Quality varies according to source, most are manufactured for oral administration or 'chasing' on foil; there is a brand preferred for injecting from Laos. This illegal drug combination is especially popular in Thailand, where it is imported from neighboring Burma. In recent years it has also been used by immigrant populations in the United States, and occasionally as a club drug replacing ecstasy.
Yaba tablets were outlawed by the Thai government in 1970; at the time they were sold at gas stations and used by Thai truckers to keep awake. After many horrific long distance bus accidents, and deposed Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra's campaign from 2003 onwards to eliminate drug trafficking, use of the drug for bus drivers is not as widespread as it was. Retail prices have risen from 100 - 150 Baht ($3-4) to 250-450 Baht per pill as a result of the crackdown, though it remains a popular party drug.
In 2006-7 Yaba consumption became fashionable for the well-to-do in Bangladesh. A series of highly publicized drug raids in 2007 by authorities implicated some well-known business people there. When Mr Joynal (owner of Hotel Purbani) & his girlfriend Nikita were arrested for the allegation of Yaba smuggling, it generated large media coverage.