Clothing for Thailand - Weather, Laundry & Shopping
Clothing choices for Thailand tend to be personal and depend on activities, seasons and locations. A businessman planning a week in Bangkok will probably want to bring lightweight suits and cotton shirts.
Short sleeve shirts are acceptable for most dining venues.
Adventure travelers will be more prone to walking shorts and pullover cotton shirts.
Weather will play a definite factor for most travelers. During the rainy season, lightweight cotton clothing will dry faster. Sandals will not get waterlogged like leather or athletic shoes, but they may be frowned upon in some venues.
Location and season can make a difference if one is traveling to the mountainous areas of the North and Northeast. A long sleeved shirt or light jacket is often advised for night time outdoors.
Thai Temples and Palaces will usually ban shorts and tank tops, especially for women.
T Shirts seem to be extremely popular among tourists ... and they are widely available in the street markets around Thailand. But they are not considered proper dress with adult Thais. A pullover shirt with a collar makes a much better impression.
Grooming is important to the Thais, who tend to be fastidious. You will seldom see an unkempt and dirty Thai unless s/he is working at a dirty job. They tend to shower several times per day. The heat and humidity in Thailand makes most westerners perspire profusely. Plan on bathing three times per day.
Sitting at the table next to a group just back from a trek who decided to have a cold drink and a snack before a shower can be downright unpleasant.
Laundry services are widely available all over Thailand, and laundry means washed and ironed/pressed. Larger hotels will tend to be expensive, but for short stays are probably more practical. For longer stays in a given area it may pay to look around for a laundry service. Asking a local will usually result in finding one nearby.
Shopping in Thailand If your body type falls in the medium weight category and you are not overly tall, finding clothing at the sidewalk markets and department stores in the larger cities if usually easy. If you are staying for longer periods of time, tailored shirts, blouses, dresses, trousers, suits and shoes can be a bargain compared to western prices.