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The REAL Bangkok Airport Express Link Opens

The REAL Bangkok Airport Express Link Opens

Old Aug 23rd, 2010, 03:21 AM
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The REAL Bangkok Airport Express Link Opens

The Bangkok Airport Express officially opened today, so I took a ride on it to see the real thing. There have been a lot of reports on the City Line, which has been in testing for the last few months, that confused the commuter service with the Airport Express, which uses different trains. The Airport Express trains have plush padded seats, overhead racks, carpeting and luggage racks by the door. It's very nice. The express trip takes only 15 minutes to the "Makassan" off Asoke Road near the Sukhumvit area.

The cost of the Express train is 100 Baht through the end of the year, after which it will be 150 Baht. If you're staying the Sukhumvit or Ratchada areas and traveling alone the train will probably save you time and money, but for more than one person, staying Siam or on the river, it will probably cost more than a taxi, and may not even save you much time.

The City Line stops at five stations between the airport and Makassan, and continues on to the Phyatai Skytrain station. It will cost just a flat 15 Baht to the end of the year, after which it will cost from 15 to 40 Baht depending on distance.

Pictures and more details on my airport blog:
http://asia-airports.com/blog/2010/0...k-opens-today/
MichaelBKK is offline  
Old Aug 23rd, 2010, 04:22 AM
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The one big advantage of the city line will be the interconnect to the Phayathai BTS.

Personally, I think both will appeal more to the backpacker types.

What is the walk from Makkasan to Petchaburi MRT like?
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Old Aug 23rd, 2010, 06:25 AM
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Thanks for that information. Good to know when I'm travelling light. If I'm arriving w/two or three bags, then a taxi will be best for me. Same with returning to the airport after two weeks of shopping in BKK and Chiang Mai.

Now I know what I've seen on the rails, running back and forth, near the airport! I had read that there were practice runs going on.
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Old Aug 23rd, 2010, 06:42 AM
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So tell me. As a single traveler, is it worth it to me over a taxi from the airport to Centre Point Silom? Then I suppose a taxi to my hotel?
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Old Aug 23rd, 2010, 06:56 AM
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Carrying your bag(s), you can take the city line to Phayathai, then transfer to the BTS. You can take the BTS to Saphan Taksin, but you will need to transfer lines at Siam. Center Point Silom is a short walk from there.

With a single bag, it might be a go. With "luggage", a taxi would be the way.
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Old Aug 23rd, 2010, 07:04 AM
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I'm traveling with one rolling "stand up" duffel with my laptop bag that fastens on top of it. So you're saying it's two transfers from the airport, then a short walk?
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Old Aug 23rd, 2010, 07:24 AM
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taxis and limos still seem the best option for arrival and departure from bkk....on short trips to other destinations with light luggage this will be convenient...

i can't imagine taking this service after a 30 hour flight from the usa or when leaving for good with all the luggage, etc... plus a michael points out if 2 or more are travelling it is cheaper in a taxi from most destinations....

what hours does it operate would be another question??? with so many flights arriving around 11PM-1AM, it may not be available??
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Old Aug 23rd, 2010, 07:26 AM
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that should read: "plus as michael points out..."
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Old Aug 23rd, 2010, 07:36 AM
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I agree with the taxi/limo when arriving after a long flt or departing BKK for a long flt home with lots of bags. On the other hand, if I've only been to Samui or Krabi for a couple of days and only have one small rolly bag (having left everything else in my BKK apt)I think this would be very useful. I'd give it a try, for sure. The big station near Asok is not that far from my apt building, but I'd do a taxi anyway. Hope they plan to have a big supply of taxis there at that station whenever there are arriving passengers!
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Old Aug 23rd, 2010, 07:37 AM
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Patrick, it will take less time via taxi from the airport to Centre Point Silom and will certainly be less hassle.
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Old Aug 23rd, 2010, 07:47 AM
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OK, Kathie, that was the important issue. I know that sometimes trains or subways are just plain quicker due to lack of traffic, but if it even takes longer (including the changes, then I don't think it's worth the extra hassle as you say -- even though I'm only coming from Hong Kong, and will be leaving for a flight to Siem Reap.
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Old Aug 23rd, 2010, 12:34 PM
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Patrick, for your first time in Bangkok, I would most definitely take a metered taxi!
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Old Aug 31st, 2010, 03:37 AM
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"it will take less time via taxi from the airport to Centre Point Silom. . . "

