Cheap Thai Travel

Transportation in Thailand


Thailand is a large country located in Southeast Asia. Thailand borders Burma (Myanmar), Laos, Cambodia, and Malaysia. Bangkok serves as the capital city of Thailand and is a bustling city of over ten million citizens. Thailand offers a great climate, unique tasting food, fascinating culture, and wonderful beaches, making it a very popular tourist destination. The country is made up of over 500,000 square kilometers making it one of the larger Asian countries. It is broken up into five distinct regions; Northern Thailand, Isaan, Eastern Thailand, Southern Thailand, and the Central Plains. The capitol city of Bangkok is located in the Central Plains region.
Getting around in Thailand is much easier than the rest of the neighboring countries due to it's more developed and sophisticated road systems. Even with the developed roads, it is not suggested that you travel by this means unless you are totally familiar with the Thai driving routines. Driving habits in Thailand are extremely poor and dangerous. Thailand features some of the highest driving mortality rates in the entire world. Excessive speeding, drunk driving, and reckless behavior are very common. It is also quite common for bus and taxi drivers to work extremely long, brutal shifts to make a living and keep up with unrealistic work expectations, which sometimes results in the reliance of drugs to stay awake.
It is common for motorcycles to drive on the wrong side of the road resulting in high death and injury rates. It is recommended to avoid riding or driving motorcycles in Thailand, especially if the driver is not accustomed to the fast paced traffic and lax driving rules. Death tolls skyrocket during many Thai holidays because of excess drinking and dangerous practices such as pedestrians throwing water on passing vehicles. It is also not uncommon to see people driving without headlights at night. Another danger for western drivers is that traffic lanes are opposite, which causes even more confusion. Cities such as Bangkok are known to have traffic jams that rival those of any other city in the world. Traffic can be backed up for miles resulting in multiple hour delays. Motorcycles even drive on the pedestrian footpaths (sidewalks) during heavy traffic, so keep your eyes open!
If travelling by road, it is best to take a government sanctioned bus. Although buses take longer in many cases, they are much safer because of their experienced drivers and sheer size in relation to the other vehicles on the road. The types of buses include local, express, second class, first class, VIP, and S VIP. Local buses are usually quite cramped and have no amenities and on the least expensive busses, no air conditioning. They are used for local travel only and should not be relied upon for long distance travel. They are however, a great tool for getting around locally for little money.
Express buses are basically local buses that make less frequent stops. They can be identified by their bright orange color and large size. Buses such as private coaches, first class, VIP, and S VIP often have amenities such as blankets, meals, and toilets. The seats often recline and have more room. These types of buses are great for long distance travel. They also carry far less passengers than the other types of buses.
Air travel in Thailand is quite common. Bangkok is a major hub for most of the major Asian airlines, which means plenty of flights to choose from. The airline industry was deregulated and has brought in several different airlines, which has caused ticket prices to fall. Travelling by air is much more affordable in Thailand than other countries such as the United States. Pan-ASEAN airline AirAsia is the most popular because of the abundance of flight options and very low prices. If booked well in advance, flying AirAsia can be even cheaper than bus or train. For those who have a bigger travel budget, Bangkok Airways offers a much more elegant experience, but at a much higher cost.
About The Author

Alex Smith maintains and manages the Cheap Thailand Travel website at http://www.cheapthaitravel.com - All of the materials on this site are the sole property and responsibility of Cheapthaitravel.com. This material may not be reproduced in any form without express written permission.
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