Tap Water Safety in Thailand

Can you drink the tap water in Thailand?

In general, no.

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.

Wikitravel

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.

The most commonly searched cities in Thailand are:

For a full list of cities in Thailand, scroll to the bottom of this post or click here.

World Health Organization Thailand Water Summary

The World Health Organization estimates that 99 percent of Thailand have access to drinkable tap water.

World Health Organization's 2017 Thailand Water Data

The World Health Organization data on water quality and availability throughout Thailand includes the national average, averages for urban population centers, and averages for rural areas.

DataDescription
Safely ManagedA location that safe, drinkable water that is free of biological or chemical contaminants available on premise.
At Least BasicSafe drinkable water is available within 30 minutes from the location
LimitedIt would take more than 30 minutes from the location to access safe, drinkable water.
YearPopulation in 1000sSafely managedAt Least BasicLimited
National
200062958-94%1%
201769038-99%1%
Rural
200043441-92%1%
201735209-99%1%
Urban
200019517-98%1%
201733829-99%1%

What Do People In Thailand Think About The Tap Water?

Travelers 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.

DescriptionScoreRating
Drinking Water Pollution and Inaccessibility51%Moderate
Water Pollution70%High
Drinking Water Quality and Accessibility49%Moderate
Water Quality30%Moderate

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View our tap water report on all cities in Thailand

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