Can You Take A Train From Bangkok To Chiang Mai?

Can You Take A Train From Bangkok To Chiang Mai?
January 27, 2019 Sandis Mukans
Can you take a train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai

When I told my wife that I want to take a night train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai, she wasn’t happy about the idea, but at the end, it turned out to be one of the best experiences that we had in Thailand.

So, can you take a train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai? Yes. 5 trains per day go from Bangkok to Chiang Mai and back. The newest and most comfortable is overnight sleeper train number 9 which leaves from Hua Lamphong Railway Station in Bangkok.

For us, the 2nd class sleeper train number 9 from Bangkok to Chiang Mai was something that we didn’t expect at all. I wanted to have that sleeper train experience no matter what, but my wife was worried about its safety and cleanliness.

It turned out that the train was very clean, and it felt like entirely new. The ride was quiet and smooth.

This article will be a complete review of train number 9 from Bankok to Chiang Mai.

For people traveling by train from Chiang Mai to Bangkok, this will be as a review of train number 10 because train number 10 from Chiang Mai is the same type of train as train number 9 from Bangkok.

How Much Does The Train From Bangkok To Chiang Mai Cost?

Train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai is not the cheapest and not the fastest way of getting there, but it is still worth it.

Compared to plane the train ticket will cost you about THB 300 (USD 9,50 or EUR 8,30) more, and it will take you about 10 hours longer to get to Chiang Mai.

How much is a first class train ticket from Bangkok to Chiang Mai?

First class train ticket from Bangkok to Chiang Mai costs THB 1 669 (USD 52,90 or EUR 46,40) per person.

First class on train number 9 means having a private compartment for two.

If you travel alone, you can book the whole compartment for yourself. Private compartment for one person on train number 9 costs THB 2453 (USD 77,71 or EUR 68,17).

How much is a second class train ticket from Bangkok to Chiang Mai?

Second class train ticket costs THB 1 132 (USD 35,89 or EUR 31,48) for adults and THB 1 001 (USD 31,72 or EUR 27,82) for children.

Note that upper beds are a little bit cheaper than lower. I guess it is because the upper bed is a little bit smaller and you have to climb.

This price difference can be seen if you buy tickets at the train station. Online I’ve seen only fixed prices for 1st and 2nd class train rides and with no options to choose the upper or lower bed.

Where To Book Train From Bangkok To Chiang Mai?

To book the train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai you can do it either online or at the Hua Lamphong railway station in Bangkok.

Where to buy Bangkok to Chiang Mai train tickets online

I am aware of two reliable options where to buy train tickets online:

  • State Railway of Thailand. Visit their website HERE
  • 12GO Asia. Visit their website HERE

I believe State Railway of Thailand website can be used by locals only. Because when my Airbnb host from Chiang Mai suggested me to use this website, I got stuck at checkout where they asked for some Thai ID number which of course didn’t have.

Nevertheless, the front page of State Railway of Thailand website is awesome, and you should check it out. You should be able to see the King of Thailand. If not, then they have changed something to the website.

12 GO Asia must be a popular choice among tourists. I’ve seen plenty of comments in forums such as TripAdvisor that refer to this platform as an option where to buy tickets for various transport in Thailand.

Note that they are an independent agency and to receive your train tickets you will have to visit their office that is located opposite Hua Lamphong railway station in Bangkok. Their website checkout process is easy and explanatory.

You should be aware that there are a lot of fake websites that offer train, bus and ferry tickets in Thailand. For example, if you will read TripAdvisor, you will see people warning you and sharing links to those fake websites.

Buying the tickets at the Hua Lamphong railway station in Bangkok

Bangkok train station Hua Lamphong

Purchasing train tickets at the train station is easy. Just head over to the ticketing booths (on the left in the picture above) and ask for the ticket. People selling tickets speak English quite good, and you should get your ticket in a few minutes.

Did you notice that everyone is standing up in the picture? It is because every round hour they play Thai National Anthem and everyone has to stand up. At first, it felt like some kind of a flashmob 🙂

What Are Opening Hours For Bangkok Train Station?

Bangkok’s Hua Lamphong train station is opened 24/7.

Ticketing booths where you can buy train tickets are opened daily from 6 AM to 20 PM.

I wouldn’t suggest you visiting Bangkok’s train station very late in the evening. But if you have to, be prepared to see people sleeping on the floors in the station or just outside it. I only can assume that those are homeless people and it feels very sad to be there at that time.

Train From Bangkok To Chiang Mai Schedule

Train No 9.

$52.90
  • 1st class sleeper train
  • Departure 18:10
  • Arrival 07:15

Train No 9.

$35.89
  • 2nd class sleeper train
  • Departure 18:10
  • Arrival 07:15

Train No 9.

$35.89
  • 2nd class Ladies Only
  • Departure 18:10
  • Arrival 07:15

 

To remind you the train number 9 is the newest train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai. Other trains are older and therefore less comfortable. If you are looking for something exotic, try the train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai that has no AC or windows 🙂

Other trains that go from Bangkok to Chiang Mai are trains with numbers 7, 109, 13 and 51.

Train No 7.

$24.77
  • 2nd class seats only
  • Departure 18:10
  • Arrival 19:30

Train No 109.

$28.11
  • 2nd class sleeper
  • Departure 13:45
  • Arrival 04:05

Train No 13.

$48.73
  • 1st class sleeper
  • Departure 19:35
  • Arrival 08:40

Train No 13.

$31.44
  • 2nd class sleeper
  • Departure 19:35
  • Arrival 08:40

Train No 51.

$29.78
  • 2nd class sleeper
  • Departure 22:00
  • Arrival 12:10

Train No 51.

