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Catching a taxi at BKK and general Thailand taxi discussion

Old Jan 3, 2015, 2:56 am
FlyerTalk Forums Expert How-Tos and Guides
Last edit by: IluvSQ
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Step-by-Step Guide to Getting a Taxi at Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK)


BKK Terminal Map

Source: AOT

MAP KEY

Arrival Gates - Level Two
Immigration
Baggage Claim Carousels
Customs and Exits to Landside Terminal Area
Elevators/Escalators to Ground Floor Level One
Numbered Exits to Outside (taxi queues are near exits 4 & 7)

WHAT TO DO

Taxis accept cash only. There are ATMs and currency exchangers inside the terminal.
  • Take an elevator or escalator down to the ground level.
  • Follow the signs to one of the two taxi queues outside of the terminal on Level One.
  • The taxi queue attendant will ask your destination and write it on a taxi slip. UPDATE: There are no longer attendants to write your destination at BKK. You get a slip from a touchscreen kiosk which directs you to a parking stall number where you meet your car/driver.
  • The larger part of the taxi slip is yours to keep, the smaller part goes to your driver. Be sure to keep your taxi slip as it contains information you will need if a problem arises. Do not give your portion of the taxi slip to the driver, even if he asks for it. UPDATE: There is no portion of the new slip from the kiosk to give the driver.

BASE COST
  • Airport Fee - THB 50 per taxi levied from the airport (never to the airport)
  • THB 35 - flag drop through 1km
  • +THB 5.50/km for kilometers 1+ through 10
  • +THB 6.50/km for kilometers 10+ through 20
  • +THB 7.50/km for kilometers 20-40
  • +THB 2 per minute waiting or standing in traffic (less than 6kph)

TOLLS
  • THB 75 to city center (two toll booths)
  • THB 60 to DMK

SAMPLE FARES FROM BKK TO...
Amounts are approximate and will vary with traffic, specific drop point, etc.
  • City Center - THB 170-200
  • Grand Palace - THB 215
  • Don Mueang Airport (DMK) - THB 290
  • Hua Hin - THB ___ (typically a negotiated flat fee)
  • Pattaya - THB ___ (typically a negotiated flat fee)

FARE CALCULATOR TOOLS
Reasonably accurate fare estimates are available from a number of websites and apps. These services provide estimated base fares only. Calculations do not include traffic, tolls, airport fees, etc. Reliability varies - use at your own risk.
FAQs

Q: Should I use the hotel's airport transfer service instead of a taxi?A: It depends on your comfort zone, budget, time of day, number of people/bags, etc. In general, the cost will probably be about two to three times the typical taxi fare, or more. If you are relatively new to Asia, it might be a bit overwhelming, and you might find it reassuring to see someone holding a sign with your name as you walk out of baggage claim.
Q: Is it best to take the expressway or surface streets?A: Depending on your destination and time of day, surface streets might be quicker and/or shorter. However, expressway tolls will usually add less than THB 200 to the trip (see above), so you may wish to defer to your driver.

Q: What types of scams should I watch for?A: The most common thing you'll encounter is taxi drivers who do not want to use the meter. They will often ask for a flat fee that is usually much higher than the meter would register. If a driver refuses to use the meter, it's best to exit the taxi and get another. Do not get angry or argue with the driver. If a driver demands more money on arrival at your hotel, wait until your bags have been offloaded from the vehicle, then seek out a porter or other hotel employee to assist you. Again, do not get angry or argue with the driver. A driver may say there is a THB 50 fee to go to the airport. There is no fee to go TO the airport. If the fee is mentioned at the outset, get out and flag down a new taxi. If it is mentioned upon arrival at the airport, remove all your belongings from the taxi and calmly state that there is no such fee while handing over the metered amount. If the driver is insistent, offering to call over a police officer to assist will usually put an end to the discussion.