Really. Even when it took exactly one hour and 45 minutes by taxi? Can you say 6 PM rush hour? I've never seen so much dead still traffic in my life and never seen such a frustrated taxi driver. This morning at breakfast I overhead two business people who seemed to be regulars here talking "what is going in in Bangkok this week? I thought we'd never get here from the airport in all the traffic". So at least I know I wasn't alone, but what is it with me and taxis lately?
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Old Aug 31st, 2010, 04:34 AM
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Neo, in my one million trips to BKK it's never taken that long. There may have been an accident or something on the toll-way. Don't assume it'll always be like that. Early morning it takes 25 minutes and about 210 baht + 70 tolls. Changing BTS trains with luggage won't be ANY fun. Go taxi, simply refuse to travel unless the driver agrees on meter.
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Old Aug 31st, 2010, 06:02 AM
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Sorry to hear of your experience in a BKK taxi, Patrick. Now that you are in the city, stick to the skytrain/subways as much as you can, plus a river taxi, and/or a ride on a longtail boat. There are times when traffic just sits still in BKK! Welcome to 'our' favorite city!
Carol
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Old Sep 1st, 2010, 03:28 AM
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You won't believe this but last night I took a taxi again -- on the suggestion that although I was going near Lumphini, that I should take a taxi as I'd have to take one anyway from there, and a taxi will only take about 15 minutes the whole way. So would you believe it was an hour and 15 minutes instead! Yep, about the same time as coming from the airport and again Silom was jammed both directions. We'd sit at an intersection but when the light turned green, we couldn't go because the cross traffic was jammed to. We'd sit for two or three light changes, and then move a car length or two or three. The driver finally managed to change over to Sathon, but it was just as bad -- maybe worse. He was clearly frustrated and I started to worry when I saw his gas gage light come on!

This just seems to keep happening to me on this trip. I get in a taxi and all traffic comes to a dead stop!

So I've made a decision. If it's not near a subway, skytrain, or boat then it AIN'T worth going to. Period. (now, we'll see if I can live with that decision).

By the way, Carol, I'm almost next to Taksin skyway. This morning I saw the express boat to Grand Palace pull away just as I got there and I did something I thought I wouldn't do. I listened to a long tail boat driver tell me he could get me there even before the next express boat arrived. He wanted 500 Baht -- and even $16 dollar US didn't sound so bad. But I got him down to half that and had a private longtail ride which was great in the morning. Some would say that's a rip off as it was nearly 20 times as much as the express boat -- but it was worth it, especially seeing the express boats were jammed, and I do mean jammed.
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Old Sep 1st, 2010, 06:05 AM
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Patrick, Riding on the longtail boats is great! I'm really glad you managed that one. You should try to take a longtail ride into the canals (klongs) to see life along the river. Very interesting. Should cost you maybe 1000-1200 baht for that ride. It lasts about an hour.

Maeng's place is very close to the Nana skytrain so you should have no problem getting there! Will you be going out to the weekend market sometime, or are you out of BKK before Saturday?

Hope you will continue your trip thread!

Michael, what exactly is the difference between the city line and the airport express? Same tracks? Just different trains? Why wouldn't you take the city line if you only have, say, one small carry on rollaboard? Is it cheaper than the fancy airport express?
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Old Sep 1st, 2010, 08:24 AM
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the whole are around silom/sathorn/new roads (centre point silom area) is to be avoided from 2-9PM imo.... there is no easy way out of there....foot is the fastest
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Old Sep 1st, 2010, 08:24 AM
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that is whole "area"
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Old Sep 1st, 2010, 07:19 PM
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Michael, I just was talking about this new airport express train with DH. He says he thinks it would be great to try. I mentioned all the luggage he can't seem to travel without... but if I recall correctly, aren't you supposed to check your luggage before boarding the train? I'm thinking that the airlines will be available to check your luggage IN before flying, at the big complex in the city that you mentioned previously, BEFORE boarding the train for your flight. What about if you are landing in BKK? Will luggage be able to be checked before you board the train for the city? Just curious if you can collect luggage at the city complex after arriving in BKK.
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