How do People In Thailand Rate The Tap Water?
Travellers and residents of Thailand have rated the water quality and pollution as follows, according to subjective survey data. A score of 100% is considered very high, and a score of 0% is very low. Please be cautious that "moderate to very high" water pollution is bad and the higher the rate of water quality the better.
Tap water ratings
- Drinking Water Pollution and Inaccessibility 51% Moderate
- Water Pollution 70% High
- Drinking Water Quality and Accessibility 49% Moderate
- Water Quality 30% Low
Can you drink the tap water in Thailand?
The US Center for Disease Control's travel advisory recommends avoiding tap water and drinking bottled or disinfected water in Thailand (source). Like all countries though, water accessibility, sanitation, and treatment vary widely from location to location, so we encourage looking for specific city information.
What do people in Thailand think about the tap water?
Although it’s deemed potable by the authorities, the Thais don’t drink the tap water, and neither should you. Stick to bottled or filtered water during your stay.
Tap water is usually not drinkable in Thailand outside of Bangkok. In many places in Bangkok however, particularly in new buildings, drinking tap water is perfectly safe. However, if you don't want to chance it, buying a bottle of water is the obvious solution. Bottled water (น้ำเปล่า naam plao) is cheap and ubiquitous at 5-20 baht a bottle depending on its size and brand, and drinking water served in restaurants is always at least boiled (น้ำต้ม naam tom). Ice (น้ำแข็ง naam khaeng) in Thailand usually comes packaged straight from the factory and is safe; there is only reason to worry if you are served hand-cut ice. You can buy a large package of ice in most 7-11s for 7 baht, too.
There are varying opinions as to whether it is safe to drink the tap water. Some people say the water is perfectly safe, others say to boil it first. When in doubt, stick to bottled water. It's cheap (10-15 baht per bottle) and sold everywhere.
Always take extra precautions, the water may be safe to drink when it leaves the sewage treatment plant but it may pick up pollutants during its way to your tap. We advise that you ask locals or hotel staff about the water quality. Also, note that different cities have different water mineral contents.
Sources and Resources
Check tap water safety for other popular destinations
Check tap water safety for other countries in Asia
- Hong Kong
- North Korea
- Saudi Arabia
- South Korea
- Sri Lanka
- United Arab Emirates
- West Bank