Q: What is the most common meter scam?
A: Very often, when you enter the taxi, the meter is obscured with a rag or towel, so you do not see that it has been running prior to your entrance,
and is now well over 100 Baht. Always ensure that you observe the driver starting the meter.
Q: If the driver does scam me, how much money are we talking about?A: Usually no more than THB 200-300, which is about USD 7-10
Q: I think I still have other questions...A: Just hit the reply button and get feedback from other helpful FlyerTalkers who take Bangkok taxis regularly!

Q: This all sounds like hassle. Is there some way I can use a small amount of money to make that go away?A: The AOT limo stands before and immediately after customs are trustworthy, although their initial quote will be for their most expensive vehicle. Ask for the Isuzu SUV. You'll be looking at 1,050THB / $33.50 to the center of town, inclusive of all fees and fares, and a small increment on that for a sedan. Credit cards are accepted. You will get a printed receipt before you get in the taxi. The vehicle will be well-driven, clean, and will have seatbelts.



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Catching a taxi at BKK and general Thailand taxi discussion

Old Sep 28, 2016, 6:51 pm
  #841  
 
Join Date: May 2001
Location: RNO, NV, USA.
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Originally Posted by onebagtraveller
What are the current prices for the tolls from BKK?
There are two tolls to pass from airport into the city, costing 25 and 50 baht.
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Old Sep 28, 2016, 6:59 pm
  #842  
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 326
Originally Posted by restlessinRNO
There are two tolls to pass from airport into the city, costing 25 and 50 baht.
Thanks!
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Old Sep 28, 2016, 7:11 pm
  #843  
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Originally Posted by onebagtraveller
What are the current prices for the tolls from BKK?

In case there is a big taxi queue how much would AOT be to Asok in a regular vehicle?

Thanks!
http://suvarnabhumiairport.com/en/115-limousine

Prices start at 1,050 baht, all in.
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Old Sep 28, 2016, 9:48 pm
  #844  
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Worth noting that there are roadworks on the highway around 8mins away from the airport, en route into central Bangkok. The traffic bunches up and can cause delays of around 10-15mins - dependent on whether the construction workers are moving machinery across the road.

M
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Old Sep 28, 2016, 10:29 pm
  #845  
 
 
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Location: Upcountry Maui, HI
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For me, I prefer AOT limo to taxi, but taxis are certainly cheaper.

In July, the AOT rates to the SGS at Asoke/Sukhumvit were 1200 for a Camry and I think it was 950 for an Isuzu SUV. (though transpac points out it might be 1050 now.)

They have a rate card at the counters. Turn it over for these car types.

-David
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Old Sep 29, 2016, 6:53 am
  #846  
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 326
Originally Posted by LIH Prem
For me, I prefer AOT limo to taxi, but taxis are certainly cheaper.

In July, the AOT rates to the SGS at Asoke/Sukhumvit were 1200 for a Camry and I think it was 950 for an Isuzu SUV. (though transpac points out it might be 1050 now.)

They have a rate card at the counters. Turn it over for these car types.

-David
That's great! With construction I'll probably do AOT and relax.

Thanks everyone!
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Old Sep 30, 2016, 10:23 am
  #847  
 
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Originally Posted by onebagtraveller
In case there is a big taxi queue how much would AOT be to Asok in a regular vehicle?

Thanks!
In seven or eight visits since the kiosks have been installed for accessing taxis, I haven't ever seen long lines. The kiosks seem to have solved the lines.
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Old Sep 30, 2016, 1:40 pm
  #848  
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I booked an AOT car in the arrivals hall last night (out past the baggage reclaim). No queues and the driver was there immediately. They quoted 2300, then looked at my face and punched '1700' into the calculator. I typed back '1050' and they said 'OK'. so it pays to know the going rates or they'll try and sell you a higher priced car (unless you want the merc )
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Old Sep 30, 2016, 2:32 pm
  #849  
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Originally Posted by LHR/MEL/Europe FF
I booked an AOT car in the arrivals hall last night (out past the baggage reclaim). No queues and the driver was there immediately. They quoted 2300, then looked at my face and punched '1700' into the calculator. I typed back '1050' and they said 'OK'. so it pays to know the going rates or they'll try and sell you a higher priced car (unless you want the merc )
The price sheets are always on display at the AoT desks - but I believe a BMW 7 series is 2,900, an E-Class is 2,300, and a Camry is 1,050.

