Bangkok

A lot of people ask me how much my flight and total cost to Thailand was. Let me break it down for you…

We booked our flights from the states about 6 months in advance. We decided to go during December after Christmas because it is high time in Thailand. Meaning weather is bearable and beautiful. Around 75-80 degrees Fahrenheit. Additionally, we had to use less vacation days since it was over a holiday so it seemed the most logical. Originally, when I started looking on Google flights, I was looking to fly out of Chicago, LAX and SFO. The cheapest option found was for $708 per person from San Francisco to Bangkok round trip. I found it in the $600’s but I waited a bit longer to book.

Cheap flights means longgggg overnight layovers though.

Below is a snap of the flight we took in United and Cathay Pacific. It didn’t allow us to book online so we ended up having to call United which was a pain. I think there was a glitch in the system with the Cathay Pacific segment because all of our friends were having issues too.

Where We Stayed

We decided to stay two nights total in Bangkok. One on the first night and one on the last night which worked out beautifully. See my posts on Phuket and Koh Samui to see the rest of our itinerary.

On the first night I used points at the Doubletree for 20,000 points. It had really nice amenities including a gym, rooftop pool and warm cookies upon check in. We were able to walk everywhere including the mall and Isao Sushi. I recommend getting there right when it opens at 5:30pm because there was a long wait when we got there a few minutes til.

On the last night, we stayed at my favorite of all time The Conrad for 27,000 Hilton points. In comparison to the States, that’s a pretty good deal. In a big city it can cost around 40,000 Hilton points or more for one free night. The Conrad has robes, fresh oranges and water upon check in. The pool was amazing

Rooftop Bars

I recommend seeing Sky Bar in Lebua at State Tower as seen in the Hangover 2. You don’t need reservations just to get drinks, but you do for dinner. There was quite the line when we went. The view makes it worth it to see all of Bangkok at night!

Other Costs

I pulled out a little over $300 aka 10,000 Baht. I used this money mainly for food and taxis. I’ve heard the cheapest way is to out of a ATM vs. a bank or exchange place. The exchange rate was only $9.41 plus $5 for my non bank fee.

I didn’t even spend all the $300 I pulled out! I spent $300 on other tours on my card +$708 flight + $200 for flights and ferry/bus ride to Koh Samui+ $300 cash everything was a little over $1,500. How crazy! For a two week vacation!? Now I know why people love Thailand so much.

Best Travel Credit Card for 2018

Previously I blogged about The Best Travel Credit Card aka the Southwest credit card. My mind has changed….big time. There are way more credit cards out there with more airlines options to redeem your points for. There are more credit cards out there were you can earn 3x restaurant purchases vs. 1:1 ratio on all purchases.

I recently got the Chase Sapphire Reserve credit card here. You can earn 50,000 bonus points for spending $4,000 on purchases in the first three months. You can use these points for any airline!!

Pros:

  1. $300 ANNUAL instant credit for travel purchases
  2. Lounge access!! To over 1k lounges around the globe. This is huge benefit for me as much as I’m at the airport and always early….
  3. Transfer points to travel partners such as Southwest, United, Marriott, The Ritz Carlton and more.
  4. Transfer points for gift cards
  5. Amazon.com shop with points
  6. 3 points for $1 on travel and dining
  7. $100 credit for TSA pre-check OR global entry
  8. No foreign transaction fees

Cons:

  1. $450 annual fee. You get charged with it right away.
  2. Spend $4,000 to get the bonus in the first 3 months. I was thinking about linking it to my venmo. My boyfriend learned the hard way that those purchases don’t count because it’s considered a cash advance. Luckily I got this before my Thailand trip so I plan to swipe everywhere since there is no foreign transaction fees.