I'll be flying into BKK around 1am on Jan 12th, and I was wondering if anyone could tell me how cheap and easy it is to get transport from the airport around the city at that hour? I'll be heading to a hostel and would probably like to get there sooner rather than later. Any suggestions?
Take a cab from the airport's taxi stand. They'll drop you off at the front door of your guest house or hotel for a flat rate regardless of how long it takes them to find the place. Why bother messing around with buses or trains at that time of the night, especially if it's your first time?
I can't remember the cost, but it's around B400 ... around U$13-U$15.
When you come out into the arrivals hall at the airport after collecting your bags and going though customs, turn right then take the escalator down one level. Walk outside and look accross (maybe slightly right) and you'll see the taxi stand.
Ignore any taxi touts on your way there, though probably not many at that time. They can be quite pushy.
Get a regular metered taxi from the desk. There is a 50bht surcharge for a taxi from the airport. You give this to the driver when you pay him on top of the metered fare.
Make sure he switches on the meter as you pull away and tell him if he doesn't. The white bit of paper you've just been handed is a complaint form.
#3 JohnnieWalker has been a member since 20/12/2011. Posts: 19
Will take < 30 mins into town at that time of day.
Depending on just where you're going, just over 200 bht. 300 max.
So: metered fare + 50 surcharge + a small tip is appreciated. (50 is very generous)
Once again, ignore airport taxi touts. They will say they have a metered taxi, but it won't be and they will want to charge a fixed price rip off fare. Just politely but firmly say no thank you and keep walking to the taxi stand.
#4 JohnnieWalker has been a member since 20/12/2011. Posts: 19
It is and it is still the easiest and most convenient way.
But at 9 Pm you could also take the train which is a lot cheaper. You can get far into town with that train but not all the way to where you want to be so you most likely need to find a taxi for the last stretch. Go all the way down to the lowest level in the terminal building to find the train.
In all honesty I wouldn't take the train still if it is at 9pm and you don't know the city. If you're new to the town a direct airport taxi is a lot easier and worth the extra money. No point in making your trip difficult in the first hour of arrival.
I'm also arriving around this time, and concerned about being able to check in to a hotel at that hour in the Khao San area.
#7 Justgoing4it has been a member since 2/1/2012. Posts: 1
nearly all the flights connecting from north america arrive at midnight or 1 am, so the khao san hotels are used to that. i typically just make a reservation for that first night or two as needed so i don't have to be searching for a room at 2 am. pick a place that advertises a 24-hour desk. you may need to wake up the desk clerk when you arrive, but there should at least be a sleepy person there to assist you.
we picked thai cozy a few trips back because it had that 24-hour desk. but even if you go without a reservation, you should be able to find something in the wee hours. cheers.
If you want to save 50THB you can always go up to the departures level and catch a taxi there (some hang around after they drop off passengers). However, if you are not exactly sure where you are going it is probably best to go downstair as there the taxi assistant can confirm where you are going. At 9pm traffic should be ok but you can never quite tell in BKK.
#9 Takalani has been a member since 2/1/2012. Posts: 3
Some inaccuracies here: 1 poster has JG4 arriving in KS road in the small hours, another at 9pm. It will be neither.
His flight is due to arrive at 9pm. So expect to leave the airport , after queueing for immigration, baggage collection and customs, towards 10pm. So ETA KS road will be circa 10.30.
No problem to find a hotel then but much more of a good secure feeling to book at least the 1st night or 2 ahead, even more so if its your first time.
KS road will be very busy at that time with everybody out eating and drinking.
#10 JohnnieWalker has been a member since 20/12/2011. Posts: 19
"If you want to save 50THB you can always go up to the departures level and catch a taxi there (some hang around after they drop off passengers.)"
I would not recommend this, especially for first timers arriving late at night! There is no guarantee that any taxi you get at departures will use the meter anyway. These taxis are not registered. You may end up paying more money than using a taxi from the Public Taxi desk. The meter taxis at the Public Taxi Desks know they must use the meters. Those taxis are supposed to be inspected, their ID information is recorded. When you use one of those taxis you get a receipt that identifies the taxi. Maybe even recorded.
For the sake of possibly saving 50 baht at the most, it might be better just to get your meter taxi at the desk. I rarely have much of any wait to get a taxi. I do check the meter in the taxi to see if it is at 35 baht. Have small bills and change available for paying taxi drivers.
Any time I have the opportunity to use the rail I do! I wish the rail service from the airport would last at least to 1 or 2 a.m.
Happy New Year.