Win a Free One month Stay in Thailand in a “One and Only” Contest


The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has launched an online competition designed to serve grow bearing of a kingdom’s “Thainess” products opposite amicable media networks. Participants are authorised to win a giveaway one-month stay in Thailand as good as a operation of giveaway short-stay holidays, including a tip esteem of a oppulance package. Non-Thai travellers from around a universe as good as Thai adults are invited to pointer adult for a “One and Only” contest. For foreigners, a applications are open from now until 30 Apr 2015, while Thai people can join this debate starting in May 2015.

For some-more information, greatfully visit:


Minister Kobkarn said, “The Royal Thai Government has announced 2015 as a year to “Discover Thainess”, that is in line with a inhabitant bulletin to foster sustainability and accelerate mercantile and amicable growth underneath a Royal truth of compelling a sufficiency economy. we would like to entice all amicable media users all over a universe to attend enthusiastically in this singular competition that has been specifically designed for them.”

Governor Thawatchai added, “We trust this innovative and artistic debate will beget a certain hum on amicable media networks all over a world, and give serve inflection to a pivotal niche-market concentration on “Thainess”.


The competition is sponsored by Thai Airways International, The Peninsula Bangkok, Sukhothai Heritage Resort, The Raya Surawong-Bangkok, Sri Panwa Phuket, De Naga Chiang Mai, The AETAS Bangkok, Wanaburee Resort Khao Lak, Paradise Beach Resort Samui, Chatrium Residence Bangkok, Chatrium Hotel Riverside Bangkok, Palm Beach Resort Phuket, Emporium Suites by Chatrium Bangkok, Maitria Hotel Sukhumvit 18, and Thavorn Beach Village and Spa Phuket.

In a nutshell, visitors can select an activity from 5 options underneath a “Discover Thainess” theme: Muay Thai, normal Thai dancing, Thai cooking, creation Thai-style floral garlands, and vocalization Thai. The “Discover Thainess’ website will upload a video shave for any activity to be used as a guideline for creation their possess video. Visitors can film themselves enjoying a same activity, contention a shave to a contest, and get a possibility to be a partial of this singular and culturally abounding experience.


The eligibility manners cover non-Thai adults aged 20-45, possibly vital in Thailand or abroad. All contingency be amicable media savvy, regulating Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, Pinterest, Wechat or Weibo on a unchanging basis. The 3 comparison teams contingency be means to stay in Thailand for 1 month.

In new years, TAT has grown assertive online and digital selling strategies to foster tourism around all forms of new media and opposite all devices; such as, mobile phones, intelligent phones, and tablets. These have been designed to strech specific aim audiences worldwide, generally immature travellers and families. Social media networks are personification an increasingly critical purpose in a tourism sector. The Internet has altered consumer poise in many ways, both in terms of a approach people buy their transport products, a destinations they choose, a volume of time they have to travel, and a volume of income they spend.

People are fervent to share practice around amicable media, creation it a homogeneous of word-of-mouth marketing, a many absolute means of personalised broadside for any destination. Participants can check out full sum of a contest, including eligibility, rules, regulations, procedures and prizes here:


Airport Rail Link extends late night use for Suvarnabhumi

airport rail link

In sequence to support for passengers nearing late during night during Suvarnabhumi Airport, a Airport Rail Link will be adding dual some-more trains after midnight. The additional trains skip from a airfield during 12:15 am and 12:30 am and transport uninterrupted to Phayathai Station during a cost of 45 baht.

The Airport Rail Link has been portion some-more business in new years. In 2013, an boost of 4.56% was available and a figure jumped to 9.29% in 2014. For this year, a expansion in newcomer series is targeted during 7%.


Tips for Traveling During Typhoon Season in…

The typhoons that frequently lash Southeast Asia during monsoon deteriorate issue in a Pacific Ocean before relocating west. With a further of comfortable water, light winds, and humidity, a thunderstorm can grow in power to turn a typhoon.

Not all pleasant storms are typhoons. In fact, a word “typhoon” is customarily a informal name for a sold kind of charge that hits a northwest Pacific Ocean. (That’s flattering many all of Southeast Asia.)

Storms with identical characteristics, though strike other tools of a world, go by opposite names: hurricane for storms that strike a Atlantic and Northeast Pacific; and tropical cyclone for storms inspiring a Indian Ocean and South Pacific. (More information here: The Difference Between Hurricanes, Typhoons, and Cyclones)

As per a NOAA, a “typhoon” represents a impassioned scale of a charge catalog: any charge value job a gale contingency have winds surpassing 33 m/s (74 mph).

When is Typhoon Season?

To pronounce of a gale “season” is rather inaccurate. While a infancy of typhoons reliably rise between May and October, typhoons can start any time of a year.

The Philippines’ many deleterious charge in new memory, Typhoon Bopha (Pablo), done landfall in early Dec 2012, causing over 600 deaths and an estimated $1.04 billion in damage.

What Countries Are Affected by Typhoons?

Some of Southeast Asia’s many heavily-trafficked traveller destinations are also a many exposed to gale damage. Places tighten to a sea and that possess frail or dull infrastructure should chuck adult large red flags in gale season. These typhoon-induced occurrences can put a tighten on your transport plans:

  • High winds. Winds in additional of 70kph can lift off roofs; even stronger winds can disintegrate groundless buildings and billboards. Flying objects can kill gullible pedestrians.
  • Storm surges. Typhoons are quite dangerous in destinations tighten to a sea, as tidal surges mostly start during such storms. These high tides can inundate streets and destroy groundless buildings. (These surges are identical to, though totally graphic from, tsunami – review about Tsunami in Bali.)
  • Landslides. Typhoons move pushing rain, that can boost a risk of landslide in alpine or hilly areas. If over 100mm of sleet has depressed nonstop in a exposed area, it’s time to cruise evacuation.
  • Restricted mobility. Airlines and sight routes can (and do) tighten down in a eventuality of a typhoon. After a gale passes, waste competence retard sight marks or roads, preventing we from removing from place to place.
  • Natural devastation. Landslides, defeated buildings, overturned trees, and a like can symbol a trail of a typhoon. Death, too – nonetheless satellite tracking and early warning systems do their partial in clearing a gale trail of intensity victims, obscure a physique count.

