General advice if you are coming to Phana
Dress: Light cotton clothing is best in Phana. In the forest you will be better to wear jeans or long trousers and trainers or light trekking shoes/boots. Sun hat and sun screen are also advisable. If you are going to teach in a village school you also need to be suitably dressed – long skirt or long trousers, top with sleeves. In December and January evenings and nights can be a little cold, so a light sweater is a good idea. It is Thai custom to cover upper arms and shoulders and legs in a temple.
Malaria is not a problem here, but you should be up to date with tetanus, typhoid, hepatitis jabs. Bring some deet or the like with you because mosquitoes can be annoying at times.
Visa: please come in as a tourist with a visa in advance (double entry if you plan to be in Thailand for more than 3 months). Visa on arrival now gives you 30 days if you arrive at a land border or if you come by air.
On arrival, please state TOURISM. Enter address as Bangkok/Chiang Mai/Ubon.
Note: Do NOT enter “volunteering” (or mention it) as you need a special visa for that and we are not able to provide you with the necessary sponsorship.
With a tourist visa obtained in advance you get 60 days which you can then extend at an immigration office near Phana for a further 30 days giving you 90 days in all. If you have a double entry tourist visa, after the 90 days you have to leave the country and come back in and you get another 60 days + 30 extension. The Laos border is about 2 hours from Phana.
ARRIVING AT BANGKOK AIRPORT (Suvannabhumhi) (spelt variously, but pronounced Soowannapoom!)
If you are staying in Bangkok when you first arrive, we advise you to take the RAIL LINK to Phayathai (pronounced PIE-a- Tie), 45 Baht. Then get a taxi-meter to your pre-booked accommodation. This way you avoid the hassle and possible scams with taxis at the airport.
It will help if you have the name of the road and accommodation printed (preferably in Thai), to show the taxi driver if necessary.