$23.10
  • 2nd class sleeper (Fan)
  • Departure 22:00
  • Arrival 12:10

 

Train From BangkokTo Chiang Mai Review – 1st Class VS 2nd Class

To remind you I am writing about the train number 9 (Bangkok – Chiang Mai) and 10 (Chiang Mai – Bangkok).

The most significant difference between 1st and 2nd class is that the 1st class is a private cabin for two. Note that these trains have only 12 private first class cabins. It means that you have to book early. We tried to book the first class cabin two weeks before our planned trip to Chiang Mai, and it was too late.

In Thailand, you can book train tickets six months before the date of your planned trip.

The 1st class cabin has a Wi-Fi meanwhile 2nd class passengers can connect to Wi-Fi only in the restaurant. Another option to get Wi-Fi for 2nd class passengers is to ask someone to share their hotspot.

Our 2nd class neighbors were a young Thai couple who could speak English, and therefore it was easy to communicate and to connect to their phone.

Unlike in 2nd class, the 1st class cabin has a private sink and mirror. In 2nd class, there is a public sink which is okay if the train is not too crowded. Both 1st and 2nd class share the same toilets.

In our case, we had this train in low season, and half of the seats were empty.

And that is it! In both classes, there is air conditioning, comfortable seats and a little table next to the window.

overnight train from bangkok to chiang mai

Is there a toilet on the train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai?

Yes. There are shared toilets on the trains from Bangkok to Chiang Mai. In trains, number 9 and 10 toilets are very clean and comfortable. These toilets are for both 1st and 2nd class train passengers.

One silly thing is the tissues for hands. They are so thin that they melt and you have to patient to get them off of your hands.

How Long Is Train Ride From Bangkok To Chiang Mai?

Special Express train number 9 ride from Bangkok Hua Lamphong railway station to Chiang Mai railway station is 13 hours long.

The fastest train is train number 7. It takes 11 hours for this train to reach Chiang Mai.

Slowest is train number 51, and it takes 14 hours for it to get to Chiang Mai.

When we bought our tickets, we thought that these would be very long 13 hours in front of us, but we were mistaken.

The train left Bangkok’s station precisely at 18:10. For about half an hour we could still see something outside. When it got dark, we took some pictures and videos from the train. Later we went to the train restaurant to have dinner.

As you can see in the picture below the dinner set on the train costs THB 210 (USD 6,65 or EUR 5,83).

Train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai dinner

Bangkok to Chiang Mai by train

Bangkok to Chiang Mai train restaurant

Around at 21 PM, the attendant came to convert our seats to beds.

Everything was clean and nice, and we slept well. In the morning we woke up at 6 AM and it was only one hour left to reach Chiang Mai.

2nd class sleeper train from bangkok to chiang mai

Is Train From Bangkok To Chiang Mai Safe?

Yes. Trains number 9 and 10 from Bangkok to Chiang Mai and back are too expensive for the local people. Therefore people who choose these trains are either tourists or wealthier local people.

As I’ve already mentioned my wife wasn’t too excited about the night train idea, but after we did it, she admitted that it was a very nice experience.

No doubt that the first class cabin would let us feel even more secure. I mean our bags would be more secure, but also 2nd class was very okay — the bag with passports and money in it I had with me in the bed.

At Which Train Station Train From Bangkok To Chiang Mai Leaves?

Train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai leaves from Hua Lamphong railway station in Bangkok. Hua Lampong is the central railway station in Bangkok, and its address is Rama IV Road, Pathum Wan, Bangkok, 10330.

Hua Lamphong railway station in Bangkok

 

When traveling in Thailand, I recommend preparing the address of your destination also in the Thai language. That way it will be easier for taxi and tuk-tuk drivers to understand you. But in this case when heading to Bangkok train station say to your driver Hua Lampong station, and you will be okay.

Watch Out From The Train Ticket Scam In Bangkok

Bangkok’s train ticket scam usually takes place right in front of the entrance at Bangkok railway station. When you walk closer to the station, you will be approached by a man or a woman who will then ask for your destination and offer you to buy a ticket.

Don’t buy tickets from these people because most likely those tickets will be fake.

What you have to do is to go inside the station and look for ticketing booths. It is safe to buy tickets there.

Is There Luggage Storage At Bangkok Train Station?

The luggage storage is located inside the Hua Lamphong railway station on the left from the main entrance.

The storage luggage is opened from 4 AM to 23 PM daily.

The cost for luggage storage starts from THB 20 (USD 0,63 or EUR 0,56) to THB 80 (USD 2,53 or EUR 2,22) per day depending on the bag size. There is no hourly rate available, and you have to pay for the whole day no matter what.

To hand your luggage, you have to pay upfront. The guy will give you the receipt, and you will have to show him this receipt later on when you will want to collect your bag.

I am a little bit concerned about the safety of this place because when I returned to collect my bag, I could enter the luggage storage but there was no one inside. The guy returned after a couple of minutes, and I got my bag.

And one more thing about this particular luggage storage is that it might get quite full. In my case, it was almost full, and I had to look at my bag being pulled out of the pile of bags quite harsh.

Can You Smoke On Thai Trains?

No. It is forbidden to smoke in all trains in Thailand.

I researched this topic online, and several people in various forums report that after 10 PM the train restaurant kind of turns into a bar with people having drinks, smoking and just having fun.

We had dinner around at 8 PM, and we didn’t see anything like that. Maybe it was just a little bit too early for a party.

Related Questions

How far is Chiang Mai from Bangkok? Chiang Mai is 687 kilometers away from Bangkok. Two of the most popular ways getting there from Bangkok is either by plane or a train.

Fly or train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai? Both are good options. The plane will cost you about the same as the train but will save you 10 hours to get to Chiang Mai. While the train ticket will be more expensive, you won’t have to pay for the hotel.

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