Not all countries in Southeast Asia are influenced by typhoons. Countries with landmasses closest to a equator – Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore – possess a pleasant equatorial meridian that does not knowledge vital climatic peaks and valleys.

Countries in a rest of Southeast Asia – a Philippines, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and Laos – are not as lucky. When gale deteriorate hits, these countries distortion directly in harm’s way. Luckily, these countries also closely lane a swell of typhoons, so visitors customarily get plenty warning over radio, TV, and supervision meteorological sites. (See this essay for links to those resources: Early Warnings for Volcanoes, Floods, Tsunamis, and Earthquakes.)

The Philippines is generally a initial stop for many typhoons, being a easternmost nation in a gale belt.

The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) is a supervision group tasked to guard and news a swell of pleasant cyclones flitting by a area of responsibility. Visitors to a Philippines can locate updates on a categorical TV channels or on their “Project Noah” website (

The Philippines follows a possess fixing complement for typhoons, that competence means some confusion: Typhoon “Bopha” in a rest of a universe is famous as gale “Pablo” in a country. For a reason why, review this essay on Tropical Cyclones in a Philippines.

Vietnam marks a entrance of typhoons into their domain around their National Centre for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting, that runs this English denunciation site to news gale progress.

Cambodia‘s Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology runs a English-language to refurbish visitors on storms inspiring a country.

Hong Kong is tighten adequate to Southeast Asia to be influenced by many typhoons entering a region; a Hong Kong Observatory runs this site tracking charge movements. Find out more: What to Do in a Hong Kong Typhoon and Typhoon Season in China.

What Should we Do in a Event of a Typhoon?

Southeast Asian countries influenced by typhoons customarily have a complement in place for traffic with imminent typhoons. When in such a country, follow any orders to leave but perplexity – it competence only save your life.

Watch out for warnings. Typhoons have a singular saving grace: they’re simply tracked by satellite. Typhoon warnings competence be released by supervision watchdog agencies between 24 to 48 hours before a gale is scheduled to make landfall.

Keep your ears open, as gale warnings will fundamentally be promote on radio or TV. Asian feeds for CNN, BBC and other news wire channels can yield present reports on imminent typhoons.

Pack carefully. The complicated winds and rains that typhoons move need that we move garments that can withstand a bad weather, like windbreakers. Bring cosmetic bags and other waterproof containers to keep critical papers and garments dry. The tips in a essay on What to Pack for Monsoon Season Travel in Southeast Asia are really applicable to a gale situation.

Stay indoors. It’s dangerous to stay out in a open during a typhoon. Billboards can retard a way, or tumble right on your vehicle. Objects sent drifting by a high winds competence harm or kill we outright. And electrical cables competence fly giveaway from overhead, electrocuting a unwary. Stay indoors in a protected area while a charge rages.

Make depletion preparations. Is your hotel, review or homestay stout adequate to withstand a typhoon? Consider following a locals to a designated depletion core if a answer to that is “no”.

International Balloon Festival in Hat Yai 6-7 March

International Balloon Festival to flog off in Songkhla in March

The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is mouth-watering tourists to revisit Songkhla range in Southern Thailand for a International Balloon Festival hold in March.


Hatyai Municipality Office and a TAT will be hosting a eventuality during Jiranakorn Stadium in Hatyai district of Songkhla province. The International Balloon Festival will take place from 6th-7th Mar 2015. Visitors can design to see colorful hot-air balloons in opposite shapes from around a globe.


They will also be given hot-air balloon rides to see Hatyai with a bird’s eye view. Organizers have designed song concerts, parades, games, and food and libation vendors during a festival. Tourists are also invited to a night eventuality called ‘Balloon Night Glow’ that will come with fantastic light and sound shows.


Tak Bat – a Morning Alms-Giving in…

The tak bat, or a Buddhist monks’ morning collection of food in Luang Prabang, has turn a must-see for travelers to Luang Prabang in Laos. And nonetheless a tak bat‘s flourishing recognition among tourists might also be branch this relaxed protocol into an involved one.

The use of charity food to monks is many manifest in Theravada Buddhist countries like Laos and Thailand, where a use sustains vast friar communities. “The monks leave a monasteries early in a morning,” writes Buddhism beam Barbara O’Brien. “They travel singular file, oldest first, carrying their donation bowls in front of them. Laypeople wait for them, infrequently kneeling, and place food, flowers or scent sticks in a bowls.”

(For a quote in context – and for some-more information on a tradition of charity food donation to Buddhist monks – review this article: The Buddhist Practice of Offering Food.)

In Luang Prabang, this tradition manifests as a morning protocol where monks silently line a streets while locals (and meddlesome tourists) put gifts of food into a bowls carried by a monks.

Tak Bat – A Venerable Tradition in Luang Prabang

It’s one of a many clear images of Laos – from 5:30 in a morning onward, wordless lines of saffron-clad monks travel down a streets of Luang Prabang to collect alms. The locals are there forward of them, prepared with bowls full of a Lao tack gummy rice; any priest gets a scoopful in their bowl. (More information here: Laos Cooking Culture.)

With roughly eighty temples in Luang Prabang alone, this adds adult to hundreds of monks, who take opposite routes depending on where in city their church stands. The routes that travel by Th Sakkarin and Th Kamal are among a many noticed by tourists, nonetheless a protocol occurs all around Luang Prabang.

Each priest carries a vast lidded bowl, that is trustworthy to a tag unresolved from a monk’s shoulder. As monks record past a line of almsgivers – who are customarily sitting or kneeling on a travel – these containers are reverently filled with handfuls of gummy rice or bananas.

The best rice for a tak bat protocol is prepared by a almsgivers themselves. The locals arise adult early to ready a collection of gummy rice, that they afterwards dip easily into any monk’s play as a line files past.

The protocol is finished in silence; a almsgivers do not speak, nor do a monks. The monks travel in meditation, and a almsgivers retaliate with honour by not unfortunate a monk’s pondering peace. For hundreds of years, a protocol has cemented a symbiotic attribute between a monks and a almsgivers who say them – by feeding a monks and assisting a laypeople make merit, tak bat supports both a monks (who need a food) and a almsgivers (who need devout redemption).

