There are meant to be 200,000 taxis in BKK.
That's a lot of cabs.
So it stands to reason that there are going to be some "bad" experiences based on numbers alone.
I travel to BKK and other provinces 2-3 times a year, so I have picked up a few tips.
You can't pick and choose your taxi at the airport because of the process involved, but, if the driver insists on a fixed rate before he drives off, then just get out and go back to the point where you got your taxi voucher.
Don't get angry either.
If the exterior and interior of the vehicle is damaged, smelly or makes you uncomfortable in any way, then politely exit.
You pay two tolls leaving the airport en route to the city. It, is not a rip off.
Have plenty of smaller notes on hand. There are plenty of Banks in the airport.
Do not hand the driver a 1000THB note.
If the fare is e.g. 320THB give him 350. 30THB is nothing. Round the fare up, it's only fair!
You will find going to the airport a bit trickier because they know you need to get there without fuss or bother.
Hopefully you have scored a professional and proud driver. If you are staying at a good hotel then the Concierge will take note of your needs.
For pickups from the (BKK) airport there are now a number of transport providers viewable online.
I have just booked and prepaid a trip to Pathum Thani from Suvaranabhumi Airport at a reasonable rate in a standard sedan.
I hope this helps...
Try to use the metered taxis which are very comfortable and with AC rather than Tuk Tuks as the price is more or less the same when bargained. We used metered taxis most of the time as we found they are more comfortable and price wise the same.
Good standard and well organised bus terminal for bus departing to all regions within Thailand. More than 100 counters divided in different aisles as per regions. Costs around THB100 from BKK city centre to bus station, by taxi.
The bus station has a very large and very economical shopping centre with some very good bargains.
Took a bus from here to Cha Am (Hua Hin), which costed THB 155 per person. The coach was airconditioned, but not deluxe though I was told this was a First Class fare ! .....all seats were Firs Class :-). The bus was a bit run down with not a very comfortable suspension. The jouney took around 3 hrs 45 min to Cha Am, including a 20 min refreshment / refuelling stop
enroute. We were dropped off on the main road in Cha Am and from there had to take a taxi to our hotel on the beach. Taxis are difficult to get, however, near the bus stop there is a shanty restaurant which displays a "Taxi" sign. Got a pick-up style taxi with benches rather than seats. Tel of the driver: +668 5704 2290. The driver promised to be at our location within 5 min the famous "on the way" statement. Remember to add 15 min to that 5 min promised waiting time !!! The drive was quite exciting as it was a different experience sitting on a semi open taxi. Taxi costed THB 200 which was a bit on the higher side, however, the availability was more important.
We however, took a direct taxi back from Cha Am to BKK, which costed us THB 3000/-. We were a family of 4.
Bangkok is a very crowded city, with a lot of traffic; rash hours are not only in the early morning and late evening as in Europe, but all over the day. However the best way to move in BKK is by taxi (metered taxi), which bring you everywhere you need for a ridiculous amount (from/to airport the very center of the city costs about 250 bath (one hour), while within the city you can drive for 20 minutes with not more than 70 bath).
- only taxis by meter (just say "by meter" while boarding) are so cheap, other ones are only tourist traps....
- if a taxi driver invents strange excuses not to bring you somewhere (like "there is a revolution" or "it is closed today") just take the next taxi; they just tell you so because they don't earn anything (extra) by driving you to your destination.
- avoid tuk tuk (don't even answer to them, it is better not to care about them at all, otherwise they could be really noisy and annoying)
One of the transportation modes while traveling in Bangkok is taxi. Although riding taxi will be quite expensive and if you take taxi during rush hour, be prepared to get stuck in the traffic.
We used taxi from the airport to our hotel in Shukumvit road. The taxi charged us 400THB with toll road inclusive, plus 50 THB for surcharge (charged by the airport). As it was nearly midnight and we were unsure about using MRT to the downtown, it seemed pretty good deal.
The taxi driver offered to take us without meter on. On our return, we were charged 280 THB, excluded toll road fee.
Whenever you can, please choose taxi with meter. If you are in the tourist area, we found that it would be better to walk for a while to stop the taxi. As we found out that taxi parking in the tourist spot has to “pay” to park there.
Taxis in Bangkok are very colorful and I see more pink colored taxis around the city. Not all Thai taxi drivers know how to speak English but they can still help you to reach your destination. Also, I guess all taxis are metered now. When we’re in Bangkok, we rode the taxis and all used their meters. Fare starts at THB35. They aren’t fond of tipping too.
