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Getting from Chiang Mai to Chaing Rai same day

Torquay, United...
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Getting from Chiang Mai to Chaing Rai same day

Hi I need to get to chiang mai to chaing rai same day, can't change my airplane ticket without massive fee.

Everyone is talking about green bus, but it doesn't seem to be a guarenteed same day service. Is there any other way of travelling the 3hrs?

Please advise, I have a lodge booked and trek starting the next day so NEED to be there on the same day!

lewes uk
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1. Re: Getting from Chiang Mai to Chaing Rai same day

Hi,

Green bus has plenty of departures throughout the day. The VIP buses take 3 hours or slightly less and the 1st class ones take 3.5. I don't really see the problem. You could hire a driver but it would be 10 times the price. Green bus is very reliable.

Cheers

Chiang Rai, Thailand
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2. Re: Getting from Chiang Mai to Chaing Rai same day

Hi Sarah,

Welcome to the Chiang Rai Forum!

Paulo has already answered your question, the Green Bus is 3 hours, I have never heard of it taking more than that, certainly not next day.

What time are you able to leave Chiang Rai? If you let me know what day, I might be able to give you a lift if it coincides with my so and his fiance here on holiday from Manchester.

Kind regards

Bruce

Kolkata (Calcutta...
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3. Re: Getting from Chiang Mai to Chaing Rai same day

Hi sarah

I too think there might not be a problem with the bus getting late.

cheers

Gold Coast
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for Ko Pha Ngan, Ko Samui, Thailand
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4. Re: Getting from Chiang Mai to Chaing Rai same day

It's a very small distance, there will be no problem getting there the same day.

Vancouver
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5. Re: Getting from Chiang Mai to Chaing Rai same day

Sarah G... you say you "need to get to Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai the same day"... I'm assuming you mean you are landing in Chiang Mai and then need to catch a bus up to Chiang Rai? If so, a taxi from the airport can get you to the bus station in good time.

Try and get a bus schedule beforehand so you know how much time you'll have after you land in Chiang Mai, to get to the bus station. You might have time for a nice lunch somewhere in Chiang Mai before you leave for the bus station. (Buses leave several times a day). Google VIP Bus Schedule - Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai, or ask on this thread for someone to provide a VIP or Green Bus schedule for you.

The Chiang Mai Bus Station can be a bit chaotic so I recommend you get there at least 1/2 hour to 45 minutes before your bus is scheduled to leave so you have time to get your ticket - there can be lineups sometimes. I have done the VIP bus trip from Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai, and back again - the ticket price is quite cheap and the buses are very nice. You will also enjoy the scenery.

As Paulo and Bruce have already said, the buses run several times a day, so relax - you'll get where you're going the same day. And Bruce has kindly offered the possibility of a ride, if the timing works out.

And if I have misunderstood your post, and you are landing in Chiang Rai instead, and need to get to Chiang Mai the same day... no problem going in that direction either. A bus or a ride will get you there.

Enjoy your trip!

Colorado
Destination Expert
for Chiang Rai, Chiang Rai Province
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6. Re: Getting from Chiang Mai to Chaing Rai same day

Sarah:

I am going to make an assumption that your concern is whether or not you are able to guarantee a ticket on the Green Bus, as your schedule would be disrupted if you arrived at the bus station and could not obtain a ticket. I too read your post as being a situation where you need to get from Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai, but the advise below applies in both directions.

Tickets for the Green Bus are not generally available online. The website is only in Thai. The tickets are sold on a first come, first serve basis, and indeed there have been travelers who have arrived at the bus station and discovered the next bus was fully booked and they were unable to obtain tickets. That is why many people purchase their tickets immediately upon arrival in Chiang Mai or Chiang Rai, even if the day for which they desire the ticket is a few days off.

If you are looking at the Green VIP bus, there is a risk that you may not be able to get tickets if you arrive at the bus station just an hour or so before departure. I think there are 3 or 4 Green VIP buses per day to CR, so whether you will be able to get a ticket for the same day you arrive will depend on how early your flight arrives in Chiang Mai (or Chiang Rai) and how many buses are scheduled to leave after your arrival.

As Paulo has pointed out though, there are Green Buses that are not VIP buses. The first class buses are not quite as nice and take a bit longer, as they have more stops, but they would still accomplish your purpose. If you add the first class bus into the mix, your chances of obtaining a ticket for the same day go way up. It is highly unlikely that you wouldn't be able to obtain a ticket on the same day if you are willing to take the first class bus rather than the VIP bus.

So, go to the bus station immediately upon arrival and purchase your ticket. If you arrive early in the day, you can get a ticket and then head off for some lunch or people watching before the bus is scheduled to leave.

And, consider sending a private message to Caroline08Australia, who is the DE on the Chiang Mai forum, as she is a wealth of knowledge about the Green VIP bus schedules and procedures.

Safe Travels,

Broder

Vancouver
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7. Re: Getting from Chiang Mai to Chaing Rai same day

Good advice, Broder. Covers all the bases.

Brisbane, Australia
Destination Expert
for Chiang Mai
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8. Re: Getting from Chiang Mai to Chaing Rai same day

Sarah - Paulo gave some very good advice about a little travel agent in Chiang Mai who sells and issues actual tickets on the VIP Bus. Here is the link to the discussion and directions to the place.

tripadvisor.com.au/ShowTopic-g293917-i9325-k…

It would be easier going here to get a ticket issued than out to the bus station if you are pushed for time. It is right in the city not far down from the Tha Phae Gate. There are four or five buses a day and the last one leaves Chiang Mai somewhere around 5pm. Go to the Chiang Mai forum - there is a FAQ on travel from CM to CR and in that FAQ (top right of the forum page) there are links to pages with the timetables.

Caroline.

lewes uk
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9. Re: Getting from Chiang Mai to Chaing Rai same day

Hi,

Just to come back with some numbers. There are 5x VIP bus departures per day, 8x1st class and 5x 2nd class. That's 18 buses a day. The VIPs have a toilet on board so don't stop, hence fastest. The 1st class make one comfort break stop for 20 mins and the 2nd class stop more frequently.

If you are arriving between 6am and say 2pm the chances are you will have no problem getting a seat to CR.

Cheers

10. Re: Getting from Chiang Mai to Chaing Rai same day

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