How Can You Go Around Thailand Like A Local?
Thailand offers abundant transportation options for easy travel between destinations, be it the vibrant streets of Bangkok or the tranquil beaches of Phuket.
Of course, we start with Bangkok. Transportation in Thailand, particularly in Bangkok, consists of different options for internal transportation.
We will start with the bike, which is known as "Win." Bikes are the fastest means of travel in Bangkok, especially when traffic is busy during workdays. Although they may appear dangerous due to their speed, the riders are skilled and know what they are doing. The cost of a bike ride starts from 15 Baht for shorter distances and can range from 200-300 THB for longer trips. Before getting on a bike, it is advisable to ask for the price first.
Another convenient option for getting around Bangkok is by taxi. Taxis can be easily called from anywhere, and it is important to check the meter when getting in. If the driver does not activate the meter, they may overcharge you. In such cases, politely ask them why and negotiate the price. If you believe the fare is too high, it is recommended to find another taxi that is willing to use the meter. The initial fare for most taxi rides is 35 Baht, with an estimated cost of 2 THB per kilometer. However, during peak traffic hours, the fare may increase to 2-3 times the normal price.
- Tuk Tuk
a popular choice among foreign visitors, is a unique mode of transportation in Bangkok. Tuk Tuks are considered a symbol of the city and are known for their exciting rides. The price of a Tuk Tuk ride varies depending on the destination and distance. It is important to ask for the price beforehand and negotiate if necessary. Tuk Tuks are particularly popular during the Songkran Festival, where both Thai locals and foreigners enjoy riding them while spraying each other with water guns. This festival creates a vibrant and festive atmosphere
- Thai Buses
In Bangkok, there are numerous Thai buses operating on various routes. The number 8 bus is particularly famous for its thrilling and adventurous driving style. If you're up for a thrilling experience, you can try riding this bus. Number 8 bus goes to Happy Land, but there are many other routes available as well. However, during the morning and evening rush hours, the buses tend to be quite crowded because many people rely on them to commute to work. There are two types of buses available: non-air-conditioned buses and buses with air conditioning.
- Bts and Mrt
The BTS (sky train) and MRT (subway) are the fastest ways to travel in Bangkok. They have multiple lines that connect various parts of the city. If you need to go somewhere, simply open Google Maps, search for your destination, and choose the train option. It will show you which train to take and how many stations you need to pass before reaching your destination. Using the metro in Bangkok is convenient. They have self-service machines and also staff at the counters who can assist you if needed. The cost starts at 17 THB for a one-station journey.
An alternative transportation option in Bangkok is using ride-hailing services, similar to taxis but more convenient and slightly more expensive. These services can be booked in advance, which is especially useful if you have a specific destination in mind. Instead of waiting for a taxi on the street, you can wait in the comfort of your home or accommodation, and the driver will pick you up at the entrance. What's great is that the fare is displayed on the app, along with the driver's name, providing a sense of transparency and security. In addition to traditional ride-hailing services, there are now other companies offering similar services, such as Line man and Bolt. These options provide more flexibility and choice for travelers in Bangkok.
In Pattaya, there are different types of public transportation available for getting around the city.
- The Mini Buses
One common option is using the Mini Buses, also known as Songthaews, which are the blue minivans. These buses follow a designated route, usually along Pattaya Beach, and then either towards Walking Street or South Pattaya, depending on the specific route. They have designated pick-up spots, many of which are popular tourist destinations.
Another option is taking a taxi, either from the street. When using taxis, it is recommended to negotiate the fare upfront, as they typically charge between 60-150 baht depending on the distance traveled.
- Rental Bike or Car
- For more independence, you also have the option of renting a motorbike or car to explore Pattaya on your own. Renting a motorbike or car is a popular choice among tourists, and it provides flexibility and convenience in moving around Pattaya. Renting a vehicle is relatively easy to arrange in the city, and there are numerous rental shops available.
- Bus Service
In Phuket, the public transportation system offers a cost-effective way to get around the city. The bus services in Phuket are reliable and operate regularly during the designated hours. This makes them a suitable choice for tourists who are mindful of their budget. The bus options available in Phuket include minibusses, smart buses, songthaews (shared taxis), and tuk-tuks. The fare for songthaews, which are like minivans, usually ranges from 30 to 50 baht. These buses provide a convenient mode of transportation for exploring Phuket and reaching different destinations within the city.
- Phuket Smart Bus The Phuket Smart Bus is a convenient bus service that travels from Phuket International Airport all the way to Rawai Beach. This bus route includes multiple stops at popular locations such as Mai Khao, Bang Tao, Phuket Fantasy, Kamala, Patong, Karon, Kata, and Rawai. The journey on the Phuket Smart Bus takes approximately 2 hours, and the buses operate with a frequency of every 30 minutes. The fare for this bus service starts at 50 baht and may vary depending on the distance of your destination, with prices ranging up to 170 baht. Payment for the bus can be made either by using the Phuket Rabbit Card or by paying in cash when boarding the bus.
Phuket Bus Terminal 1 to Patong. If you're looking for an affordable way to travel from Phuket Town to Patong, there's a convenient van service available. This van route connects Phuket Bus Terminal 1 to the lively heart of Patong. The van route includes a stop at the famous Patong circle near the renowned Patong Simon Cabaret. What's great about this option is the reasonable price, with a fare of just 50 THB per passenger. This makes it the cheapest way to travel between Phuket Town and Patong, allowing you to easily explore the vibrant attractions and beautiful beaches of Patong without breaking the bank.
