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Yea, I took the bus from KU down to Union/Cen Lad most days, traffic isn't too bad during the day. In the evening it gets frustrating when cars are backed up from Major all the way to the MRT but the walk isn't bad, and it's a nice area with plenty to do if you're feeling too lazy to walk.

I prefer the area around Huay Kwang on Ratchada because it's cheaper and closer to RCA, Soi 4, and Talad Huay Kwang. But Phahon is a nicer area to walk around in to be sure.

I also lived a bit further down Ratchada near Suttisan for a while and it was shit, bad area, shitty walk to the MRT through small dark sois that scared girls(rightly so). And oddly, many more westerners.

@Kdog: You stayed at Porn-Uthai for a while right? How'd you like it?
Yep.I really liked it. A few too many white women there since they deal so much with international students though. No problems with the deposit or anything and for a month to month option it was great for 10k. Major Ratchayothin was so convenient for date and tons of options for food around. Starting to miss it while I talk about it.
Having a motorbike is by far best and quickest way to get around Bangkok. Once you learn how to jump the traffic lights, you rarely stop at all. When the traffic gets jammed you'll still be going, there is many short cuts to be made. In some places it's no problem to use the sidewalk, it's no people walking there anyway, and if there is they better get out of the way.

Getting through the red lights is no problem, there is several ways. Either you would just look carefully and go when there is no car coming. Another option it to go when the lights change from red to green in the other directions. The last way is to do a left-turn, u-turn and a left turn again. It's also perfect for pulling girls home, I'll just say they need to come with me and help me with my Thai studies on the computer and off we go. Otherwise I would just say we'll go to another place and go straight to my room.

It also gives me a feeling of freedom, I can be on my way wherever in the whenever I want. It would be hard for me to go back living in Bangkok without a scooter.

The negative is that it's a death trap which will probably kill you sooner or later. I had three minor accidents and one which gave me some cool scars and daily trips to the clinic everyday for a month. Had a really close call which could have ended badly too. It will also expose you to the sun, Thai girls like guys white as ghosts and sun cancer is a danger for some of us. It also gets hot and to drive in rain absolutely sucks. The police is another issue. Expect to pay a 200-500bath bribe now and then.
I drove in BKK both scooters and big CBRs and I am still alive. As soon as you get used to the traffic you should be fine.

Anticipate driving errors of others though.

When police tries to stop you it is perfectly normal to try to escape.

They won't follow you - of course don't knock sb down.

Sometimes they stop bikes, collect keys and let you wait while they catch others first. Therefore always have a second key, wait for a good moment and drive away. Too bad I could never see their faces when they realized the farang was gone.

Years ago it was more common to settle the bill right on the street - a 100 Baht note inside the documents usually helped. What I have heart is that nowadays quite often they expect you to pay at the station which can be annoying, as they will keep your bike or documents as deposit.

Always have driving license, insurance and copy of green book with you to avoid frequent tickets.
Well, I'm really considering buying a motorbike. After ~2 years here, I still use public transportation..
(01-18-2015 12:19 PM)alex3948 Wrote: [ -> ]Well, I'm really considering buying a motorbike. After ~2 years here, I still use public transportation..

Do it, I don't know anyone who switched to their own transportation and thought; "This sucks I like the bus/BTS/MRT more.
anyone know a company that delivers drinking water in glass bottles (not plastic!) to your condo in bangkok?
(01-16-2015 11:06 PM)Afarang Wrote: [ -> ]BTS is great. Sometimes it can be busy inside the train but I mean you don't to anything but still stand so for me I don't really care if it's full of people or empty.

Having your own transportation is great but does come with problems. Cars are way too expensive and as expats it's probably not a viable option. Scooters are great but way too dangerous. I see motsi drivers drinking around 7pm as they are on work and as the night gets darker more and more people drink and drive. If you live in the center of Bangkok like me you are also prone to shakedowns from the cops. Some travel insurance does not cover motorcycles either.

