Old Bangkok Airport – Don Muang

How to get to Thailand – by air

The airport was officially opened in 1914. In 2006 it was replaced by Suvarnabhumi Airport as the main Bangkok international airport. In 2007 the government approved re-opening of the Don Muang airport as the second Bangkok airport for some domestic flights as for example flights to the north of Thailand Chiang Mai or to Thai beaches on the south – Krabi or Phuket.

9 years ago as we visited Thailand, we flew from Vienna via Finland to Don Muang. This Airport is the place that I remember very well. There are two reasons why:  the first of them – the film with Nicole Kidman – Bangkok Hilton. For those who have not seen it yet – it is a story of young woman Kat Stanton who was travelling from London to Australia via Thailand. And which was tricked into carrying some luggage through Thai customs for Arkie, her new friend and it was only for the police to find drugs in her bag. Kat was sentenced to spend time in the horrific “Bangkok Hilton” prison.  The second reason – this is the place, where I lost my first clocks, a present from my parents. I forgot them on the wash-basin on the airport toilets. When I found it out, I was crazy enough to leave my passport by the airport officers, but it could not help either. They were away. Sorrow after them left me only when I saw an incredible offer of clocks from Tommy Hilfiger, Police, Diesel, Esprit or DKNY etc. in hundreds of possible shops on Pratunam market.

If you want to get to Bangkok, you have basically three possibilities. You can rent your own car. You can wait for the Shuttle Bus which will carry you to the Transport Center and after it you can go by the Public Bus or you can choose a Public Taxi.

This is what we did. High humidity (Bangkok belongs  among the most humid places on the earth)  and the long flight did quickly made us sure, that there is no reason to wait for the bus. Today, if you choose public taxi you do not to have any fears because taxi drivers must be certified by Airports of Thailand and their cars must be less than 5 years old. If you travell from Suvarnabhumi, just go to the first floor of the airport, and near doors 3&4 and 7&8 is the taxi sign up desk.  As we were in Thailand, we were four and you would not believe, that all four of us plus our baggage can be pushed into one car. Tipping is generally not required, but anything from 20 to 50 baht persuaded our taxi driver to take us all.

We went to Khao San.  If I remember well, we paid around 400 baht totally, but it was 9 years ago and we went from Don Muang. The price of taxi consists of metered taxi fare (this can vary depending on traffic at the time you go), plus 50 baht airport surcharge and you also have to pay any tolls which are two at a cost of 70 baht.

Our taxi driver made it in one hour.

Do not forget that getting from Airport to Bangkok is always cheaper then get back. For journey back I surely recommend the bus. If you have time, go by bus. For planning your journey, use web site of Bangkok Mass Transit Authority (BMTA). It serves information on bus routes in Bangkok and neighboring provinces. Total cost for this option is less than 70 baht. In our case, it was working very well.

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