- Rental Bike or Car
Another convenient option for getting around Phuket is by renting a bike or a car. There are plenty of rental shops available throughout Phuket, making it easy to find a vehicle that suits your needs. Renting a bike or a car provides flexibility and independence, allowing you to explore the various attractions and scenic spots at your own pace. It's important to note that you typically need a valid driver's license and should always prioritize safety while driving in Phuket. Renting a bike or a car can be a great option for those who prefer to have more control over their transportation and want to fully experience all that Phuket has to offer.
- Rod-deang or Red minibus is the most popular in Chiang Mai.
If you miss it, it would be considered as not having arrived in Chiang Mai. Therefore, it is impossible to ignore the iconic red songthaews that run throughout the city. Although their driving style can be somewhat unpredictable, with stops and turns seemingly anywhere they please, these vehicles are the sole rulers of the road. Additionally, the fare is not fixed, making it uncertain whether they will actually take you to your intended destination. We cannot read their minds. However, these red songthaews or red trucks are still a good transportation option because they are easily accessible and you don't have to wait for them for too long.
- White bus
Another impressive project under the Chiang Mai Bus initiative is the reintroduction of the white city buses, which had previously ceased operations but have now made a comeback. These new buses not only boast a modern design and powerful air conditioning but also cater to the growing trend of cycling by installing bike racks on the front of the buses. This convenience is greatly appreciated by travelers who need to continue their journey on foot. This white bus has captured the hearts of the younger generation. As for the fare, it is only 15 baht for adults and 10 baht for students, monks, and senior citizens, making it affordable for all. Currently, there is a trial route available, which is Route 14. The bus route starts from Arcade Bus Station and passes by Darawan College, McCormick Hospital, Tonlamyai Market, Thapae Gate, Yupparaj College, Wat Phra Singh, Chiang Mai Gate, and reaches Chiang Mai International Airport. The return route passes through Wualai Road, Watthanothai Payap School, Maharaj Nakorn Chiang Mai Hospital, Chiang Mai Vocational College, Chang Moi Road, Darawan College, and Arcade Bus Station. This project may have a minor drawback, as each trip takes a long time and may not be suitable for those in a hurry. It is recommended to allocate at least 40 minutes or even up to 2 hours for the journey.
In addition to the available transportation options in Chianmai there are also taxi services similar to those in Bangkok. If you're in a hurry and don't want to wait, taking a taxi is a convenient choice. Taxi services in Chiangmai allow you to easily reach your destination with comfort and ease.
a popular mode of transportation in Chiangmai, can also be found conveniently at various locations such as the Arcade Bus Station, Transport Terminal 3, Railway Station, Tha Pae Market, Warorot Market, and shopping malls. These vibrant three-wheeled vehicles are a fun way to travel around and can take you to famous nightlife venues. The starting fare for tuk-tuks is usually around 60-80 baht, depending on the distance traveled.
- Furthermore, if you find yourself in need of a car or bike, there are numerous rental services available in Phuket. These rental options offer flexibility and freedom, allowing you to explore the city and its surrounding areas at your own convenience. Whether you prefer to drive a car or ride a bike, you can easily find rental services to cater to your needs.
Transportations between cities
The Thai train system has improved and provides connections from Bangkok to various provinces in Thailand. Online booking is available, and you can check the prices on the website. Taking a train is a unique experience and worth trying during your time in Thailand.
Flying is the most convenient option, with flights available to almost every tourist destination in Thailand. Domestic flights are reasonably priced, especially if you plan ahead and book in advance. Airlines like Thai Lion Air, Nok Air, and Air Asia offer affordable fares for domestic travel.
If you're heading to cities near Bangkok, such as Pattaya, Ayutthaya, or Hua Hin, van services are a convenient choice. There are plenty of van services available at Mor Chit Station, Sai Tai (Pin Koa Station), and Ekkamai. Each station serves different destinations, and you can easily check and book these services online
Mor chit Station: Go to Northern, Eastern such Ayutthay, UThaithani, Chanthaburi etc.
Ekkamai station : Go to Eastern such as Pattay, Rayong, Chonburi
Sai Tai (Pin Kao Station) : Huahin, Chaam, Kanchanaburi Nakhon pathom and Ratchaburi.
You can easily check and book here.
Buses are suitable for longer distances, such as traveling from Bangkok to Phuket or Chiang Mai. Bus fares often include dinner stops at no additional cost.
- Mor Chit Station
Is the main bus terminal, offering routes to various destinations across Thailand.
- Viphawadee station It's important to note that this station does not cover all provinces in Thailand, so it is advisable to check the website before visiting. Viphawadee station offers two classes, Normal and VIP, both of which are operated by Sombat Tour. Additionally, the waiting area at the station is known for being more comfortable and clean.
Thailand offers a wide range of transportation options, making it easy and affordable to travel around the country. Whether it's air travel, rail networks, buses, taxis, or tuk-tuks, there are plenty of choices available to suit different preferences and budgets. With an extensive transportation infrastructure, exploring various parts of Thailand has become convenient, enabling visitors to reach their desired destinations quickly and efficiently. From bustling cities to serene beaches and cultural landmarks, Thailand's transportation options ensure that travelers can go everywhere easily and affordably.