"getting to/from Laos from/to Thailand" Laos Transportation Tip by seagypsy
Laos Transportation: 146 reviews and 157 photos
1. Yes, you can fly from Bangkok to Chiang RAI on budget airlines such as Thai Air Asia or perhaps Nok Air. Chiang Rai is only 2.5 hours from the Chiang Khong to Huay Xai border crossing but the bus from C. Rai drops you off in town so you'll still have to take a short tuk tuk ride several kilometers to the Thai immigration building, exit formalities, then catch a very short boat ride across to H. Xai where you can get the Lao visa upon arrival but BEST to pay in U$35 dollars because it costs more if you pay in Thai baht. there's a small exchange booth as well but only exchange a little bit because the rate is not that great. Also, you can get by with Thai bahts and U$ until you get into larger tourists centers but it's usually best to pay in local Lao kip.
PS--there's also a very long overnight VIP bus from Bangkok's Mochit Bus Station near Chatuchak Market (end of the Skytrain noth line and you'll have to transfer to a taxi for the bus station).
2. While Lao Airlines operates a Pakse-Bangkok flight, this last year quite a number of these flights got cancelled on short notice due to lack of passengers. Some passengers had to re-route from Ubon Ratchathani across the border in Thailand. There's an international bus that runs between Pakse's bus station and Ubon Ratchathani several times a day. Previously there used to be VIP bus service between the Chong Mek border all the way to Bangkok's Mochit
Station but I'm not positive now. There's certainly VIP overnight buses and the overnight sleeper compartment train to Bangkok's Hualamphong Station as well from Ubon Ratchathani. Also budget flights on Thai Air Asia between Ubon and BKK but best fares are booked well in advance via their website.
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