The chances are that if you are heading to Phuket for your outdoor adventure travel you will have the time of your life and never become the victim of a crime. However, there have been a number of headlines lately featuring foreigners in Phuket who have been the victims of murder, robbery, assaults and blackmail.
It’s not that Phuket is inherently dangerous, my own experiences of Phuket were that it was loud, teeming with touts and there was a definite sense of a seedy underbelly. I felt the need to exercise caution and there were a couple of times when I changed direction due to a sense of something not being right. That being said, there are some great people, I enjoyed my time there and got in some good outdoor adventure activities, particularly around the nearby islands.
Tips for safety during Phuket outdoor adventure travel;
For these tips, I have had a good hunt around the advice that is out there, including smarttraveler.gov.au ,Trip Advisor, other travelers and my own tips.
- Be vigilant about your surroundings and what is happening around you. Many crimes lately have occurred where offenders drive up on motorbikes, snatch at purses etc then drive off.
- Food and drink spiking has been known to happen and lead to violent crimes. Do not leave food/drink unattended and be a bit savvy about where you are getting it from.
- Be discreet about what you are carrying around. Handbags and flashy cameras are like a beacon to would-be thieves.
- Try to have an eye on your luggage at all times while in transit, or, at the very least don’t keep things in your checked luggage that you will be upset about losing. Items have gone missing from bags that have been underneath buses or in luggage compartments on trains.
- Be aware that there have been many reported incidences of blackmail involving jet-ski hire. Basically tourists who have hired jet-skis have been greeted on shore by groups alleging that they have damaged the jet-ski. Large sums of money are demanded to pay for the so-called damage. If you are hiring a jet- ski, it is recommended that you take photos of its condition before you take it out to provide evidence if it does come down to a dispute.
- Make sure you have organised a variety of ways to access your money before leaving for overseas e.g. travel cards, visas, debit cards etc. Don’t carry large sums of cash around with you.
Have you got any further tips to add for adventurers heading to Phuket? Please comment below.