Sunday, August 30, 2015

Taking the Airport Rail Link and Arriving at the City in Less than 30 Minutes @ Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport [Thailand]

Like many tourists, i used to make a beeline for the taxi queue once i arrived at Suvarnabhumi Airport at Bangkok and pray very hard for a jam-free journey to the capital's downtown.

With the opening of the Airport Rail Link in 2010, many passengers now have a way more economical, faster and jam-free option. This post today shall focus on my personal experience and i hope you would find it useful. :)

Arrivals are on the second floor of the airport and you may take the lift / escalators to basement one where the Airport Rail Link is situated. Note: those who wish to visit the washrooms should note that there wasn't any on basement one (i checked with the info counter). 

Fare structure - the most i would pay from the start to the end (eight stations in total) would only be about 45 baht (less than S$2) and you may contrast this with the likely 400-450 baht you have to fork out for the taxi! I would recommend you save the taxi fare for your return trip back to the airport instead! 

Let me explain why. The train carriage was extremely narrow and unlike Seoul's Airport Railroad Express (AREX), you will have issues placing your baggage as the train service was popular with both locals and tourists, and larger baggage would definitely block the crowded aisle! 

Train frequency was about ten minutes and at the present moment, only the blue city line was operational. The red express line has been suspended indefinitely due to a lack of trains. Operational hours for the City Line are from 6am till 12 midnight. 

Without any place to sit and a big suitcase to manage, i wouldn't say my journey was comfortable. Frankly, i don't need to rest my legs over the short period of time but it would be nice to have a baggage corner where i know my suitcase would be safely immobilised. 

Suvarnabhumi Airport in front of me - the track is mostly above ground and runs for 28.6 kilometers at a maximum of 160 kilometers per hour. End point is Phaya Thai which is near to the tourist-filled Pratunam area and connected to a BTS station of the same name. 

An observation; two elderly ladies were behind me and no one offered their seats to them! How could that be?! Has Thailand changed so much since the last time i visited? It was after removing my earphones and listening to the conversations that it's obvious the seated commuters nearest to the ladies were foreigners; well travelled yet socially retarded.

Arriving at Phaya Thai station where almost everyone alighted! Time taken? Less than thirty minutes! As it was the lunch peak, i would have imagined how long it would take us to reach our destination via the taxi mode. 


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