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Land in Bangkok: Stay up all night or find a place to crash?

Land in Bangkok: Stay up all night or find a place to crash?

Aug 28th, 2012, 08:30 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 48
Land in Bangkok: Stay up all night or find a place to crash?

I start my vacation trek in Chiang Mai and am landing at midnight in Bangkok from Chicago (12 hour time difference).

With the time change, given landing at midnight, I am thinking at least 2 hours before I would see a hotel room, do I:
a. Hang out at the airport for the 8 am flight to Chiang Mai
b. Crash at a hotel (even though body clock will be at noon time) and then get to final destination later that day (move the flight later in the day)
c. Other

What do you recommend? Ever been through the Bangkok airport? Howz the airport lounge? I'm flying United and Thai airlines.

On the way back, I'll be in Bangkok for a few days. Where are some recommended areas to stay? I don't want to get a car, want to have good access to different things. I saw a post about Ratt/Tong for potential tour guides. I have hotel points with Marriott and Hilton, so those are options as well.

Please advise.

Kim
Kkimkim is offline  
Aug 28th, 2012, 08:45 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 32,991
Believe me, you'll want some sleep after you arrive in Bangkok. I get in on this United flight every year. I go to my hotel, take a hot bath and sleep until 6 am or so, then get up and go. I'd suggest you stay at the Novotel at the aiport if it is within your budget. I've often taken flights out the next morning at 8 or 9.

There is a pay lounge, Louis Tavern, in the airport. I've never used it. I do appreciate having a real bed at that point.

When you return to Bangkok choose a hotel close to a skytrain stop. You are right, you do not want to rent a car!! There are a number of Marriots that are well-locted. Consider the JW. Personally, I prefer to stay on the river. You could stay at the Hilton Millenium on the river.

I'm not one who has ever used a guide in Bangkok. Bangkok is remarkably easy to navigate on your own. Use the skytrain and water taxis and taxicabs as needed.
Kathie is offline  
Aug 28th, 2012, 09:12 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 11,334
I'm rather the opposite to Kathie. I get my second wind when I touch down in Bangkok (3-4 times per year) and find myself going into the city, dropping my bags in my hotel, and going out to catch up with friends! I'm often up until 4am!! I guess you know what I'd do.....

Carol (and I'm 66 yrs old)
simpsonc510 is offline  
Aug 28th, 2012, 11:16 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Carol's point is well-taken. We all respond differently to time zone changes. And we have different demands we need to meet.

My goal is always to get into the time zone as soon as possible. My approach means that I feel like I am in the Thai time zone my first full day there. I am tired early that first evening, but other than that, I fell like I am on Bangkok time. If you are heading to Chiang Mai the next morning and will be trekking soon thereafter, I'm guessing you'll want to get inot teh time zone as soon as you can. Getting early mornign sunshine will help.

So think about how you react to big time zone chnages and what you are likely to need.
Kathie is offline  
Aug 28th, 2012, 08:46 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 532
I wouldn't have booked a flight to Chiang Mai so early.
http://www.domesticflightsthailand.c...oChiangMai.htm

I would have spent the night in Bangkok in a hotel.

When I arrive in Thailand around midnight I don't go to sleep right away. There is life on Sukhumvit even at 2 or 3 a.m. I have a couple drinks and kill an hour or two after cleaning up and locking my bags up. Then I hit the rack.

I am up before 8 a.m. The sooner I put my body clock on Thai time the easier I adjust to time changes.
SirHalberd is offline  
Aug 28th, 2012, 08:53 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 11,334
I'm also up early that first morning, even if I'm out with friends until the wee hours. I try to stay up and awake until about 9pm that first night. One thing I hate to do is force myself to go to bed when I'm really not tired (like when I land in BKK and get my second wind).

I think you would enjoy the Sukhumvit area. There is plenty of activity, shopping, dining, entertainment.
simpsonc510 is offline  
Aug 29th, 2012, 07:23 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 56
Hi
Around sukhumvit area probably good for you to stay in Bangkok.
it's easy to travel by BTS ,just like centre area in BKK.
RiniRabbit is offline  
Aug 30th, 2012, 07:49 AM
  #8  
 
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it should be pointed out that simpson flies business or first class, making the flight experience far more tollerable.

i would move the CM flight to the afternoon. i would stay at the airport, maybe at the novotel. there is a new marriott opening soon near to the airport.

you will find that the airport is a ghost town from maybe midnight to 5AM. there may be an open restaurant, but most are closed. i think once you go thru immigration and customs you are outside of any comfort areas, and you will not be able to check your bags to CM until the next AM.

for intown stays i would consider any of the marriott properties except the one on sathorn. the jw is very nice as is the mayfair... i have stayed at both.. i would point out however that hotels are generally very reasonable in bkk and it may not be the best use for your points.

