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First time with a few questions...

Melbourne, Australia
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33 posts
2 reviews
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First time with a few questions...

Hello, my friend and I are travelling to Phuket and staying in Patong beach early march and as this is my first time I have a few questions..l

We have no booked accommodation as yet, but we are looking for a place close to everything and with free wifi and a great pool for $70-100 aud a night...any suggestions as the places I have found have really bad reviews :(

We want to go to a zoo where we can hold baby tigers and monkeys, anyone know any places?

What is the best way to travel with my money? I have been to Bali a few times and gottn ripped off at money exchange booths, is this also an issue in Thailand?

Also looking at doing Quadbike riding...

Any tips would be appreciated, my friend and I are both early 20's :)

Thankyou!

Chiang Klang...
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902 posts
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1. Re: First time with a few questions...

Money issues:

tripadvisor.com/Travel-g293915-s601/Thailand…

Phuket Zoo is the pits, with appalling conditions. Monkeys can and do bite, they are not pets.

Melbourne, Australia
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792 posts
14 reviews
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2. Re: First time with a few questions...

The attendant at the tiger compound has only one arm, "Motorsai accident" LoL

Phuket, Thailand
Destination Expert
for Phuket, Kata Beach, Karon
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3,995 posts
15 reviews
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3. Re: First time with a few questions...

Definitely give the zoo a miss. It is really depressing. :-(

Norfolk, United...
Destination Expert
for Chaweng, Ko Samui
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36,719 posts
352 reviews
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4. Re: First time with a few questions...

Give animals a BIG miss unless you are heartless.

ATMs, travellers cheques, cash all work wekl and have pros and cons. FAQ money --->>> is a good read.

What area you planning to stay in? Budget is limited for timeof year, so look at sawdee.com once you know which area you plan to stay in. <<---- hotels is a good way to

Rockhampton...
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92 posts
4 reviews
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5. Re: First time with a few questions...

I went this time last year and stayed at the Kee resort. Im quite sure on wotif now they have a mystery deal for the Kee. www.wotif.com/hotel/View…

As everyone else has said the zoo is not good.. they dope the tigers up and then tourists take photos with them and the handlers keep whacking them as they can barely lift their heads from being so dosile. There is good ATV (quads) which you can ride up to the big buddah and around some tracks. Cant remember what it was called but I remember it being fairly cheap! If you want to go to Phi Phi islands look uo Simba Sea Tours they are the best company I have found with a speed boat and they provide breakfast..Just a few tips :)

Melbourne, Australia
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33 posts
2 reviews
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6. Re: First time with a few questions...

That's so sad about that animals, I held a baby tiger in Bali once, but he was very active and playful, I never knew their conditions were that bad! I'll be staying in Patong Beach, thanks everyone for the tips! Anything else would be appreciated :)

Melbourne, Australia
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2,037 posts
88 reviews
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7. Re: First time with a few questions...

Don't just read the bad reviews !!! Phuket newbies tend to concentrate just on the negatives in the reviews. Read the good ones and the bad ones, and after a few you get a feel for the hotel you are looking at. People complain about ridiculous things - they didn't smile at reception (so l let it ruin my stay !); there were ants/mosquitos/lizards in the room; there was a damp smell (hullo ! humidity !); they didn't understand English very well (!); I could hear the airconditioner; there were chipped tiles in the pool; the bacon looked funny. Seriously, think about where you are, remember it's a non-English speaking third world country, and get a life !

Not sure about the free wifi, but under $100 you could stay at the Mercure, or Salathai (except it will be booked out). Unfortunately early March is still higher prices than your budget for the perennial favourites like Patong Merlin, Gracelands etc or even the likes of Thara Patong or Duangjitt. Though Duangjitt often has super specials.

england
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49 posts
14 reviews
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8. Re: First time with a few questions...

To much negativity on these forums can end up you missing out. I recommend that you try everything once and see with your own eyes. Ive stayed at so many good hotels in the past but read so many bad reports about the same place. Just try it, if you dont like it, dont put your self through it again.

Mount Gambier...
5 posts
1 review
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9. Re: First time with a few questions...

I've been to phuket fantasea twice ,(good show). they have fiesty baby tigers to hold ( although only breifly) and get a photo taken, as you go into the show.

The Anz bank have a travel card where you load it with the currency of the country you are visiting and then use it at ATM's no conversion fees only the Atm fee so take out enough cash each time to last awhile.

agree with others the zoo is deplorable.

Gold Coast
Destination Expert
for Ko Pha Ngan, Ko Samui, Thailand
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25,956 posts
67 reviews
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10. Re: First time with a few questions...

As you are from Australia you can buy American Express TC's from the post office with 0% commission, you can change them in numerous places and each cheque will cost 33 baht to change up, so it's wise to get larger denominations. I've previously taken the ANZ travel card and found the fees and charges way too high and then getting my money out at the end was a pain, this is what a another poster put recently regarding travel cards:

"If you load a travel card with Thai baht you will be paying a conversion rate to get the Baht, and it will not be as good a rate as on the street in Phuket. ANZ = 28.1 ? What is it in Phuket at the moment ? Probably around 30 baht to the $AUD ? Even if it's only 1 baht different, load $2,000 = 2,000 THB less; there's $70 gone for no good reason. Then, if you have any money left on the card, you will be paying a HUGE conversion rate to get the money back out in your own currency back home (around 5%). Not to mention all the sundry fees that come with the card, including the card purchase price, loading/reloading fees, card cancellation fee, monthly inactivity fee (!), and ATM withdrawal fee (on top of the local ATM fee).

Sure, as mentioned, you may only be losing a so-called small amount of $100-$150 over your holiday by using a travel card, but that goes a long way in Phuket !"