How to use Bangkok’s Skytrain System: The Rabbit Card Explained

  The in & outs of using a Rabbit Card on the BTS   What is a Rabbit Card A Rabbit Card is actually an E-money system for BTS, mass transit and retail partners. Its the easiest payment method for travelling in Bangkok. No more cueing, just beep and go & you only pay for what you use. Register your Rabbit Card online for Rabbit Rewards and start earning Rabbit Reward points. Once you have registered for Rabbit Rewards online, you will be eligible to earn Rabbit Reward points. These points canRead More

The Unfortunate History Behind the Erawan Shrine

August 17, 2015 is a day I won’t forget easily. I spent the day on the ground in Central Bangkok, collecting photos and information for my up-coming Bangkok travel guide. At about 6:10pm, I tried texting my friend in order to organise a meeting place for dinner. However, for some reason, the internet was not working, notwithstanding that I had a full signal and 4G connection. By 6:45pm, in frustration at not being able to get the internet to work and feeling hungry, I boarded a skytrain away from theRead More

Pattaya: The Comprehensive Guide – voted on Koh Samui Sunset

Recognition for all the hard work on the first of our travel guides is finally starting to emerge. The expat forum site Koh Samui Sunset recently cited our guide as the number one regional guide for Pattaya.  The link to their guide book review is here (opens in new window): http://www.kohsamuisunset.com/thailand-travel-guide/ The Amazon link for the guidebook is here: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00P7XAZSC Hopefully, this can now trickle into a few more sites and get a bit more attention. For those interested in Thailand based guides, we have been busy this year and weRead More

Bangkok Expat Guide – Part Two – Banking

Ever since I set foot in Bangkok back in the 1980s, dealing with Thai banks has always been a source of frustration.  Thai banks do subscribe to the various international conventions generated by the BIS, ICC and IMF, and even Thai banking laws very much mirror those of Western countries.  However, Thai banks do still seem to do things a bit differently at times, and this tends to be the source of frustration.  However, if you feel frustrated with banks in Thailand today, I can confirm it was significantly worse 30Read More

Bangkok’s Hidden Classic Cinema – Scala

Whatever happened to the good old days of movie cinemas, where you would enter a grand entrance with fluted columns, large winding staircases and gabled ceilings.  Attendants wore uniforms complete with hats and gloves, and there was only one large screen, not eight, sixteen or twenty-four small screens.  The large cinema would often even have balcony seating. Notwithstanding numerous proposals to knock it down, Bangkok has so far managed to retain one of its icons of classic cinema, namely the Scala Cinema.  This beautiful icon to the movie world is aRead More

Bangkok Expat Guide – Part One – Food

Welcome to the first post in my new series aimed at helping expats to enjoy their time in the fun, exciting, yet confusing mega-city of Bangkok.  Over the next few months, I intend to cover a wide variety of topics, providing good, useful information about matters such as: how to find accommodation (including good but cheaper accommodation options); how banking works in Thailand and the best ways to get money into the country; work options for foreigners in Bangkok (including information on work permits and visas); where to get furnitureRead More

The Truth About Taxis in Bangkok

Taxis are everywhere in Bangkok and can be a cheap and comfortable way to get around town.  However, everyone struggles to find a taxi willing to do the right thing and get them from point A to point B, using the meter.  Tourists often think this is a practice that is targeted solely at them, but actually, everyone in Bangkok has difficulties when trying to catch a taxi. Some Information About Taxis There are approximately 140,000 official licensed taxis in Bangkok.  These licensed taxis tend to be brightly coloured sedansRead More

Bangkok’s Victory Monument

In the midst of Bangkok’s steamy traffic stands a tall needle-pointed concrete obelisk of European design that raises more questions than get answered.  Thailand’s Victory Monument, or Anu Saowari Chai Samoraphum (or just Anu Saowari for short) is situated in one of the busiest and most important traffic circles in Bangkok.  However, very few people actually know what victory the monument is actually dedicated to. History The Victory Monument was designed by Italian sculptor Corrado Feroci and erected under his direction in 1941.  Corrado has a very interesting and long history with Thailand, andRead More

Tips That You Didn’t Know for Getting the Most Out of Bangkok – Part Five

There’s been a little gap between my tips recently as I focused more on the usual travel guide type material.  In this issue of my Bangkok Tips I look at where to find cheap Western food. As most of you who spend any time in Bangkok know, the Western luxuries in Bangkok can cost more than they would back in the West.  This is because of a combination of high import taxes and also the “luxury image” factor.  For Thai people, showing off that they lead a regular Western “luxury”Read More

Suan Pakkard (Cabbage Patch) Palace – A Hidden Slice of Paradise

Most of the palaces and major temples of Bangkok are located within Ratanakosin Island or nearby Dusit district in the old part of town.  However, there is a real gem of a palace hidden away in the urban sprawl of Bangkok that is not far off the beaten track but still off the radar for most tourists. Suan Pakkard Palace (Suan Pakkard means a cabbage field or cabbage patch), sometimes also spelled Suan Pakkad (without the R), is a royal residence on Sri Ayuthaya Road in the heart of Bangkok.Read More