:: Hospitals in Bangkok #2

Pakkred Vejchakarn General Hospital
132/ 215 Chaeng Wattana Road.
Tel: 960-9655 to 9
Fax: 960-9666
Private hospital, English spoken.

Phayathai Hospital 1
364/1 Si Ayutthaya Road
Tel : 245-2620 -1, 245-9610 -9
Fax: 245-5488
Private hospital.

Phayathai Hospital 2
943 Phahonyothin Road.
Tel: 270-0780, 270-1830
Private hospital.

Police Hospital
Rama I Road.
Tel: 252-8111 to 25
Modern government hospital.

Rajavithi General Hospital
Rajavithi Road.
Tel: 281-1246
Fax: 246-8270
Government hospital.

Ramkhamhaeng Hospital
2138 Soi 34, Ramkhamhaeng Road.
Tel 374-0200 to 16
Fax: 732-3977
Private hospital.

Saint Louis Hospital
215 Sathorn Tai Road.
Tel: 675-5000
Fax: 675-5200
Oldest private hospital in Thailand, English spoken.

Samitivej Hospital
133 Soi 49,
Sukhumvit Road.
Tel 392-0011 -9
Fax: 391-1290


:: Transportation in Bangkok

Most Asian countries have problems in their big cities, like Bangkok, with over-population, traffic congestion and pollution.  There are several modes of transportation in Bangkok, with the automobile being the most popular.  Taxis, samlors (three-wheeled taxis), buses, and boats via the canal are other modes available in Bangkok.   Travelling outside Bangkok and Thailand is possible due to roads and railways that go from Bangkok to Malaysia, Laos and Kampuchea (Cambodia).  Bangkok's port, which manages most of the imports and exports in Thailand, is actually a channel that has been made from the mouth of the river located seventeen miles away. 

The bus can be an inexpensive, but crowded, way to get around Bangkok, but without a map it can be totally confusing.  The air-con bus is easily confused with the regular public bus and costs a bit more.  As the name implies, the air-con bus is cooler and generally isn't as crowded as its counterpart.

Before going anywhere, a price must be agreed upon for a taxi ride.   Taxis are plentiful, so bargaining for a good price is not too difficult.  Most taxis are air conditioned and for the most part the drivers can speak English.  A 7% government tax is part of the cost of taking a taxi and depending on when a taxi is needed, the fares will jump up either late at night or in heavy traffic.  Tipping is not customary when taking a taxi.  Additional passengers are not charged, neither is baggage.

The tuk-tuk, a three-wheeled small taxi, is easily distinguishable by its blue and yellow cab.  It is not recommended for long distances, as it will end up costing more than a regular taxi, but are good for short trips.  Agree upon a price beforehand, if possible, but most drivers don't speak English.  The average cost of taking a tuk-tuk is 20 baht.

Bicycle/Motorcycle Taxi
This way of getting around is best during traffic congestion, as it is small and easily navigated.  The downside is that only one passenger is allowed.  Negotiate a price beforehand, there is no set fee.

Thailand's railway is excellent in that it reaches most major cities in the country.  Air conditioning is available on the diesel trains for first class passengers; second class passengers get fans to move the air.  The most popular route travelled in Thailand is from Bangkok to Chiang Mai. 

Domestic flights are available to the major towns in Thailand, with ten flights available to Chiang Mai and Phuket daily.  The airport tax is about 20 baht on domestic flights.  Thai International's domestic flights are centred in Bangkok.  Most major international airlines fly into Bangkok, which is the centre for international discounted tickets.

Sky train
The Bangkok Mass Transit System (BTS) Sky Train has been built to solve Bangkok's traffic congestion problems. The system opened to the public in December 1999 and so far has proved very popular with Thais and visitors alike. Currently, the BTS system has two routes, the Sukhumvit Line and the Silom Line, with a total distance of approximately 23.5 k.m. It's possible to change lines at Siam Square.