  • Image of Tak Bat in Luang Prabang, Laos

Tak Bat in Luang Prabang – Dos and Don’t’s

The torrent of tourism in Luang Prabang has involved a tak bat ceremony, as many tourists proceed a protocol not as a eremite rite to be respected, though as a informative uncover to enjoy. Tourists mostly shove a monks, violation their meditation; they take peep cinema of a line; and they interrupt a protocol with their inapt noise, actions and dress.

As a result, fewer locals are prone to take part, since they exclude to be partial of a dog-and-pony uncover for tourists. Some Lao officials are deliberation interlude a tradition since of a low offense caused by tourists’ brutal behavior.

It’s not that tourists aren’t acquire to see or attend – they are giveaway to do so, though usually with a scold actions and intentions are in place.

  • Don’t provide a protocol as a photo-op. Be there to give overtly and humbly. If we can’t do that, keep a deferential stretch and don’t interrupt a participants – and if we can’t do even that, don’t be there.
  • If you’re not participating, keep a deferential distance, and stay out of a approach of possibly a monks or almsgivers.
  • Dress properly. Keep your shoulders, torso and legs covered. This is doubly critical if we devise to attend in a almsgiving. Take off your boots if you’re giving alms.
  • Don’t use your camera flash. It breaks a monks’ concentration, and detracts from a gravity of a ritual.
  • Do not position yourself so your conduct is aloft than a monks’ heads.

The following tips request privately if you’re participating in a tak bat ceremony:

  • Don’t buy food from travel vendors nearby; if we have to participate, make rice yourself (or have your hotel ready we some rice).
  • Do not make eye hit with a monks.
  • Do not hold a monks. Withdraw your hands immediately after fixation your charity in a bowl.
  • Do crawl before a monks to uncover your respect.

For some-more tips about working reasonably in a Buddhist church or within a context of a Buddhist ceremony, review this article: Visiting Buddhist Temples – Do’s and Don’ts.

What You Need to Know Before Your First Visit…

Visa and Other Entry Requirements

Before formulation your trip, deliberate a Thailand Profile page for simple information about a country.

You’ll customarily be authorised into Thailand if your pass is current for during slightest 6 months after arrival, with adequate pages for embarkation stamp on arrival, and contingency uncover explanation of sufficient supports and leading or lapse passage.

American, Canadian, and UK adults do not need to acquire a visa for stays not longer than 30 days. For some-more details, we can revisit a Kingdom of Thailand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs page on entrance requirements.

For a prolongation of visa need to request to one of a Thai Immigration Offices. For details, hit a Immigration Bureau Head Office: Soi Suan-Plu, South Sathorn Rd, Bangkok, Thailand Phone: 66(0)2 287 3101 until 287 3110; Fax: 66(0)2 287 1310, 66(0)2 287 1516

Customs.You might move these equipment into Thailand though profitable etiquette duty:

  • 200 cigarettes, or no some-more than 500 grams of smoking tobacco
  • One liter of spirits / booze / malt liquor.
  • Up to 10,000 Baht value of cosmetics, perfume, soaps, toothpaste, and other personal effects – presumption these are for personal use only
  • Film: a reasonable volume for personal use

The central Thai Customs Department page can fill we in on what we can and can’t move in.

Drug trafficking in Thailand carries a genocide chastisement – underneath no resources should we ever get held carrying any on your approach in!

Airport Tax.You will be charged an airfield taxation of 500 Baht on depart on any general flight. Passengers of domestic flights will be charged 40 Baht.

Health Immunizations

You’ll customarily be asked to uncover health certificates of vaccination opposite smallpox, cholera, and yellow heat if you’re entrance from famous putrescent areas. More information on Thailand-specific health issues are discussed during a CDC page on Thailand and during a MDTravelHealth webpage.


Thailand is mostly protected for unfamiliar visitors, nonetheless a nation is located in a segment with an towering risk of terrorism. The Thai military have been mostly effective in defence a reserve of their tourists.

Because of a ongoing predicament in Thailand’s southern provinces (Yala, Pattani, Narathiwat and Songkhla), travelers are suggested not to revisit these areas, or transport overland by a Malaysian extent with Thailand.

Violence opposite tourists is thankfully rare, though visitors might be exposed to pickpocketing, fraud, and certainty tricks. One common device involves rowdiness tourists into shopping feign “smuggled Burmese jewels” during intensely low prices. Once a traveller discovers they’re fake, a vendors have customarily skeltered divided though a trace.

Sexual assaults on women have been famous to occur, so womanlike travelers should sojourn vigilant. Be clever about usurpation drinks from strangers, keep an eye on your passports and credit cards, and don’t lift too many money or jewelry.

  • The Australian Government’s Travel Advisory on Thailand
  • The United States Government’s Consular Information Sheet on Thailand

Thai law shares a draconian opinion to drugs common in Southeast Asia. For some-more information, read: Drug Laws and Penalties in Southeast Asia – by Country.

Money Matters

The Thai section of banking is called a Baht (THB), and it is divided into 100 satang. Notes come in 10-baht, 20-baht, 50-baht, 100-baht and 1,000-baht denominations. Click here to see a Baht’s sell rate opposite a US dollar. Currency can be exchanged during a airport, banks, hotels and accredited moneychangers.

American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa credit cards are generally accepted, though not universally. Cheaper guesthouses and restaurants do not accept plastic.

ATMs are in many (if not all) cities and traveller areas, including Phuket, Ko Pha Ngan, Ko Samui, Ko Tao, Ko Chang, and Ko Phi Phi. Depending on a bank, a withdrawal extent might operation from 20,000B to 100,000B.

Tipping. Tipping isn’t customary use in Thailand, so you’re not compulsory to tip unless asked. All vital hotels and restaurants accurate a use assign of 10%. Taxi drivers don’t design to be tipped, though won’t protest if we turn a scale transport out to a subsequent 5 or 10 baht.


Thailand is a pleasant nation with a comfortable and wet meridian via a year. The nation is during a warmest between Mar and May, with an normal heat of around 93°F (34°C). From Nov to February, a northeast monsoon fast lowers temperatures down to 65°F-90°F (18°C-32°C)centigrade in Bangkok, and even reduce in a northern areas of a country. The continue in Thailand is during a best from Feb to March; a continue is during a mildest and a beaches are during their best.

