Southeast Asia Trip in August: Change of Plans!

Ok, scratch the whole idea from the last post. I have changed the plan completely for a few reasons.

1) There are a lot of buses that go from Bangkok to Cambodia… but not too many vice versa. At least, from what I can see. Which means, there are no reliable companies that actually do buses across the border unlike going to Vietnam.

Therefore, it would be best to fly to Bangkok from Phnom Penh using AirAsia. It is, afterall, the cheapest. If we fly mid-August, the cheapest rate we can get is $94 incld. all fees and taxes.

2) I wanted to save money but I also need to weigh out the pros and cons. Is spending less money really worth wasting the time, and being uncomfortable, etc. For me, this was an easy thing to decide because.. first of all, I’m leaving Cambodia soon.. meaning I want to spend as much time as I can with both family and friends. When it gets to near the end of August, time is too valuable to waste! Second, I have a back problem. If I sit for too long and overwork myself, I’ll most likely end up in the hospital and physical therapy again.. so it’s not worth it!

3) I wanted to see A LOT of places.. but regarding the number of days I have, trying to fit in 4 locations won’t let me enjoy each places to the fullest. Instead, we will be tired and exhausted and won’t be able to appreciate anywhere! So I’ve decided to cut it down to two places.

We will go from:

  • Phnom Penh to Bangkok (Flight)
  • Bangkok to Siem Reap (Train, Tuk Tuk, Cab): This is based on info from a friend I met here who traveled through this route. The border is sketchy, but I think it’s part of the experience!
  • Siem Reap to Phnom Penh (Bus)

For Flight, we are using AirAsia.

For Train,  Is it not awesome that the train is 5 hours and it cost only $1.50?!

From the train we will take the Tuk Tuk across the border and then take a cab to Siem Reap (Around $10 – $15)

Any suggestions? Question? Tips? Let me know!!

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3 thoughts on “Southeast Asia Trip in August: Change of Plans!

  1. Hey.
    Maybe it’s too late and you have booked your tickets but getting from Siem Reap to BKK is super easy. Pretty much every hostel or guest house offer transport to BKK as well as other destinations. You pay them but it all goes through another company (just like everything else in SE Asia). I booked at 9pm and left the following morning, it takes a full day but costs only $8 USD. So super cheap. Great way to meet people too.

    But let me warn you, it’s not a simple trip, just like I explained in my blog (www.thekidtravels.com) you have to change vehicles many times and sometimes you have to be a bit pushy to get to the right city onetime.

    All said and done though, transport is only for getting to a new destination and the place you are going to or from is the most important and I loved Cambodia. You should visit a school whilst you are there. Again check out my blog for that story.

    Plains may be faster but even cheap flights cost 10 times more than local transport. And the environmental cost is a no brainer. I little extra frustration for the individual but at a great saving for the planet. Also give money to the locals not to some huge international airline.

    That’s just my thoughts.

    Thanks for traveling.

    The Kid.

    • Thank you so much for the tip!
      Yea, I hear going across the border is a bit hectic. I actually haven’t bought my ticket yet so I’m thinking maybe I’ll do the original route. The flights are quite expensive too :S
      I did read about it on your blog — which was awesome! And the primary school visit too.. :)

      $8 is a lot cheaper than what most websites have told me.
      How many hours did it take in total to get from Siem Reap to BKK?

      And I hear you can get free 15 day transit visa for free for Thailand.. is that true?

  2. The visa is dependant on passport. But yes I got 15 day, if you fly you usually get 30days.

    I set off at 8am and arrived to BKK at about 8pm, they say it is a lot quicker but there is a lot of changing of busses and waiting in cafes, which they don’t tell you about. On my trip they had too many people so wanted two of us to travel to a different city and then on to BKK, they say it’s close but it never is. If anything like this happens just be tough and refuse, but you bag in the correct minibus and get in, everything always works out.

    Yes $8 is what I payed but I didn’t need a visa payed visa so if you do then it will cost more.

    Here is a thought. Doing it this way is not simple, nor easy but it is exciting, frustrating and at times risky. But it makes for a great experience and an awesome story. For me this is what travelling is about, if you want comfort then don’t do this trip. Oh and if anyone says you can go on a VIP bus say no and take the cheaper option. Everyone ends up on the same bus doing the same journey. Expect the worst bus you can imagin and be surprised when you get a good one.

    Happy travels and I look forward to reading about your travels.

    The Kid.

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