as far as hotels in bkk are concerned, there is no perfect location, all require some sort of transportation to see the sights, go shopping and visit restaurants. Like kathie my wife and i prefer the hotels along the river. for a long time our favorites are the marriott riverside, now the anantara riverside, and the peninsula. we have also stayed at the roual orchid sheraton, chatrium riverside and the shangri-la, all of which are very nice.

but don't overlook in town hotels too: oh, there are so many: jw marriott, four seasons, marriott courtyard, renaissance, plaza anthanee (a favorite), marriott sukhumvit park, marriott mayfair, hyatt, st regis, kempenski, bangkok holiday inn, sheraton grande and on and on...
rhkkmk is offline  
Aug 31st, 2012, 12:27 PM
  #9  
 
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"you will find that the airport is a ghost town from maybe midnight to 5AM. there may be an open restaurant, but most are closed. i think once you go thru immigration and customs you are outside of any comfort areas, and you will not be able to check your bags to CM until the next AM."

*

On the first floor of the airport, near where you get the meter taxis, is the Magic Food Point - Magic Food Court. Open 24 hours a day. Cheapest place to eat while at the airport unless you have free lounge privileges.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/bill2p/7160805327/
http://www.facebook.com/note.php?not...40053782718715

For an afternoon departure I would never stay at the airport unless maybe if my company was paying for it. A hotel at half the price of the Novotel is still pretty good for Bangkok. You can spend the difference on anything you want, drinking, entertainment, shopping, meals and take a meter taxi or even the Rail Link back to the airport in time for the flight. Rail Link from Pratunam is only 45 baht using City Line.

There is a left luggage room at the airport.

http://www.bangkokairportonline.com/node/134

Have fun.
SirHalberd is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2012, 11:38 AM
  #10  
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Posts: 48
Thank you for all of the comments and hotel options. I am flying business class so I will get some rest on the way out. I fly through Tokyo. I cashed in my frequent flier points so I do have some flexibility with changing flights. I will be staying in Bangkok on the way back for 2.5 days so I will have some time to stay in the city. Should I just bum around or get a guide? Suggestions? I will be traveling on my own.
Kkimkim is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2012, 11:53 AM
  #11  
 
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I prefer to see Bangkok without a guide. It's easy to get around via the skytrain and the water taxis and taxicabs as needed. Do buy a copy of the Nancy Chandler Map (much more than a map!) to help orient you.
Kathie is offline  
Sep 6th, 2012, 08:18 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 339
Move your flight back a few hours, perhaps to 1300. I would get a hotel room and get some sleep, then fly on. If you hang out at the airport until 8 am, you will end up very tired and miserable. It is true that some of us get a burst of energy on arrival, but that fades after a few hours, and you will waiting at a nearly deserted airport terminal when the jet-lag kicks in.
rayong is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2012, 04:33 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
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Interestingly, we were faced with the same question and came up with a totally different scenario, for better or worse. We come into Bangkok on that same flight from Tokyo and decided to just hang out and take the 8AM flight to Chiang Mai, settle into our hotel, have lunch, sleep about 4 hours, go to (friend's) dinner, sleep and get up early the next day. The friends in CM suggested this routine, as they have had several visitors follow it successfully. We decided that by the time we got to a hotel in Bangkok and then, had to get up to make the flight again, we'd sleep maybe 4 hours if lucky. We, also, return to Bangkok for 2.5 days and have engaged Ratt for 2 of them to drive/guide us, thinking we would make the most of our time that way, too.
virginiafish is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2012, 04:42 PM
  #14  
 
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Virginia, there is a hotel connected to the airport, the Novotel, and I have used it a number of times when we were flying out early in the morning. Everyone is different, but I find an bath and 5-6 hours of sleep makes all the difference for me. We often connect through Bangkok on our way elsewhere and have done this. We strive to get into the local time zone as quickly as possible, so sleeping when we arrive and being exposed to early morning light does that pretty efficiently. With that arrangement, we are in the time zone after we get up the first morning, and really don't lose any time to jet lag.

You wil be going to sleep when it is morning in Thailand (and after you have had exposure to sunlight), so see how it works for you. You may just further confuse your body clock. Let us know how it works for you.
Kathie is offline  
Oct 6th, 2012, 08:27 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 532
"I will be staying in Bangkok on the way back for 2.5 days so I will have some time to stay in the city. Should I just bum around or get a guide? Suggestions?"

*

Millions of tourists travel to Thailand on their own. You can sign on to short tours out of the city through local travel agencies. There are many travel agencies in Bangkok. I prefer a hotel in the Sukhumvit Nana area where I can walk to malls, street vendors, nightlife, restaurants and many travel agencies for tours. You can also use the Skytrain in this area too.

Up to you.
SirHalberd is offline  
Sep 25th, 2014, 08:21 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 1
Hi Kim!
I just booked my flight from Chicago to BKK and was wondering the same thing! And I'm traveling alone! Would love to pick your brain on a few things. Is there any way we can connect??
Lindsay
lsaewhat is offline  
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