When/Where to Go. Thailand is best gifted between Nov and February, overdue to a northeast monsoon’s cool, dry winds. Chilly nights – and sub-zero temperatures during high altitudes – are not unheard of.

From Mar to June, Thailand undergoes a hot, dry summers, with temperatures commanding out during 104ºF (40º C). Avoid Thailand during a summer – even a locals protest about a heat!

What to Wear. Wear light, cool, and infrequent wardrobe on many occasions. On grave occasions, jackets and ties on group are recommended, while women should wear dresses.

Don’t wear shorts and beachwear outward a beach, generally if you’re formulation to call on a church or other place of worship.

Women would be correct to dress respectfully, covering shoulders and legs covered.

Southeast Asia’s Unforgettable Beaches

This island in a Southern Gulf of Thailand was once famous essentially as King Chulalongkorn’s favorite vacation getaway. In a past 20 years, a place has grown rather fast from “backpacker’s best kept secret” to “tourist prohibited spot”.

The little island has copiousness to offer: primitive beaches done for swimming and snorkeling; accommodations to fit any budget; fun outside activities for adults and kids alike; and, for partygoers, Haad Rin’s scandalous “Full Moon Parties”: described elsewhere as “a monthly ‘Burning Man’” with a excess of coma music, fire-spinners, drugs, and alcohol.

To get to Kho Phangan, take a train from Bangkok; this will take we to a provincial collateral of Surat Thani, where we can house a packet to Thong Sala on Koh Phangan.

  • Koh Phangan Experience Guide – Transportation options to and from Kho Phangan (offsite)

Resorts in Koh Phangan

Guests in Koh Phangan have copiousness of resorts to select from. A brief list of hotels and resorts in Koh Phangan follows below.

  • Royal Orchid Resort – Mae Haad Beach. 0066 77 374182; From $25 (compare rates).
  • Bounty Resort – Haad Dao Deuk. From $49 (compare rates).
  • Baan Bang Rak Resort – Hin Kong Bay. From $76 (compare rates).
  • Phanganburi Resort – 120/1 Haad Rin Nai Beach. From $79 (compare rates).
  • Santhiya Resort and Spa – 22/7 Moo 5 Bantai. From $125 (compare rates).
  • Rasananda Resort Koh Phangan – 5/5 Moo 5 Thong Nai Pan Noi Beach Baan Tai. From $176 (compare rates).

Traveling in Southeast Asia’s Monsoon Season

Throughout Southeast Asia, a monsoon deteriorate generally refers to a “southwest monsoon”, a time of a year when a prevalent winds blow adult from a warm, soppy equatorial seas, bringing in rains and storms. This southwest monsoon generally starts in May or June, reaching a heat representation between Aug and Oct (typhoon deteriorate in Vietnam and a Philippines) afterwards tapering off by November.

Rain and cloudy skies symbol a continue via a monsoon season. At best, areas influenced by a monsoon knowledge a few days of sunshine, punctuated by invariably stormy days. As Jul turns into August, a rains feature – pleasant depressions develop into storms or typhoons that emerge from a Pacific and hurl west, crashing by a Philippines and Vietnam and inflicting casualties along a way.

By Dec or January, a winds’ prevalent instruction reverses. Now a winds blow from a north, pushing cold, dry atmosphere from China and Siberian Russia into Southeast Asia. This signals a commencement of a dry season, generally durability until a winds change again in May, ushering in another monsoon season.

  • For a some-more minute reason of a mechanics behind a Southeast Asian stormy season, review this primer: What Is a Monsoon?

How a Monsoon Season Affects Southeast Asia’s Destinations

The countries with landmasses closest to a equator – Indonesia, Malaysia, southern Philippines, and Singapore – have a pleasant equatorial climate, regularly soppy and soppy via a year. These countries do not knowledge a climatic peaks and valleys that start in a rest of a region: small to no typhoons, though no extended cool, dry periods, either.

The monsoon’s effects are some-more clearly felt in a rest of Southeast Asia; a conflict of a stormy deteriorate plays massacre with some of a region’s many dear traveller sites.

The Thailand beach locales of Phuket and Koh Chang knowledge dangerous slice currents during stormy season; these explain several lives a year, customarily tourists who weren’t briefed on a hazardous internal tides. In Jun 2013 alone, Phuket’s slice currents killed 3 tourists in as many days. (Source)

  • Find out some-more about Thailand Weather.

In Vietnam, a stream flitting by a ancestral city of Hoi An practice yearly flooding; a Tan Ky Old House beside a stream displays high-water outlines on their walls for tourists to see. (You’ll find a design of this in this blog entrance on Hoi An, it’s a sixth design down.) Unwary tourists might be trapped in their hotels, or worse, killed by peep floods.

  • Find out some-more about Weather in Vietnam.

In Siem Reap, Cambodia, a monsoon continue brings about a certain change in during slightest one vital traveller destination. “The Angkor temples are during their cultured best during a soppy season,” a folks over during Canby Publications tell us. “The surrounding moats and reflecting pools are full, a jungle is sensuous and dampness move outs a colors of a moss and mould lonesome stones of a temples.”

  • Find out some-more about Weather in Cambodia.

In a Philippines, a change of breeze instruction affects a beach island of Boracay: a southwest winds describe White Beach dangerous to swimmers. The beachfront is defaced with pure cosmetic shields set adult by locals to strengthen conflicting drifting sand. Most of a traveller movement moves to Balabag Beach on a other side of a island, that is safeguarded from a misfortune of a wind.

  • Find out some-more about Weather in a Philippines.

The island of Bali demonstrates what happens when we cranky a Equator: a monsoon deteriorate there is a conflicting of those locales serve north. Bali practice a heaviest rainfall between Dec and March; only as Vietnam and a Philippines are fresh themselves for typhoons between Jun and September, a dry and cold deteriorate commences in Bali.

  • Find out some-more about Weather in Indonesia.

In general, mobility is rather limited during a monsoon season. Some ferries portion island destinations stop handling out of reserve concerns, and some overland routes are done insurmountable by floods. Booking flights becomes a odd affair, too: flights are some-more disposed to check or termination during a stormy season.

But it’s not all that bad: ensue to the subsequent page to find out because roving during monsoon deteriorate can be a good thing, and review adult on the monsoon transport tips.