I lived in Pahon Youtin before and I was 15mins from a MRT. While I enjoyed my time there I hardly left the area because I was too lazy to walk to the MRT and the traffic at peak times was so intense that I could not get a taxi. If I ever went into the middle of Bangkok I felt like I should stay there for a few hours and make the most of it as I will be paying 150+150 baht taxi to get there and back.


Now I live in Thong Lo and I seldom catch anything as I can walk to most places of interest, or ill catch a bus for 5 baht to take me down either end of Sukhumvit.

This is just my opinion on it.

I used to think the same, at least for my first 6 months here. Trust me on this one though, once you have your own transportation, you won't want to go back.. I still use public transportation, but contend they could do a better job. Why not allow a BTS rabbit card holder to use the MRT? It also needs to be expanded; coverage is minimal for the size of the BK metropolitan area.

Why do you think vehicles are expensive here? Any vehicle built here in Thailand, and there are many, have prices comparable to North America. As for insurance, open a GSB or SCB bank account and choose their 'life' plan debit cards, very good accident insurance for less than 1000 baht per year. Cheaper than a bottle on a night out!
Expensive in terms of cost compared to every other mode of transportation in Bangkok. For me a car (and I assume many others) would be pointless, the traffic is so bad in the city center that unless I was driving out of town on a regular basis I have no need for one. Due to my location and lifestyle I rarely go further than 10km from my condo since all bars,clubs, restaurants are easily walkable, a taxi for less than 60 baht or a short BTS trip.

Then you have to factor in the visa situation and the chance (be it small) that they won't let you back into the country. From my expat friend circle of around 50-60, nobody owns a car who lives in Bangkok, although several do have motorbikes.

If you lived in the outer skirts of Bangkok then I see more reason for a car. But I am very happy with all the transport options in Bangkok. I think they are pretty much all great for what you have to pay. You got to remember that thailand is not like the West and the infrastructure is not all there yet, but for 35 baht I can get to Thong Lo to Bearing. In London I am paying 250 baht minimum and it's smoggy and smelly inside. 7baht for a bus that goes for miles while it's 150 baht for a few stops in the UK.

Sure they could be improved but I never had an issue getting to where I needed to be. As long as you understand what is optimal to use at what time based on traffic etc you will be fine.

I contemplated a motorbike several times, but I'm fairly conservative when it comes to riding them in Asia.
Problem for me with a car is that I still have to take the bts to go most places I want to go during many hours of the day anyways. Traffic is too bad. When me and my girl want to go to major ekkamai, eat in Thonglor, go to terminal 21, etc. It could take hours in her car.

I literally got out in the middle of sukhumvit once and walked to the bts to go to the gym because it took us 45 minutes to get from Thonglor back to Sukhumvit. She was going to drive me to the gym but it ended up taking ten times longer than if I had taken a motorbike.

With that said, my buddy has a motorbike and be said it opens up a whole lot of areas to him now. He can jump on his bike and go get lunch at a ton of different places much quicker than before, and places he's discovered that he never would have seen before.

I won't fuck with a motorbike though because for me, they are too dangerous. Everyone I know who has one has been fucked up on it. Some even breaking their ankles. I'm not an experienced rider so for me I won't get one.
A few of us hit up Demo last friday night. Personally I find to be

A) Loud
B) Way too fucking crowded
C) Thais there are way too rowdy

I personally had no rhythm there. Cool music but not conducive for game whatsoever.
Inside of Demo sucks. Hang outside. Way too loud, dark and crowded inside.
(01-19-2015 01:14 AM)RioNomad Wrote: [ -> ]I won't fuck with a motorbike though because for me, they are too dangerous. Everyone I know who has one has been fucked up on it. Some even breaking their ankles. I'm not an experienced rider so for me I won't get one.

I don't blame you; Bangkok on a moto is its own little experience.

