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Thailand forum

bankok to chang mai

Posted by L100 on 30/6/2013 at 15:10

Hey,

would love advice on traveling after a long flight to Thailand, arriving around 6pm, going from Bankok's international airport to chang mai.

How many hours of traveling, and how much would it cost to go by bus. which buses are the safest and most comfortable ? Is it better to take the train-how long & how much would that cost? Are there local websites with this traveling info?

Thanks.

#1 L100 has been a member since 12/5/2013. Posts: 13

Posted by MADMAC on 1/7/2013 at 00:37

Don't do it would be the best advice I can give. Get off the plane and find a place to relax and recharge your batteries. Unless you fly, it's a long trip to Chiang Mai. A long trip on a bus which was just preceded by a long trip on a plane is going to suck a LOT.

#2 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957


Posted by L100 on 1/7/2013 at 08:08

Thanks :-)

#3 L100 has been a member since 12/5/2013. Posts: 13

Posted by MADMAC on 1/7/2013 at 11:53

No problemo.

As for getting there. assuming you don't want to fly, I would take the train. Not particularly fast, but pretty safe and comfortable if you go first class.


Otherwise take a VIP bus. More comfort and safety.

#4 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957

Posted by L100 on 1/7/2013 at 12:19

Do i get tickets and info to all of these possibilities through travel agents or do i go directly to where the bus/ train is located and buy the ticket there? can you tell me how much approx would the train cost as apposed to the VIP bus?
I really appreciate the info.

Thanks a lot
:-)

#5 L100 has been a member since 12/5/2013. Posts: 13

Posted by L100 on 1/7/2013 at 12:29

wow, great. i'll look it up :-)

#6 L100 has been a member since 12/5/2013. Posts: 13

Posted by Captain_Bob on 1/7/2013 at 12:31

Easiest option is get a connecting flight up to Chiang Mai as soon as possible without even leaving the airport. Keep in mind that some budget carriers like Air Asia and Nok Air use another airport (Don Muang) but Thai Airways (Thai Smile domestic) and Bangkok Airways use Suvarnabhumi the international airport. You could be in Chiang Mai that same evening if you plan accordingly.

Otherwise the fastest ground option is government-licensed bus, which you get from Mo Chit (northern) bus station. Can get there via the airport link and Skytrain. See map here. Overnight buses depart throughout the evening until around 11pm but you can probably grab a seat around 8-9pm. Sorry no online schedules, just go and buy directly at the ticket counters. There are many bus operators to choose from, but one of the best is Nakhon Chai Air (NCA). VIP bus will run about 750-900 baht.

Trains are slower than buses, but arguably more fun, and you can at least get up and walk around when you get stir crazy instead of being trapped in a seat all night. The best website for train info is seat61.com. Buy tickets directly at Hualamphong, Bangkok's main station. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hua_Lamphong_Railway_Station

#7 Captain_Bob has been a member since 27/5/2006. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,891

Posted by MADMAC on 1/7/2013 at 14:01

Captain Bob is Johnny on the spot here.

Me personally, when I fly in from overseas, I do not want to get on another airplane. I did it once, when I missed my little girl so much I just had to push on and get home. But I would never do it for vacation.

#8 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957

Posted by antoniamitchell on 2/7/2013 at 15:09

I personally don't mind catching a connecting flight - I figure after 12 hours on a flight, what's 1 more hour? Plus I usually just want to hurry up and get to my final destination so I can relax.

If you do decide to catch a connecting flight, and go straight on to Chiang Mai, remember to leave yourself sufficient time to clear customs in Bangkok. When I did it, I gave myself 2.5 hours for the connection (which turned out to be a bit more than I needed, but I'm paranoid about stuff like that).

Have fun!

#9 antoniamitchell has been a member since 13/5/2012. Location: Singapore. Posts: 492
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Posted by exacto on 2/7/2013 at 16:03

OP mentioned they are scheduled to arrive in Bangkok at 6 pm (1800). Are there Chiang Mai -bound flights after that? I recall being able to catch late evening flights between Chiang Mai and BKK before, but a quick check on Kayak didn't return any flights later than 1840, which does not seem like near enough time to transfer - even assuming the flight arrives in BKK on time.

