How to Get Around Bangkok Fast and Cheap!

Traffic Jam in Bangkok

Get Around Bangkok Fast and Cheap Like a Local

Due to the fact that Bangkok is the heart of all business and economic flow in Thailand, it is not surprising that the city has become packed and loaded with the population as well as vehicles. How to get around Bangkok reliably is the most common question for all, especially the newbies.

Is it easy to get around Bangkok?

Getting around Bangkok is somewhat a confusion and puzzle when you just happen to be in the country for the first time. However, please also bear in mind that Bangkok is a city full of culture preservation yet a high tech city, therefore, transportation issues are not somehow a concern for Thais and expats alike. You just have to know some useful tips to ease your life.

Let’s get to know the tips, together:

Meter Taxis in Bangkok
Meter Taxis in Bangkok

It might not be cheap as said however if we compare the fare price of the taxi in Thailand to some major cities like Singapore, you will be amazed to find out that the starting price is only 35 Baht or 1 USD dollar when you hop on. Taxi is very reliable to get you around any place in the city especially when you are not familiar with Bangkok at all. It is the most comfortable transport until the road is all packed and you will be stuck in the middle of the road from one to two hours and that would ruin your work, your meeting or plan. Certainly, if you are here to settle down, a taxi might not be a good choice. Therefore, if you read down to the bottom of the article you will find many more options.

BTS Skytrain Operating in Bangkok
BTS Skytrain Operating in Bangkok

BTS SkyTrain

BTS SkyTrain is the most convenient transportation to get around Bangkok, though you might find it a little bit too crowded especially during peak hours. It gets you to almost every part of Bangkok within a matter of time, no traffic jam, constantly takes you to the destination you want to go. If you are not quite sure about the transit operation, don’t worry! There are numerous applications that can be downloaded into your mobile to help you understand how it works and where it will take you to. One of the useful apps is BTS SkyTrain, where it will tell you the exact location you are at and what you have to do is to go to setting and allow the app to use your current location. Next is a search platform in the app where you can type in the place you want to go to. It will show how many stations you have to pass before arriving at your destination with a pinned signal on the station from where you start.

Pricing starts from 15 Baht or 0.5 USD dollar per ride. Price may vary a little on the card you purchase. In each station, there will be a customer concierge where you can purchase the ticket for the ride and the ticket kiosk if you are too impatient to wait in the line. If you are planning to be in Bangkok for more than a week, you might consider looking for the Rabbit card as it will save each time you travel with BTS.

Iconic Bangkok MRT
Iconic Bangkok MRT

MRT or Metropolitan Rapid Transit

MRT is another popular method to get around the city, it operates similarly to BTS. The difference is that it runs on the underground and the area that is different from BTS. At some point, we can always proceed to transfer from the BTS line to MRT and vice versa (Asoke BTS or Sukhumvit MRT line and Mochit BTS or Chatukchak MRT) YES! Sometimes it is very confusing to have two different names for the same location. No worry, since I have come here, I found one amazing app that eases my travel a lot. You just have to download Bangkok Metro Transit Map and play around with it. This app features all lines in Bangkok ranging from BTS, MRT, and ARL (airport link). It works almost the same as the BTS app and included with fare fee calculating, distance, etc.

Pricing starts from 16 Baht or 0.5 USD dollar per ride. In each station, there will be a customer concierge where you can purchase the ticket for the ride and the ticket kiosk. Bangkok MRT card is highly recommended when you plan to stay in Bangkok for a week or more as it is crazily crowded every time at the MRT station. Please note that you will find MRT one day pass in the form of a round coin bigger than Thai baht coin, however, it works the same as the card where you can tap on the platform of the entrance before entering and insert the coin after you reach your destination.

Airport Link (ARL):

The first thing you have to know is that ARL will get you around Bangkok just like BTS and MRT. It is a good thing for those who want to save their cost from Suvarnabhumi Airport into the city as the line is connected and you just have to transfer at the right station which is Phayathai BTS station. Another good point is that ARL is not always crowded as you can see at BTS or MRT and there will surely be available seats for you.

Motorbike Taxi in Bangkok
Motorbike Taxi in Bangkok

Motorbike Taxis

Motorbike is another fast way to get around the city when you are in a hurry. You will find a queue of people wearing orange jackets in most places in Bangkok. The fare usually starts from 10 baht or 0.4 USD Dollars. However, it might be an issue for our expats friends when they do not speak the language as well as being overcharged by the motor riders as they do not have an exact fare based on the meter. It is important to note that there are available scooters for rent in Bangkok as well, the most reliable one I know so far is BKK SCOOT. They provide both short term and long term rental.

The answer to getting around Bangkok is easy or not depends on the methods you are using. From my point of view, whether you are traveling alone or with your family, BTS, MRT and, ARL is the most convenient method of all. You are aware of your fare charge, distance to travel and safest way! However, you just have to start having some of the useful apps down here.

Useful Navigators in Bangkok
Useful Navigators in Bangkok

Recommended Apps to Get Around Bangkok

Google Maps: it is surprising to know that Google Maps does not work reliably in some countries but Thailand is not one of those. You can even travel to the outskirts of Bangkok while browsing Google Maps anywhere you go.

BTS SkyTrain: includes all the amazing features from the estimation of fare charge, the distance you have to travel on BTS, tourist info and call center for help and especially it reliably locates our current location and directs you where to go. The app is also friendly usage for those who are having difficulty with seeing (blind people) with the support system for the blind where they can be directed to get on board with the voice director.

Bangkok Metro Transit Map: works similarly to the BTS SkyTrain app. However, it gives you extra on the MRT line as well. Therefore 3 in 1 app!

Grab: Yes! This app is well-known in the globe. Ranging from transportation to food delivery. It is very helpful for us who do not speak the language and want to go anywhere, though it might be costing more compared to the call cab. However, you do not have to panic when traveling, there is an emergency call plus the trip tracking and you will never be overcharged!

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