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Getting to Know Public Transport in Bangkok

August 24, 2020
If there's one thing you need to know about Bangkok, it's the city's public transport. Before exploring the Thai capital city, it's important that you familiarize yourself with ways in which you can travel around. Bangkok is actually a large and diverse city, one that's both an urban metropolis and a solemn land rolled into one. It's easy to get lost here as each part looks different from each other. Not to mention it's also one of the busiest cities in Southeast Asia. So to make your trip here a lot easier to handle, here are some public transport systems in Bangkok you ought to know.

Getting to Know Public Transport in Bangkok

 

The Bangkok Mass Transit System

More popularly known as the 'BTS Skytrain' the Bangkok Mass Transit System lets you zoom through the city in record speed.  Since Bangkok is one of those cities that's prone to seeing many traffic jams throughout the day, the BTS Skytrain provides an excellent alternative that will get you to where you want to be in no time. The best part is it travels to most of the popular tourist spots in the city, from the beautiful temples to the well-visited shopping districts. Furthermore, one of its lines can get you to Suvarnabhumi Airport as well, which is always a major plus! 

 

Metropolitan Rapid Transit

The Metropolitan Rapid Transit, or "MRT," on the other hand, is the more popular metro/subway station of Bangkok. While the BTS Skytrain is more suitable for tourists, the MRT is the one locals prefer. It relatively covers more areas, with stations located in practically all Bangkok districts and more. Running from 6:00 am to midnight the next day, its two main lines are what most residents rely on to go to work, school, or any other everyday destination. Just make sure you're careful here as it can get really crowded during peak hours. And always follow the rules laid out on the stations as well. 

 

Getting to Know Public Transport in Bangkok

 

Bangkok Buses, Minivans, and Songthaews

For those of you who are budgeted travelers, your best bet to save money while commuting in Bangkok is through its local buses. Operating on various routes throughout the city, you can go on Transit Bangkok to see which one you should ride and what the schedule of their buses are. At the same time, however, do note that the schedule isn't always accurately followed as buses face Bangkok's traffic jams on a daily basis. If you find buses too busy during the day, there are still the minivans and songthaews. They serve similarly as buses but can be stopped anywhere around the city. 

 

Riding a Taxi

The most unique quality about the taxis in Bangkok is that it's multi-colored. While New York has the famous yellow cabs and London has the more mysterious black taxis, here in Bangkok, you'll see them in pink, green, blue, white, and more. Though this can get confusing, just watch out for the taxi sign to know that a vehicle is one. However, you also have to stay alert as it's fairly common for taxi drivers to scam their passengers. Always ride with the meter on and be very specific as to where you're going. If the driver suggests going on toll roads, know that you'll be paying for the extra charges as well. 

 

Getting to Know Public Transport in Bangkok

 

River Ferries

While most roads in Bangkok tend to get very busy during the day, there is one that not a lot of vehicles go on—the Chao Phraya River. This local body of water is actually surrounded by hotspots and districts that many people frequent, so it's only natural that it's become a pathway for transportation in of itself. And it's fairly common for both locals and tourists to ride ferries on this river. They're cheap and efficient, working on a fixed schedule that goes from 6:00 am to 10:00 pm. Most of these services are color-coded so stay alert as to which one you'll need to board. 

 

The Famous Tuk-Tuks

Finally, there are the famous tuk-tuks. A rare transport system that can only be found in Southeast Asia—though most famously in Thailand—tuk-tuks are small taxis running on motorcycles that you can ride in Bangkok. it's a famous mode of transportation in the Thai capital, both for its efficient compact size and affordable rates. Though do be careful, as tuk-tuk drivers are also known to scam tourists into paying more than they should. Know how to haggle when it comes to pricing and do not ride unless you're comfortable with the amount you have to pay. 

 

Getting to Know Public Transport in Bangkok

 

With a city as busy and bustling as Bangkok, it will help that you get to know its public transport systems even before you get here. You'll have an easier time navigating the Thai capital once you do!


Of course, going for public transport system is easier if you're staying at a nice location. With this in mind, it's better to go for a Bangkok luxury rental for your accommodation. They're usually located in the best areas in the city.




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