This topic will be about tips on things (with budgets, of course!) to do around Bangkok airport; transportations, baggage, foods, etc. From how to travel around Bangkok from the airport to where to get your stomach filled, now you can just relax and travel in Bangkok airport like a boss 😉
1. There is more than one Bangkok airport.
Many travelers, especially from western countries, don’t know that there are 2 international airports in Bangkok; Suvarnabhumi airport and Don Muang airport. Despite being an international airport, most of domestic flights in Thailand are operated at Don Muang airport. So, don’t forget to remember which Bangkok airport it is though… 😉
2. There are several transportations that will take you around the town.
There are many ways for you to travel from the airports. Suvarnabhumi airport offers more transport services than Don Muang airport, which are really convenient The most common ways to travel from Suvarnabhumi airport are via Airport Rail Links (ARL) and via taxi.
3. Traveling from Bangkok airport in late night hours? No problem for all the ladies 😉
One problem for many travelers is most of the public transportation from Bangkok airports: buses, vans, and Airport Links, are close before/ by midnight. Arriving in late night hours, many foreign travelers are concerned about their safety and convenience (even Thais are concerned about this too. lol) Unfortunately, getting a cab seems to be the only choice. But, there are several taxi services you can choose from which are very convenient and affordable.
- For Suvarnabhumi airport, you can simply get a queue tickets at the ticket kiosks, located at the platform of Passenger Terminal on the 1st Floor, Gates 4 and 7. The ticket will indicated which taxi you will get in; a taxi slot number, his name, and his license plate number.
- For Don Muang airport, their taxi service works almost the same way with Suvanabhumi’s, but there is no automated kiosks. In order to get the taxi queue ticket, you will need to wait in line to tell the officers where you will be going. Then, they will call a taxi driver to come over to you and get your luggage.
Note that Bangkok airports have taxi services available with 50 baht surcharge.
4. The cheapest way to travel from Suvarnabhumi airport to popular hostel/ hotel destinations
I’ve seen a lot of questions from Bangkok first-timers in regard to the cheapest way to travel to their places. Khao San road and Ratchatewi area are ones of the most popular choices for foreign travelers. Here are directions from your airport to these two destinations. (during daytime – midnight)
Khao San road
From Suvarnabhumi Airport
- Airport Rail Links (ARL) – Walk down to Basement B and take the train from the airport to the terminal station, Phaya Thai. The fare is 45 baht. Then, catch a taxi to Khao San road (approx. 70-100 baht depends on the traffic).
From Don Muang
- Airport LimoBus Express – The service hours are from 9.30 am – midnight, and the bus arrives every 30 minutes. The parking spots will be at Platform of Passenger Terminal (Buidling no.1), Gate 6-8 and Platform of Passenger Terminal (Buidling no.2) on the 1st Floor, Gate 14. The fare is 150 baht.
Ratchatewi/ Phaya Thai area
From Suvarnabhumi Airport
- Airport Rail Links (ARL) – Walk down to Basement B and take the train from the airport to the terminal station, Phaya Thai. The fare is 45 baht. To get to Ratchatewi, when you walking down from Airportlinks, turn left (you should see a railway there,) then walk straight toward an intersection. You will see Ratchatewi BTS station across the street (approx. 15 mins of walking).
From Don Muang
- Public bus no. 29 – Walk toward Platform of Passenger Terminal (Buidling no.1) on the 1st Floor, Gate 6 or Platform of Passenger Terminal (Buidling no.2) on the 1st Floor, Gate 12.
From Suvarnabhumi Airport
- Airport Rail Links (ARL) – Walk down to Basement B and take the train from the airport to the terminal station, Phaya Thai. The fare is 45 baht. To get to Victory Monument, you can either get on BTS (only 1 stop) or walk down from Airportlinks, turn right (a railway is on your left,) then walk straight toward an intersection. Cross the intersection and keep going straight, and you will reach Victory monument with only 15 mins of walking
- Public van no. 551 – Departing every 20 minute with only 40 fare throughout the route, you can find the vans at Platform of arrival terminal 1st floor, gates 1 and 8.