Visiting Buddhist Temples

Buddhist temples are found all over Southeast Asia and many visitors find themselves in during slightest one – if not several – during their travels. In all tools of Asia, life in tiny villages typically centers around a church or internal shrine.

Full of history, intrigue, considerable design and forged reliefs, many temples are wonders to explore. Usually pacific and hushed, erratic a drift of a church while mislaid in your possess thoughts is a noted knowledge no matter your eremite preference.

Foreigners are always acquire in Buddhist temples, customarily with a grin even; there is no reason to be intimidated. Following a few elementary manners of practice ensures that we don’t incidentally provoke someone, nonetheless we would positively be forgiven anyway!

Buddhist Temple Etiquette

  • Remove Your Hat and Shoes: Shoes should always be private and left outward of a categorical ceremony area. The raise of boots is an apparent denote of where to leave them.
  • Show Respect: Turn off mobile phones, mislay headphones, reduce your voice, equivocate inapt conversation, mislay hats, and no smoking or nipping gum.
  • Cover Yourself: This is a order many abandoned by tourists who dress for a feverishness in countries around Southeast Asia. Shoulders should be lonesome and long-pants ragged rather than shorts. Some temples in traveller places might be some-more lenient, though your tact will be appreciated.
  • Respect a Buddha Statues: Never touch, lay near, or mount on a Buddha statue or a lifted platform. Get accede before holding photographs and never do so during worship. When exiting, behind divided from a Buddha before branch your back.
  • Don’t Point: Pointing during things or people around a church is deliberate intensely rude. To prove something, use your right palm with a palm confronting upwards. When sitting, never indicate your feet during a chairman or picture of Buddha.
  • Stand Up: If we occur to be sitting in a ceremony area when monks or nuns enter, mount to uncover respect; wait until they have finished their prostrations before sitting again.

Interacting With Buddhist Monks

Monks are some of a friendliest people we will accommodate during your travels. The monks that we see unconditional a church stairs might be reduction endangered about mud and some-more meddlesome in stealing a insects so that no one incidentally stairs on one!

  • Eating: Monks do not eat after noon; be aware about eating or snacking around them.
  • Body Language: If a priest is sitting, uncover honour by sitting before starting a conversation. Avoid sitting aloft than a priest if we can assistance it. Never indicate your feet during any Buddhist while sitting.
  • Right Hand Only: Only use your right palm when giving or receiving something from a monk.

Advice for Women

A lady should never hold or palm a priest something. Even incidentally brushing opposite their robes requires that they quick and perform a clarification ritual. Food or donations contingency be upheld to a male initial and afterwards on to a priest – even a monk’s possess mom contingency follow this rule!


Nearly each church has a tiny steel box for receiving donations from a public. These donations keep a church running, customarily on a really skinny budget. If we enjoyed your visit, giving a tiny volume would meant a lot.

A standard concession is US $1 or less.

Going a Little Extra

While positively not expected, these gestures will uncover that we took a time to investigate Buddhist practice before your visit.

  • Enter a tabernacle with your left feet first, and exit by heading with your right foot. This gesticulate symbolically represents a whole.
  • The normal nod for a priest is to place a hands together in a prayer-like gesticulate and give a slight bow. Known as a wai in Thailand or a som pas in Cambodia, a hands are hold aloft than common (near a forehead) to uncover some-more honour to monks.

When to Visit Buddhist Temples

The best time to revisit a Buddhist church is early in a morning (just after sunrise) when a heat is still cold and a monks are returning from their donation procession.

Visiting Mosques

Many countries in Southeast Asia – quite Malaysia – have a brew of Buddhist temples and Islamic mosques open to a public.

  • Read some-more about visiting mosques.

Knowing internal practice is not a usually approach that we can make a difference. Read some-more about obliged transport in Southeast Asia.

Why Southeast Asia Has a Harshest Drug Laws…

Southeast Asia’s governments levy a toughest drug laws on a planet. You can’t censure them – a mythological “Golden Triangle”, a patch of genuine estate adjacent Thailand, Laos and Myanmar, is pound in a heart of a region, and is a universe hotspot of narcotics production.

In annoy of such draconian measures, certain places are flush with bootleg drugs. However, we should still defer to internal laws when offering a probability to indulge – your standing as a immigrant does not make we reduction expected to be punished for drug use, utterly a opposite!

Some general, unsolicited advice:

  • Don’t move your personal accumulate with you. Don’t get conned into carrying drugs for others, either as personal favors or for profit. The risks distant transcend a probability of removing divided with it. You can gamble a Bali Nine or Schapelle Corby (see Notable Arrests below) suspicion they could get divided with it, too.
  • If you’re bringing medication drugs with you, play it protected and move a medication for these drugs.

Notable Drug Arrests in Southeast Asia

The following visitors to Southeast Asia fought a law, and a law won – with mostly depot formula to a lawbreakers.

  • Schappelle Corby – convicted of bootlegging roughly 10 pounds of pot into Bali. She could have perceived a genocide chastisement – instead, a decider condemned her to 20 years in prison. (Schapelle Corby – Wikipedia)
  • Nguyen Tuong Van – hanged during Singapore’s Changi jail in 2005. He had been hold with 14 ounces of heroin during Changi International Airport during a stopover between Cambodia and Australia. The Singapore supervision denied a Australian government’s ask for clemency. (Nguyen Van Tuong – Wikipedia)
  • The Bali Nine – an Australian drug ring confronting a genocide chastisement for bootlegging heroin into Bali. They are being hold for attempting to filch 18 pounds of heroin into Bali. (Bali Nine – Wikipedia)
  • Michelle Leslie – Australian indication hold with dual Ecstasy pills in 2005. She after pleaded guilty to possession, was condemned to time served, and was released. (Michelle Leslie – Wikipedia)
  • Kevin John Barlow and Brian Geoffrey Chambers were hanged in Malaysia in 1986 for trafficking 5 ounces of heroin. (Barlow and Chambers execution – Wikipedia)

Drug Laws and Penalties in Southeast Asia – by Country

Southeast Asian countries have despotic laws in place for drug-related offenses, and aren’t fearful to use them.

The region’s diplomats aren’t fearful to omit appeals for indulgence from Western governments, if any are done during all. Americans underneath detain on drug-related charges poise a quandary for a State Department – a U.S. supervision might jeopardise a possess fight on drugs if it intercedes in such cases.

