I love Bangkok, but it might be too expensive for a long term base. It’s crazy that I might think that. The biggest problem is that I haven’t been able to find a place for the $300 a month mark that I would need if I were to live long term here. So onto Chiang Mai. There’s a lot of places on Air BNB that were around $13 a night. I’ll let you all know what those places are like when I get there.
But first I had to get there. I decided to take the train. The travel agency people thought I was a little nuts because the flight is short and not that expensive .
I’m actually looking forward to trying the train out! And by taking an overnight train I save a night on hotel costs. When you’re looking for the best countries to retire cheap every dollar counts.
- First step head to a travel agency to buy a train ticket. These are everywhere in Bangkok (3 things you see on every block, a massage place, a 7-11, and a travel agency). You can go to the train station yourself to buy it but I wouldn’t recommend it. The travel agency charged me $7 to send somebody by motorbike taxi to pick up the tickets. I was considering taking the BTS Metro there but that would have cost me $3. Worth it in my mind. To take a taxi there is $5 one way.
- Pick the seat type you want ahead of time. I knew I wanted a lie flat bed that was air conditioned. This meant either a first class or second class ticket. With that choice it limited my train times s well, I couldn’t leave on my first preferred day (1 day later) so I left the day after. There are also 3rd class, no air conditioning with seats not beds. The first class ticket gives you a private compartment, and I didn’t think the extra money was worth it.
- If you are going to be returning to Bangkok like I am, it’s also a good idea to buy your return ticket at the same time. (This way you don’t have to pay that motorbike fee again or deal with issues in Chiang Mai.)
- The travel agency wanted me to pay cash but I opted for the 5% Amex surcharge because I didn’t want to use my precious cash if I didn’t have to (a lot of places in Bangkok are cash only).
TOTAL COST : $49.58 for two tickets and all surcharges and fees!