From Don Muang
- Public bus A1/ A2 – Walk toward Platform of Passenger Terminal (Buidling no.1) on the 1st Floor, Gate 6 or Platform of Passenger Terminal (Buidling no.2) on the 1st Floor, Gate 12. A2 bus will take you straight to Victory Monument. A1 will drop you off at Mo Chit BTS station, which is only 4 stations away from Victory Monument. The buses fare are only 30 baht.
5. Afraid of Thai taxi scam?
Thai taxi is notoriously known as they often reject us, overcharge with a fixed fare during rush hours, blah blah blah…and even local folks are so tired of this. My best advice is that you check on your arrival time first and make sure you will be able to catch the last train/ buses. And, if you need to catch a cab in late night hours to your place do use Uber or Grab application to call a designated car. Many travelers told me before that using Uber and Grab is just an old-geezer way of traveling and not a real way to experience the local way of life. Well, you don’t have to use the services all the time. You will find these apps come in handy at times. Trust me, many locals use these apps to save times on negotiating with taxi drivers. It’s not funny though to stand by a sidewalk for an hour trying to catch a cab.
6. Where to snooze at the airport
There are many long chair to lie down and take a nap…which you might be only half-asleep since you would be worried about your stuff. At Suvarnabhumi airport, many travelers prefer to sleep on B floor under the stair way. lol B floor has a couple quite spots for you to take a rest. There are 24-hours lounges at Bangkok airport for you to take a shower and rest too (and it’s a little expensive). The lounge is accepting guests from both memberships and regulars (when there are rooms available.)
7. Stay over at a place nearby airport?
I would encourage you to find a place to stay beforehand though… don’t just arrive in Bangkok and go around by asking a taxi driver to take you to a hostel nearby your airport. At least, book a hostel/ hotel for your first night first.
8. A place to storage your belongings
Usually, Bangkok airports offer baggage storage services for you guys to safely keep your belongings.
- For Don Muang, you can find the counter in the departure hall on the 2nd floor of Domestic Terminal with a 75-baht fee/piece for 24 hours.
- For Suvarnabhumi, the counter is on the 2nd Floor in the Arrival Hall, Baggage Claims and on the 4th Floor in the Departure Hall, behind check-in counter Q. The service charge is 100 baht/ piece for 24 hours.
But, if you would like to deposit your baggage somewhere else? You can check out this service from bangkokselfstorage.com to get your stuff securely stored. The basic service fee is only 100 baht/ piece for a WEEK. Very cheap, right? Here are their numbers, in case you need more information 02 261-1516 and 02 261-1517.
9. Which tourist sim you should buy?
There are 3 mobile phone providers in Thailand; Dtac, AIS, and True. You can find their counters at both airports for tourist sim cards. Choose one that you think it has the best deal. Most of tourist sim cards are pre-paid ones which you can easily top up at any 7-11 and Familymart across the country.
10. WTF (Where The Food)!
Look for 7-11 or Familymart, if you are hungry and would like to find something (cheap) to fill you. Franchised restaurants in the airports are more expensive than the ones in town. You can also grab a meal at a food court downstair of Suvarnabhumi airport.
For Don Mueng, there are a minimart and a food court with budget. Located nearby ‘Group Tour’ exit, turn right and walk to the end of the way, walk down a small stair, and you will reach Magic minimart and food point.
Spending your free time (during a transit or a departure time) at Bangkok airport could be boring and expensive. lol If you have to wait for your flight for 6 hours I would suggest you guys to storage you belongings at the airport and go out for a walk somewhere else along Airport Links line though…
Comment and let me know what your thoughts are. Feel free to ask me about a direction from Bangkok airport to your place though. I will surely help.
Enjoy traveling 😉