I am flying into Bangkok on 19th June at 6.40am and want to get the train to Chumphon. I was planning on just going to the station when I arrived and booking tickets but I've read that you cant buy tickets on the day and the trains will be booked up. Have I left it too late?
#1 duanea has been a member since 2/5/2010. Posts: 4
In order for you to get to Chumphon before evening you'll have to catch the 08:05 train. After that you will have to wait until around 1:00 pm before the next one leaves, and then there are several through the rest of the day.
You can certainly buy train tickets on the day you want to travel. You may not have much choice when it comes to seating, and will probably be put into 3rd class, but you'll get to where you want to go.
According to the State Railway's site it is a 6 hour trip ... this is purely theoretical. It's probably more likely to be around 7 hours or a bit more.
There are also 7 or 8 buses each day from the Southern Bus Terminal, Sai Tai Taling Chan. If you aren't going to make the train, you might consider taking a bus.
When you arrive you might be able to get a ticket for the 22:50 sleeper train. That will get you into Chumphon at around 6:00 am and you'll be able to get horizontal. You'll have to hang around Bangkok all day, though.
Sorry Tilaipa, disagree with you about the trains. .
The 22.50 isn't a sleeper, seats only, and if you're planning to catch the ferry to Ko Tao you won't make it if you take that train. It too will arrive an hour or so later than scheduled, too late to catch the ferries for Ko Tao.
The sleeper train leaves at 19.30 and that's also the one you have to get catch to get to Chumphon in time for the ferries to Ko Tao. Ignore the official arrival time of 03.47 in Chumphon, it's usually more like 5am, sometimes even later. Transport to the piers is included in the price of the boat ticket which you can buy on the platform when you arrive if you want.
Here are the train timetables
You can book online. I just checked and there are even some sleeper berths still available on the 19th if you want. Here's the link. If it comes up in Thai there's an English language option at the top of the page on the right.