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Visiting temples - entrance fees
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  1. #1
    Falcoe Guest

    Visiting temples - entrance fees

    Temples in Thailand are really beautiful, but I don't understand why tourist need to pay for entrance fees. I've stayed in Thailand for 12 months and been to many temples in BBK. The locals can enter the temple freely, which is written in Thai, but tourist gotta pay for entrance, written in English. I think donations to the temples for individuals will be a better way.

  2. #2
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    Not all temples are like that. I think only some of the royal ones in Bangkok. Outside of the city it is free.

    To your question why is it free for Thais? Do you think it is right they should pay to visit their own temple to pray? Do Westerners pay to visit their church?

    Yes, a donation would be better but maybe not enough people make donations.

    I agree with you that visiting the Temple of the Emerald Buddha at over 200 baht is expensive when it is free for Thais.
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    To us tourists, the temples are an attraction, but to the locals, it is a place of worship, largely different, therefore it is only right that tourists pay to enter these tourist attractions where we are there to admire its beauty and take into the sights. Whereas the locals are there for prayer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]Yes, a donation would be better but maybe not enough people make donations
    I guess there are certain maintainence to the temple, god knows how much damage could have been done making the temples tourist attraction. Without charging an overpriced fee, i believe that it can make the temple a better place and benefit the locals too.
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    I don't really mind paying the entrance fee, I think it's fair enough. But I don't especially like the way that the two tiered pricing system tries to be hidden, like with using Thai numbers (almost the only time they're used it seems) and with signs like this one...

    "Only Thai people don't need to buy tickets to enter (free entry)"

    If they think it's a justifiable system, why not make it obvious to all ? Hiding it makes it looks like they think they're doing wrong and are trying to get away with it, hoping it's not noticed.

  6. #6
    Falcoe Guest
    Any recommandations of temples in Bangkok? I myself feel very comfortable visiting Wat Rakang and thus often pay give my offerings to the temple.
    Donations is of own accord and I think it is a good practise for it.

  7. #7
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    Mike, was that at the Grand Palace? Do you mind if we use that picture on our site? We are doing a page on this subject.

    Do you know, if you can talk enough Thai and give them the correct change for the ticket for Thai people (like at the crocodile farm where it is 80 baht for us and 300 baht for you) you can sometimes get in with Thai price. They will just ask you questions like how long have you been in Thailand and what do you do. We are going to do a page with sound clips which will help people get into these places cheaper!! But, I don't think it will work for the temples.
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    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]Mike, was that at the Grand Palace? Do you mind if we use that picture on our site? We are doing a page on this subject.
    It was at the Grand Palace. Feel free to use it if you want . Like I said, I don't mind paying the higher price for this as it's just a tourist attraction for visitors rather than a main religious site. I'm just not a fan of the way it's done in a kind of underhand way.

    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]Do you know, if you can talk enough Thai and give them the correct change for the ticket for Thai people (like at the crocodile farm where it is 80 baht for us and 300 baht for you) you can sometimes get in with Thai price.
    I've never tried this I have to say, and I'm not sure I'm at a good enough level to do so anyway. Quite a few times though I've been given 'Thai speaking' discounts in shops without asking for them, even when they already knew I was going to buy at the original price!

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    I don't see anything bad about Thais charging extra for foreigners. I just think of it this way: foreigners pay the "regular" price, while Thais get a discount. Really, this is just the "Is the glass half-empty or half-full?" question.
    As for Thais doing this "covertly", I don't think that's because they are doing something wrong and trying to hide it; it seems to be just another manifestation of Kreng Jai. If the Farang doesn't know that Thais get the discount but he/she doesn't, it will not hurt his/her feelings. Of course if the Farang happens to be able to read Thai... that's another matter.

    BTW: is this "double-charging practice" extended to all foreigners, or limited to Farangs (Caucasians) only?

  10. #10
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    You're probably right Seeker

    I think the double pricing is basically for anyone not Thai. Of course, other Asians might be able to pass themselves off as Thai and pay the Thai price. But I don't think the intention is specifically to target just 'farangs'.

    Have you seen this happens in some restaurants too ? Not that often though, at least I think it's not that often. I first realised it at one of those floating restaurants, when I was given an English and Thai language menu which was just a couple of pages long. I saw Thai customers were given a purely Thai language one which was about 6 pages. I asked to have a look at the Thai language one just to see what other options there were, and noticed all the food/drinks were about 15 or 20B cheaper! They only charged me the Thai price in the end though.

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