However, taxis from Suvarnabhumi Airport gives higher meter rate, they say that fare meter starts at 50Baht… I dunno but when we arrived at 9pm, there were only a few taxis lined up along the airport. So we decided to take a taxi going to the hotel since we’re so exhausted from the trip. We were given a specific fare amount of THB300 and they say that it’s the normal rate for airport taxis. but we talked to a few locals, they say that taxis from the airport really cost that much. I really dunno, but I recommend you to take the train going to the city instead of taking the taxis from the airport. But I didn’t regret to take that ride because the driver was very friendly and talkative too. I had a few Thai phrases written in my small guide notebook that I used to communicate a little with him and he was very pleased. We kept laughing inside the taxi.
I guess.... our THB300 was worth it after all.
There have been several negative comments about taxis in Bangkok lately. Here are some helpful suggestions:
There have been some comments on the website about Bangkok taxi drivers. I have had few problems with them. Make sure they start the meter and make sure they understand that BEFORE you get into the taxi. Also a good idea to photograph the taxi number (and make sure the driver sees this) in case of problems. You can tell him you do this so you can locate the taxi again if you forget something. If problems DO occur, you can let him know you sent a picture of the taxi information to a friend. Oh, and if you threaten to report him to the "Tourist Police" make sure the taxi is stopped or on a straight road. Told one that onetime and he nearly lost control while in a curve!!
You will nearly always come out ahead by paying the meter-rate instead of a negotiated rate. Exceptions might be if you are familiar with the meter rate and the driver offers a better deal. Other times during heavy traffic or long trips, the driver may refuse to accept a meter rate passenger. (When I get what I consider to be excessive requests, I usually tell him, "I want clear title and a full tank of gas!")
Passengers are responsible for tolls.
There is a service charge from (but not TO) the airports
Don't be afraid to contact the Tourist Police if you have problems!!!
MOST IMPORTANTLY--Have a good trip. Thailand is by far my favorite country and I get there about 5-10 times a year!
There are plenty of taxis in Bangkok with many different striking colours and most are metered taxis.
On exiting the Airport's Departure Hall, there's a taxi stand and a counter where you goes up to and tell them your immediate destination/hotel. They will fill it on a chit and hand it over to the taxi driver (in waiting) and the taxi driver will take you to the hotel.
The driver of the taxi that I took indicated he would take the highway to Bangkok city centre where the hotel is located and I mentioned I had no objection. Those taxi drivers at the Airport seems to have better command of the spoken English.
The journey was smooth until the end of the highway and after exiting the highway into the city centre itself, the journey was smooth was we were heading in the opposite direction of the heavy traffic.
Total fare: THB300
CITY CENTRE TAXIS:
Generally, the drivers in the city centre speak little English and showing them a map may not be meaningful. Address/Destination written in Thai would be more helpful.
Starting fare seems to be about THB35.
If caught in the famous Bangkok's traffic jam, one may wish to reconsider destination and re-route to the nearest BTS or MRT station. Time saved (from sitting out a traffic jam) is more important for a tourist who has limited time in Bangkok. Generally, on the western side of Bangkok city are without the BTS skytrain and MRT.
In some tourist spots, there are many metered taxis awaiting but would only accept fixed fare price and would not accept metered fares.
Taxi in Bangkok
All taxis have a taxi meter that begins from 35 baht. There is taxis with different colors (red, yellow and more) and always you find one. Be careful and say the taxi driver to put the taxi meter on before he begins to drive.
First Photo: Taxis in Siam, Bangkok
Second photo: Taxi in Rama I Road in Siam, Bangkok
Third photo: Taxis in Surawong Road in Bangkok
Forth photo: Taxis in Siam, Bangkok
Fifth photo: Taxi outside the hotel
Bangkok is world renowned for its terrible traffic problems, so getting around on the roads is a bit of a nightmare. Yes, Bangkok has a metro but it only consist of one line (at the moment) and, yes, it has the BTS Skytrain but this doesn't go anyway near the city centre in order to get to the main tourist destinations like the Grand Palace, Wat Pho or Wat Arun. Instead you either have to take a tuk-tuk or a taxi. I took a few taxi's during my time in Bangkok and found them to be a lot cheaper than the tuk-tuk prices I was quoted.
