Bangkok Skytrain

The Bangkok skytrain, also known as the BTS, is a rapid transit system that serves the city of Bangkok, Thailand and is an extremely convenient and inexpensive method to get around the city of Bangkok.

It consists of two main lines, the Sukhumvit Line and the Silom Line, which run through the city center and connect to several major suburbs.

The BTS was opened in 1999 and since then has had several line extensions added, as part of the overall Bangkok transportation plan.

The Bangkok Skytrain is known for its fast and efficient service, as well as its clean and air-conditioned stations and trains. 

bangkok skytrain is the best way to get around Bangkok

Located above the street level as its name suggests it avoids all of the unpleasant traffic jams that Bangkok is renowned for and it is extremely reliable and relatively cheap.

The BTS started operation with two basic lines; one line going South East to North (Bearing to Mo Chit), called the Sukhumvit line and another line going from West to Central Bangkok (Wongwian Yai to National Stadium) called the Silom line.

Take a look at the Bangkok skytrain routes and fares for more detail of where the skytrain now goes.

Buy Bangkok Skytrain Tickets

Visitors to Bangkok have many attractions on their list of things to see and do.

Choosing a hotel near to the BTS is a very smart move as it allows you to traverse the city extremely easily and avoid the Bangkok traffic down below.

Bangkok skytrain map

Bangkok BTS Price

The BTS uses an electronic ticketing system and there are a few different types of tickets that are great bargains for the visitor or tourist.

Single Journey Card - 16 - 59 baht depending on distance

One Day Pass - This allows unlimited rides on the day of issue for 140 baht

BTS Skytrain SmartPass (Rabbit Card) - This allows Full-time Students and Thai Seniors to pre-purchase a set number of trips, to be used within a month.

Depending on how many trips you purchase at the one time, the cost per trip is ~25 - 40 baht.

Each of these tickets can be purchased at the ticket office located at each BTS station.

If you choose to purchase a single journey ticket, instead of the multi-trip tickets above, then the price ranges from 25 baht for one stop, up to a maximum of 59 baht, from the beginning of the line to the end of the line. 

Skytrain ticket machine takes 10 and 20 Baht coins

Purchase of single journey tickets is from the Ticket Issuing Machine (TIM), which takes 5 or 10 baht coins, or from the Integrated Ticketing Machine (ITM), which takes banknotes as well.

If you need change to operate the machines then you can go to the manned booth that dispenses change.

The Integrated Ticketing Machine is currently being installed in stations and so is not available everywhere.

The BTS operates from 06.00 am to 12.00 pm each day, so if you head on out, make sure you don't miss the last train home, othewise you may have to take a taxi.

The trains are very frequent so there is not really any need to consult a timetable.

Just go to the station and wait a few minutes, but if you do want that extra bit of detail about when trains first leave each station, then you can find the BTS timetable here at the Bangkok BTS website.

For those people coming to live in Bangkok for a longer period it might seem expensive to rent a condominium near to your office, but once you add in the additional travelling time and weekly BTS fare cost, you may decide differently.

Bangkok skytrain ticket machine

The other major public transport system in Bangkok is the underground train or MRT (Mass Rapid Transit). so make sure you check out this other public transport system before you arrive in Bangkok.

Each of the BTS stations have a number of retail outlets, so nothing surprising there.

Four Ways for Tourists to Use the BTS

The Bangkok skytrain is a convenient way for tourists to get around the city to do some sightseeing.

Here are a few ways tourists can use the skytrain:

  1. To explore the city: The BTS has two main lines that cover a large part of the city, including popular tourist destinations such as Siam Square, Sukhumvit, and Silom. You can use the skytrain to easily visit these areas and avoid traffic.

  2. To get to the airport: The BTS connects to the Suvarnabhumi Airport via the Airport Link, which is a fast and affordable way to get to the airport from the city centre.

  3. To connect to other modes of transportation: The BTS connects to the MRT (Bangkok's subway system) at several stations, making it easy to travel to other parts of the city. It also connects to several bus lines, allowing you to reach destinations that aren't directly served by the BTS.

  4. To save money: While taxis and tuk-tuks are a popular way to get around Bangkok, they can be expensive for tourists. The BTS is a more affordable option, especially if you purchase a multi-trip ticket or a stored-value card.

