A Horrible start for Day 1 in Thailand

A Horrible start for Day 1 in Thailand

My first overseas solo trip was not a smooth ride at all. It started with bumps all the way from Bangalore Airport. To start with, I booked my tickets for Krabi one month after I booked my round trip to Bangkok. So my flight schedule looked something like

Banglore -> Bangkok -> Krabi -> Bangkok -> Bangalore

The thought of staying in Bangkok for 7 days kind of bugged me which made me book tickets for Krabi as well, after I found a wonderful place to stay in Krabi. I booked the Krabi flight which departs 3 hours after I land in Bangkok. As an Indian passport Holder I need to take Visa on Arrival before I can catch my domestic flight to Krabi. Going by the info that I found on other blogs, the Visa on Arrival process does not take more than 30 mins. So I felt like I would get enough time for getting my Visa and then have a good Thai breakfast at the airport.

So all excited for my trip, I missed my lunch and reached the Bangalore Airport 5 hours before departure only to find out that my flight was delayed by an hour. That left me with 6 hrs at the airport. Still the idea of having some food did not strike me, thanks to my inexperience in traveling. I was already dreaming about my Thai breakfast.

Finally I boarded and reached Bangkok airport with a 1 hour delay. That left me with 2 hrs for my Visa procedure. Still all cool.

Only when I entered the Visa on Arrival section, did my jaw drop on seeing the long queue. I snatched a Visa application form lying at the desk and filled it all off in seconds, the queue had doubled by the time I finished filling. Then I stood in the queue and changed the time on my watch and phone to the local Time Zone. To add to my woes, there was only one person at the counter for checking the documents. I was pretty sure by that time I will be missing my flight as the queue was moving at a snails pace. I then thought of ditching Krabi and staying in Bangkok as I was on a tight budget and didn’t want to book another ticket for Krabi. Then 2 more officials joined the counter and I got my hopes up as the queue started moving quick. Got my Visa after 90 mins in the queue, that left me with 30 mins left for departure and 25 mins before the gate closes. Mission Krabi was still ON.

Then came the queue for immigration. That was a breeze as there were 5 counters for that. Ran to the carousel to get my baggage. 15 mins left.

Ran to the domestic terminal which is the adjacent building. Another F-ing queue at the counter, the longest one for the day, hopes down again. Showed my ticket to a trainee attendant who was quite helpful and let me ahead of the queue. Checked in my baggage. Time check – 5 mins for gates to close.

Another queue at the security check. Done with that, 0Β mins for gate closure. I still ran, hopes up for another flight delay. Gate no 78, the last gate at the farthest end of the terminal.

I Ran, my eyes searching for the number 78.

By the time I reached there, the gate doors where already closed, I ran and slid at the desk, the boarding pass slipped from hand and hit the attendants face. She looked at it and quickly opened the sliding doors and and pointed towards the bus. The bus with the passengers was still there outside, waiting for another bus at move forward. Mission Krabi was a success.

If you think that is where my misery ended, wait for it….

Finally relieved and tired, got into the bus. The next bump – Hunger. As you know, I did not have time for that Thai breakfast I was dreaming of. That never happened. I have never been more hungrier in my life.

As soon as we took off, I got some sort of sandwich and a bottle of water from the in-flight service. Gobbled it down. 30 mins into the flight, I felt an uneasiness in my tummy. Ran to the toilet and puked the whole thing out. Not sure if it was the sandwich or the water or if it was just part of my bad day.Β And no love lost with the airlines though, got a free upgrade for my flight from Krabi to Bangkok.

Landed in Krabi, still hungry. The driver was waiting there to pick me up. I didn’t want to eat anything funny from the airport anymore. So decided to hold it till I reached my resort. Another 1 hour drive, around 30+ kms from the airport.

The scenic drive along the way seemed to have made me feel better. The natural beauty of Krabi took my breath away. Finally checked in to the resort and gobbled a big juicy homemade chicken sandwich. Then I slept off and woke upto this view below.

This view was probably the best highlight of my day. Met some cool travelers, had a great communal dinner and made plans for kayaking the next day. Needless to say it was a perfect ending to a horrible day.

A lot of lessons learnt on Day 1Β of my first overseas solo trip. And I am glad it went horrible, so that I will be a better traveler on my next solo trip.

98 thoughts on “A Horrible start for Day 1 in Thailand

  1. Gkad you are safe on your Thailand trip. Am planning to go to Phuket and I pray that it will be smooth.

  2. Oh Gokul, what a nightmare!

    It looks like you got lucky in the end though, I can’t believe that you managed to catch your flight!

    Take care, and let us know how you got on kayaking!


  3. Hey im plannin on going to thailand in a month hopfuly i can grab some pointers from you, also starting a blog you think you would have some time to give me some pointers?

  4. That view is worth all the headache !! I would love to travel more. We all have days but honestly it wasn’t that bad as least it didn’t seem to be as I read it πŸ™‚

  5. That view is worth the horrible day! I hope you have a positive attitude because that’s the only way you will overcome any “bad days”

  6. The logistics part of getting to a specific location can be quite trying especially when it is more remote. Although Krabi is a very popular flying spot for Thailand so I can imagine there must be a lot of flights going there.

  7. Oh, long customs lines give me extreme anxiety, especially when connecting. And it drives me nuts to see that only one person is working. You’re lucky to have made the flight.

  8. Oh wow, that sounded stressful. Connecting flights are so hard to judge, using different airlines is cheaper but it can a pain when your original flight is delayed.

