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Airport Rail with luggage

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Napa, California
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24 posts
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Airport Rail with luggage

Hi,

We will be arriving at Suvarnabhumi airport on Saturday, June 3 at about 5PM. Because we are touring Asia, we will each (two of us) be carrying a full size piece of luggage, with a full size wheel-aboard case (four pieces in total).

Two questions for this forum:

1. We don't mind carrying out bags. But are reading some forums that suggest the trains are too crowded for people with luggage. Is this true, especially on a Saturday evening?

2. Is it cost-effective for two people to take the train to the end of the line, and then take a taxi the rest of the way to the hotel (Royal Orchid Sheraton...along the river)? Or is it just not worth the hassle, and we would be better of just taking a taxi the entire way from the airport?

lewes uk
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1. Re: Airport Rail with luggage

Hi,

Cost wise, two tickets on the express to Makasin or Phaya Thai and then a taxi would be getting close to the cost of a metered taxi from the airport. Luggage wise, both the express to Makasin and the express to Phaya Thai have plenty of room and often few pax, the city line has less space and rather more pax especially at rush hour, but it is very cheap.

Cheers

Bangkok
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for Bangkok, Air Travel, Thailand
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2. Re: Airport Rail with luggage

Hi,

I think the comments about not enough space speak to the CITY line services which call at all stations and have far less actual seating, as compared to the EXPRESS line..

You'll find that the City line is a defacto commuter rail link for those living/working on the eastern side of the city.. The express line really only "works" for those going to/from the airport and either Makassan or Phaya Thai stations; which would exclude the vast majority of the commuter traffic.

I also agree that when you look at the "math", given that rail fare is per-person and taxi is per-vehicle, that with two or more people in your party, that the taxi becomes a more and more attractive and cost-effective option (express on a per person basis) and this doesn't even factor in the door-to-door convenience factor which can be huge depending on where you're going and the number/size of your bags.

Travel Safe,

Ajax, Canada
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131 posts
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3. Re: Airport Rail with luggage

Taxi is convenient and probably only around 400B from the airport to the front door of the hotel. Took the train to the end of the line-30 minutes to the centre of Bangkok from the airport with a large piece of luggage and a smaller carry on. No problems on the train but had to carry everything down stairs to get to the street and trying to get a cab at around 9:00 a.m. in the morning in 33 degree heat was exhausting.

Take the taxi...

Pawtucket, RI
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14,815 posts
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4. Re: Airport Rail with luggage

Royal Orchid Sheraton is not a cheap hotel. (In Bangkok a hotel around 600 baht also has private toilet, TV and air conditioning.) Don't cheap out on your transportation! Stick with the taxi, it is door to door too.

(I am retired, almost at the "old fart" stage of my life - I have no real problem with carrying 2 bags or suitcases on the City Line or Skytrain. Sometimes a little crowded and there is some up and down stair walking - but I just man up and do it!)

Toronto, Ontario
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5. Re: Airport Rail with luggage

I've taken the Airport Rail Link at 3 pm local time while carrying a heavy full size suitcase. There were no problems with space on the train for me.

Getting into Bangkok and switching at the interchange to the BTS was a small hassle. There are only stairs and carrying 40 lbs in 35 degree celsius weather up down several flights of stairs was a bit of work. Getting onto the BTS at around 3:30 pm was not an issue and the crowds didn't matter either.

Next time I would definitely take a taxi though. I chose the Airport Rail because the view was fantastic, but I suppose you can just search on YouTube for videos of it.

Hua Hin, Thailand
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187 posts
13 reviews
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6. Re: Airport Rail with luggage

If you have bags get a taxi.. due to the following..Door to door bags in the back no humping them after a long flight. Train is great when your not tired and not hoofing bags about IMHO..

Bangkok
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for Bangkok, Air Travel, Thailand
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7. Re: Airport Rail with luggage

Hi,

I agree with the others that for many, the combination of checked baggage and ARL isn't the most convenient solution... Do-able? Most definitely. Cheaper? For two or less passengers? Probably so.....

Do know that there IS an elevator that you can use between the Phaya Thai walkway level to the ARL ticketing level, and either an escalator (up only) or elevator that you can use after passing the fare turnstiles, between the ticketing level to the platform level.

Really, the only place you're left to carry bags is; 1) on the down/exit side at the Phaya Thai station (going to the airport) when you move from platform level to ticketing level; and, 2) at *most* BTS stations on the exiting side as escalators are usually only in the up/entrance direction and not down/exit direction.

BUT... I also think that when you take a hard look at the total combined fare differential-- that's ARL & BTS fares for each passenger, compared to the one taxi cost, that this fare gap is - in many cases- a worthwhile price to be paid for the ease of not having to carry, lift or wheel bags around, and (for me the more important issue) door-to-door, single transport mode service.

Again, this isn't to say the ARL is a bad choice- its not... But for me, when I look at parties of two or more, and going to a place that requires both a transfer from the ARL to the BTS *and* some amount of walking from the BTS station to your hotel front door, that the total fare differential represents a good value on terms of convenience.

I'm all for cost-savings and seeking out the best values for your vacation and transport funds.. But I think if you've got checked bags, are staying somewhere that requires some amount of walking to/from the closet BTS station and are a party of 2 or more, that the fare differential is a good value.

Travel Safe,

Sydney
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25 reviews
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8. Re: Airport Rail with luggage

Also adding to GOP's advice is a word of caution using the Bangkok pavements..they will wreck the wheels on your luggage!(been there done that and got the bill)For the sake of saving a minimal amount of money(and stress)catch a metered taxi door to door.

Ajax, Canada
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131 posts
186 reviews
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9. Re: Airport Rail with luggage

Yeah you man up and carry things up/down stairs but waiting for a taxi-I know that may sound surprising during daytime hours in BKK near the malls but...I had to stand by the side of the road with bags and the heat/humidity of April for a good 35 minutes last year. That is the absolute final time I take any piece of luggage larger than a carry on suitcase to that country. Shorts, t-shirts and sandals cannot take up that much room!

London, United...
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123 reviews
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10. Re: Airport Rail with luggage

Definitely grab a taxi from the airport.

Edited: 09 April 2013, 20:57