Bank and public holidays in Thailand: 2017-2018 guide

TransferWise
07.23.18
5 minute read

For many westerners, holidays in Thailand can be difficult to keep track of, since many of them change dates yearly depending on the lunar calendar. Thailand’s holidays come from a mix of cultures, including Chinese holidays, Buddhist holy days and even a number of holidays to celebrate Thailand’s beloved late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who died in 2016. Read on to learn more about what to expect on Thai holidays, including whether you’ll be able to access a bank if you need to.

National holidays in Thailand

There are 15-20 national holidays in Thailand, depending on the year.

  • Thai public holidays: 15-20
  • Thai bank holidays: 15-20

Celebrating Mother’s Day and Father’s Day in Thailand

Mother’s Day in Thailand is celebrated on the 12th of August, the birthday of Queen Sirikit. It’s traditional for children to give their mothers gifts of white jasmine flowers, then spend the morning giving offerings of food to Buddhist monks. It’s becoming more common for families to go out for a special meal together, especially in larger cities. Since schools are closed on Mother’s Day, children will hold a Mother’s Day ceremony the day before or after, where mothers visit the school and children kneel at their feet and thank them for their work as mothers. This is a tender, emotional and often tear-filled ceremony.

Father’s Day in Thailand is held on the birthday of the late king, December 5th. Up until the king’s death, many people went to the palace in Bangkok to hear the king give a speech on this day. Today, people wear yellow out of respect for the late king and light candles in remembrance of him.

The most important holidays and dates in Thailand

Many of Thailand’s holidays are related to Buddhism and its royal family. Some of the most important holidays are Coronation Day, when the beloved late King Bhumibol Adulyadej assumed the throne, Chakri Day, which celebrates the current monarchy, and Visakha Puja, which celebrates the life of Buddha.

Songkran is an important festival for the Thai New Year that includes parades, singing, dancing and religious ceremonies. The Thai people also believe in cleansing themselves and one another with water in order to be pure going into the new year, so buckets, water guns and hoses turn Songkran into a multi-day water fight across the country. If you’re in Thailand during the festival, you’ll get wet.

List of public holidays in Thailand for 2017

HolidayName of holiday in Thai2017 DateBank holiday?
Western New Yearวันขึ้นปีใหม่ (Wan Khuen Pi Mai)1 January, 2017Yes, observed on 1-3 January, 2017
Chinese New Yearปีนี้ปีมังกร (wan dtrùt-jiin)28 January, 2017Yes, in Narathiwat, Pattani, Yala and Satun
Makha Bucha Dayวันมาฆบูชา (Wan Makha Bucha)11 February, 2017Yes, observed on 13 February, 2017
Chakri Dayวันจักรี (Wan Chakkri)6 April, 2017Yes
Songkranวันสงกรานต์ (Wan Songkran)13-16 April, 2017Yes
Labour Dayวันแรงงานแห่งชาติ (raeng-ngaan)1 May, 2017Yes
Visakha Bucha Dayวันวิสาขบูชา (Wan Wisakha Bucha)10 May, 2017Yes
Asahna Bucha Dayวันอาสาฬหบูชา (Wan Asanha Bucha)8 July, 2017Yes, observed on 10 July, 2017
H.M. King’s Birthdayวันเฉลิมพระชนมพรรษาสมเด็จพระเจ้าอยู่หัวมหาวชิราลงกรณ บดินทรเทพยวรางกูร (Wan Chaloem Phra Chonmaphansa Somdet Phra Chao Yu Hua Maha Wachiralongkon Bodinthrathepphayawarangkun)28 July, 2017Yes
Mother’s Dayวันแม่แห่งชาติ (Wan Mae Haeng Chat)12 August, 2017Yes, observed on 14 August, 2017
The passing of King Bhumibolวันคล้ายวันสวรรคตพระบาทสมเด็จพระปรมินทรมหาภูมิพลอดุลยเดช บรมนาถบพิตร (Wan Khlai Wan Sawankot Phra Bat Somdet Phra Paramin Maha Phumiphon Adunyadet Borommanat Bophit)13 October, 2017Yes
Chulalongkorn Dayวันปิยมหาราช (Wan Piya Maharat)23 October, 2017Yes
Royal Cremation of the King26 October, 2017Yes
Father’s Dayวันพ่อแห่งชาติ (wan-pôr-hàng-châart)5 December, 2017Yes
Constitution Dayวันรัฐธรรมนูญ (Wan Ratthathammanun)10 December, 2017Yes

