Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport notebook

I was on the ground in Bangkok for just over 10 hours, more than ample time to get a visa, hop the new train into the center of town, stroll around a bit and get a delightful fix of Thai cuisine before heading back to catch my midnight flight back to Europe.

The airport recently celebrated it’s 4th birthday, and it’s a massive place. At 563,000 square meters (just over 6 million square feet), it’s the world’s third largest single-building airport terminal. Despite its size, it’s surprisingly quick and easy to get around.

A few items of note for day-trippers:
– Citizens of many countries don’t need visas, including the UK, USA and Australia. More visa info is here.
– For many others, Visa on Arrival is available. Here’s a list. You’ll need a passport-sized photo – if you don’t have one handy there are photo booths nearby where can get four pictures snapped and pick your favorite. 200 baht (about 5 EUR, 7 USD). If time is short there is a fast track line available (cost is 200 baht) and it does seem to save a considerable bit of time.

There’s a great new airport train, The Airport Link, which after numerous delays, finally began operating in August. The City Line runs every 15 minutes, serves eight stops and ends at the Phaya Thai station roughly 30 minutes away. The best part – there’s an introductory promotional fare of just 15 baht (USD 0.50/ Eur 0.36) through 1-Jan-2011. After that, fares will range from 15 to 45 Baht.

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