The impending laws and penalties for any nation are listed in brief below.

Drug Laws in Cambodia. The genocide chastisement was abolished in Cambodia, though a Law on a Control of Drugs bodes ill for those hold with tranquil substances, during slightest on paper. Cambodia’s laws allot punishment trimming from 5 years to life in prison, though law coercion is lax.

Marijuana expenditure is partial of a internal informative fabric; tough drugs are easier to come by compared to a rest of a region, though a law will come down tough on we if you’re hold bootlegging a things opposite inhabitant borders. (More information in this talk with an expat in Cambodia – Drugs in Cambodia – “Pot Prohibition Never Really Caught On”.

Drug Laws in Indonesia. Indonesian drug laws allot a genocide chastisement for narcotics trafficking and adult 20 years in jail for pot offenses. Simple possession of Group 1 drugs formula in jail terms of 4 to twelve years. More on Indonesia’s drug laws here: Drug Laws in Bali and a Rest of Indonesia.

Drug Laws in Laos. The Criminal Code of Laos penalizes possession of narcotics underneath Article 135. A new rider of a formula lifted a limit chastisement for drug offenses – from 10 years’ imprisonment, a law now calls for genocide by banishment patrol for those found guilty of possessing some-more than 500 grams of heroin.

Laos is partial of a “Golden Triangle” of drug poppy prolongation in Southeast Asia, and business shows no pointer of negligence down – according to a new UN Office on Drugs and Crime report, “opium poppy cultivation in Myanmar and Lao PDR rose to 63,800 hectares in 2014 compared to 61,200 ha in 2013, augmenting for a eighth uninterrupted year and scarcely triple a volume harvested in 2006.”

Drug Laws in Malaysia. Malaysia’s possess drug laws opposition Singapore’s in their rudeness towards suspected drug traffickers. The Dangerous Drugs Act 1952 (Act 234) outlines a penalties for a importation, use, and sale of bootleg drugs.

Long jail sentences and complicated fines are imperative for suspects hold with tranquil substances, and a genocide chastisement is prescribed for drug traffickers. (The law presumes we are trafficking in drugs if you’re hold in possession of during slightest half an unit of heroin or during slightest 7 ounces of marijuana.)

Warrantless arrest/detention might also be prescribed underneath Section 31 of Act 234; such apprehension might be extended adult to fifteen days if a review can’t be finished in 24 hours. For sum on a drugs and penalties imposed for possession of such, review this outline of Malaysia’s oppressive drug laws.

Drug Laws in a Philippines. The Philippines Dangerous Drugs Act prescribes a genocide chastisement for drug traffickers hold with during slightest 0.3 unit of opium, morphine, heroin, cocaine, pot resin, or during slightest 17 ounces of marijuana. The Philippines has imposed a duration on a genocide penalty, though drug offenders are still punished cruelly if hold – a smallest judgment is 12 years in jail for possession of.17 unit of bootleg drugs.

Drug Laws in Singapore. Singapore’s Misuse of Drugs Act is really despotic – persons hold with during slightest half an unit of heroin, during slightest 1 unit of hypnotic or cocaine, or during slightest 17 ounces of pot are reputed to be trafficking in drugs, and face a imperative genocide penalty. 400 people were hanged for drug trafficking in Singapore between 1991 and 2004. For some-more information, review a article: Drug Laws in Singapore.

Drug Laws in Thailand. The Narcotics Control Laws of Thailand allot a genocide chastisement for carrying difficulty we narcotics (heroin) “for a purpose of disposal”. The genocide chastisement for drug trafficking has not been imposed given 2004, though reconstruction conversing is mostly imposed on convicted drug users.

Drug Laws in Vietnam. Vietnam particularly enforces a drug laws. As prescribed by Article 96a and Article 203 of a Vietnamese Criminal Code, possession of heroin in quantities incomparable than 1.3 pounds gets we a imperative genocide sentence. In 2007, 85 people were executed for drug associated offenses.

AirAsia Launches Bangkok-Buriram Daily Flights

air asia buriram

AirAsia will shortly be rising a new approach track in Thailand from Bangkok’s Don Mueang airfield to Buriram in a Northeast of Thailand. Buriram was one of a places selected for a Tourism Authority of Thailand’s “Cities That Can’t Be Missed” debate as it has a accumulation of appeals. The city is home to universe eminent mill palace Panom Rung Castle as good as Mueang Tum Castle, another good famous landmark that draws many visitors any year. Buriram also has a some-more complicated pull as it is a heading plcae for sporting activities with a Motor Sports track and heading Thai football team, Buriram United, who are both Thai Premier League Champions and deliberate vital contenders in Asia.

Mr. Santisuk Klongchaiya, Director of Commercial for Thai AirAsia, remarked that “Don Mueang-Buriram” is a track that AirAsia has been excitedly watchful to deliver for someday as it builds on a airline’s tie to a call of sporting passion that has grown over a past 2-3 years. He suggested that sports fans have been job out for a track invariably and positive that AirAsia is blissful to be means to assistance football fans transport to see their favorite group some-more absolutely with AirAsia’s good prices, remarkable on-time record and swift of Airbus A320s, all prepared to chair adult to 180 passengers any day.

The new track “Don Mueang-Buriram” starts drifting on 2nd Apr 2015 in time for a Khao Phanom Rung Festival. The new route will be launched with a entrance promotional transport starting during usually 390 Baht per outing and is accessible for engagement from currently until 8 Mar 2015 for transport from 2 Apr 2015 to 26 Mar 2016 during and all AirAsia ticketing channels; all Counter Service and 7-11 branches, around a mobile app, certified agents, AirAsia Counters national or by a Call Center Tel. 02-515-9999.


Thailand International Jazz Conference 2016


Thailand International Jazz Conference (TIJC) 2016 will underline heading Thai and world-renowned artists and a record series of some-more than 60 bands. This grand and singular uncover during Mahidol University’s College of Music will underline gifted jazz and exemplary song performers who will play together for a initial time.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Sugree Charoensook, Dean of a College of Music and Chief Organiser of TIJC 2016 said, “Thailand International Jazz Conference is a indication jazz festival dignified for a peculiarity of participating artists as good as sound and surrounding. The eventuality attracts several hundred jazz fans with augmenting numbers each year. The 2016 book will be done some-more complete both in terms of party and preparation to prove flourishing expectations of peculiarity song among Thai and unfamiliar audiences.”

