We flew into Bangkok via Thai Airways from JFK on October 20 at around 16:30. The flight was via the North Pole, took over 17 hours, and arrived on time. We flew premium economy and had no complaints with the service. It was a hike from the gate to immigration, but once there, the processing was quick and convient as was the currency exchange. The baggage was a bit slow. We were met by our guide and driver and effeciently transferred to our hotel, though the traffic was a bit heavy. We stayed at the Sheraton Royal Orchid. The room was nice, on the 18th floor and overlooked the river. The breakfast buffet was excellent. We went on a tour of the Grand Palace (worth going to) and the Wat Po temple. Then took the commuter boat back to the hotel for a change of pace. We spent the afternoon by the pool reading and relaxing. We ate at a seafood restraunt accross the river reached via their boat. The food was excellent - if a bit on the spicy side. The next morning (Sunday) we were back to the airport for our flight to Kathmandu via Thai. Check in was effecient as was the airport tax transaction and security. The new airport has tons of shops and such if you're into that.
We then spent the next eleven days in Nepal in Tibet which were an unforgettable experience.
We returned to Bangkok the evening of November 1 from Kathmandu via Thai. Same drill regarding the hike, immigration and baggage. We were again met by our guide and travelled in less traffic to our hotel, The Amari Watergate. Again a nice hotel and a room on the 30th floor. An excellent breakfast buffet. The next morning we took a boat tour which included the canals, royal barges and the Wat Arun temple. Again a worthwile tour. We spent the afternoon reading by the pool. We ate in the hotel bar and grill. After 11 days on the road we were ready for some American style ribs!! The following morning they opened the resteraunt early to accommodate our early flight. Again the check in was smooth and then we had to board a bus to get our flight to Saigon. Though somewhat apprehensive about returning after an absence of 36 years, the trip went well. We returned to Bangkok again around 20:30 on the 5th and transferred to the JFK flifgt that left at 01:00 on the 6th. Transferring again requires at least 25 minutes of hiking. Very inefficient for supposedly a modern airport. The JFK flight took off and arrived on time. 17 hours is a long time!!
On a scale of 1 to 10 our trip was a 12!!