The currency in Thailand is the Thai Baht. Check out the current exchange rates. I strongly recommend you avoid changing money before you arrive - the exchange rates at the airport banks on arrival are far superior to the rates that you will get in your own country and it just goes to show what a rip off foreign exchange business is for tourists who don't know any better. No wonder in the UK the banks and UK Airport Foreign Exchange booths make obscene amounts of money out of the ignorance of travellers. When you arrive at Bangkok International you will find a bank inside the customs hall. Change your money before you look for your ground transportation. Here is a good source of current rates
HOW TO GET THERE
Pattaya is about 90 miles south of the new Bangkok International airport. There are bus services between the airport and Pattaya but these do not operate in the evening and at night. For information on these check this out. You could take the official airport limo service which will probably set you back around 2,300 Baht including expressway tolls but I would recommend you pre-book a taxi from Pattaya using the Pattaya 4 Leisure website where you car will only cost you 1200 Baht** and the driver will meet you off your flight outside the customs hall with a sign displaying your name and take you right to your hotel door.Please tip the driver well - I usuall give then 300 Baht. They also offer service to U-Tapao for 1,000 Baht. **Rates checked September 2014. There are two distinct parts to Pattaya for the tourist. North Pattaya is more peaceful and is home to many of the plush hotels in the $100 -$400 US a night range, while in South Pattaya it is much wilder, home to more of the budget style accommodation and is the area for the best nightlife and it is the location of the original Walking Street. Official Pattaya Website
Walking street, the oirmer home to the Climax Band is also the centre of nightlife with great restaurants, girlie bars and live music. Located at the Southern end of Pattaya, Walking Street is closed off to traffic from 7pm and usually does not reopen tiil around 2am when the most of the bars are supposed to close. Certainly they turn the lights and music down! The Thai police have a special Tourist Police Squad and Volunteer Police who patrol the area and have done an excellent job in clearing out undesirables in the last couple of years. They are tolerant but not to the point of drunken abuse. They also have several undercover officers disguised as tourists to keep an eye on things.
The budget price hotels will give your rooms in the range of $20 - $50 US a night - some are even cheaper but may have poor air conditioning and questionable security. I stay at the Diamond Beach Hotel - you have to email the hotel firstname.lastname@example.org as the booking engine on their website is out of date, or at Secrets in Soi 14 which offers excellent rates and has great staff
The Thai society is extremely polite. Do not say anything to offend the Thai Royal Family who are held in great respect. To be a big hit with your Thai friends try and learn just a few words in their language. They will love you for it.
Do not in any way get involved with drugs in Thailand. The penalties are severe and life in a Thai prison is not the way to extend a holiday.
There are many websites giving information about Pattaya. Check out the official Pattaya site for a good overall description of the resort. I also recommend you check out the original local English Language weekly paper on line - The Pattaya Mail.