Safety & Danger in Bangkok, Thailand
As big cities go, Bangkok is pretty darn safe. You can walk into most neighborhoods and experience little more than curious residents -- especially in the daytime. Actually, its very common to see young women walking alone at night as well.
The nearest you will come to being terrorized Hollywood movie style in public will be from touts or an occasional beggar. Later in the evenings on major boulevards men will often be approached and propositioned by hookers -- female, male and "lady-boys". A polite, "No, thanks," and shaking your head will normally suffice -- or Bt x,000.
Damn Those Pedestrians! Full Speed Ahead!
Traffic will probably be your greatest threat in Bangkok. First, assume that pedestrians never have the right-of-way. While it's true that traffic will usually stop at traffic lights at major intersections, Thai drivers seem to always be looking for an advantage.
- Motorcycles, especially will jump traffic lights
- Left turns, even at stop-lights are usually legal
- "Stop" is often interpreted as "reduce speed"
- Use the overhead boulevard crossings is possible
- If you do have to cross a major street If you actually decide to “jaywalk” one of the major boulevards in Bangkok, especially those with a center median, beware of:
• police, you will likely be fined
• cables stretched along the center of the median -- meant to block pedestrian crossing
• and can be extremely embarrassing to find yourself stranded on the median. without benefit of signals, wait for traffic to stop, then be careful of motorcycles navigating between the lanes of automobiles.
- Watch how Thais navigate Bangkok's traffic.