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  1. #1
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    Getting Off Koh Chang

    Spent a wonderful week there last week with wife and family as well as cousin visiting from U.K. only for the whole experience to be sullied by petty rip off merchants as we sought to book transport from KC back to BKK.

    There were various options offered by Mr. Noom most of which involved making ones own way to the port by island taxi (who are fairly notorious rip off merchants themselves) and then getting onto van or 'big bus' on the mainland.

    We opted for the, in line with Buddhism 'middle path', of 610 B van off the island including pick up from hotel. With four adults it meant an extra 900 B but what hell eh! The extra money was paid as punctuality and safety were 100 % guaranteed by Mr. Noom.

    Instead of being picked up at 11.00 am it was 11.30am. Instead of van leaving port at 12.30pm it became 1.30pm . And instead of back in BKK at 4.00 pm we ended up in fookin Trat for hour and half waiting on two more bods simply to fill the van.Then the van made four LPG stops along the way. Arrived back in BKK 7.00 pm non too pleased with the service.

    So you have three options it seems to me :

    take your own transport, which I expect most of the TD community will do anyway,
    splash out 900 B each on swanky van that picks you up in KC and drops you in BKK or
    go for the cheap n cheerful 450 B option after you've made your way to the port yourself.

    Screw the middle path and the middle man as the extra 200 B each is simply lining Mr. Noom's pockets on a daily basis.
    It's a real pity because it really took the shine off what was otherwise a perfect week.

    P.S. Vans from the mainland leave on the half hour not the hour despite what Mr. Noom and his cronies might say. And if you want to get to Mor Chit remember they only got there after Victory Monument (in rush hours!! aagh).

  2. #2
    DaffyDuck
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guilt Gland View Post
    So you have three options it seems to me :
    ... or the fourth option, go by plane, which is what I do.

    1,300 Baht each way / 2,600 Baht R/T - + 500 Baht / person for the hotel shuttle.

    (and whatever the cab from Suvarnabhumi would cost).

    The lack of headaches and complications, and that it's only a 45 minutes flight, is worth it.

  3. #3
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    Daffy - any links to the plane option?

  4. #4
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    Just left Koh Chang myself, but to pattaya. Traveled from Koh Chang to Bangkok a couple of times though. There are a ton of ripoff places, including pretty much everyone stationed at the docks mainland side(I have had especially horrific experiences with Malibu travels and would recommend everyone to avoid them if possible). We have had several good trips with the big bus however. The Taxis on Koh Chang are ripoffs in general(and from what I hear, it's all mafia run) but there are some that only go to the pier that aren't as bad. I think it's 60 baht from Kae Bae to the pier, only problem is you never know when they come around and you need to know to look for the ones with a small sign saying specifically that they go for the pier. The b ig bus I have gotten for as low as 200 baht but a friend of mine who is a travel agent booked it for me and I think she even didn't take commision but I think standard price is about 250-300Baht.

    Most people try to sell you ferry tickets for 100 baht but if you buy roundtrip when you get to Koh chang its just 120 baht total. You can definately get to BKK under 400 baht and I have found the big buses to be more comfortable than the minivans anyways and the time difference negligable.
    Last edited by Jesper; 23-10-2009 at 03:28 PM.

  5. #5
    Member tuktukdriver's Avatar
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    I never take minivans in Thailand anymore. I learned my lesson. They never leave when they say, only when they are FULL. They are very cramped. I don't understand why people think they are getting something more over a big bus.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by tuktukdriver View Post
    I never take minivans in Thailand anymore. I learned my lesson. They never leave when they say, only when they are FULL. They are very cramped. I don't understand why people think they are getting something more over a big bus.
    I rode in one years ago, jammed packed with a Israeli's elbow in my ear and ripe BO in my nose, dodgy air-con, windows wired shut, multiple stops...
    No thanks, that was enough for me.

    On holiday I don't want to piss away precious time by using cheapo transportation, better to take the fastest a-to-b that you can afford and economize elsewhere.

  7. #7
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    Private taxi only, with me in it and no one else. It costs more, well so what.

