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Getting start when you arrive Thailand.

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Well, I believe that each country in our world is different, not only by culture but also with regards to, mobile system , transportation and foods.

It is useful for people who have just arrived in a new country to know a bit about the place . So here are some ideas on how to get started and prepare yourself for your whole trip after you set foot in Thailand.

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No.1 The Airport

Thailand has many Airports but the only international hub is The Suvarnabhumi airport, which located in Samut Prakan (not Bangkok but very close). When you arrive or depart at this time (8/2/2012), you may wonder “why is it taking longer than my last visit?”

I can answer that…It is because some runway are closed due to damage. The runway standard was lower than usual. All Thai people know about it, as it has been on the news since it’s grand opening (about 8 years ago). And if you wonder why this happened?

I can answer that as well…It’s because of the corruption!!! Another reason that was recently revealed on the news is that there are too many tourists—the capacity of Suvarnabhum airport can take 45 million people per year but it’s currently at about 50 million. So these two problems combined have resulted in longer than usual wait times.

 No.2 Getting around from the Airport.

- By Air : Will cost about 1500 – 3000 baht, depending on your destination and promotional period. Since October 2012, Another big airline, Airasia has changed their domestic service by going back to Donmuang Airport (in Bangkok).

As a result , there are Airasia and Nokair , the two biggest domestic airline, in Donmuang airport and the other domestic airlines are considering to move, too. This would affect you if you plan to go to somewhere else, such as, Phuket , Krabi or Chaingmai. You should be aware of a transit time because it could take about 1 hour from Suvarnabhum airport to Donmuang Airport by car if there is no traffic.

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- By Taxi : From Airport to Phayathai (the end of high speed line) costs about 270 Baht. Suvarnabhum Airport is famous among taxi drivers. They want to get in, but few can. There is a taxi stand that you have to wait in line for and pay an extra 50 Baht. This is normal and it is right regulation.

But in some cases, the taxi driver refuses to use the meter and overcharges the customer. My suggestion is not to get in the line that queues up. Instead, go to the top level, then go out to the taxi that has just pull over to let their customer out. Ask the driver whether or not they use meter, if they do go with them. This trick is a win-win situation for both you and the taxi driver. Because these taxis are not in the gang of mafia taxis that wait downstairs.

This is a sky train line
This is a sky train line
This is how to get the ticket
This is how to get the ticket

- By Train : cost from 15-45 Baht, the non-stop cost 90 Baht. There are 3 high-speed train services in Bangkok. But I will discuss the one that could take you from Suvarnabhum to Bangkok city.

You can use this service by going the the underground level (there are many signs point ingto it). It’s easy and takes about 45 Mins from Suvarnabhum to Payathai (The end of the line). At Phayathai you can use another train service to explore more areas in Bangkok.

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sky train station
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subway station which use a different line with sky train.
There are plenty of minivan lines in Bangkok. But only few Foreigners knows how to use it.
There are plenty of minivan lines in Bangkok. But only few Foreigners knows how to use it.
General bus stop.
General bus stop.

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- By Bus and Mini Van : 15-40 Baht. According to the news, there is the free shuttle bus on level 1 that will take you from Suvarnabhum to Donmuang (5.00am-22.00pm). But I’m not sure if this is actually a fact or just a rumor.

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The free bus that I have used is from Suvarnabhum to a bus terminal and there are many buses and vans that service you all around Bangkok. Anyway this service has gotten less popular since the high-speed train opened.

 No.3 Mobile ( sim cards )

Some people think of Thailand as a jungle in which Thai people rides an elephants to school. That was a joke that a Thai comedian told Thai people during a class in The US. This image has existed for about 500 years. But now Thailand is far more developed, with sky scrapers and lots of modern shopping malls.

But you don’t have to worry about being disconnected from the world while you relax on the beaches in Thailand. After you pass through the immigration, there are mobile phone company booths where you can buy a simcard for your mobile phone. Then it’s ready to use (without any registration).

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There are 3 providers : AIS. , Dtac. and True. If you plan to travel all around Thailand and go to beaches, mountains, or remote areas. I would recommend AIS. , the most expensive one, but it will cost about 20% more than others.

If your itinerary is in town or the city provinces. You can’t go wrong with any of the carriers , all of them have good signals. The cheapest one is True. But you need to look at what their covers and the current promotions.

When you buy a simcard here, there should be a credit in simcard for you to start. Let’s say you pay 50 Baht, then you may receive a 15 Baht credit to use. And you can buy a simcard or recharge your credit in any 7-11 shop, there are so many 7-11 and all of them open 24hours/7days.

The only problem is if you buy it in 7-11, you have to communicate with the shopkeeper with body language (they can not speak English at all.) So if you feel uncomfortable about that I recommend you to buy at the Airport.

 

XXX-L01

 

 

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