How Much Does A Trip To Bangkok

Many of the Americans consider Thailand as a key expat destination in Asia since the end of the Vietnam War. However, the influx of foreign presence in this part of the world was already prevalent even as early as 13th to 17th Centuries. Once known as Siam, this country was an important neutral trading zone for the Portuguese, Chinese, Arabs, Indians, Japanese (exiles), French, and English colonials.

Curiously, Thailand is the only country in Southeast Asia that has never been conquered by Westerners – despite the fact that previous dynasties were subject to several brutal invasions by the neighboring rival Burma. Bangkok was then established as the center of political and economic activities in 1782, nearly two decades following the fall of previous royal capital Ayutthaya.

As of 2012, there are approximately 5,673,560 people living in Bangkok alone – making it one of the most densely populated cities in Southeast Asia. Thailand’s capital has a reputation for having the wildest and most energetic nightlife scenes in the world – which, for better or worse, were popularized in several gritty Hollywood films like Hangover 2 (2011), Bangkok Dangerous (2008), The Beach (2000) and Elephant White (2011).

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Best Time to Visit

If one has to account the weather, the best months to visit Bangkok is anywhere between November and March – when the heat and humidity are at its lowest. A strong argument can be made about emphasizing the merit of climate simply because of two factors: the typical Southeast Asian climate and the (arguably) poorly-insulated concrete jungle of Thailand’s capital. In addition to the ideal weather calendar, one must also schedule the holiday based on a more favorable economic season.

If one has to schedule a two-week vacation in Bangkok in light of these factors, the best time to visit is from March 1 to 14 (2018). After all, the average vacation rental cost in this month does not exceed $50. Likewise, the initial weeks of March have a milder weather than the succeeding window marking the start of the summer season.

Flight Costs via PriceLine

In terms of flying to Bangkok from the United States, the best chances for booking a bargain plane ticket price includes these following locations: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Washington DC.  So how much does a trip to Bangkok cost based on the schedule prescribed in the earlier part of the article? One can expect a price range that does not exceed $680. However, some of the flights in this table may be subject to several changes in time:

Flying fromTicket CostAirline/sOutbound Flight DeparturesReturn Flight Departures
New York (JFK)$480.59Air China1st: to Beijing (PEK) at 2:30 AM
Last: to Bangkok (BKK) at 8:15 AM
1st: to Beijing (PEK) at 1:05 AM
Last: to New York (JFK) at 10:25 PM
Washington DC (IAD)$570.59Air China1st: to Beijing (PEK) at 3:35 PM
Last: to Bangkok (BKK) at 7:45 PM
1st: to Beijing (PEK) at 7:15 PM
Last: to Washington DC at 12:45 PM
Los Angeles (LAX)$590.59Air China1st: to Beijing (PEK) at 1:20 PM
Last: to Bangkok (BKK) at 7:45 PM
1st: to Beijing (PEK) at 5:50 AM
Last: to Los Angeles (LAX) at 3:00 PM
Chicago (ORD)$660.96EVA Airways1st: to Taipei (TPE) at 12:20 AM
Last: to Bangkok (BKK) at 7:45 AM
1st: to Taipei (TPE) at 2:40 PM
Last: to Chicago (ORD) at 8:05 PM

Best Accommodations

Among the most crucial aspects that determine the overall Bangkok trip price is the cost of accommodations. When it comes to reserving a room based on the prescribed two-week vacation date, it is important to remember that some flights from the United States may take as long as 2 days to complete. Hence, the following reservation details featured in this table are consistent with a reduced two-day allowance beginning March 1:

