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  1. #1
    Resident Laconic bristolgeoff's Avatar
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    going back to chiang mai feb 2nd,the train was late.it was also 4 hrs late getting into chiang mai.they kicked us out of bed at 8.am so they could sit and watch the trees go by.i said it is late anyway but still wanted you on the seats and the not bed.they laughed at my reasons but i had to get out of the bed.4 hrs later they thought reasons were good but stilled laughed at the farlang who wanted to stay in bed longer,and thought maybe i was right for not hurrying in letting the bed go back to the ceiling.thai reasoning makes me laugh sometimes

  2. #2
    Forum Antiquity ของโบราณ Linne's Avatar
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    just lie on it, the top beds are difficult to evict

  3. #3
    Old Hand มือเก่า DavidJohn's Avatar
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    What a great trip travelling on the overnight train from BKK to Chiang Mai is!!
    I was on my first visit to Thailand and was travelling with 9 Thai students from univerity, 5 female and 4 male + me. Vendors came on the train at various points with hot food and snacks which made the British Rail turned up sandwiches usually served on the platform in Britain look rather limp. Then a young girl came on and commenced to massage my shoulders, paid for I found out by my companions without informing me!
    Sleeping arrrangements were comfortable and the role and sound of wheels on track soon sent me off the the land of nod.
    Next morning washing in public and shaving my head caused some reaction, the boys got a bit uppity with me and the girls all wanted to stroke my chest hair!!
    Oh well those were the days before marriage.

  4. #4
    Furniture เฟอร์นิเจอร์ IanB's Avatar
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    Oh DavidJohn!

    I haven't heard the British Rail turned up sandwiches myth for so many years! Ignoring the fact that British Rail ceased to operate trains MANY years ago, I should also like to point out, as an example, that last Saturday I traveled first class on the Wrexham and Shropshire Railway for £55 one way from Shrewsbury to London. Included in the price was a very decent meal - bacon colcannon followed by caramel apple crumble. Yum!

    Decent food is available on more trains in the UK than almost any other country. And the sandwiches are on a par with Marks and Spencer or other high quality purveyors!

  5. #5
    Furniture เฟอร์นิเจอร์ IanB's Avatar
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    Bristol Geoff,

    I am sorry you had a bad experience on the Thai Railways. It is normal practice on sleeper trains the world over to convert sleepers to seating early in the morning. This is what most passengers want. It also allows the staff to prepare the train in advance for a quick turn around.

    However, it is disappointing if the staff were rude. SRT is a well run business, but some of the staff on sleepers are sub contractors. It would have been worth having a word with the guard or the station manager at Chiang Mai.

  6. #6
    Premium Member KhunIanB-UK's Avatar
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    However, it is disappointing if the staff were rude. SRT is a well run business
    Agree with that, haven't done Chang Mai by train, but have done Udon Thani in first class sleeper and it is a memory I will treasure.

    Decent food is available on more trains in the UK than almost any other country. And the sandwiches are on a par with Marks and Spencer or other high quality purveyors!
    I would have said "edible", I am on the train this week and occasionally have the trolley up and down the corridor, loads of chocolate choice, but flat sandwiches. Unfortunately due to the cost of the fare I am left with no money to pay the sandwich fees I don't get quite such a bargain fare or the bacon colcannon followed by caramel apple crumble! I did a check as I can pay a lot more for my journey and to get the little luxuries on your route I would pay the normal 1st Class £133.50 single to Euston , do you get "employee" perks?

  7. #7
    Moderator Tobias's Avatar
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    Originally posted by IanB-UK:
    ... do you get "employee" perks?
    Yes, the edible food!
    Tobias - โทเบียส
    If you want to know where I am, follow me on my Thailand-UK Blog.

  8. #8
    Premium Member -Keith-'s Avatar
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    Overgound trains in this country are expensive, poorly run (when they run), have surly jobs worth staff, poor food and are often over-crowded. Pretty crap really
    If you're offended by any assistance I give, it says far more about you than it does me.

  9. #9
    Furniture เฟอร์นิเจอร์ IanB's Avatar
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    No employee perks as I don't work for a railway company! If you shop around, you can find the deals - but almost never at the time you need them!

    Keith, cancellations are very rare so "when they run" = >99% of the time! And I don't think the staff are surly at all.

