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3 Things to NEVER Do (and 1 to ALWAYS Do) During Thailand Yacht Charter Vacation

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Recently, we blogged about the Thai government’s efforts to lift the restrictions that kept superyacht charter vessels away from Thailand.  Now that the door has been opened for foreign-flagged yachts (and American charterers and tourists), let’s look at some cultural taboos that could save you from being branded an “Ugly American.”

Woman making shocked face - black and white


Keep in mind almost 95% of the Thai population is Buddhist. As in much of southeast Asia, there are cultural taboos that non-Buddhists would not know, some of which are considered religiously offensive.


Three things NOT to do on your yacht charter Thailand:

  • Avoid touching or passing any object over the top of anyone’s head, as a person’s head is viewed as the most sacred body part.  Related to this  – Do not touch anyone’s head.
  • Don’t point your foot at any person, and don’t use your foot to move anything, as the foot is viewed as the lowliest body part.  Remember to never put your feet up on a table or any furniture. [I thought my mother-in-law was Italian, but now I’m thinking she was Thai, as she always scolded her son for putting his feet on the coffee table while watching TV!!!]

Baby between two adult feet with traditional no symbols on the feet

  • Try never to point, especially with your index finger, as it is considered extremely rude. [Think of President Bill Clinton – he always used his thumb to point, never his index finger.  Funny, he doesn’t strike me as a Buddhist!]


Here’s one thing to ALWAYS do:

  • Always use your right hand to pass or receive an object.  [Sorry left-handed charterers.]

Right hand thumbs up

One of the great joys of a yachting vacation is the Superyacht Experience – the chance to embrace diversity, participate in unique cultural events, and rejuvenate mind, body, and spirit.  By avoiding these taboos, think how much more enjoyable your Phuket yacht charter vacation will be.  You won’t offend the wonderful people of Thailand, and your mother won’t scold you for putting your feet up on the yacht’s furniture!


For more information on chartering a yacht in Thailand, contact 1-800 Yacht Charters at +1.800.922.4824 (toll free in North America) or +1.305.253.7245 (local and international) or use our convenient online contact form right now. #knowbeforeyougo #yachtcharter

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