TRAVELLING TO BANGKOK
Bangkok has two major airports. Suvarnabhumi International Airport (BKK) is the city’s main international airport, which is located about 30 kilometres from the center of Bangkok. The second one is Don Muang Airport (DMK), located 20 kilometres north of the city center, and it handles mainly domestic and regional flights.
Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of six months from the date of entry into Thailand.
Generally, a foreign citizen who wishes to enter the Kingdom of Thailand is required to obtain a visa from a Royal Thai Embassy or a Royal Thai Consulate-General. However, nationals of certain countries do not require a visa if they meet visa exemption requirements.
More detailed information about summary of countries and territories entitled for visa exemption and visa on arrival to Thailand: http://www.immigration.go.th/nov2004/doc/services.pdf
More detailed information regarding visa provision can be found on the web page of the immigration bureau: http://www.immigration.go.th/nov2004/en/base.php?page=visa
The weather in Thailand is generally hot and humid across most of the country throughout most of the year. While Thailand’s seasons are generally divided into the hot season, cool season, and rainy season, in reality it’s relatively hot year round. The hot season has temperatures fluctuating between +26 °C and +36 °C. The cool season is mainly cool and dry, and really only occurs in the northern mountains of Thailand. The average temperature of cool season and rainy season are between +23 °C to +33 °C.
The average temperature in Bangkok in November is +31 °C, with an average low of +23 °C and average high of +31 °C.
The official language is Thai. English is widely spoken, especially in establishments catering for tourists.
The Thailand banking system consists of 24 commercial banks. The banks in Bangkok are generally open from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM, Monday to Friday, except on public holidays. However, some branches may be open at the weekend.
ATMs can be found on all the main streets of Bangkok.
Credit cards are widely accepted in the capital city and some other major cities, but not in the rural areas. Almost all hotels, supermarkets and restaurants accept credit cards (Visa, MasterCard and Amex), with few exceptions.
The national currency of Thailand is called “Baht” (the code is THB). There are banknotes of 1000, 500, 100, 50, 20 and 10. Coins are 10, 5, 2, 1 and tiny satangs.
Foreign currency can be exchanged in banks and currency exchange offices throughout the city. Current exchange rates can be found at the official website of the commercial banks.
The following means of public transportation are available in Bangkok:
Airport Rail Link: The Bangkok Airport Link connects downtown Bangkok with Suvarnabhumi International Airport with eight stations, completing each run in 30 minutes. More details: http://www.srtet.co.th/index.php/en/cityline-calculate
Skytrain (BTS): The Bangkok BTS line has two lines (Silom line and Sukhumvit line), running in the city center area of Bangkok. To download “BTS Travel Guide & Map”: http://www.bts.co.th/_admin/uploadfiles/files/754.pdf.
Mass Rapid Transit network (MRT): The Bangkok MRT underground serves 18 stations, runs underneath Rama IV and Ratchadapisek Roads which cut through the heart of downtown Bangkok. Trains arrive every 5-10 minutes, and connect to the BTS Skytrain at Sukhumvit and Silom stations. For more details, please visit http://www.bangkokmetro.co.th/map.aspx?Lang=En&Menu=8
Buses: There are buses running on all major routes. For more details, please visit http://www.bmta.co.th/?q=en/bus-lines
Taxi Services: There are many taxi service offices, which accept orders by phone and online applications. The fare starts at 35 baht and gradually works its way up by distance and time period. It is also possible to hail a taxi at crossroads and at crowded places.
Tuk-tuks or “Sam Lor” (Three-wheeled): Tuk-tuks have become one of Bangkok’s most recognizable transportation features, and are still popular among tourists and visitors. The fare depends on the distance travelled, the time of the day and the traffic.
An iconic Bangkok tuk-tuk.
The country code is +66, Bangkok city code is 2.
There are three major mobile operators – AIS, DTAC and True Move. Their prepaid sim cards with internet (3G/4G) can be easily purchased at any international airports (from the counters of these operators), the downtown operator stores in many department stores and at convenience stores such as Seven Eleven.
Outgoing international calls can be made as follows:
- AIS: dialing 003 followed by the country code, the city code and the phone number.
- DTAC: dialing 004 followed by the country code, the city code and the phone number.
- True Move: dialing 006 followed by the country code, the city code and the phone number.
|The electricity in Thailand is 220 volts, 50 cycles per second, as in almost all of Europe.
Outlets in Thailand generally feature flat, two pronged plugs, though some feature holes for round plug ends. Few outlets feature three holes (grounded outlets) so it is often necessary to have a three to two-prong adapter for using laptop computers in Thailand.
Thai food is actually based on a balance between different flavors including spicy, sour, sweet, salty and bitter.
There are also many restaurants serving the dishes of different internationally recognised cuisines.
Food sampling at one of Bangkok’s many lively markets.
Fax: Services are available in numerous business centers and hotels.
Shopping hours: Most shops are generally open from 10:00 AM – 10:00 PM, though opening hours are typically longer in tourist areas than in smaller local towns. However, some shops might be closed on Sundays.
EMERGENCY PHONE NUMBERS
Police Hotline: 191
Fire Department: 199
Directory Assistance Bangkok: 1133
Tourist Service Center: 1672, 0 2250 5500
Tourist Police: 1155, 0 2281 5051
Immigration Department: 0 2287 3101 (Monday to Friday, 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM.)