Travelling by train in Thailand is not only one of the cheapest ways, but also one of the most enjoyable. The railways network is rather dense and extends over 4000 km and it links the main tourist cities in the country. There are different types of trains with different comfort levels. There are 3rd and 4th class trains, rapid, fast trains, express and special express trains. They are available during day as well as during the night. Looking for the timetables? Just check here.
If you opted for night-time travel and you are looking for a sleeper, you must make a choice:
First Class or Second Class Sleeper Trains in Thailand?
Find below everything you need to know about the second class sleeper trains in Thailand:
Thailand plans to have two high-speed trains by 2018: Bangkok > Chiang Mai and Bangkok > Nong Khai. There are still a few years to wait though.
Second class trains are highly popular among foreign tourists and even among Thai people. Being roughly 30% or 40% cheaper than the first class trains, we can understand why their popularity.
What about the 2nd class sleeper cars?
There are two types of 2nd class sleeper cars – air-conditioned and fan-cooled.
In the air-conditioned cars there is a central aisle with the following on each side:
- Either 2 opposite seats that will convert to 2 berths at night, 40 seats/car
- Either 4 opposite seats, thus 4 berths, 34 seats/car
The exceptions are the trains No. 13 and 14, on the Bangkok – Chiang Mai route, that also have sleeper cars with a side aisle and 4 opposite seats that convert to berths – 2 lower berths and 2 upper berths.
In the fan-cooled sleepers you will only find the 2 opposite seats system, thus 2 berths, 32 seats/car.
- Second class berths come with individual curtains that will protect your privacy.
- The bottom berths are larger and the main advantage is that the air con will not blow straight into your face. The upper-berths, smaller, are a bit cheaper.
- When the time comes, a steward or a hostess will prepare your berth (sheet, pillow, blanket and curtain).
- You can get breakfast and a meal in second class sleeper trains. For breakfast, you can have Thai or western food which you can eat simply in your sleeper compartment or at the restaurant-car (where you have a wider choice in the menu).
- The restaurant-car, very friendly, is a place where you can meet people and have a good time during your travel. At both ends of each car you will find a toilet and a washbasin.