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Travelers to Bangkok, Thailand as well as those who live or spend a lot of time here, often eventually need to find a computer repair shop. With travelers now traveling with laptops or netbooks, it’s become commonplace for them to be dropped, plugged into wonky electrical outfits so suffering an electrical short, pick up a computer virus or any number of other computer-related problems. That’s why, if your computer needs repairing cheaply while you’re in Bangkok, you’ll be happy to know you’re in the right place.
Where to Take Your Computer For Repair in Bangkok – Thais are obsessed with computers so you’ll find computer repair shops everywhere. Whenever I have problems with my laptop in Bangkok though, I take it to one of three places – places where you’ll find many computer repair shops, so can shop around for the best price.
Pantip Plaza – Pantip Plaza is the most popular place in Bangkok to get a computer repaired and buy computers, computer peripherals and software. I’m actually not a huge Pantip Plaza fan, as it’s geared towards tourists as well as being full of shady sellers. It is however popular with both Thais and foreigners and, if you’re in downtown Bangkok, is easy to find.
Pantip has hundreds of computer shops, many of which do computer and laptop repairs. Just take your broken computer in, shop around for the best price, drop it off and leave it. In most instances, it will be ready in 2-6 hours.
Easiest way to get to Pantip Plaza is to take the sky train to Ratchathewi station and ask at the ticket booth for directions. It’s a five minute walk from there. If you happen to be carrying a heavy desktop computer though, take a taxi.
Fortune Town Mall – My favorite place for everything computer, including computer repair is Fortune Town Mall. Few tourists know the place, so you get ‘Thai price’ and not tourist price. The shop owners are honest, prices are cheap and it is huge, so you can buy anything you need for your computer, as well as cameras, mobile phones and more.
At least 50 shops do computer repairs and repair jobs only take a few hours, with occasionally an overnight job required. Prices are cheaper than Pantip, the sellers are more honest and I’ve always found the repair job is better. The sellers are friendlier too.
Fortune Town Mall is next to Phra Ram 9 underground station. Just walk out of the station exit and the entrance to the mall is right there.
Union Mall – If you’re staying in northern Bangkok, near Chatuchak Market or on Pahonyothin, Viphavadee or Ladprao roads, a convenient place to get your computer fixed is Union Mall. A large budget mall opposite Central Ladprao Mall, with lots of computer accessory stalls, they also do computer repair and, as it’s a mainly local mall, prices are cheap.
With at least 20 shops and stalls that do computer repair, you can shop around and be sure you’re getting a good price. Again, repairs take anything from a couple of hours to overnight depending on how serious your computer problem is.
To get to Union Mall, take the MRT underground train to Pahonyothin Station. The mall is next to it.
How To Get a Computer Fixed in Bangkok – It’s just as easy, if not easier, to get a computer fixed in Bangkok as it is in any western country, except prices are much cheaper. To make sure you get your computer repaired correctly though, here’s what you should do –
1. Shop around and get quotes from at least three shops before deciding on one. At any of the places I mentioned though, with a choice of upwards of 20 places, that’s not difficult to do.
2. Most computer repair shop staff will speak some English. If you’re wary of them understanding you, go to a shop where their English skills are high and get them to repeat back to you what you just said the problem was, so you’re sure they understood. Even at shops where they speak no English though, I’ve had excellent computer repair jobs with the exact problem I had fixed perfectly.
3. To be on the safe side, always ask the computer repair shop to do a back up of all your data so nothing is lost if your computer ends up being unfixable. Many shops in Thailand will do a backup for free or, if they charge, it will be a nominal fee of 100 baht ($3). Well worth it to ensure you don’t lose your data.
4. Most computer repair shops in Thailand will also offer fake software they’ll install on your computer for free. This can be anything from Microsoft Word to Photoshop, games,translation software, basically a bundle of cool software an d just about anything you can think of. It’s up to you whether you accept it or not but it is absolutely normal in Asia, where just about every computer comes with fake software, so don’t think they’re doing it just because you’re a tourist.
5. Get either a business card from the repair shop or have them write down their address and telephone number in English and in Thai. If you have to come back a few hours later, you may be surprised to see all the shops look alike and you’ve no idea where you left your computer just hours before.