11-night stayPropertyAddress
$332H-Residence48 Soi Sathorn 11 (Junction #4), South Sathorn Road, Yannawa, Sathorn, 10120 Bangkok, Thailand
$332Bansabai Hostelling International8 Naknivas53, Ladprao71, Ladprao, Bangkok, Ladprao, 10230 Bangkok, Thailand
$365King Royal Garden Inn245 South Sathorn Road, Yannawa, Sathorn, Sathorn, 10120 Bangkok, Thailand
$409Prom Ratchada Residence558 Soi Nathong7, Ratchada Rd, DinDang Thailand, Din Daeng, 10400 Bangkok, Thailand
$415Elizabeth Hotel169/51 Pradipat Rd., Samsennai, Phayathai, Phaya Thai, 10400 Bangkok, Thailand
$426Interchanged Tower Serviced Apartment94 Soi Ratchtapan (Soi Mor Leng) Rajaprarop Rd., 10400 Bangkok, Thailand
$431The Patra27 Rama 9 Soi 31 Huamark Bangkapi, Bangkapi, 10240 Bangkok, Thailand
$441Win Long Place Hotel1179/42 Soi Charoenkrung47, New Road, Bang Rak, 10500 Bangkok, Thailand
$450The Dynasty Bangkok Hotel8 Ramkhamhaeng 35, Huamark, Bangkapi, Bangkapi, 10240 Bangkok, Thailand

Smart Consumer Guide

As of September 2017, the currency exchange rate between US dollars and Thai baht is $1 to ฿33.08. While it is crucial to understand that living in Thailand (like most Southeast Asian countries) is relatively cheaper than in North America, one should not forget that Bangkok is one of the most expensive cities in the country.

In one month, the cost of living for any single adult living in Bangkok is anywhere between $605 and $1,500. The difference between these estimates is largely dependent on the kind of lifestyle one adapts. The amount of money needed to pay the rent and bills account for a maximum of almost 85% of the total monthly expenses – which means the cost of food, transportation, personal care and outdoor activities roughly costs around $375 to $400.

Fun Activities

Curiously, Bangkok has a number of daytime activities that do not cost a single baht. In this particular case, one can say for certain that some of the “best things in life are free.” Aside from eating and shopping, here are among the best occupations in the city which only requires time and enthusiasm:

  • Visiting Lumpini Park (similar to New York’s Time Square)
  • Meditation classes in Wat Mahathat
  • Watching the dance show at Erawan Shrine
  • Watching live Muay Thai competitions at MBK Center

Fitness and wellness are considered to be important (and often inseparable) cultural values in Thailand – both of which can occupy an active tourist the entire day. One can practice Muay Thai in the morning and visit a massage parlor at late noon in preparation for an exciting nightlife party.  Speaking of which, working out should only entail a negligible cost. Here are some of the places one can check out for a good training experience:

  • Lumpini Park (gym): Free
  • Lumpini Park (Tai Chi session): Free
  • Lumpini Park (Muay Thai class): $1 per session
  • Thai-Japan Youth Center (gym): $1.21 a year
  • Ekkamai School (gym): $0.76 per session

Regardless of which massage parlor one visits, the most reputable (if not controversial) highlight of this activity concerns “Happy Ending.” This term describes an extra service that involves ‘certain sexual activities with a female therapist.’ It is important to understand that only a few may offer this feature, and it is only available at one’s discretion. Here is a presentation of the average cost of the various hourly sessions:

  • Thai massage: $7 to $8
  • Foot massage: $7 to $8
  • Oil massage: Around $9
  • Hand-job: Around $15
  • Fellatio: Around $30
  • Intercourse: $46 to $61

Nightlife Walkthrough

The main reason why it is highly advisable to limit expenses in the morning is that it is always best to splurge in the evening. As mentioned earlier, Bangkok has one of the most active and bustling nightlife scenes in the world.

Anyone who envisions a good bargain for Bangkok trip price would know that buying wines and imported whiskey brands should be avoided. The former is 2 to 3 times more expensive than the prices sold abroad and the latter has the same exact retail price as it does in the United States or Europe. Cheap local beers are usually priced lower than $2 while inexpensive cocktails do not exceed $4.

It is important to understand that many of Bangkok’s drinking establishments and nightclubs allow customers to store their liquor for their next visit in case the bottle is only partially consumed. This approach allows many thrifty carousers to save considerable expenses. As for choosing the best places in the city for a night out, one should take note of these three most popular neighborhoods featured in the table below.

