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Overnight train Bangkok - Vientiane

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Overnight train Bangkok - Vientiane

We have been planning to use the train to get from Bangkok to Vientiane in January., mainly because we expected that it would enable us to see some of the countryside. However, a Thai acquaintance has just warned us that it is an uncomfortable trip, and that there is little to see , mainly because it will be dark throughout the journey.

I need some advice urgently, as if we are to change our bookings we need to do it in the next few days.

Bristol, United...
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1. Re: Overnight train Bangkok - Vientiane

Well your acqaintance is right in that you won't see much as the train leaves at 8.45pm and aarrives 9.00 the next morning (just bought train tickets for 24th dec!!). You won't see much in the morning as around Udon Thani (you'll be awake by then/there) and the scenery is pretty boring.Uncomfortable? Well some people find it so and some find it perfectly comfortable. We are a British/japanese couple who don't exactly slum it in our trips in/around Thaialnd and find the sleeper trains (that 8.45 train has beds, air-con, fan, - take the fan in jan as its cooler and even cold up North). to be fine,safe, and the added bonus of being cheap.

We sometimes fly back from Udon Thani to bangkok with airasia (two flights a day - you'd need the later one) Very cheap and there is a bus service now from Vientiene to Udon. Direct flights with Thai run around 6,000 baht return, probably more with taxes/surcharges.airasia about 2,000 return if booked in advance on airasia.com

B>Gas

Kurashiki, Japan
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for Kurashiki, Cambodia, Myanmar
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2. Re: Overnight train Bangkok - Vientiane

Bankokgas-

How much is the train trip from BKK-VTE? My buddy wants to do that.

Bristol, United...
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3. Re: Overnight train Bangkok - Vientiane

Hi maneki - cat!

Train from BKK- Nong Khai is about 480 baht (14 dollars) for an upper berth sleeper, 530 for a lower. A 40 baht tuk-tuk ride to the border, your mate can get his/her visa at the border for 30 dollars or 1500 baht so no need to do that in Tokyo/Bangkok, bit it is easier to do so.

Give my love to Tokyo and Shimokitazawa (where my mrs has an apartment)!!!!!!

B.Gas

Mason, Ohio
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4. Re: Overnight train Bangkok - Vientiane

NokAir also fly to Udon. Nong Khai is quite nice and you would do better flying to Udon and stay a night there, than taking the overnight train and see nothing.

Santa Cruz, Cal
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5. Re: Overnight train Bangkok - Vientiane

I think I paid 2300 bt for a first class sleeping compartment for 2 BKK to Nong Khai and you won't see much , only farmland around Udon in the morning but if you like the train where else can you get a pullman room for 2 for $60

New York, NY
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6. Re: Overnight train Bangkok - Vientiane

Hi -

I'm going to be traveling to Southeast Asia for the first time with my sister this winter. I'm traveling from the US and am on a very stringent student budget. I'd love to learn more about this train and where I could possibly book a car for the two of us. Thanks!

Tiffany

Santa Cruz, Cal
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7. Re: Overnight train Bangkok - Vientiane

I've taken this trip a couple of times, It is an overnight train, the only scenary is from before Udon Thani to Nong Khai, mostly farmland,and the lights thru Bangkok, leaves BKK at about 800pm but it does save you a nights hotel room and 1st class sleeper compartment was 2300 baht for 2, I may try the 2nd class sleeper this time and that is cheaper, stock up on stuff to eat at the station before you get on as it is better the the food on the train, its enjoyable for me, air asia and nokair fly to Udon Thani as well for about $50 per person, plus 150 baht each to Nong Khai in a minibus, train ends at Nong Khai and a short tuk tuk ride to the border, minibus on the Lao border to VTE is about 350 baht, theres a website for thai rail travel and numerous post on here about it, callao

Singapore
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8. Re: Overnight train Bangkok - Vientiane

Tiffany, check out seat61.com/…20Khai - it worked well for me.

You can book tickets in advance but deliveries will only be made in Thailand. In my case I had it delivered to my hotel by one of the nominated agents and all went fine. Alternatively you can buy it on arrival - but that train is quite popular so book as soon as you arrive.

I enjoyed the ride, but I use the comfy end of the train. Other posters are correct - eat before you board and take food with you. Even in the "pointy end" the food isn't a highlight of the trip.

Note, as the previous poster indicated, that the train probably still stops in Nong Khai on the Thai/Laos border - 24km short of Vientiane. There was construction of the rail extension over the border but I've seen no update here to suggest it is completed (things move quite slowly in Laos).

Allow a couple of hours to get out of Thailand and into Laos. Just slow moving lines, not big issues. Chance to meet some fellow travellers. Have a couple of passport photos with you for the visa-on-arrival application into Laos. And some $US or Thai Bhat for the visa cost.

Cheers, --Kip

Vientiane
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9. Re: Overnight train Bangkok - Vientiane

Not "probably stops", still does stop in Nong Khai.

Singapore
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10. Re: Overnight train Bangkok - Vientiane

Ah, yes, I should have said "probably still terminates" rather than "stops". Thanks for the catch.

Cheers, --Kip