Driving a tuk tuk there is even more squirrely. Well, maybe not if you know how to drive one but for the uninitiated.
Yeah, I liked riding a moto in Bangkok too for its own sake and for convinience. You can explore so much more of the city on moto and find lots of cool little places, Bangkok is jam packed with massage places, restaurants, bars and cafes down the small sois and subsois. It's also much, much faster if you're going to particular places like Ramkamhaeng or Din Daeng or Banglamphu or other strange parts with no BTS/MRT. Most girls giggled quite a lot over the whitey on a moto and most of them don't dare ride in traffic either, so it's a nice little conversation topic. Allows you to live further away from the BTS too.

You can actually rent bikes now in Bangkok, up to bigger bikes or mid range like Kawasaki D-Tracker 250 or one of those 150-200cc big scooters. Would consider that next time for sure.

I don't consider it dangerous in itself, a lot can be planned away. What I didn't like was changing lanes or direction on the larger semi highways where the small moto begins behaving strangly and people overtake with high speed. Other than that if you pay attention and don't drive drunk, it really isn't that dangerous. There's a method to the madness. Once you're on the street it is not nearly as chaotic as from the outside, and most Thai drivers are very aware of motorists.
Even though I had a dirt bike in Canada, I was still a bit intimidated of riding in Bkk. Then I went to Chiang Mai for a while and rode everyday. It was awesome and also bumped my confidence up. I rented a bike a few times in Bkk as there was a rental place on Phahonyothin close to me and even though it was 50x more intense than CM, I really considered buying a used one. But I was on a Tourist visa and getting a legit license wasn't possible on that visa (as far as I know). But damn I sure loved those PCX bikes. A bit expensive but even those Honda clicks you can get for like $700. I think it was Satoshi that got a great deal some months back.
Guys, for those who can afford it, I'd strongly consider getting a full size moto with a small engine, like a 250cc. Mopeds don't have the stability or ability to escape a problem like a motorcycle will have. I've ridden bikes for more than 10 years in the US, mostly around NYC, and I'll tell you that potholes are not really dangerous (nor minor road debris) on a motorcycle, but all that shit vs. a moped is a problem. Add a passenger on back, and its even worse. If you can fight your way up to a 250cc bike, you're greatly increasing the safety of riding, and quite frankly, it is a better experience and looks cooler too (especially in Asia).
(01-19-2015 11:28 AM)Kdog Wrote: [ -> ]Even though I had a dirt bike in Canada, I was still a bit intimidated of riding in Bkk. Then I went to Chiang Mai for a while and rode everyday. It was awesome and also bumped my confidence up. I rented a bike a few times in Bkk as there was a rental place on Phahonyothin close to me and even though it was 50x more intense than CM, I really considered buying a used one. But I was on a Tourist visa and getting a legit license wasn't possible on that visa (as far as I know). But damn I sure loved those PCX bikes. A bit expensive but even those Honda clicks you can get for like $700. I think it was Satoshi that got a great deal some months back.

You used to be able to both buy a bike and get a license on a tourist Visa, not sure about Visa Exempt. I bought my bike on a tourist visa.
Really? That would of been nice. They've made It a bit of a headache now unfortunately.
@Global Entry
I agree and disagree with you on this....

No doubt a 250cc bike is going to look way cooler, and when on the open road offer a much more stable ride with the ability to pass cars comfortably.

But as a guy who has driven several years in BKK traffic I can tell you that 90% of your driving is done at less than 30/kph weaving in and out of parked cars at red lights. The smaller scooters are just so much lighter, not as top heavy, and easier to balance.

The routine of driving in BKK is sitting at a stop light, jetting off at a green light and catching up to the cars stopped at the next red light and starting to weave in and out hoping you can make it to the front of the pack again before the next light change.

I think for experienced riders such as you and I a 250cc bike is a good option. I personally enjoy having a manual with a clutch. But for anyone who does not have lots of experience you gotta stick with an automatic scooter.