To use the BTS, you will need to purchase a ticket or a stored-value card at a ticket vending machine or a customer service center located on the station, just prior to entering the platform.

It's a good idea to familiarize yourself with the BTS route map before you travel to ensure that you are taking the most efficient route.

Currency Exchange Booth Locations

If you want to exchange foreign currency for travel purposes then head over to BTS Phrom Phong, which is located right at the Emporium Shopping Centre.

The Bangkok Skytrain operates from 06.00am to 12.00pm

On the Phrom Phong BTS station they have five currency exchange booths all located together and you can quickly walk between them and compare which will give you the best rate.

Of course if you are wanting to exchange foreign currency of $5,000 and up, you should go to Super Rich (Thailand) in Pratunam, because they will generally be 0.5 baht better on the currency exchange rate.

As an example, for $10,000 you will be 5000 baht better off by taking the time to wander down to Pratunam.

It is quite easy to get to, just take the Bangkok Skytrain to Siam Station and walk down to Pratunam, it is not far.

Currency exchange booth located at Phrom Phong BTS station

Many of the Bangkok skytrain stations have currency exchange booths on the premises and the exchange rates are better than you will get in a hotel or bank.

Whilst there is normally a requirement to have a valid ID, such as a passport, I have never been asked for this at one of these booths and the whole transaction can be conducted in a couple of minutes.

Siam City currency exchange booth located at Phrom Phong BTS station
UOB currency exchange booth
Superrich Thailand currency exchange booth

7 Hotels Near BTS Skytrain

Staying close to a BTS skytrain station can make your siteseeing forays much more pleasant and there are many hotels located near Bangkok BTS skytrain stations, which can be a convenient option for travellers who want to have easy access to the public transportation system. 

If you are looking for a nice hotel to stay in Bangkok that is close to the BTS, then these inexpensive Agoda hotels are located within 300 metres of Bangkok skytrain stations.

Here are seven hotels to consider for your trip planning:

  1. Novotel Bangkok Sukhumvit 20: This hotel is located just steps from the Asok BTS skytrain station and the Sukhumvit MRT subway station, making it an ideal base for exploring the city.

  2. The Sukhothai Bangkok: This luxury hotel is located near the Sala Daeng BTS skytrain station and offers easy access to the city's business district and popular tourist attractions.

  3. Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok: This hotel is located near the Chit Lom BTS skytrain station and offers easy access to the city's shopping and business districts.

  4. Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel: This luxury hotel is located near the Ratchadamri BTS skytrain station and is convenient for the city's shopping and business districts.

  5. Centara Grand Central World at BTS Siam: This luxury hotel is located near the Siam BTS skytrain station and offers easy access to the Central World shopping centre and entertainment options.

  6. Landmark Hotel at BTS Nana: This luxury hotel is located near the Nana BTS skytrain station and offers easy access to shopping, dining, and nightlife entertainment options.

  7. Emporium Suites at BTS Phrom Phong: This luxury hotel and long-stay apartment complex is located near the Phrom Phong BTS skytrain station and offers easy access to the Emporium shopping centre, local dining, and entertainment options as well as being adjacent to the Benjasiri Park.

It's a good idea to read the Agoda reviews, check the location map and compare prices before booking to ensure you select the best option.

Tourist Attractions Near BTS Stations

One large part of your Bangkok vacation is to plan your sightseeing activities and the BTS makes it really easy to navigate the Bangkok traffic. 

The free BTS travel planner link below can sort tourist attractions according to the following categories and provides instruction on which Bangkok skytrain service to take.

Bangkok Palaces

The Grand Palace

Station Saphan Taksin
Opening Hours : Daily from 08.30 hrs - 15.30 hrs.

How to Get There : Take the Silom Line and get off at Saphan Taksin Station (or S6 Station) and go out through Exit No. 2. Then, take the Chao Phraya Express Boat to Ta Chang Pier (No.9).

A 10 minute walk will bring you to the entrance gate of the Grand Palace.

Phaya Thai Royal Palace

Station Victory Monument
Opening Hours : Saturday only at 09.30 hrs and at 13.30 hrs

How to Get There : Take the Sukhumvit Line and get off at Victory Monument Station or N3 Station and go out through Exit No. 3.

Walk towards Rajavithee Road, then cross the street, past Wat Aphaitayaram to Phra Mongkutklao Hospital.