Taxis are all metered, here, and the set price is 35B at flag fall for the first 2km, then 5B/km after that. This means that even relatively long journeys, such as from Sukhumvit to the Grand Palace often aren't above 100B but this does go up depending on the time it takes. The two tone green and yellow taxis are generally reckoned to be the best ones. These are driven by the owner, while all others are rented out by the day. Of course, everything really depends on the driver rather than the colour of the car, and there's not really any major difference between any of them.
Once exiting the airport, do not try to book taxis INSIDE the arrival hall. Instead, walk out and join the long queue at the official taxi stand. It's much cheaper here and you are never short of taxis. It looked chaotic but the system works. It should cost you about 400-450 Bahts to get into the center of the city, and do factor in the additional toll tax of about 65 Bahts as well (circa Nov 2007) should you choose to go by the highway and escape BKK's deadly traffic jams.
Once in BKK, taxis are not exactly a bad way to get around BKK (especially to the outlying areas not reached by the Skytrain or the Subway), except during the peak hours along the major roads where you can really be boxed tight in a traffic jam. Much more comfortable and much cooler compared to the Tuk-tuks and you are not exposed to the pollution outside, well at least till you get off.
Always insist on the meter, unless you are feeling really rich or generous.
However, when night falls and you are trying to return to your lodging really late, that it could be a hardball game of bargaining with some drivers to get your fare right.
On my latest visit to Bangkok (circa Oct 09), I hired an AOT limousine to house my entourage of 6 to-&-fro the airport. 1 way was 1200 Bahts and there was a 50% discount if we book the return journey as well...which turns out to be quite economical for us as a group.
We hired a taxi for a day as well this time round to drive around to the destinations we need to go. For a day 10am-7pm, we paid 2500 Bahts. It may be steep by local standards, but to have the taxi at our beck and call the entire day, it worked out pretty fine for us.
The best and fastest way is by metered taxi. Make sure that insist on metered. I would also suggest that you get one away from the Patpong area, they are not as easy to negotiate with, just walk a couple blocks away from the area and you should be fine.
For better prices, why not try the Suan Lum night market at Lumpini. Much better market
We did have some problems with tuk-tuks and taxi's in Bkk. On our first 2 visits we didn't use them a lot, but in 2005 we encountered several problems.
The biggest problem was that they didn't want to put the meter on. We stayed several times in Twin Towers hotel, each time for 1 night when stopping over. The hotel was very close to the Hualamphong trainstation, but we took a taxi several times to avoid the hassle of dragging our luggage over the streets. Each time they tried to rip us of by asking a fare between 300 and 500 THB, where the meter-fare was only 50 THB. I don't mind paying a bit extra or giving a tip, but they don't have to exaggerate.
At one time we called a taxi through the hotel to take us to the international airport (was still Don Muang airport at that time). The guy at the hotel told him to put the meter on, but when he drove away he refused to do so. Only after we were ready to get out of the car he agreed to put it on. Then he first took us to the domestic terminal (which was furher away) instead of the international, so the meter was higher than it normally had to be.
Also be careful when you take a taxi and pay extra for the toll at the expressway. There are several points in the city to enter the expressway: depending on where you enter you pay a fare to use it. Very often the taxidrivers charge you the highest rate, but they only enter at a point further down the expressway, so where they don't have to pay the complete fare they've charged you.
In Bangkok meter taxis are plentiful and available 24 hours a day. Sometimes you need to be sure that the driver will use the meter, if they do not want to then do not use them - just wave down the next one. Late at night, especially from the night life areas such as Patpong the cabs lined up waiting for you will refuse to use meters and try and charge you 3 or 4 times the fare as a fixed price. The best option here is to walk away from the lines of cabs and flag down a passing one. It is always useful to have the address of your hotel or destination written in Thai to show the drivers. Hotels usually provide cards for this purpose.
The normal way of taking a cab is 4 passengers. But on our last day in bangkok, the 6 of us were really short of money, and we weren't keen to walk miles. So what we did was squeeze into 1 cab. Yes, 6 passengers in 1 cab. We did felt bad for the cabbie and gave him a tip as well. Still, it worked out to be cheaper than taking 2 cabs. And since we 3 girls were petite, it was not that uncomfortable for a short 5min ride. I still can't believe we could all take one cab. That would never happen in my country.