The Skytrain (BTS) has two lines running above Bangkok's central areas, while the Bangkok Metro has one route and covers areas not connected by the Skytrain. The Metro intersects with the Skytrain at three points and has 18 stations, with frequent services running until midnight. The bus system has always been the main form of public transport, but it should be used with care due to pickpockets. The most interesting way to get around is on the waterways of the Chao Phraya River where numerous river taxis, long-tail boats and large waterbuses make most tourist sites easily reachable for about THB 10. Tuk tuks (colourful three-wheelers) are the standard way of making short journeys and are cheaper and quicker than regular taxis, but fares should be negotiated before boarding. Metered and un-metered taxis are air-conditioned, but be aware that drivers don't carry much change. Any taxi or tuk tuk can be hired for a day's tour of the sights. Bangkok also has free bikes for tourists for two set routes along the river; the east side goes past some of the biggest temples, while the west side goes through more residential areas.
220 volts AC, 50Hz. Both flat and round two-pin plugs are used.
The unit of currency is the Baht (THB), which is divided into 100 satang. Currency can be exchanged at the airport, banks, hotels and bureaux de change. Banks are open Monday to Friday. ATMs are available in most cities and tourist resorts. Most major credit cards are accepted at hotels and larger businesses.
The international country dialling code for Thailand is +66. The outgoing code is 001, followed by the relevant country code (e.g. 00144 for the United Kingdom). City/area codes are in use. To dial a mobile in Thailand an 8 must precede the city code. International direct dial facilities are available throughout most of the country. Mobile phone networks cover most towns, cities and holiday resorts; operators use GSM 900, 1800 and 1900 networks. Internet cafes are available in the main towns and resorts.
Emergencies: 191. Tourist Police: 1155
|New Year’s Day||1 Jan||1 Jan|
|Chakri Day||6 Apr||6 Apr|
|Songkran Festival||13 Apr - 15 Apr||13 Apr - 15 Apr|
|National Labour Day||1 May||2 May|
|Coronation Day||5 May||5 May|
|Bank Holiday||1 Jul||1 Jul|
|H.M. Queen’s Birthday||12 Aug||12 Aug|
|Chulalongkorn Day||23 Oct||24 Oct|
|H.M. King’s Birthday||5 Dec||5 Dec|
|Constitution Day||10 Dec||12 Dec|
|New Year’s Eve||31 Dec||31 Dec|
Bangkok has a hot, tropical climate with average high temperatures ranging between 88°F (31°C) and 93°F (34°C) all year. November to February is the driest time of year and the most popular with tourists. March, April and May are the hottest months, and the rainy season runs from May to October. During the wet season short showers are likely during the afternoon, though sometimes it will rain all day.
The Airport Rail Link (ARL) is the fastest way to get to central Bangkok. The service runs from the first floor of the airport and connects you to the MRT underground at Makkasan City Interchange Station (MRT Phetchaburi Station) and the BTS Skytrain at Phayathai Station. The cost of a ticket starts around THB 45 for a single fare and around THB 90 for express tickets. Public buses run several routes from the Transport Centre to Bangkok, while the Airport Express provides air-conditioned coaches between the airport and first-class hotels in downtown Bangkok. There is also a Limousine Service counter on the 2nd floor of the Arrivals Hall.
Car hire is available from Avis, Budget, Europcar, Hertz, Sixt and Thai Rent-a-Car. Bookings can be made at the Car Rental service counter at Arrivals.
From the airport passengers can catch a taxi from the departure terminal. Travel time depends greatly on traffic but is at least 30 minutes and can be much more. An exit fee is expected to be paid by the passenger although this can be paid at the end of the ride. Passengers can request the driver use the expressway which will cost a small additional fee. Rides will cost between THB 200-400.
Currency exchange is available on Level 2 at Arrivals, and ATMs are located throughout the terminal building. Public telephones are widely available. A tourist information service is located in the Arrivals hall on Level 2, duty-free shopping and a myriad of restaurants, wine bars and fast food outlets are also available.
Short and long-term parking is available at Suvarnabhumi International Airport. Short-term rates range from about THB 25 for the first hour to about THB 250 for the day. Long-term rates start at about THB 20 per hour and go up to about THB 140 per day.
Wifi is available throughout the airport and it is free in some areas, mainly the concourses.