With a Train from Bangkok to Laos

Train in Thailand

One of the most comfortable ways of travelling from Thailand to Laos is by train. As we love train journeys, we looked forward to taking the train from Bangkok to Laos. We wanted to reach Vientiane, and there were a few different possibilities to do it, so we made a combination of several transports. Here is our experience.

Train from Bangkok to Nong Khai (at the border with Laos)

Train in Thailand

It is possible to get all the necessary information and to buy train tickets in any of the train stations of Bangkok. We heard that it is also possible to book the tickets online, but we didn’t try it. We went to one of the train stations of Bangkok and managed to buy a ticket to travel to Nong Khai immediately the next day, even though we were in high season. Staff was very welcoming and professional and warned us that the train would leave from Krung Thep train station, the new station in Bangkok.

The train had several carriages and was far from being full. At the station, we were shown the schedules of different trains and its correspondent prices. Staff were all very friendly and very competent. The two trains that interested us the most were the following two:

  • Train 25 – leaves Bangkok everyday at 20h25 and arrives in Nong Khai at 06h30 (10 hour journey)
  • Train 75 –  leaves Bangkok everyday at 08h45 and arrives in Nong Khai at 17h30 (9 hour journey)

Train 75

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Train 75 is an old train, which offers second and third class tickets. We bought third class tickets, which cost us 250 baht/person, specially because we did not want air-conditioning, which was the selling point of second class. After having made a short visit to second class, we think we made a mistake. Second class was not only about A/C, the seats there were much more comfortable than seats in third-class! This would have been reason enough to make an upgrade, as plastic seats for nine hours were a bit too hard!

Train in Thailand

Even though we did not take Train #25 – the night train with the sleeper berths (departure at 20:25) – we think that if we had to do this journey again that’s what we would do. The price per ticket was only 1000 baht, and the landscape really wasn’t that beautiful that one absolutely wanted not to miss it.

Besides that, as we took train 75, and the windows of the carriages were open all the time, we got the smell of smoke and ashes coming inside the carriage. The slash and burn method of clearing fields is unfortunately still widely used. It is also partly for that reason that many people use their face masks, by the way. Something we noticed early on during our first visits in the region.

Train in Thailand

 What we did like about the journey with train #75 was that at a point, the ticket controller passed-by asking passengers if anyone wanted to order lunch. We could choose between two or three different dishes, and got our meals delivered in the train at a certain train station.

Enjoy the ride!

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