How To Get To Thailand
|How to get to Thailand
Bangkok is Thailand's major gateway. Most visitors arrive through Bangkok's Don Muang International Airport which is connected by daily flights to Europe, North America, Asia and Australasia aboard the world's major airlines.
Further international flights, mostly from Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Hong Kong, land on a less regular basis at the southern airports of Phuket and Hat Yai and Chiang Mai in northern Thailand.
Charter flights from Europe and the Orient sometimes land in Bangkok, Phuket, Chiang Mai, Hat Yai and at U-Taphao for Pattaya.
Regular rail services link Singapore and Bangkok. Intermediary stops include Kuala
Lumpur, Butterworth and major southern Thai towns.
Overland entrance to Thailand is restricted to three road crossings on the Thai-Malaysian border in Songkhla, Yala and Narathiwat.
There are no regular steamship connections with Thailand. Cargo ships calling at Bangkok's Klong Toey port sometimes have passenger cabin facilities. Cruise ships, such as Cunard's Queen Elizabeth 11, Royal Viking, or Pearl of Scandinavia periodically visit Pattaya.
Domestic air, rail and road transport in Thailand is surprisingly inexpensive.
Thai Airways International, Thailand's national airline, flies to eight destinations in the North, seven destinations in the Northeast, and six in the South. Bangkok Airways flies from Bangkok directly to Ko Samui, Ranong, Cha-am (Hua Hin) and Sukhothai. It also flies one-stop to Chiang Mai and Phuket, and from Samui to U-Tapao (Pattaya). There are also services linking Samui and Singapore. Orient Thai Airline connects major Thai cities such as Chiang MaiSurat Thani-Hat Yai, Chiang Mai-Hat Yai, Chiang Mai-U-Tapao, Chiang Mai-Udon Thani-Ubon Ratchathani, Chiang Mai- Khon Kaen-Ubon Ratchathani.
Reservations can be made through any authorized Thai Inter Travel Agent. Thai Airways International's Lan Luang Office is on 6 Lan Luang Road, Tel: 280-0110,280-0060. The airline also organises 'Royal Orchid Holidays' tours to every destination it flies to.
An efficient rail system links major northern and northeastern towns with the capital. A southern route permits the visitor to travel by train into Malaysia and Singapore. Domestic express trains comprise first, second and third class carriages. Slower trains may have only third-class seats.
The State Railway of Thailand organizes oneday, two-day economy tours to various destinations on Saturdays, Sundays and official holidays. Other tours include trips to Surat Thani (for Ko Samui), Chumphon and Chiang Mai. Railway schedules can be obtained from Bangkok Railway Station, Tel: 223-7010, 2237020.
A modern highway system reaches into all corners of the kingdom. Domestic bus services offer fast means of travel. Airconditioned tour coaches offer more comfort.
Bangkok's Northern/Northeastern Bus Terminal is on Kam Phaeng Phet 2 Road, Tel: 9363674, 9363667-8.
Bangkok's Southern Bus Terminal is on Pinklao-Nakhon Chaisri Road, Tel : 4351190, 4351200 (air-conditioned) and 4345558 (regular).
Bangkok's Eastern Bus terminal is on Sukhumvit Road, Tel: 3929227, 3919829 (airconditioned) and 3912504, 3922521 (regular).
|Travel inside Bangkok
Public buses are plentiful and cheap, with 3.50 baht minimum and 5 baht maximum fares to most destinations within metropolitan Bangkok- Air- conditioned buses within Bangkok have minimum and maximum fares of 6 and 16 baht respectively. Red and grey Micro-Buses, also air conditioned, cost 30 baht for single journey.
A Bus Route Map is available at most hotels, bookshops and the TAT head office for 35 baht.
Taxis and Tuk Tuks
Hotel taxis have fixed tariffs. Taxis cruising the streets of Bangkok, and designated "taximeters" charge 35 baht for the first 3 kilome
tres and approximately 5 baht for every kilometre thereafter.
Tuk-Tuk or three wheel taxis are quite popular among the tourists for short journeys inside Bangkok. Fares range from a minimum of 30 baht to a maximum of 150 baht. Fares must be bargained for.
There are many boats plying the Chao Phraya River. Some criss-cross between landings on opposite banks while the Chao Phraya Express boats travel upstream and downstream within the metropolis. Fares range between 5 and 15 baht.