M
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Old Sep 30, 2016, 6:47 pm
  #850  
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I think the prices, which vary by both vehicle and destination, linked to in post #843 remain accurate.

So for some central locations the SUV option (a full-size SUV, Izuzu MU 7) remains the lowest priced option at 1,050 all in (tolls included). The Camry option is 1,200. They have published sheets and there really should not be any negotiation, save perhaps the vehicle make/model?

I think the official taxi queue lines vary quite a bit by season and time of day. I last returned 5 July ~ 10:00 PM and looked down at the taxi queue lines which were 100+ deep, maybe 30-45 minute wait. And the actual automated kiosk machines were mostly out of service shortly after they were introduced, but maybe they have been repaired?
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Old Sep 30, 2016, 9:17 pm
  #851  
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Originally Posted by transpac
And the actual automated kiosk machines were mostly out of service shortly after they were introduced, but maybe they have been repaired?
They worked fine last week.

I had a lovely taxi ride last week. When I got in, driver suggested fixed price of 500 (to SGS). I declined and requested meter. He said no problem. Clean taxi, seat belts in the back worked, driver drove reasonably and took the expected route, the timer on the meter for idle time (upper left) ran only when we weren't moving, and the fare was correct. Now if only they all could be like that. I can't remember the last ride (before this one) when the idle timer wasn't set to run throughout. Yes, I know, it's a small amount of money; but when I'm the passenger, the driver does much better when everything is correct and honest. When the idle clock runs continuously (assuming that the rest of the meter hasn't been "adjusted"), driver gets the amount on the meter, period. To the baht.
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Old Oct 1, 2016, 12:18 am
  #852  
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yEWA...ature=youtu.be

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Old Oct 1, 2016, 2:11 am
  #853  
 
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For the mavericks, just to say it is still easy to go to departures level and grab a taxi there - most times the waiting drivers hold the turnstile for you and help with your bags - but sometimes those same guys suggest fixed prices so you just have to stick to your guns and insist on meter even if that means taking a different taxi, and there is always one that will do meter.

For AOT limos, last time I took it in July I took a BMW 1-way to JW Marriott Suk.Soi 2, for 2,300 baht. This is a great solution when you arrive exactly during a rush hour or torrential rain, though it does cost a bit more!
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Old Oct 1, 2016, 7:10 am
  #854  
 
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Originally Posted by Powers106
For AOT limos, last time I took it in July I took a BMW 1-way to JW Marriott Suk.Soi 2, for 2,300 baht. This is a great solution when you arrive exactly during a rush hour or torrential rain, though it does cost a bit more!
For comparison: A taxi to the JW in Aug was about 400 baht, including tolls and tip. That comes out to about $11.50 USD, versus $66.50 USD for the AOT service. The taxi was a very clean, maintained Corolla, albeit a little old. Personally, I'm willing to wait in line for thirty minutes to save $50, but YMMV.

The last time I had to wait in a long line, when they were still filling out the taxi forms by hand, I wound up talking to the person in line with me who had been on both my flights and also from Atlanta, lives near me and we know a couple of the same people. She and I were both staying in the same hotel, so we decided to split a cab, which was going to save me $5! It turned out she was with a large, international organization in Atlanta (not naming names, but Clifton Rd if you know ATL) and on an expense report, so she just paid for the whole thing, lowering my cost to zero!!

Last edited by CJKatl; Oct 1, 2016 at 7:17 am
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Old Oct 1, 2016, 7:17 am
  #855  
 
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I booked through Blacklane, got a newer E Class, cold water, cold towel. Man waiting at the meet point with my name. Car and driver waiting outside. Took less than a minute. No cash changed hands. Gave the driver a tip. Total about 2300 Baht to the Conrad. Glad to see it was as competitive as the AOT service. Still much more expensive than a cab, but it was a nice option.
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