Echoserang Accounting: Bangkok Budget and Expenses

The second stop of our Indochina Adventurewas Bangkok. That was my first time in Thailand and I’m looking forward to more visits. Bangkok is a good example of tradition meets modernity. This mixture and balance of the old and the new gives visitors a plethora of options when it comes to accommodations, food and dining, transportation, places to see, and activities to do. So, how much do you need to save for that trip to Bangkok? Read my expense report below and find out.

Cost /
Taxi TBH308 TBH154 USD5
Bus TBH26 TBH26 USD0.87
Water Taxi TBH21 TBH21 USD0.70
Tuktuk (From Nong Khai Railway Station to border/immigration) TBH80 TBH40 USD1.33
Sleeper Train TBH773 TBH773 USD25.77
Khao San Baan Thai (Twin bedroom; shared bathroom) TBH2000 TBH1000 USD33
Food and Drinks
Meals, snacks, and beverages TBH1081 TBH1081 USD36
Water TBH84 TBH84 USD2.80
Admission Fees (Grand Palace, Wat Pho, Wat Ben) TBH520 TBH520 USD17.33
Delivery fee for train tickets TBH100 TBH50 USD1.33
Laundry (c/o Khao San Baan Thai) TBH120 TBH60 USD2
Souvenirs TH320 TBH320 USD10.67
Grand Total USD137.14

One of the advantages of traveling in land-locked countries like the Indochina Region is that you can skip airplanes. Traveling by air is definitely a lot more expensive than traveling by land. From Siem Reap it only cost us around $10 to get to Bangkok. We could have shelled out almost $100 had we chosen to take a plane. Note: The bus transfer from Siem Reap to Bangkok is excluded in this expense report. I included it instead in my Siem Reap expense report which you can read here.
Bangkok is walk-able but if you’re not fond of that, there are other means of going around the city like buses, taxis, boats, and tuktuk. The cheapest, in our experience and according to our guesthouse’s caretakers, is the bus. Though it can be a challenge, especially if no one inside can speak English. The pink taxis were not only cute but they were very efficient. I didn’t mind the extra cost because we were comfortable and we were brought to our destinations safely and quickly. Each and every time.
Water taxis are best when you’re not in a hurry.
Only take the water taxis if you have some time to spare, but if you’re in a hurry to go to the Grand Palace or any other tourist attraction, ditch it. We didn’t hire tuktuk in Bangkok because 1) my friends vehemently ordered me not to try them and 2) they’re expensive. A case in point: Met a lady in Wat Pho who chose to go there via tuktuk from Khao San Road. The driver charged her TBH100. We came from MBK Center and boarded a pink taxi and it only cost us almost TBH80.
Though admittedly there are other cheaper accommodations in Bangkok than the guesthouse where we chose to stay, I was actually happy with my experience at Khao San Baan Thai. Its location was quite good. It’s situated in a quiet neighborhood and it’s only a few minutes away from Khao San Road, grocery stores, food establishments, flea markets, bus stops, and even the water taxi system.
Khao San Baan Thai: Cheap, clean, cozy.
The room is spacious enough; it was very clean and very tidy when we arrived. The beds were comfortable, though some people may find it odd that they are placed on the floor. The AC unit was in good working condition and the Wi-Fi connection was stable and fast even though our room was at the second floor. The shared bathrooms were cleaned regularly so I don’t have any toilet horror stories to tell. Khao San Baan Thai lived up to its tagline – cheap, clean, and cozy.
Food and Drinks
Bangkok is geared for tourists so you won’t have problems looking for food. If you want a little luxury there are many fine-dine restaurants scattered all over the city. If you need your daily fast food fix you have McDonalds, KFC, Burger King, and more. If you’re on a tight budget, go for street foods; order a Pad Thai and your food dilemmas are solved.
Fruit shakes: Good for the summer heat and for your body, too.
Because we visited during the summer, I was really fond of ordering fruit shakes whenever I get the chance. They’re delicious, healthy, and most of all, they’re cheap. If you’re on Khao San Road, I suggest you order fruit shakes from the stall beside Swnesens. That stall gave the yummiest and most generous servings during my stay in Bangkok.
Instead of going on a stressful trip to Hua Lamphong Station to buy our tickets, the guesthouse kindly did that for us. They called the station, checked the availability on our desired date of departure, and voila! We can sit and relax because the tickets will be delivered to our guesthouse the next day. There’s a delivery fee of TBH100 but we so effin’ do not care. I can now go back to our room and sleep some more.
Make sure you don’t skip out the Grand Palace on your itinerary.
As expected, admission fees to the Grand Palace and other temples were going to take a big chunk out of our budget. It was worth it, though. Besides, I probably won’t be coming back to those places anytime soon. I have to look for new places to conquer, after all.