Glad to hear other guys are riding motorbikes in BKK or at least thinking about it. It was probably the best decision I made. It opens up a huge part of the city you would simply have no reason otherwise to explore. You start to comprehend how huge BKK truly is and that in a city that seems to be swamped in Farang the truth is you don't have to travel far on a motorbike to be the only Farang around.

For those thinking of getting a scooter I was really happy with my Honda Scoopy. Here is an example...





I picked the Scoopy for several reasons...
1. It is a honda. Hondas just seem to work.
2. Big wide seat that is comfortable for 2 people.
3. Handle grips at the back for a passenger to hold on to so she is not always leaning forward on me.
4. big open area where the feet are. Makes it much easier to carry things like groceries.



Motorbikes in BKK are the shit.



(01-19-2015 12:32 PM)Global Entry Wrote: [ -> ]Guys, for those who can afford it, I'd strongly consider getting a full size moto with a small engine, like a 250cc. Mopeds don't have the stability or ability to escape a problem like a motorcycle will have. I've ridden bikes for more than 10 years in the US, mostly around NYC, and I'll tell you that potholes are not really dangerous (nor minor road debris) on a motorcycle, but all that shit vs. a moped is a problem. Add a passenger on back, and its even worse. If you can fight your way up to a 250cc bike, you're greatly increasing the safety of riding, and quite frankly, it is a better experience and looks cooler too (especially in Asia).
If buying a larger cc bike, the most important I would say is to get a compact one and with short handlebars, which is why something like a D-Tracker or other Supermoto is a popular choice. The CBR in 150 and 250 is also very popular and small enough to weave in traffic. Kawasaki Ninja 250 is also popular. Preferably I'd have a Ducati Monster, perfect size for Bangkok, get a passenger seat fitted though:

[Image: 640px-Ducati_Monster_1200_S_(10760223465).jpg]

Remains a dream though. I saw one in Siam Paragorn at 900,000 THB. Good little piece of motivation to make some coin.
(01-19-2015 11:28 AM)Kdog Wrote: [ -> ]Even though I had a dirt bike in Canada, I was still a bit intimidated of riding in Bkk. Then I went to Chiang Mai for a while and rode everyday. It was awesome and also bumped my confidence up. I rented a bike a few times in Bkk as there was a rental place on Phahonyothin close to me and even though it was 50x more intense than CM, I really considered buying a used one. But I was on a Tourist visa and getting a legit license wasn't possible on that visa (as far as I know). But damn I sure loved those PCX bikes. A bit expensive but even those Honda clicks you can get for like $700. I think it was Satoshi that got a great deal some months back.

I did the same, bought a big bike and got a Thai drivers licence on a tourist visa. That was about 1 1/2 yrs ago.
900,000 THB for a Ducati Monster? Holly shit.

You can get a 2015 Ducati Monster 821 for $11,000 (360,000 THB) in the US.
(01-20-2015 01:25 AM)DirectDanger Wrote: [ -> ]900,000 THB for a Ducati Monster? Holly shit.

You can get a 2015 Ducati Monster 821 for $11,000 (360,000 THB) in the US.

A guy I know imported a Harley-Davidson - in multiple shipments as parts to avoid the huge tariff. Saved him a lot of money.
Are there any popular areas/venues where you will find a significant number of women with their own money [I.E: The ability to pay for their own meals/entertainment etc]?
(01-20-2015 03:34 AM)Rush87 Wrote: [ -> ]Are there any popular areas/venues where you will find a significant number of women with their own money [I.E: The ability to pay for their own meals/entertainment etc]?

It's not impossible, but it's deeply ingrained in most aspects of eastern culture that the dude pays.

With that being said, if you organised a meet up off of Thai Friendly or Tinder or something and she expected you to pay for everything, that would be fucking rude.
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