To support to a aloft interests in a Jazz song festival, organisers of a TIJC 2016 have motionless to enhance a opening stages from 3 to four, located during a Musica Arboretum, a Prince Mahidol Hall, a MACM Hall and a Oval Stage, as good as boost a series of a participating bands.

The prominence will be a co-performance between a Thailand Philharmonic Orchestra (TPO) and heading jazz artists including Cherryl Hayes (voice), Jens Lindemann (trumpet), Jacop Dinesen (saxophone) and Thai woodwinds master Thanit Sriklindee. During a performance, a musicians will play a operation of works from their originals and past renouned jazz songs by Charlie Parker and Ella Fitzgerald to orchestral music.

Mr. Darin Pantoomkomol, Head of Jazz Studies Department during Mahidol University’s College of Music said, “Such a twin play, a brew of jazzy melodies with a magnificence of a symphony, is not usually a singular uncover in Thailand, though it’s also formidable to see this kind of opening on earth since of a complexity in terms of song and management.”

Other shows will also not disappoint, combined Mr. Darin, who has comparison artists for a festival himself. He formed his preference on their performance, knowledge and, especially, their ability to enthuse new musicians to rise their personification skills. Their accumulation of shows will also take listeners to a abyss of song as an art form and greatfully their ears and mind as a form of entertainment.

For some-more information, contact:
Mahidol University’s College of Music
Tel: +66 (0) 2800 2525 Ext. 153-154

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Illuminated Boat Procession in Bangkok for Loy Krathong 2015

illuminated vessel procession

One of a best places to applaud Loy Krathong in Bangkok this week is along a riverfront. we know lots of people like to go to a city parks like Lumphini and Chatuchak, though if we go to a Chao Phraya River afterwards we will see 7 bright boats cruising along.  The boats will go adult and down a stream during a dusk from Monday 23rd to Wednesday 25th Nov 2015. The track is from Krungthep Bridge nearby Asiatique to a Rama VIII Bridge. You can watch a way anywhere along a rive, though a categorical observation point, and a place where they are judged, is at Nakarapirom Park nearby Wat Pho. Click here to see some of my cinema from a past.

illuminated vessel procession

Visit Thai Festival Blogs for all a latest dates for festivals around Thailand.

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New Multiple Entry Tourist Visa for Thailand in Nov 2015


The Thai Ministry of Foreign Affairs has just reliable that a new multiple-entry visa will be released starting from 13th Nov 2015. The visa lasts for 6 months and allows we as many visits as we like as prolonged as any revisit is no longer than 60 days. Presumably we afterwards have to leave a nation and come behind again to get your subsequent 60 days. The visa seems to be accessible for all nationalities.

The following is a full matter by a Ministry:

Thailand will shortly extend multiple-entry visas to visitors to foster a stirring ASEAN Community and to boost Thailand’s tourism industry. The multiple-entry traveller visa (METV), costing 5,000 baht, will extend travelers mixed entries during a 6-month period, for adult to 60 days per entry. All unfamiliar nationals are authorised to request for METV. Thailand’s METV will be accessible from 13th Nov 2015.

In my opinion, this is not unequivocally a diversion changer. The normal length of stay for many tourists is usually 10 days. For many of them, they can get a 15/30 day visa giveaway stamp that is free. You can get 30 days during a airfield and 15 days during a land borders (30 days during a land limit if we are from a G7 country). However, we can't get a visa giveaway stamp if we are one of those people vital in Thailand doing visit limit runs. You contingency be a genuine traveller entrance in from another country. This means being means to uncover transport channel that includes hotels and flights.

The new mixed entrance visa (METV) would be useful for people who devise to spend a lot of time in South East Asia. This complements easily a TAT devise to foster Thailand as a hub for people who wish to try a region. For example, also visiting Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam and Myanmar within a 6 month period. The METV will concede them to come and go as many times as they like within a lifetime of their visa. At a moment, we don’t know if they will concede we to request for back-to-back visas each 6 months. Further sum and construction are approaching later.

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Bangkok Air to fly from Phuket to Hat Yai in Oct 2015

bangkok air

Bangkok Air will shortly be rising their new track from Phuket to Hat Yai regulating an ATR 72-500/600 70-seat aircraft. There will be 4 flights per week and one moody per day on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays. The initial moody will be on 25th Oct 2015. Promotional cost will be 1,890 Baht per trip.

Flight Schedule
PG298 HKT-HDY DEP. 07.25 ARR. 08.30 AT7
PG299 HDY-HKT DEP. 09.10 ARR.10.15 AT7

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Cape Panwa Hotel Phuket Raceweek 2015


Now in a 12th year, a “Cape Panwa Hotel Phuket Raceweek” is one of a region’s tip regattas and will be hosted during Cape Kantary Hotels’ Phuket properties – Cape Panwa Hotel and Kantary Bay Hotel – from 15th – 20th Jul 2015. Online registration for Cape Panwa Hotel Phuket Raceweek 2015 is now open and participants wanting to book accommodation during possibly Cape Panwa Hotel or Kantary Bay Hotel should revisit to haven bedrooms during special regatta rates.

Source: Press Release

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Tips to get a many out of Songkran 2015 in Thailand

Songkran 2015

Songkran, a much-loved and much-anticipated yearly event, is some-more than about water-fights and fun in a sun. The Thai New Year traditions widen behind hundreds of years, and in a nation as vast and different as Thailand, how a festival is distinguished differs from operation to operation – any village carrying their possess singular centuries-old traditions.

Top tips to get a many out of Songkran:

  • In a morning, make consequence and listen to church sermons to know and advantage from a righteous side of a festival. Remember that during a New Year festival, a church activities are a many critical aspects of a celebration.
  • To freshen or bath a Buddha or other statues, H2O should not be poured directly onto a conduct of a relic, rather on other tools of a statue’s torso.
  • The tradition of pouring H2O onto a palm of elders’ (people above 60 years old), is to uncover honour and find their New Year blessings. This tradition is called a Rod Nam Dum Hua ritual.
  • Water used to dash on others should be purify or churned with Thai normal fragrances. Avoid throwing H2O aggressively or regulating high-pressure H2O guns or hoses. Avoid throwing H2O with ice.
  • Women should be heedful of wearing parsimonious panoply or ones that are light in colour and/or done of skinny fabric. When wet, such panoply can turn utterly revealing, lifting a risk of passionate harassment.


