Having a way to contact coworkers, friends, and even family back home is crucial. Luckily, landlines and mobile phones are inexpensive and easy to set up in Thailand. Within a few days of arriving, you can get yourself set up with a local number.
Most foreigners don’t bother with landlines in Thailand. Mobile phones are inexpensive, and the coverage throughout Thailand is generally very good. However, if you do want a landline, they are inexpensive and easy to set up. Expect to pay around $3-$4USD to start, plus the cost of the calls you make. If you are making international phone calls, or calls outside of your region in Thailand, these costs can get quite high.
If your mobile phone is a GSM phone, then you will be able to use it to make phone calls, both to local numbers and international numbers. This can be a good emergency fall-back during your first few days in the country, but it will get expensive quickly.
One of the first things you will want to do when you get to Thailand is get yourself a local number. If your phone is able to use a Thai SIM card, then you will be able to use your current cell phone with a new SIM card. Thai SIM cards can be found for as little as $30. These are pay-as-you-go plans, so no contract is required. Shops selling SIM cards are prevalent and easy to find, and you can buy more minutes from 7-11s or other convenience stores.
However, many phones are locked, meaning that they can only be used on a certain network. If this is the case with your cell phone, then you will have to buy a new mobile phone and SIM card in Thailand. Cell phone shops have everything, ranging from inexpensive and basic cell phones to the latest in smart phones.
Since most people use pay-as-you-go plans, your monthly costs vary depending on how many calls you make and how often you need to add value to your phone. Expect to pay $10 per month minimum.
General Emergency: 191
Fire Department: 199
Tourism Police (Service in English, French, and German): 1155
Tourism Authority of Thailand: 1627
Tourist Service Center: 1672