  8. #8
    DaffyDuck
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    Quote Originally Posted by mediamanbkk View Post
    Daffy - any links to the plane option?
    Bangkok Airways :: Asia Air Travel, Airlines, Flights, Samui Thailand

    BKK to Trat

    Overall, you're talking about 1 hour travel time, seeing as how the other time variables are more or less the same when you travel by bus, versus 5-7 hours when traveling by ground - and oftentimes in uncomfortable situations.
    Last edited by DaffyDuck; 24-10-2009 at 11:55 AM.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by tuktukdriver
    I never take minivans in Thailand anymore
    One day I am gunna buy a Hummer with those big bull bars on it so I can ram all those mini-buses up the arse, pushing them off the road and when they sit in the Highway fast lanes holding up all the traffic.

    Ignorant fooking drivers these coonts.

  10. #10
    Days Work Done! Norton's Avatar
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    Flying is an option but with a family of 4, gets expensive. About 14,000 baht plus transportation to/from airports.

    Renting a car might be the best option if 3 or 4 people. Most rental companies allow car pickup at departure location and drop off at destination. If going a relatively short distance such as BKK to Pattaya it's not only cheaper but faster after one takes into account wait times at airports. No need to deal with the "taxi" mafia.
    Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.

  11. #11
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    Another option is just to catch public transport all the way. A whole lot cheaper- and you negotiate your accomodation at the Pier, which would involve complimentary drop- off too.

    Seems less hassle than the tourist operators anyway- i'd either do that or plane if I was a tourist. But I drive,
    probes Aliens

  12. #12
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    The minibus option isn't always a good one from Koh Chang as they tend to take Centerpoint ferry which is the slow one. Sometimes you have to wait nearly an hour for it. They also have to wake people up sometimes, as well as wait in Trat for more passengers.
    There is a bit more freedom as far as your schedule goes if you take taxis to Trat bus station. Buses leave almost hourly to different destinations in Bangkok.
    Take the ferry that goes to Ao Tammachat from Ao Saparot. It is faster and leaves more often and about the same price as the other one if you have no car.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaffyDuck
    Overall, you're talking about 1 hour travel time, seeing as how the other time variables are more or less the same when you travel by bus, versus 5-7 hours when traveling by ground - and oftentimes in uncomfortable situations.
    Home to Suwanabhum airport one and a half hours minimum allowing for check in and traffic. One hour flight. Half an hour to collect the luggage and board the coach. Half and hour to the pier. Half and hour for the ferry. On the island in 4 hours. Drive it in 4 and a half. Planes are often not that fast. Cheapest flight 2100 one way.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by aging one
    Drive it in 4 and a half
    One of my Thai mates drove me once and we did it in 2 and a half. Crapped my pants all the way as he rarely dropped below 210kmph. Never again.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Fresh Prince
    One of my Thai mates drove me once and we did it in 2 and a half. Crapped my pants all the way as he rarely dropped below 210kmph. Never again.
    get passed by crazy fuckers like that. Wonder what percent end up where they are going?

  16. #16
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    His excuse was that the boat was leaving at 2.30 and we didn't leave Bangkok until 12 but then he did it on the way home as well and it was raining. The other Thai's in the car didn't bat an eye lid and happily slept through the ordeal. I just thought I was going to die.

  17. #17
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    1500 Baht for door to door transport for 4 adults sounds like pretty good value to me, even if it does take twice as long as it should in a private taxi. You get what you pay for I guess.

  18. #18
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    By the way, good opening thread Guilt Gland and already contributing to the forum with worthwhile information. Have some welcome repo!

    Hope you enjoy your time here on Teak Door.

  19. #19
    Days Work Done! Norton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aging one
    get passed by crazy fuckers like that.
    Same everywhere in the world. Only two types of drivers. Idiots, the ones going 80 km/h that you can't get past and Maniacs the guy who passes you going 210km/h.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Norton
    Idiots, the ones going 80 km/h that you can't get past
    Will you stop going on about that?!

  21. #21
    DaffyDuck
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    Quote Originally Posted by aging one View Post
    Planes are often not that fast
    It depends where you start from - Pattaya, obviously flying would be futile. Bangkok, flying is convenient.

    Quote Originally Posted by aging one View Post
    Cheapest flight 2100 one way.
    The cheapest flights are 1,300 Baht. It's their 'Best Buy" fare, and it's available if you can plan ahead.

  22. #22
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    always done the public buses, flown once, taxis ahhh its all the same,gotta wait soemwhere

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