Saving cash at the Airport.
From the very moment you touch down in Bangkok expect your heart to race and your feet to fly to the quickest method of transportation to get you to the city now! Hold on a second! How are you getting there? More than likely jet lagged and eager I am sure you do not want to sit (Or even stand) on a bus you want to get to your location quick and begin to settle in. Well before you hop into those expensive taxis through the arrival doors, take a moment to make your way downstairs to the public taxis and take your ticket. With your taxi ticket, find your flashing taxi number and always ask him the price to your location. Sometimes a meter is better, other times a set price is, depending on your location that’s a decision you and your taxi driver need to determine. While talking to our taxi driver, Danny and I was approached by 2 German backpackers that was also going to the same location, agreeing on a fair price with our taxi we set a cost and divided the expense 4 ways! There is no shame in sharing a taxi with an equally eager backpacker, heck! That’s half the fun! 🙂
Oh the world of currency exchange! Some people love it, others, em not so much. When changing cash for Thailand, your local currency exchange office back at home may require a period of time to order the amount of Baht you need to begin your adventure through Thailand, Sounds reasonable right? Sure it is but what comes along with an order forum? More money! When buying our beginning cash to Thailand, I discovered that I was too late to order the cash we needed so what did we do? Taking €300 in our bag and keeping it safe at all times we took our Euros across the globe and changed only €100 at the airport. Pricey but acceptable we travelled to our hostel by taxi, paid our accommodation (Including an upgrade), ate dinner and had a beer with our exchanged cash with more to spend. The next day as we arose to adventure Bangkok we approached a money exchange box located along the main road of Bangkok and received an extra 200 Baht. My point being, Organisation is not always the best option. Somethings are best waited for, 200 Bath extra worth waiting for!
Where are you staying?
As backpackers, we do not really need much from accommodation. Fancy hotels with award winning restaurants and well dressed staff for what? A hole in your pocket and only to leave it every day to adventure your new location? Na! Money means a lot these days so lets avoid the fancy stuff and save our money for the adventure! Although, be careful with this opinion on spending as sometimes it can come back to bite you. Danny and I landed in Bangkok with our accommodation booked through Booking.com Searching through accommodation we decided to accept a reasonabily priced hostel close to Kaoh San Road. After inspecting the hostels standard room and upgrading option we decided to upgrade our room to a private en-suite room with air-con, a kettle, a mini fridge and a television! We were living pretty sweet! However, located quite a distance than expected from prime areas and down the pretty pricy street of Sukumvit we soon caught up with our saved cost. Remember when booking accommodation to not only glance at the map and determine yourself the distance from location to location but read each detail provided by Booking.com and also double check the distance with the help of google map. Distance can cost you your saving, Bangkok is a lot bigger than you think! Avoid our shy impulse to accept what we have paid for and to check what you are receiving for your money. Appearances can be deceiving, when you have paid for a nice standard bedroom only to be met with less than acceptable living conditions your overall experience is decreased and leaves you feeling robbed. Don’t be shy and ask to check the room before you pay. Your custom is very valuable, if all is not what they portrayed to be seek other accommodation, There is no shame in getting your moneys worth! Important to remember! Yes your custom is valuable and you want your moneys worth but you’re not Royalty. Don’t be nasty, A smile and a pleasant attitude will bring you a lot further in life.
What have you packed?
I am sure your mammy, your granny and your auntie have been haunting you with the golden questions “Have your brought your sun-cream” “Do you have your passport” “You will need a pair of socks” and “Don’t forget your shampoo!” but have they listed a face cloth? Or toilet paper? Its only when you land in different parts of the world you begin to realise that your home comforts list is actually a lot longer than you expected. A lot of places respect the European need for loo roll but I warn you now, your lucky your sitting on a toilet instead of hovering above a hole so be grateful for their efforts. Its all a great culture experience really! “Did she really say a facecloth earlier? What? I can not wear makeup in that heat! Who would need a face cloth!” Lets remember that sentence when you touch down in the never ending heat of Bangkok and begin to sweat your life away. This magical facecloth is not for use of cleaning your face but instead for cooling it. Damping with water then squeezing out any access and placing in your communal fridge or even private fridge in your hostel, your little facecloth buddy will soon become your best friend in the world. Not all hostels or beach huts will be accessible to a fridge but at least when you are, your ready! To check out other helpful products for your adventures around the world check out our post Shopping for a Backpacker made easy!
We hope you have found this post helpful guys and wish you all happy adventures!! Love Shauna and Danny,