Khao San RoadSukhumvit RoadThong Lor Road
Adhere the 13th
-------------------
• Type: Pub
• Theme: Jazz & Blues
• Opens: 6:00 PM to 12:00 AM
Levels Club & Lounge
-------------------
• Type: Nightclub
• Theme: Chic
• Opens: 9:00 PM to 3:00 AM
Badmotel
-------------------
• Type: Bar
• Theme: Abandoned Warehouse
• Opens: 5:00 PM to 1:00 AM
Madame Musur
-------------------
• Type: Bistro
• Theme: Tiki & Local
• Opens: 8:00 AM to 12:00 AM
Alex & Spin
-------------------
• Type: Rooftop Lounge
• Theme: Prohibition Era
• Opens: 5:00 PM to 1:00 AM
Clouds
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• Type: Nightclub
• Theme: Eco-friendly
• Opens: 8:00 PM to 2:00 AM
The Club
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• Type: Nightclub
• Theme: Ibiza Style
• Opens: 10:00 PM to 3:00 AM
Above Eleven
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• Type: Rooftop Bistro
• Theme: Contemporary
• Opens: 6:00 PM to 2:00 AM
Myst
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• Type: Nightclub
• Theme: Chic
• Opens: 5:00 PM to 2:00 AM
Bombay Blues
-------------------
• Type: Bistro
• Theme: Indian
• Opens: 3:00 PM to 2:00 AM
Apoteka
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• Type: Bar
• Theme: 19th Century
• Opens: 6:00 PM to 1:00 AM
Iron Fairies
-------------------
• Type: Bar
• Theme: Victorian Gothic
• Opens: 6:00 PM to 2:00 AM
The Brick
-------------------
• Type: Bar
• Theme: Reggae
• Opens: 8:00 PM to 2:00 AM
Octave Rooftop Lounge & Bar
-------------------
• Type: Rooftop Lounge
• Theme: Contemporary
• Opens: 6:00 PM to 1:00 AM
Fat Gutz
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• Type: Bistro
• Theme: Mariner's Dive
• Opens: 5:00 PM to 2:00 AM
VW Cocktail
-------------------
• Type: Mobile Bar
• Theme: Funky
• Opens: 8:00 PM to 2:00 AM
The Londoner Brew
-------------------
• Type: Pub
• Theme: English
• Opens: 11:00 PM to 11:00 AM
Shades of Retro
-------------------
• Type: Pub
• Theme: Vintage (50's to 80's)
• Opens: 2:00 PM to 1:00 AM
Lava Gold
-------------------
• Type: Nightclub
• Theme: Hip-hop
• Opens (Mon-Thu): 9:00 PM to 2:00 AM
• Opens (Fri): 9:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Titanium Ice Bar
-------------------
• Type: Nightclub
• Theme: Chic
• Opens: 11:00 PM to 11:00 AM
Desi Beats
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• Type: Rooftop Lounge
• Theme: Moroccan
• Opens: 6:00 PM to 2:00 AM

Shopping guide

When it comes to shopping in certain places around the world, it is crucial for travelers to know which ones are either cheap or expensive by comparison elsewhere. In Bangkok, imported branded items may cost 10% to 30% more expensive than in the United States and Western Europe. Quality cameras and computers are also costlier in Bangkok by up to 20% when they aren’t on sale.

However, generic products like non-branded clothes and other items are significantly cheaper by up to 50% less compared to those sold in the United States and Europe. The same value is expected for custom clothing and counterfeit luxury goods (e.g. Louis Vuitton bag). These are some of the most notable places to splurge on consumer goods and souvenirs in Bangkok:

Shopping PlaceCapacityOpening HoursHighlights
CentralWorld• 7 floors
• 500 stores
• 100 bistros & cafes
10:00 AM to 10:00 PM• 3rd largest shopping center in Asia
• Organized shopping category per floor
• Great entertainment center
Platinum Fashion Mall• 4 floors
• 1,300 stores
9:00 AM to 8:00 PM (Mon, Tue, Thu, Fri)
8:00 AM to 8:00 PM (Wed, Sat, Sun)
• Wholesale clothes and accessories
• Wide-ranged fashion styles
• Indoor street shopping
Chatuchak Weekend Market• 35 acres
• 8,000 stores
6:00 PM to 12:00 AM (Fri)
9:00 AM to 6:00 PM (Sat & Sun)
7:00 AM to 6:00 PM (Wed & Thu: only at the Plant Sections)
• Haven for ceramics and home furniture
• The best place for Thai handicrafts
• Renowned street food paradise
Terminal 21 Bangkok• 9 floors
• 600 stores
10:00 AM to 10:00 PM• Multinational themes (e.g. Paris, Tokyo, etc)
• One of the best places for luxury clothes
• One of the best food courts in Bangkok
MBK Center• 8 floors
• 2,000 stores
10:00 AM to 9:00 PM• Premium local design and brands
• High quality imitation brands at $25 to $50
• Free overlooking viewing of Muay Thai Fight Night
Rod Fai Market• 3 market zones
• 2,000 stores
5:00 PM to 12:00 AM (Thu to Sun)• Best place for shopping vintage goods
• Wide variety of open-air bistros and bars
• Festive night out venue