    But I completely agree that trains in the UK are over priced and overcrowded. Of course, if you put the price down the crowding would get much worse, so not an easy one to solve.

    Generally, though, trains in the UK at the moment are reliable, clean, modern, safe, and comfortable - all things worth paying for.

  10. #10
    Premium Member KhunIanB-UK's Avatar
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    Damn, I was hoping on getting some pointers about how to get best fares. I think the whole ticketing procedure has got vastly complicated here now, find it much easier buying a train ticket in Thailand, I haven't found them to have little secrets like if you pay for the train after this one and return on the early evening one it will save you £ over the next day return early sleeper with your network over 25 and under 57 family saver card

    The trains do feel safer here and are now kept a lot cleaner than in the past, have to disagree about the reliable and comfortable aspects though. Tend to only take the train for work if I know the weather and traffic will be very bad or dangerous and there have been a couple of cancellations, many delays followed by waits outside stations to further the delays in the last 20 train journeys I have made. Yesterday the nice sunny day that it was the train was 25 minutes late getting into Reading I also find that the cattle class seats are very narrow, with arm rest down and someone sitting next to you, the spine sits at a twisted sideways curve, some of the seats are too close front to back to use a laptop properly, but I do like the inclusion of Power Sockets Got to remember to take in my mains powered back massager next trip

  11. #11
    Forum Antiquity ของโบราณ Linne's Avatar
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    Yes they are outsourcing rail jobs in thailand, the porters , restaurant car staff and carriage attendants, maybe the armed guards next. Have you tried the fast rail cars down south in late afternoon with FREE FOOD (you would not pay for it). Err a pretty lady friend of mine found most of it down her front(i guess its in flight catering)
    Truly wonderful never the less, despite the delays.

  12. #12
    Forum Regular สมาชิกประจำ
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    the overnight sleeper from BKK to Chaing Mai is a lovely way to get there . when we got on board at BKK we shuffled about worked out who was sleeping with who (kids in one and me and the missus in another or 1 adult i child in each, fortunately for me we choose the latter after having dinner in the buffet car the wife took the youngest and went to bed i stayed and got into the party atmosphere generated by several backpackers and some girls going back home for songkran i eventually found my cabin which was right adjacent to the loo, (thankyou lord) we were promptly awoke at 6 am with breakfast after we washed etc we went back to the cabin to find it all made up for sitting and nursing my hangover. do it again anytime

  13. #13
    Forum Regular สมาชิกประจำ chocolate-eater's Avatar
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    I think trains in the UK are not to bad. thetrainline.com has some deals if booked in advance. I came back from London Paddinton to Newport for £11.00 after my xmas trip to Thailand, and did Hereford to Heathrow by combination of train and bus going for £23.00 so very good value when fairs to London are usually £60 odd from here.

    I did the overnight sleeper to Koh Samui with the girlfriend and it was a good experience. However the recent train from Bangkok to Hua Hin was not so good (clean the windows might help in being able to see the beautiful countryside). This was 2nd or 3rd class (can't remember) and the worst thing was lack of luggage space which resulted in my girlfriends daughter sitting on her and the luggage having its own seat as it would just not fit anywhere and it was only 1 case. The memorable thing through was the trolley dolly - bloody hell talk about sexy!!!!! I paid for the 4 of us, me, girlfriend, daughter and her mum and it was cheaper coming back by taxi from Hua Hin - and no luggage trouble but the driver was no where on par with the trolley dolly.

    Derren

  14. #14
    Premium Member KhunIanB-UK's Avatar
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    Things that suprised me about the Bangkok - Udon train was that it was 19 carriages long, it was cheap and you could stand on the back of the train (similar to how US Presidents do when campaigning) watching the scenery disappear into the distance. We were told our carriage was the last one, so walked down the platform a fair distance, when the train pulled in we realised how far short of the end we were and walked carriage after carriage of the train, lots of characters on the way through and gave us a good insight into the different standards of travel.

  15. #15
    Furniture เฟอร์นิเจอร์ IanB's Avatar
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    Ian B-UK you have my sympathies! Reading is the worst bottleneck in the UK, and FGW is arguably the worst operator. Its going to get worse before it gets better as they soon start to totally rebuild the station layout.

    the whole ticketing procedure has got vastly complicated here now,
    Absolutely true - and if anything its worse since they simplified it last year!

    Ian

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