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Planning a trip next week

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Hi, I am planning to go Bangkok next week. I wonder if all the services are back to normal. I usually use the ARL to reach the city from the airport. Is that still operational as most test and go package comes with your own airport transfer. 

Also are the money changers at b2 of swampy still the best forex in town or are there better options now. 

Also planning a short side trip to Pattaya, planning to take a bus, where the best place to take it aside from swampy? 

Thanks in advance for your sage advice 

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To Patters: depends a bit wher exactly you want to go.

Direct BUSes (probably much less though as the very frequent service pre-covid) run from both Ekamai=eastern and Mochit=northern bus terminal, end at main PTY busterminal on 2nd rd near Sukhumvit=far from the areas anyone stays-so mercy of greedy ´bathbus´ drivers.

From what I remember the BELL bus is the one from airprot and sets down at most convenient points in PTY. Runs hourly and is/was often full if youcoame just before dep.

For direct to Jomtien-in fact I also wonder-maybe christian knows more, for me too long ago since been there.

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1 hour ago, Slut1215 said:

I'm also visiting Bangkok from 11 - 16 May. With a side trip to Chiang Mai. Feel so excited

Yes, the anticipation is always a pleasure in itself. As are the recollections which I assist by keeping my (very) private journal. 

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3 hours ago, pong2 said:

From what I remember the BELL bus is the one from airprot and sets down at most convenient points in PTY. Runs hourly and is/was often full if youcoame just before dep.

The Bell bus runs every 2 hours 0800-1800 and has minibus transfer between the Pattaya bus station and your hotel. 

TIcket sales are only by online pre-booking (or at their Pattaya office but not at the airport - they have no office there, just someone with a clipboard!)

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The bus service I and several other board members would recommend is the Roong Reuang service.

They adjust the frequency of the service according to demand.   So check the website.   Back in December January, it was at nearer 2 hour intervals, but the frequency is now improved.

https://airportpattayabus.com/from-suvarnabhumi-airport/

Unlike some Thai buses, this is a professional service that goes direct from A to B, without any stupid detours or unnecessary stops for food.    Also, where it stops is convenient.  

So it beats the Ekamai bus on several counts.   The last time I used the Ekamai bus, it had to fight it's way though Bangkok traffic, then made a detour to Naklua and then stops off at the northern bus terminal in Pattaya, which is not at all convenient.  

 

Depart Airport:

On level 1 near gate 8.    Which is on the far LEFT side, as viewed from inside the airport.

You can book on line, but I have never done so and buy at their ticket desk.    So far I have never had to wait for a later bus.

It's 130 baht.    I think there's a small extra charge if you have more than one large hold bag.

 

 

Arrive Jomtien:

It briefly stops on Sukhumvit, 3 times, 1 North, 2 Central & 3 South, before heading to 4 Jomtien bus station, which is an easy walk to Jomtien complex.     If you're heading to South Pattaya, you can get off at either of the last 2 stops and cross the road to get the baht bus.   I would normally choose the third stop for S Pattaya.   

 

When returning to the airport, it seems to leave Jomtien and does not stop anywhere.

 

 

 

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Bell and Roong Reuang are the same company. The main difference is that the Bell service (equally professional but about twice the price) takes you right to your hotel, which is better than RR if your destination is in central Pattaya rather than Jomtien. Being dropped somewhere on Sukhumvit (especially at night) can be a bit disconcerting if you haven't visited Pattaya before.

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On 4/30/2022 at 3:00 PM, z909 said:

On level 1 near gate 8.    Which is on the far LEFT side, as viewed from inside the airport.

You can book on line, but I have never done so and buy at their ticket desk.    So far I have never had to wait for a later bus.

It's 130 baht.    I think there's a small extra charge if you have more than one large hold bag.

I always use their services and it's pretty good and reliable never wait more then one hour to find free sit available. For more than one suitcase or overweight one the extra charge is 50 Baht , if their stuff noticed that at all . Their mini buses are not luxurious but for the short trip to Pattaya are reasonable.

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I’ve used the airport bus quite a few times, but not on cost grounds rather for safety. I find the regular taxi journey a bit scary with the drivers following the vehicle in front too closely and making erratic lane changes. The large buses go at a much steadier speed and arrive only maybe 20 minutes slower at Jomtien. Everyone should be aware of the appalling death toll on Thailands roads. Also saving about 1750 baht gives me a good feeling even though it is eliminated very quickly as soon as I get into a boy bar.

as has been mentioned the Jomtien terminus is only a short walk from the Complex where many of us stay. Even if your hotel is in South Pattaya (Boystown) staying on the bus to Jomtien is a good tactic and using the steady stream of baht buses rather than the rip off merchants who wait at the Sukhumvit stops.  

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There are 3 reasons to use the bus:

Cost

Safety

Better view

 

I only use the taxi if going direct to a long haul flight, if bus times are inconvenient.   Which hasn't been necessary for years, as I usually start and end trips in Bangkok.

Getting off at the South Sukhumvit stop works fine as long as you cross the road to catch a baht bus.   I only have a rucksack, so luggage isn't a problem.

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I'd miss the chats with the drivers...nearly always Isaan people. And Red shirts to a man...for a Leftist  like me, fascinating. P once spent the entire BKK-Pattaya trip talking politics with one driver. I didn't understand a word, of course. Just as I don't when he talks about his beloved DMC (the Buddhist movement), another favourite topic amongst drivers. Look at the photos above the visor.

Some BBK drivers struggle to make a living, you know. You may be surprised to learn that some sleep in their cars. 

By the way, I wouldn't dream of using the bus. My last trip in one ended a few miles before Chonburi when it broke down and we were left stranded. As far as safety is concerned, check the tyres! I couldn't believe what I saw at Ekamai. But that was along time ago.

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5 hours ago, Travellerdave said:

 Everyone should be aware of the appalling death toll on Thailands roads.

1 hour ago, Londoner said:

I'd miss the chats with the drivers.. P once spent the entire BKK-Pattaya trip talking politics with one driver.

now we know one of reasons for that toll, drivers distracted by politics talking passengers

no, I'm not making fun here , I'm dead serious !

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I had more than 1 taxi driver in bangkok playing some gambling slots game while driving on my recent trip, at least it made them slow down a little haha.

I usually take Nams taxi service between Bangkok and Pattaya, I'm ok with 1200 baht for the comfort of door to door service and i've never had issues with the lady drivers. I just email the day before to book and they're usually already waiting for me by the time i've arranged the pickup.

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Had almost made a mistake of taking the minivan to pattaya. I suddenly recalled that it does not stop on the Central bus terminal. This happened to me a few years back when I had to drop myself at the highway (sukhumvit???) And desperately looked for a grab car. It took me almost an hour on the app as my destinasyon was in North pattaya.

 

I did not have the death defying car ride as described above, but have the unfortunate luck to have a seatmate that was coughing halfway through the trip.

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16 hours ago, vinapu said:

hopefully it was just cough from dry A/C air

Unfortunately no, it had phelgm with it. Good thing he had some tissue with him. Next time i  think better to buy 2 tickets to ensure you don't have any seatmate

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1 hour ago, orson said:

Next time i  think better to buy 2 tickets to ensure you don't have any seatmate

not a bad idea but it works only on BKK-Pattaya leg, 

if I recall correctly  going from Pattaya seats are not assigned so it's  jus a matter of luck to have seatmate or not.

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