So you have booked your tickets, planned your accommodation and thought of where you want to visit while on holiday in Bangkok, Thailand.
But there is also one more important thing you need to consider; that is how to get around in Bangkok. When you travel to a foreign country, the use of public transportation may be somewhat daunting. In contrast to this common notion, getting around Bangkok on local transport is actually a preferred method. Therefore we have put together a guide to the Bangkok city's transportation to help you find some of the easy and quick ways to get around in Bangkok.
Airport City Link
The Airport City Link is one of the first methods of Bangkok public transportation you can try out as soon as you arrive in the city. Starting from the main airport Suvarnabhumi International Airport
, this subway line is a quick and easy way to reach the city, and most importantly is a great way to escape the city traffic. The City Line operates from 6 in the morning till midnight, so you can conveniently travel around the city till late at night. You can get two types of tickets - pre-paid Smart Passes and single-trip tokens, which are recommended for tourists. Tickets are easily available at automated machines and the entire trip will only take between 15-30 minutes depending on your destination. What's even better, a ticket costs only 15 to 45 THB which is equivalent to 0.45 to 1.35 USD! Also make sure to hang on to your tokens, as they are collected at the exit gate for recycling.
Once you reach the city centre, the BTS Skytrain is one of the two main ways for getting around Bangkok on local transport. This elevated rail offers users, several benefits including the fact that it is fast, affordable and allows you to witness the beautiful surroundings of Bangkok city. There are two lines - the Silom line and Sukhumvit line - which connects at the Siam Station. The BTS Skytrain is well connected and is one of the easiest and quickest ways to get around in Bangkok to reach main commercial centers like the Chatuchak weekend market and Sukhumvit Road, the Asok Station to reach famous shopping malls like Terminal 21 and Times Square, and the Siam Station leading to one of the most trendy shopping areas in the city. You can opt to purchase single stop tickets priced at 15 THB / 0.45 USD or go for the most recommended option of a One-Day Pass priced at 140 THB / 4.20 USD.
Tip: You might want to avoid using this method of Bangkok public transportation during rush hours between 07:00 – 09:00 and 16:00 – 19:00, as they tend to get extremely crowded.
Mass Rapit Transit (MRT) Underground Train
The Metro system of Bangkok is a single line that connects between Bang Sue to Hua Lamphong with many 18 key stops along the way. All the trains in operation are fully air-conditioned and do not allow the consumption of food and drinks onboard. Here you can also purchase tokens for single trips or even get a 1-day ticket for unlimited rides within a single day. Some of the main stations closer to popular attractions include Lumphini – close to the Suan Lum Night Bazaar and several foreign missions, Phahon Yothin – to visit the massive shopping mall Central Lad Phrao, and Sukhumvit – close to Terminal 21 and also has an interchange with the BTS Asok Station.
Tip: If you're heading to the Chatuchak Weekend Market, the Kamphaeng Phet Station is much more convenient than the Chatuchak Park Station (BTS).
If you are looking at how to get around in Bangkok especially during rush hours, taxis are the simplest and most convenient ways of doing so. These brightly colored taxis are quite comfortable and spacious, and come fixed with meters so you don’t have to haggle.
Tip: The taxi drivers tend to quote tourists a price for the destination. Try to negotiate with them as prices quoted are usually much higher than what the meter would cost you.
These small three-wheeled vehicles are quite commonly found in Thailand. They are highly popular among locals for short stops and are something you should try too. You can negotiate prices before the ride and a reasonable fare would be about 20 THB / 0.60 USD per kilometre.
Tip: Some drivers would recommend you another destination - don't give in because their aim is to get commissions for bringing tourists there.