If you’re thinking of going to Bangkok, you may be intimidated by the heavy traffic the city is partly renowned for. But while traffic can be an issue in and around Bangkok, their world class and very reliable public transit system makes it pretty simple to get around while maintaining your sanity. Let’s look at some at the transportation options in the city, as well as a few tips on how to get wherever you need to go easily.
The BTS Skytrain
If you want to travel around the city’s center, then the BTS Skytrain is the way to go. The Skytrain runs on two lines – the Silom Line and the Sukhumvit line. These lines cover most of the central city area and will connect you to the main business districts.
If you’re going to be staying in Silom or Sukhumvit, the Skytrain will allow you to circumvent the heavy traffic and get where you need to go fast without worrying about delays. It’s also pretty cheap as well. Tickets start as low as 15 Baht each, so make sure that you check the BTS price table for various ticket prices and pass options.
However, you should note that the Skytrain doesn’t reach the Rattanakosin area. If you happen to be near Khao San Road, then you’ll have to take either a boat or a taxi and head to the Saphan Taksin Station. You’ll then be able to connect to the Skytrain via the Silom Line and get to the city center.
Motorcycle Taxis and Rentals
Getting around the city on a motorcycle is the best way to go if you don’t want to use public transit and get around the traffic. Taxis are a good option if you can’t drive and only need to travel short distances. Otherwise, rent a bike. You can rent bike in Bangkok for a few dollars a day and you won’t have to deal with tuk-tuk drivers or taxis constantly haggling their prices down, so that’s a major plus.
Cycling and Walking
Getting around the city can be done either on bicycle or by foot. If you’re staying near Chit Nom or Siam, the city’s elevated skywalks are great if you’re trying to avoid heavy traffic. And while gridlocks can make it a challenge for cyclists during rush hour, you can always take the city’s backstreets and ride along the canals if you want to get to your final destination.
Canal and River Boats
Canal and riverboats are also a very common mode of transportation in Bangkok and the city’s extensive canal system allows you to get virtually everywhere on a boat. If you’re traveling with a large party, you can also book a private taxi boat ride. These will usually charge you a price per hour, so try to negotiate a small fare first and ask for an hourly price to avoid extras.
Bangkok is a pretty navigable city once you know the basics. Make sure that you get acquainted with the various transportation options before you leave and consider all the options at your disposal.