List of public holidays in Thailand for 2018

HolidayName of holiday in Thai2018 DateBank holiday?
Western New Yearวันขึ้นปีใหม่ (Wan Khuen Pi Mai)1 January, 2018Yes
Chinese New Yearปีนี้ปีมังกร (wan dtrùt-jiin)16 February, 2018Yes, in Narathiwat, Pattani, Yala and Satun
Makha Bucha Dayวันมาฆบูชา (Wan Makha Bucha)1 March, 2018Yes
Chakri Dayวันจักรี (Wan Chakkri)6 April, 2018Yes
Songkranวันสงกรานต์ (Wan Songkran)13-17 April, 2018Yes
Labour Dayวันแรงงานแห่งชาติ (raeng-ngaan)1 May, 2018Yes
Visakha Bucha Dayวันวิสาขบูชา (Wan Wisakha Bucha)29 May, 2018Yes
Asahna Bucha Dayวันอาสาฬหบูชา (Wan Asanha Bucha)27 July, 2018Yes
H.M. King’s Birthdayวันเฉลิมพระชนมพรรษาสมเด็จพระเจ้าอยู่หัวมหาวชิราลงกรณ บดินทรเทพยวรางกูร (Wan Chaloem Phra Chonmaphansa Somdet Phra Chao Yu Hua Maha Wachiralongkon Bodinthrathepphayawarangkun)30 July, 2018Yes
Mother’s Dayวันแม่แห่งชาติ (Wan Mae Haeng Chat)12 August, 2018Yes, observed on 13 August, 2017
The passing of King Bhumibolวันคล้ายวันสวรรคตพระบาทสมเด็จพระปรมินทรมหาภูมิพลอดุลยเดช บรมนาถบพิตร (Wan Khlai Wan Sawankot Phra Bat Somdet Phra Paramin Maha Phumiphon Adunyadet Borommanat Bophit)13 October, 2018Yes, observed on 15 October, 2018
Chulalongkorn Dayวันปิยมหาราช (Wan Piya Maharat)23 October, 2018Yes
Father’s Dayวันพ่อแห่งชาติ (wan-pôr-hàng-châart)5 December, 2018Yes
Constitution Dayวันรัฐธรรมนูญ (Wan Ratthathammanun)10 December, 2018Yes

List of public holidays in Thailand for 2019

HolidayName of holiday in Thai2017 DateBank holiday?
Western New Yearวันขึ้นปีใหม่ (Wan Khuen Pi Mai)1 January, 2017Yes
Chinese New Yearปีนี้ปีมังกร (wan dtrùt-jiin)5 February, 2018Yes, in Narathiwat, Pattani, Yala and Satun
Makha Bucha Dayวันมาฆบูชา (Wan Makha Bucha)19 FebruaryYes
Chakri Dayวันจักรี (Wan Chakkri)8 April, 2017Yes
Songkranวันสงกรานต์ (Wan Songkran)13-17 April, 2017Yes
Labour Dayวันแรงงานแห่งชาติ (raeng-ngaan)1 May, 2017Yes
Visakha Bucha Dayวันวิสาขบูชา (Wan Wisakha Bucha)19 May, 2017Yes
Asahna Bucha Dayวันอาสาฬหบูชา (Wan Asanha Bucha)17 July, 2017Yes
H.M. King’s Birthdayวันเฉลิมพระชนมพรรษาสมเด็จพระเจ้าอยู่หัวมหาวชิราลงกรณ บดินทรเทพยวรางกูร (Wan Chaloem Phra Chonmaphansa Somdet Phra Chao Yu Hua Maha Wachiralongkon Bodinthrathepphayawarangkun)29 July, 2017Yes
Mother’s Dayวันแม่แห่งชาติ (Wan Mae Haeng Chat)12 August, 2017Yes
The passing of King Bhumibolวันคล้ายวันสวรรคตพระบาทสมเด็จพระปรมินทรมหาภูมิพลอดุลยเดช บรมนาถบพิตร (Wan Khlai Wan Sawankot Phra Bat Somdet Phra Paramin Maha Phumiphon Adunyadet Borommanat Bophit)14 October, 2017Yes
Chulalongkorn Dayวันปิยมหาราช (Wan Piya Maharat)23 October, 2017Yes
Father’s Dayวันพ่อแห่งชาติ (wan-pôr-hàng-châart)5 December, 2017Yes
Constitution Dayวันรัฐธรรมนูญ (Wan Ratthathammanun)10 December, 2017Yes

Sending money home for the holidays in Thailand?

Unless you’re familiar with the lunar moon cycle, making international bank transfers to and from Thailand around the holidays could be tricky — you might get caught on a day banks are unexpectedly closed. Instead, try TransferWise, which allows you to move money as quickly as possible for as little as possible. TransferWise moves money between local accounts, so it never crosses borders. That means you don’t pay any international or intermediary fees. TransferWise uses the actual exchange rate, like you'd see on Google, without any hidden fees or markups. The only thing you have to pay is a small, fair transfer fee that’s spelled out upfront.

TransferWise also offers borderless multi currency accounts, which allow you to manage, send and receive money in multiple global currencies all at once. If you live in one country and get paid in the UK, the US, the EU or Australia, then you can even get bank details to get paid like a local. Borderless account holders will even have access to consumer debit cards beginning in 2018.

Give TransferWise a try today and see how easy it can really be to move money across borders.

The holidays can be an exciting time in Thailand, and now that you have this information, you’re ready to celebrate like a local. What’s even better is that you’ll know when banks are closed, so you don’t need to stress about getting caught needing one. Happy holidays!

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