A Budget Getaway to Bangkok, March 2015

Bangkok, just 2 hours 30 minutes away by air from Singapore, is a popular holiday destination for my fellow countrymen.  I know of many who go there often, once every year or even once every few months, to take advantage of the comparatively stronger Singapore dollar to shop, eat & massage to their heart’s content.  Well, I must admit, I don’t belong to this gang, because the last I visited Bangkok was about 12 years ago, & somehow there was no compelling reason for me to visit Krung Thep (known locally by the Thais), meaning the “City of Angels”, over other destinations. 😛

This time, the opportunity to visit Bangkok came about because of the following reasons:

  • cheap Jetstar promotion airfare to Bangkok;
  • a complimentary night stay in any overseas Millennium & Copthorne group hotel expiring on 31 March; and
  • the city was close enough for a 3D2N getaway within what we could afford in terms of time & money!

So off we flew to the City of Angels for a 3D2N shop/eat/massage holiday last week. 😉  Below is what I’ll be covering in my upcoming posts on the short trip:

Day 1: Arrived at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi (pronounced “Suwannaphum”) Airport and checked in to Grand Millennium Sukhumvit Bangkok hotel.  Had lunch at Terminal 21 shopping mall as well as explored this unique mall.  Early dinner at Audrey Cafe & Bistro which serves European and Thai dishes with a twist.  Ended the day with a relaxing foot massage at Health Land Spa & Massage.

Day 2: Checked in Glow Pratunam hotel and headed directly to Platinum Shopping Mall for retail & food therapy.  After that, walked to Central World Plaza & enjoyed afternoon tea at the After You cafe there.  We also prayed at the nearby Erawan Shrine (undergoing restoration at the point of visit but still open to public), & continued to walk to Siam area to check out malls around there.  Finally returned to the hotel for traditional Thai massage before retreating to our room to rest after a long day.

Day 3: Woke up early in the morning to visit the busy Pratunam market just a stone’s throw from the hotel. After breakfast in the hotel, it was time to leave for the airport.

From my summary above, I bet you must be thinking the trip was really short & we didn’t seem to cover many places ya?  Actually we had to make some changes to our initial plan due to bad weather, hence we could have covered a few more places. 😦  We were caught in a flash flood (had to walk back to hotel from Terminal 21 & it was flooded up to my knees -_-“) on the first day when there was a heavy downpour that lasted about 1 hour, so was stuck in the hotel for a few hours & couldn’t explore the Thong Lo district as much as we wanted.  Then on second day evening, it rained so heavily that we gave up searching for a recommended massage parlour near the hotel & settled for massage at the hotel instead. 😦  Well, I guess it’s a good excuse to cover worthwhile places that we missed this round in our next trip to Bangkok, isn’t it?  Lol

One tip for would-be travellers to Thailand, you can consider buying a prepaid traveller SIM card upon your arrival at the airport because it’s just so affordable & convenient!  My friend and I each purchased a Traveller SIM 299 Baht (about S$12.80) from the AIS counter just between gates 6 & 7 of Suvarnabhumi airport’s international arrival hall.  The staff will help to insert and activate the SIM card when you purchase at the counter.  Unless you can understand Thai, I suggest you just let the expert help you with the activation.  The SIM card comes with free 7-day unlimited internet, free THB 100 call credit with 30 days validity, & cheap local and international call/ sms rates.

There is another provider called DTAC that sells a similar prepaid SIM card called Happy Tourist SIM 299, offering the same benefits.  Not sure which provider gives better coverage though it didn’t really matter to us when we only roamed in the city.  You won’t miss these 2 counters which are next to each other, because there would surely be many travellers queuing to buy the SIM cards, just like the situation when we arrived early in the morning before 9am. 😉

So, do stay tuned for my upcoming posts soon! 😀

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