Best Ways to Get Around In Bangkok

Bangkok Travel Guides / September 26, 2016
Best Ways to Get Around In Bangkok Image credit: lovegtrv6

Bangkok is one of the metropolises that have the largest number of transport systems in the world. There are trains that fly above the city as well as trains that go underground. There are vehicles that move their wheels on the roads and boats that run on the river.

First time visitors may find it a bit confused when choosing suitable modes to get around in Bangkok. Read on this guide to familiarize yourself with the city’s various transport means, and travel the capital of Thailand with ease.

See also: Best Ways to Get from Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport to City

1. Bangkok Skytrain (BTS)

Bangkok Skytrain (BTS)

Skytrain, widely known as BTS by locals, is an elevated train system consisting of two lines: BTS Sukhumvit Line and BTS Silom Line.

The BTS Sukhumvit Line connects north districts to south east districts. It stops at 22 stations, including these popular ones: Mo Chit, Victory Monument, Phaya Thai, Siam, Asok, and Ekkamai. BTS Sukhumvit Line meets the underground MRT system at Mo Chit and Asok stations.

The BTS Silom Line runs from central Bangkok to the west. This line covers 13 stations, and National Stadium, Siam, Sala Daeng, and Talat Phlu are counted as the most busiest stops along its route. BTS Slilom Line connects to underground MRT system at Sala Daeng/Silom station.

This high-tech system is an efficient and relaxing way to get around in the city. It is the best option to take during Bangkok peak hours.

Service hours: 06:00 to 00:00 daily

Service schedule: A new train arrives every 5 to 8 minutes.

BTS fares: Fare ranges between 15 baht ($0.43) to 42 baht ($1.21) per trip, depending on the length of the travel distance.

2. Bangkok MRT (Underground Train)

Bangkok MRT (Underground Train) Image credit: sun_line/Flickr

Bangkok MRT, also known as underground train, currently consists of only one line – MRT Blue Line.

The MRT Blue Line runs through 18 stations. Chatuchak Park, Phetchaburi, Sukhumvit, Silom, and Hua Lamphong are the most used stations by travelers as they provide access to many tourist attractions. From MRT, you can transfer to BTS at these interchange stations: Chatuchak Park/Mo Chit, Sukhumvit/Asok, and Silom/Sala Daeng.

Service hours: 06:00 to 00:00 daily

Service schedule: Intervals are less than 5 minutes during peak hours (06:00 to 09:00 and 16:30pm to 19:30pm), and less than 10 minutes during off-peak hours.

MRT fares: Fares range between 15 baht ($0.43) and 40 baht ($1.16) per trip.

3. Bangkok Taxis

Bangkok Taxis Image credit: Moss/Flickr

Taxi is a comfortable yet inexpensive way to travel around Bangkok, except at rush hours (16:30 to 19:30 everyday). It becomes a common choice after midnight, when BTS, MRT and river ferries have ended their working day.

You can easily catch a taxi anywhere in the city. One useful tip to protect your pocket while traveling by taxi in Bangkok is asking taxi drivers to use the meters.

Taxi hours: 24 hours

Taxi fares: The fare starts at 35 baht ($1) for the first kilometre. A charge of 5.5 baht ($0.15) applies to each subsequent kilometre. Be prepared to pay 2 baht ($0.06) for each waiting minute in traffic jams. A normal 10-kilometre trip costs you around 80 baht ($2.3).

Note: Tipping is not required but it’s recommended to round the fare up to the nearest 5 or 10 baht.

4. Tuk-tuks

Tuk-tuks

The 3-wheeled vehicle tuk-tuks were a popular means of transportation used by Bangkok people before the time of taxi and BTS. They are still a way of transport now, but the service is mostly favored by tourists who want some fun while getting around.

Tuk-tuk hours: 24 hours

Tuk-tuk fares: There is no fixed rate for riding a tuk-tuk. The fare varies, based on the time of the day, the travel distance, and your haggling skill. Normally, a short 5-kilometre tuk-tuk ride will cost from 30 baht ($0.86) to 60 baht ($1.73).

Notes
– A tuk tuk can carry 3 adults, or 2 adults and 2 children.
– There are no seatbelts on tuk tuk.
– Tuk-tuk ride is exciting but it is not a very safe mode of transport.

5. Bangkok BRT (Bus)

Bangkok BRT (Bus) Image credit: Schwede66/WikiMedia Commons

Bangkok BRT is a bus rapid transist system that has its own 16 kilometre bus lane. There are 12 stops along the route, including two interchange stations that meet BTS Silom Line at Sathorn/Chong Nonsi, and Ratchpruek/Talat Phlu.

Service hours: 06:00 to 00:00 daily

Service schedule: Buses leave their stops every 5 minutes during peak hours (06:30 to 09:30 and 16:00pm to 20:00pm), and every 10 minutes during off-peak hours.

BRT fares: Fares range from 12 baht ($0.34) to 20 baht ($0.57) per trip.

6. Bangkok Motorbike Taxis

Bangkok Motorbike Taxis Image credit: Mark Fischer/Flickr

Motorbike taxi is a common mode of transport in Southeast Asian cities. In Bangkok, many locals choose to get around with this cheap yet convenient option. For solo travelers, especially those are adventurous, motorbike taxi is a fun and quick way to reach anywhere you want to reach.

You can find motorbike taxi drivers who wear numbered orange vests at most of the street corners near working offices or shopping buildings.

Motorbike taxi hours: 24 hours

Motorbike taxi fares: Fare varies based on the travel distance, the time of the day, and yes, your bargaining skill. A short 5-7 kilometre ride will cost from 20 baht ($0.57) to 30 baht ($0.86).

Notes
– A motorbike taxi can carry one passenger only.
– It is always recommended to wear a safety helmet, which will be provided by the driver.

7. Bangkok Ferry Boat service

Bangkok Ferry Boat service Image credit: noelbynature

Ferry Boat service provides river crossing service for those just want to move from one side of the river to the other.

These ferry boats travel on 6 routes: Tha Chang – Tha Wat Rakhang, Tha Chang – Wang Lang, Tha Phra Chan – Wang Lang, Tha Phra Chan- Thonburi Railway, Tha Phra Chan – Phra Pin Klao Bridge, and Phra Pin Klao Bridge (Phra Nakorn) – Phra Pin Klao Bridge (Thonburi).

This service is offered everyday from 06:00 to 20:00, and it costs only 3 baht ($0.10) per trip.

8. Bangkok Express Boats

Bangkok Express Boats Image credit: David McKelvey/Flickr

Express Boats, also called River Taxis, are often regconized through their colour-coded flags. Boat tickets are available for purchasing at piers or on the boats. There are 5 different types of express boats, differentiated by their flag colours.

Among them, the orange flag boat is the best option for travelers who want to explore Chao Phraya River and get to the Grand Palace. We can say so because it is the only express boat that operates all day.

Service route: These boats cover 21 piers.

Service hours: 06:00 to 19:00 daily

Ticket fares: It costs you 15 baht ($0.43) per trip, no matter how far you travel.

9. Long tail boats

Long tail boats Image credit: wihtgod

Long tail boats are like tuk-tuks on river, they are available for private hire throughout the day. The rate is not fixed, so you can test your bargaining skill if you choose to explore Chao Phraya River on a long tail boat.

A one-hour trip costs around 600 baht ($17.23) to 800 baht ($22.97).