I agree that catching a connecting flight that evening is a good idea, if there is one available. It will only add a few hours to the trip and you get to wake up already in Chiang Mai the next morning. But catching a train (a little better) or bus (a little worse) for another 10 to 12 hours of travel after a long-haul flight to Bangkok would be torture. In that case I'd just stay near the airport and catch the first available flight to Chiang Mai. By overnighting in BKK, you'd also have the option of flying to Chiang Mai from Don Muang via one of the budget airlines as well. Cheers.

#10 exacto has been a member since 12/2/2006. Location: United States. Posts: 2,650
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Posted by MADMAC on 3/7/2013 at 00:18

L100
Just out of curiousity, is there a reason you don't want to spend any time in Bangkok and want to press on to Chiang Mai rapidly?

#11 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957

Posted by TassieWombat on 4/7/2013 at 23:10

Personally I would "camp" somewhere for the night (or the remains of that night +1 more, why not?) and get the train that leaves Hualamphong Station at 8.30am (there are others) and gets into Chiang Mai at 8.30pm (barring break downs.. we got in at 10pm) great visual trip, comfort level is OK, second class seats are fine, aircon, includes lunch etc. Fare 528bht ($17)

I think it is a great way to see lots of Thai countryside and meet other people on route.

Have also done the overnight leaves BK at 7.30pm arrives 10am next day (obviously LOL) Good sleepers, restaurant car, price 770bht ($25). Good way to go, maybe a bit hard sleeping (if the others SNORE!!) but not as scenic.

All details here "The man in seat 61"

#12 TassieWombat has been a member since 6/4/2012. Location: Australia. Posts: 44
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Posted by TassieWombat on 4/7/2013 at 23:10

Personally I would "camp" somewhere for the night (or the remains of that night +1 more, why not?) and get the train that leaves Hualamphong Station at 8.30am (there are others) and gets into Chiang Mai at 8.30pm (barring break downs.. we got in at 10pm) great visual trip, comfort level is OK, second class seats are fine, aircon, includes lunch etc. Fare 528bht ($17)

I think it is a great way to see lots of Thai countryside and meet other people on route.

Have also done the overnight leaves BK at 7.30pm arrives 10am next day (obviously LOL) Good sleepers, restaurant car, price 770bht ($25). Good way to go, maybe a bit hard sleeping (if the others SNORE!!) but not as scenic.

All details here "The man in seat 61"

#13 TassieWombat has been a member since 6/4/2012. Location: Australia. Posts: 44
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Posted by LeonardCohen1 on 7/7/2013 at 06:59

1 night in Bangkok makes little sense. You'll spend 2-3 hours checking in/out/travelling to/from plus packing/showering for basically nothing.

Either stay 3-4 nights and see Bangkok or

Get a connecting flight same day, same airport.

#14 LeonardCohen1 has been a member since 24/7/2012. Posts: 2,148

Posted by L100 on 7/7/2013 at 09:04

Thanks guys.

I ended up flying that night to Chiang mai without leaving the airport in Bangkok- it was a long trip but made sense to start fresh in the morning rather than get on the move once again if i would've stayed in Bangkok

#15 L100 has been a member since 12/5/2013. Posts: 13

Posted by LeonardCohen1 on 7/7/2013 at 10:45

Sanity prevails

#16 LeonardCohen1 has been a member since 24/7/2012. Posts: 2,148

Posted by exacto on 7/7/2013 at 21:03

L100,

Do you mind me asking which airline you used from BKK to Chiang Mai, what time the flight way, how much it cost, and about how long it took to clear customs and immigration for the transfer? Or did you just connect directly and clear customs and immigration in Chiang Mai?

Glad it worked out for you. Regards.

#17 exacto has been a member since 12/2/2006. Location: United States. Posts: 2,650
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Posted by fondo on 7/7/2013 at 22:07

I'm not L100, but FYI, I recently connected through BKK to CNX on Thai. I cleared immigration in BKK in a dedicated area for domestic transfers. They put a little sticker on me to identify me as an international passenger and I cleared customs in CNX (ie, walked through just like everyone else). Both took no time at all.

#18 fondo has been a member since 23/6/2006. Posts: 171
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Posted by exacto on 8/7/2013 at 02:38

thanks, fondo. that sounds really convenient. ta.

#19 exacto has been a member since 12/2/2006. Location: United States. Posts: 2,650
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