Bangkok Temples

Wat Pho

Station Saphan Taksin
Opening Hours : Daily from 08.00 - 18.00 hrs.

How to Get There : SkyTrain to Saphan Taksin Station S6. (Silom Line), Take Exit 2 and go to Chao Phraya River Express Boat Pier.Take boat heading to Tien Pier (N.8) and walk straight to WAT PHO

Wat Arun Ratcha Wararam Ratchaworamahawihan (WAT JANG)

Station Saphan Taksin
Opening Hours : Daily from 08.00 hrs. - 17.30 hrs.

How to Get There : SkyTrain to S6 Saphan Taksin Station (Silom Line). Leave via Exit 2 and take a Chao Phraya Express Boat to Tien Pier (N8) take a cross river ferry to Wat Arun.

Wat Phra Sri Rattana Satsadaram (Wat Phra Kaew)

Station Saphan Taksin
Opening Hours : Daily from 08.30 hrs. - 15.30 hrs.

How to Get There : SkyTrain to Saphan Taksin Station (S6) (Silom Line). Leave via exit 2 and take a Chao Phraya Express Boat to Chang Pier (N9).

Wat Pathumwanaram Ratchaworawihan

Station Siam
Opening Hours : Daily from 06.00 - 21.00 hrs.

How to Get There : Get off the SkyTrain at Siam Station and take Exit No.5, then walk through the street, heading to Central World.

The temple is located on the left hand side between Siam Paragon and Central World.

Bangkok Educational Interest

Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum, Bangkok

Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum in Bangkok is a popular attraction that features life-sized wax figures of famous celebrities, historical figures, and popular characters.

The museum is located at the Siam Discovery shopping center in the heart of the city and is open every day from 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. 

Admission to Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum in Bangkok is 900 baht for adults and 700 baht for children. Children under the age of 3 are admitted for free.

You can purchase tickets online or at the museum.

It's a good idea to book tickets in advance, especially during peak tourist season, as the museum can get very crowded.

Station Siam
Opening Hours : Daily from 10.00 hrs. - 21.00 hrs.

How to Get There : Get off at Siam Station (Interchange Station for both lines) and go out through Exit No. 1.

Walk to the 6th floor, Siam Discovery Center.

Bangkok Art and Culture Center (BACC)

The BACC has a number of galleries that showcase the work of both Thai and international artists.

There are also regularly scheduled talks, workshops, and other events that offer visitors the chance to learn more about art and culture.

In addition to the galleries, the BACC also has a theater, a library, and a restaurant.

The BACC is a popular destination for both tourists and locals, and it is a great place to learn about contemporary art and culture in Thailand.

Admission to the BACC is free, although some special exhibitions may have an admission fee.

Station National Stadium
Opening Hours : Tuesday - Sunday from 10.00 hrs.- 21.00 hrs.

How to Get There : SkyTrain to National Stadium Station and leave via exit No.3, then use Skybridge direct to Bangkok Art and Culture Center.

Erawan Museum

Station On Nut
Opening Hours : Daily from 08.00 hrs - 17.00 hrs.

How to Get There : Take the Sukhumvit Line and get off at On Nut Station (or E9 Station) and go out through Exit No. 3.

Then, take a taxi.

Science Centre for Education

The Science Centre for Education (SCE) has a number of interactive exhibits that cover a wide range of scientific topics, including physics, chemistry, biology, and more.

There are also special exhibits and activities for children, such as science experiments and hands-on workshops.

In addition to the exhibits, the SCE also has a planetarium, a theatre, and a library.

The SCE offers a variety of educational programs and events throughout the year, including science camps, workshops, and lectures.

You can purchase tickets at the museum or online. The SCE is a great destination for families and anyone interested in science and education.

Station Ekkamai
Opening Hours : Tuesday - Sunday 08.30 hrs -16.30 hrs.

How to Get There : Take the Sukhumvit Line and get off at Ekkamai Station and go out through Exit No.2.

Then, turn around and walk toward the Ekkamai Bus Terminal. Bangkok Planetarium will be on your left.

Bangkok Family Fun

Bangkok Shopping

Bangkok Parks

Bangkok Tours and Travels

If you are unsure about which train to take for your days' sightseeing, then this official BTS link will indicate which trains you need to take to go to the most frequently visited Bangkok tourist attractions.

Revised 17-Dec-2023

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