Bangkok - Post Report Question and Answers

Are credit cards widely accepted and safe to use locally? Are ATMs common and do you recommend using them? Are they safe to use?

I never had an issue. You need cash for small transactions, e.g., street food, but credit cards accepted in fancy restaurants, etc. - Feb 2023

I've used my credit card everywhere and never had a problem. I've used only a handful of trusted ATMs. - Jan 2023

Credit cards are fairly widely used at all high-end establishments, and also at most mid-range and chain stores. That said, you should definitely open up a local Thai bank account and download its corresponding app so you can use QR code bank transfers, which are accepted just about everywhere (including at street stalls, which usually don't accept credit cards). I'm really going to miss the electronic bank transfers through the apps here - so much more convenient than in the U.S. ATMs are common and generally safe (with the usual precautions you'd take in any major city anywhere in the world). I almost never use them, though, as I exchange USD to Thai baht at the embassy cashier (the best rate) and then deposit or transfer Thai baht into my local bank account, where I can use them via QR code or bank transfers to pay for just about anything. - May 2022

Yes. Most small vendors require cash though. ATMs are scattered throughout the gated community and are easy to find outside Nichada. I've never had a problem besides having my card sucked into the machine when I left it behind. Banks here do not collect the cards so be aware. Once it is sucked in the card is destroyed. - Aug 2019

Yes, no issues so far. Use cash for taxis, motorbikes, BTS sky train, and shopping at street markets. There is also a cashier at the embassy for obtaining cash. - Jun 2018

I use my ATM card everywhere--there is a 200 Thai Baht (@ $6 USD) fee for ATM withdrawals, so I withdraw a larger amount of cash versus small withdrawals, as the fee is the same. You can cash checks at the embassy but the exchange rate is not as good and the hours are quite restrictive, especially if you live in Nichada or are reliant on a traveling spouse to get cash for you. I also use my debit card to buy groceries, except at Makro (a Costco-like store), which only takes cash but has ATMs on the premises. - Apr 2017

Yes, I use them all the time. Recommend staying on top of your transactions as ATM scammers have been seen here. - Nov 2016

ATMs are everywhere and credit cards are widely accepted. - Aug 2015

Credit cards are accepted at many places, however, the more local the vendor, the less likely they will be willing to accept them. - Aug 2014

Generally, safe. - May 2014

Seems safe so far to us--no problems with it. - Oct 2013

Cash is king here, but you can find an ATM or exchange anywhere. - Jul 2013

Easy and available on most streets. - Jun 2013

Don't use credit/debit card at local shops. Use it for brand name hotels, brand name stores, etc. I typically use cash. - Jul 2012

They warn you not, too, but we have used them at reputable seeming places and been fine. - Oct 2011

No problems. - Aug 2011

Lots of ATMs, and credit cards are accepted at most places. - Jul 2011

This is a cash culture so get used to it. ATMs are all over. Sure, you can use your credit card almost anywhere, but it's risky and, unless you have the right card, you'll pay that painful 3%. Most school fees are cash-only. You carry around a lot of baht on those days, and the ATMs clean out! - Feb 2011

We generally used cash and did have ATM card info stolen twice in four years. With the international charge from your credit card company and big ATM fees, it's easier and cheaper to carry cash. All the outdoor markets and street vendors are cash only. - May 2010

There seems to be an ATM at every corner but I wouldn't use them. Try to use the ATM inside a bank or major store. Try to never use credit cards. - Apr 2010

many places do not accept credit cards and many of the ones that do will increase the bill by 3% to accept your card. ATM usage here is an art--you can pay your bills by using an ATM. - Jan 2010

They're readily available, and easy to use. Again, we've heard rumblings of folks having their credit cards and or debit cards cloned, but again, no one that we've met here has had any problems. The rule of thumb, or so we were told, is to stick to using ATMs that are attached to banks. - Jul 2009

I use both and have not had any problems. - Apr 2009

Be careful with the credit cards. ATM's are fine (so far) and ubiquitous. - Feb 2009

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