Travellers to Thailand Beware

Disturbing stories have been emerging recently of travellers being scammed at Bangkok airport - accused of shoplifting in the Duty Free store, they are then frog-marched off to the airport police station and only released after the payment of hefty 'fines', in many cases running into thousands of dollars. I heard of someone a few months ago who was conned in this way, though her 'fine' was relatively modest. However, there was a story about a couple in today's Sunday Times in London who had to part with £8000. It appears the local Thai police are mixed up in the scam.

Anyone traveling via Bangkok is advised to avoid any duty free shops, and not to linger in the airport. If you are approached, the first resort is to make a lot of noise and to alert people to what is about to happen. Alternatively you can try and bribe your way out there and then. However, once marched away, getting back home on a flight some days later is likely to cost you dear.

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  • James Dunford Wood

    Founder and former MD of, James teamed up with online publisher James Blackwell to launch Worldreviewer …

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