Sorry, another question as my trip starts tomorrow.
I used the advice given on what I consider to be a very good website to try to sort my train ticket. I dont know if I am allowed to post the link so I will just give a clue - 'the man in seat 61'
It suggested emailing them with my requirements, but allow a good 2 weeks as they are notorious in slow email replies.
I now realise that it has been over a month and no reply.
My question is - Will I be able to get an overnight sleeper with only a few days notice at this time of the year.
Failing that I guess the alternative is to fly, but i have done the overnight sleeper before and really enjoyed the experience.
#1 buttonbridge has been a member since 21/11/2010. Posts: 32
1.this site is very well known and mentioned here dozens of times.
2.IF you had been so old-fashioned to do what we did long time ago: buy a guidebook and READ it-then you would have noted that there is a ready alternative, used by millions of Thai every year: an overnight bus (coach for real UKers)-some 20+ different companies run overnightbuses-and by day too, from BKk to CM-cost is less as a train ticket. Many different classes and types of service. Just go to that giant BUSterminal Mochit and you will be welcomed by the sellers. MOstly on time and faster as the trains-who are always late anyway.
3.which also partly explains my graft against seat61: it is so much train-only, that it looks like jehova's as it will not tell any reasonable alternative. Thus the tipical young who is unable to believe that there are things out of the www- is restrained in other possibilities.
4.as there were longtime and long overdue repairs on that line late 2013, the situation now is that due to the ignorance of so many people most tickets for the populair sleepers (there are 3 or 4 overnite trains, but 1 is dead-slow and very old stock-this train is free for Thai) are caught by ticket scalps/touts, who then try to sell them to those ignorant folks at a high markup when they come to the station.
#2 captainbkk has been a member since 16/2/2012. Posts: 472
CaptBKK - Thanks for the patronising and and almost insulting response.
I am 61 and have travelled a lot and bought many guidebooks; only to find them out of date almost as they leave the press.
I ask questions on forums such as this as the multitude of 'information websites' are often out of date too.
I never had a problem last time I travelled by train, but I didn't actually buy my ticket myself.
I don't like the buses; dont see a problem with them, just dont like them.
Thanks for the information on the state of the trains.
If you read any of my posts in future, extend me the courtesy of NOT replying.
#3 buttonbridge has been a member since 21/11/2010. Posts: 32
@Buttonbridge - in answer to your question, with a couple of days notice you should be ok - no guarantees of course, but with a couple of days you should be set.
As @captainBkk points out the trains are a bit slow and clunky, but personally I'd go with slow and clunky over a night bus anyday ( or night)
#4 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 7,652
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Thanks Somtam. I remember them being a bit slow and clunky, but I did enjoy the experience. And I totally agree; train over bus any day.
#5 buttonbridge has been a member since 21/11/2010. Posts: 32
Yes it was a consideration, but I kinda liked CM and I have already booked my flight from there to Krabi.
#7 buttonbridge has been a member since 21/11/2010. Posts: 32
I'm a big fan of the overnight sleeper trains from Bangkok to Chiang Mai too, and have used it dozens of times. It isn't the best night's sleep ever, but like you I enjoy the experience. As you note, it is late in the game, but you might still get lucky and find an open berth. If it were me, I'd try to contact a Bangkok-based travel agent to see if they can find something for you. Consider the first class sleeper, if you haven't already. I've lucked into a few of those last minute too, since they are more expensive (but worth every baht to me).
If you can't find a sleeper berth, then I would fly. Last resort would be to take the overnight bus. Good luck. Cheers.
Went to station today and booked 2class sleeper no problem.
#10 buttonbridge has been a member since 21/11/2010. Posts: 32