Packaged Trips

When it comes to managing one’s travel budget in and around Thailand’s capital city, a great deal of attention is afforded to the price of accommodations, meals, transportation, and even outdoor activities. Fortunately, one can factor all of these costs within a certain vacation timeframe by booking holiday packages. So how much does a trip to Bangkok cost if it already includes the following items?

  • Round-trip airport shuttle
  • Hotel stay (based on the package trip duration)
  • Meals (based on the package trip itinerary)
  • All in-land transportation
  • English-speaking tour guide

One of the most recommended sites for package trips in Bangkok is Take Tours. It is important to understand that any online reservations on this site require 2 to 3 business days for confirmation. Caution: Never book airline tickets without receiving any confirmation.

Take note: Some important aspects of the overall Bangkok vacation package cost based on the table below are no longer subject to the prescribed date. One can still book a reservation within any of the March 2018 dates featured. However, the exact airline ticket costs highlighted featured earlier in this article may no longer apply.

 5-Day Bangkok and Pattaya Tour6-Day Bangkok, Pattaya and Ayutthaya Tour7-Day Bangkok, Pattaya and Chiang Mai Tour
Tour Code926-942226-943126-943
Cost$431$527$887
March 2018 Reservation Dates2, 6, 9, 13, 16, 20, 23, 27, 302, 6, 9, 13, 16, 20, 23, 272, 6, 9
Itinerary Destinations / HighlightsDay 2: Bangkok to Pattaya
Bangkok Chinatown, Pak Khlong Talat, Rattanakosin Island, Wat Arun, Ananta Samakom Throne Hall, and Alcarzas Cabaret Show

Day 3: Pattaya
Ko Lan, Floating Market, Alangkarn Cultural Show

Day 4: Pattaya to Bangkok
Pattaya Elephant Village, Gems Gallery Pattaya, Queen Saowapha Memorial Institute & Snake Farm, Leather House, and Erawan Shrine
Day 2: Bangkok to Pattaya
Bangkok Chinatown, Pak Khlong Talat, Rattanakosin Island, Wat Arun, Ananta Samakom Throne Hall, and Alcarzas Cabaret Show

Day 3: Pattaya
Ko Lan, Floating Market, Alangkarn Cultural Show

Day 4: Pattaya to Bangkok
Pattaya Elephant Village, Gems Gallery Pattaya, Queen Saowapha Memorial Institute & Snake Farm, Leather House, and Erawan Shrine

Day 5: Bangkok to Ayutthaya
Ayutthaya and Wat Phra Sri Sanphet
Day 2: Bangkok to Pattaya
Bangkok Chinatown, Pak Khlong Talat, Rattanakosin Island, Wat Arun, Ananta Samakom Throne Hall, and Alcarzas Cabaret Show

Day 3: Pattaya
Ko Lan, Floating Market, Alangkarn Cultural Show

Day 4: Pattaya to Bangkok
Pattaya Elephant Village, Gems Gallery Pattaya, Queen Saowapha Memorial Institute & Snake Farm, Leather House, and Erawan Shrine

Day 5: Bangkok to Chiang Mai
Chiang Mai and Wat Phra That Doi SuthepTemple

Day 6: Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai
Mae Sai District and 212 House of Opium

Travel Guide

A paperback or Kindle e-book travel guide is one of the smartest investments one can acquire in terms of tailoring the Bangkok vacation package cost to one’s relatively limited budget. One of the most highly rated recent accounts about traveling in Thailand’s capital was published in 2016 – The Bangkok City Travel Dudes Destination Guidebook

For a more personalized and unfiltered perspective to Bangkok’s infamous nightlife atmosphere, one of the most recommended materials for prospective travelers is Bangkok Naked: Now and Then. This volume was published in January 2017.

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