Here are some of a locations to applaud Songkran where ancient traditions are still being observed.

Central Region

Bangkok (12-15 April)

Phra Buddha Sihing picture from a National Museum will be taken on a march around a Bangkok Municipal Administration for a open to bath and urge to. Visitors are suggested to wear Thai normal clothes.

For a civic ways of celebrating Songkran, go to a streets of Khao San and Silom, where revellers will overflow a area in hunt for a rebellious good time.

Ayutthaya (13-15 April)

Join locals in celebrating Songkran in a ancient collateral of Ayuttaya with a merit-making rite during Viharn Phra Mongkolborpit, a way of Miss Songkran and elaborately-decorated floats, showering Buddha image, join Rod Nam Dum Hua protocol and suffer many other eremite and informative activities.

Samut Prakan (date differs from plcae to location)

Phra Pradaeng is one of a few places in Thailand that celebrates a Thai New Year in a Thai-Mon style. Visitors can suffer a pleasing march of floral wagons, contests of Miss Songkran and Mister Loi Chai, a Mon folk play and a Mon diversion of Saba. (17-19 April)

In Bang Nam Phueng district, highlights embody Miss Jumbo-Nam Pheung and Miss Songkran contest, internal comedy and play, as good as many informative activities. (13-15 April)

Kanchanaburi (date differs from plcae to location)

The Thai-Myanmar limit city of Sangkhlaburi will applaud Songkran from 13-18 April. The ‘Mon’ or a ethic Burmese-Thai people perform a merit-making protocol to Buddhist monks on Thailand’s longest wooden bridge. There’s also a Mon rite of showering Buddha statues by bamboo pipes that can be kilometers in length.

Nong Prue district will applaud Songkran with a Wax Castle Procession from 13-17 April. Other activities are merit-making ceremony, Rod Nam Dum Hua ritual, and internal play.


Northern Region

Chiang Mai (12-16 April)

The Prapeni Pi Mai Mueang lasts 5 days. Highlights embody fasten a way of Chiang Mai’s distinguished Phra Buddha Sihing picture as good as showering a image, and holding partial in a march bringing silt and Sali (Bodhi tree) clutches to temples.

Sukhothai’s Sri Satchanalai (8-12 April)

Join a worshipping rite of Phra Maha Thammaracha we and a stately dynasty as good as suffer a Lady Oi Tan – Miss Songkran foe and a Chang pho Mueang march during Sri Satchanalai Historical Park.

In addition, on 13-15 April, there will be a Songkran jubilee in observance of Sukhothai as an ancient collateral of Thailand, also during Sri Satchanalai Historical Park.

Chiang Rai (13-15 April)

Phra Buddha Sihing picture from Wat Phra Singha will be taken on a march for a open to bath and urge to. Join a way of Miss Songkran, silt pagoda building foe and a operation of fun-filled internal shows.

Mae Hong Son (13-15 April)

Join a way of a Buddha picture and Miss Songkran as good as suffer several fun-filled activities including Songkran imagination parade, internal sports, and cooking proof of internal snacks and sweet.

Tak (13-15 April)

Join a Thai-Myanmar Songkran jubilee on a banks of Moei River. Other highlights embody a Muay Kaad Cheuk matches between Thai and Myanmar fighters. This is an ancient Muay Thai martial art in that a fighters hang their fists and forearms in hemp rope.

Phichit (8-10 April)

Bathing a highly-revered Por Pu picture in that righteous Buddhists flow perfumed H2O over a picture to symbol a welcoming of a New Year, rite a provincial tabernacle in Mueang district, and learn a enthralling story of Phichit in a pretentious light-and-sound presentation.

Northeastern Region

Udon Thani (12-16 April): Bath Buddhist monks and Rod Nam Dum Hua ritual. Savour internal dishes during a entrance of food, party generally to showcase a best flavours from around a town.

Nong Khai (6-18 April)

Baht a worshiped Luang Por Phra Sai Buddha picture as it is paraded around a city. Join a jubilee on a Thailand-Laos Friendship Bridge that signifies a togetherness between a dual nations.

Nakhon Ratchasima (13-15 April)

Join a fantastic Songkran procession, merit-making activity, Rod Nam Dum Hua ritual, internal play, and theatre party from heading Thai artists.

Mukdahan (12-16 April)

This is where Thailand, Lao PDR and Vietnam jointly applaud Songkran with fantastic way that depicts a characteristics of a 3 Mekong nations, as good as a long-standing friendships between a peoples. Join a merit-making rite and Rod Nam Dum Hua ritual.

Eastern Region

Chon Buri (date differs from plcae to location)

In Meaung district, there will be a march of a ‘God of Death’ statue to a sea to follow divided bad fitness (13-17 April).

In Bang Saen district, people from internal villages will come together in a rite called Wan Lai to make consequence with a silt pagoda foe (18-19 April).

In Sri Racha district, other normal events set to take place including a rice pagoda march and performances of internal plays (19-21 April).

Southern Region

Hat Yai, Songkhla (11-15 April)

This is a usually place in Thailand to applaud Songkran during midnight. Enjoy a full fun of Songkran from midday to midnight with several fun-filled activities including Songkran procession, internal sports, Miss Songkran contest, and several forms of entertainment.

Nakhon Si Thammarat (11-15 April)

Join a way of Nang Dan, that is synonymous to Sonkran jubilee in Nakhon Si Thammarat. Bath a highly-revered Phra Buddha Sihing image, join a Rod Nam Dum Hua protocol and suffer internal play.

Ko Samui, Surat Thani (12-14 April)

Samui Beach Songkran Festival highlights a H2O striking along Chawang Beach Road and Samui Muay Thai Angels matches.

Phuket (13-15 April)

The renouned traveller island celebrates what it calls Songkran on a Beach with merit-making ceremony, Rod Nam Dum Hua ritual, and several competitions and fun-filled entertainments.

The dates might be theme to change. For some-more information, hit TAT Call Centre 1672.

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