  9. Can’t believe you went through that! Sometimes things just don’t go the way we like. Keep up things will be fine! Thank god for views to remember you the positive moments!

  10. Thanks for your honesty, what a terrible trip but at least you woke up to that amazing view. I hope the rest of your trip was better!

  11. Gokul, what an adventure on your very first solo trip. I see from the photos that all is well that ends well and you are enjoying yourself πŸ™‚ Keep it up.

  12. Very very close call on your first solo trip! But the adventure was worth it in the end and a story to have for the future. Loving the photos πŸ™‚

  13. thanks for sharing your experience, its true that things don’t go perfect every single time, and every single thing that goes wrong can help us, we learn what to do and what not to do the next time.

  14. What an exciting story! The same thing happened to me while coming back to Sydney from Mumbai in India. Fortunately the flight literally waited 15 mins for me! and I didn’t miss it. Though I would say that the guys on the Mumbai airport were not at all helpful. I would never prefer that airport again.

  15. That was pretty close! All’s well that ends well, so you did not miss the flight and landed in Krabi. I am sure after this initial hiccup, you would have enjoyed your time in the beautiful island.

  16. Trust me, I traveled solo, small group, big group many many many many times and these kind of things still happen… I just broke my Leica in Thailand for some stupid accident and had to buy a new one… but somehow it would be the adventure for a story to tell and so …. finger crossed good luck to you.

  17. When everything ends well the hole mess leaves you with a good story! You’ll probably never forget this journey! πŸ™‚ You really earned that view and the white sand on the beach! πŸ˜‰

  18. Hi Gokul,

    Wow, crazy.

    I dig you have a good perspective on the situation.

    We arrived in Chiang Mai yesterday. Loving it so far. But we also got wicked sick last week in Myanmar. Me during a bus ride through the hills. Travel, right? πŸ˜‰


  19. Glad you made it! Travel will throw all sorts of hurdles at you, but your survived and that’s what counts! My first os trip I arrived with no luggages ans had packed my coat in my backpack! It was an interesting 24 hours of being woeful unprepared, but I survived and now will never do such a thing again! Safe travels!

  20. Never know what to expect when you are traveling! There are times that are harder than others, but these problems I would call first world problems πŸ˜‰

    1. Yea that can be true, but I am from India, not a first world but still it was my first time outside my country. So it was too much for me to handle.

  21. So you made it to Krabi! And by the pictures it seems all the rest was worth it. You will forget your misadventures in a couple of days, now enjoy Thailand!

  22. It all ended well, which is great. There are always small difficulties when travelling, but you just get used to it, small details that turn out Okay at the end, one way or another. This probably seemed to complicated because it was your first time going solo. It gets better in time, you’ll see! πŸ™‚

  23. Oh you were just unlucky. BTW, when you check-in and hand your bag, then you shouldn’t worry much. The plane won’t take off without you due to security reason. They will call your name for a while, then they need to get out your bag out of the plane ….. So you have sometimes

  24. Wow, how lucky that the bus was still there so you could make your flight! I am sure it was quite tense in the moment. Also I always travel with granola bars for delays like that, I’m sure you’ll pack a snack for next time.

  25. Dude, man, it’s like you were doing a lot and going through a lot. At least it ended well. the first time is always difficult. But when traveling locally coping mechanisms need to be built.

  26. Congratulations on your first solo trip! Glad that you finally made to Krabi with series of unfortunate events! The view of the sunset from the window is breathtaking. Finally, all your struggle didn’t go in vain for that million dollar view!

  27. For your first solo trip, you did awesome. You got where you needed to be and enjoyed yourself. Delays and travelers tummy happens to us all. At least you got to see some natural beauty in new part of the world. Well done.

  28. Congrats on getting there, despite the hiccups! Leaving enough time for unexpected things (like a massive visa line) is so important – at least you still made your flight πŸ™‚

  29. Sometimes things like this happen and you have to be prepared for them. Your story reminded me when the airline lost my luggage, I got denied boarding on my connection flight because the airline oversold it, I also got sick eating some airport food waiting 10 hours for the next available flight and when I finally arrived at the destination, the hotel couldn’t find my booking. The lesson I’ve learned is that is out of our control so we shouldn’t get angry about it.

  30. That’s ambitious for a first overseas solo trip. I put off Thailand for many years and although I fly there solo, I’m usually meeting locals. Be proud!

  31. Well Kudos to you for taking the big step and going for a solo trip. I for one am still to do one. What did you do for a SIM card at Thailand? Still trying to wrap my head around the concept of a Thai breakfast. What is it??

    1. I got DTAC SIM card form the airport. You can find many such SIM outlets there. Thai Breakfast is a concept I made up about an imaginary breakfast waiting for me at the airport which eventually did not happen.

  32. Oh No! This sounds like the worst! I can imagine myself in that situation and I would have been a mess! I’m glad it all worked out in the end and you pictures are incredible so really it was all worth it, right? ha

  33. Well that was close! I love to take my time and stroll around the airport, have some coffee or lunch and look at the people. This would be an absolute nightmare to me. But it has happened to me once and I hated every second of it. I also get very irritated when hungry. But I’m glad you made it to your flight though.

  34. Oh I am so sorry to hear about the terrible start. However, as I read through, I could see that things improved after you landed in Krabi. Glad it ended well for you. Am sure you felt so good at the end of it all.

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