Finance&insurance

In this section, we have listed 3 of the most popular banks in Thailand

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In most cases, anyone can go and open a savings account. All you need is a copy of your passport and bring the original along as reference. With a savings account, you can get a debit card for that account.
All 3 of the banks listed have very good internet banking systems. In either Thai or English languages.
They all use a system where at some point you must enter one time passwords, either emailed or sent as sms to you.
Another good idea, to avoid ATM machine scams or if you loose your card, is to have 2 saving accounts.
One is your main account, with no debit card attached, but with internet banking access.
The second is then you savings account with a debit card attached. The idea is then to keep only low amounts of money in the second account, and only transfer from the main account when needed. This way, should you loose your card or be the victim of some ATM machine scam, you will never loose the money in your main account.
The few cases, that has been reported about ATM machine scams, the banks has fully reimbursed the victims.
But its not a one day process, so better to be safe, than sorry.

Insurance

Here we have listed some of the major international insurance companies operating in Thailand

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In Thailand, there is no automatic healthcare system. You yourself have to be insured. You can work here and be insured through the fact that you work and pay revenue here, allowing you to go to government run hospitals. However, if you want the top of the line, grade A service from a private hospital, you should have your own health insurance. Especially if you drive a motorcycle here. So much easier to get hurt in some way or form, driving a motorcycle than a car. There are different covers of insurance. For instance you can sign up for an accident insurance only, that is cheaper obviously, than a full on health insurance.
If you live here a long time, and plan on retiring here too, a health insurance is valuable to have. The earlier in life you sign up, the cheaper it is. As when you are 35, your are not in the same risk group as when you are 65. But I strongly advise getting a couple of quotes and play them up against each other, to ensure you get the best deal possible for yourself and your family.
Then there is the insurance for vehicles. There are 3 grades of insurance, where grade A covers all damages and medical expenses for all parties. That is really the way to go. Especially if you don’t want to sit at some police station, finding yourself in a debate with the Police and the Thai driver, about how much compensation you should pay the Thai driver that actually caused the accident. In my experience, you can be totally in the right, but still being forced to pay some compensation to the other party that was totally in the wrong. This is because foreigners are generally conceived as being wealthy. So to avoid this totally, go for grade A insurance. And don’t be surprised, even if you are stopped waiting for the light to turn green, and you are hit by a motorcycle, that your insurance pays for repairing his motorcycle as well. I am no expert on the law, but it seems to me, that the bigger of the parties involved in an accident, their insurance pays no matter if they where totally blameless for the accident. In the event of an accident, call your insurance company or let some nearby Thai do it. The insurance company will send an appraiser and the same case for the other party. They will decide who ( which one of the insurance companies ) pays what and so on. Don’t interfere. Don’t get upset. That’s how the insurance system works here. You will most likely get a fine of 500 baht by the police, for being in an accident. In any case, you are required to go to the Police station and fill out an incident rapport. Then pay the fine, go home and wait for the car is fixed, at the garage the insurance company tells you to go to. Worth mentioning, Thais usually don’t move the cars and/or motorcycles involved in bigger accidents, ensuring the police can see the result and measure skid or brake marks etc. If its just minor scratches of paint and no bodily harm, sometimes nobody is called and they just get on with it.