Thailand is a country known for its rich diversity of culture and tradition on one hand, along with varied preposition of flora and fauna on the other. This attracts travelers from around the globe to explore the country that is complimented with pleasant vibes of atmosphere throughout the year. For a commuter, it is important to get a reliable means of transportation to hop from one corner to the other. In this, the three-wheeler vehicle popularly known as tuk-tuks make the most preferred mode of commutation. They assure a fun-filled and adventurous ride across the streets. Here is everything you need to know about Tuk Tuks.
What is a Tuk-Tuk?
Tuk-tuk is a three-wheeler motorized vehicle commonly used as a taxi but without a meter. These are also known as sam lor, trishaw, moto-taxi and more. It is among the preferred means of getting around the different locations along with BTS, MRT and colorful taxis. Tuk-tuks originated from old traditional rickshaws during the second world war.
These three-wheelers modified rickshaw are popular in various parts of Thailand and some of the Southeast Asian countries. They are used for short distance commute as their speed limits to about 50 to 60 kilometers per hour. It is a rickshaw with a small engine responsible for its swift performance. The running mechanism is like a scooter-style two-stroke engine and makes a puttering noise while it is in motion. They can easily wave in and out of a jam.
One can find a variety of tuk-tuks in the country itself. Ko Si Chang a small island in Thailand is the home of large and powerful tuk-tuks, that primarily constitutes of a six-cylinder engine to move smoothly on the steep hills of the island. Whereas in Cambodia, these look like a motorbike meant to pull separate cabin-style trailer. In the Philippines, tuk-tuks are used as sidecar that can take seven passengers in a go.
Tuk-Tuks in Thailand offer more of leg room but less of head space in comparison to the other versions. They are open-air, three-wheeler carriages that are attached to a motorcycle chassis. Some drivers even provide a personalized touch of their creativity to these rickshaws for example the use of neon lights, bumpin speakers, colorful paints, stickers
Tuk-tuks in Thailand offer more of leg room but less of head space in comparison to the other versions. They are open-air, three-wheeler
Tuk-tuks in Thailand offer more of leg room but less of head space in comparison to the other versions. They are open-air, three-wheeler carriages that are attached to a motorcycle chassis. attached to a uk motorcycle chassis. and more.
Thailand has reported the registration to more than 20,000 tuk-tuks as taxis. In this, Bangkok alone has the registration to 9,000 tuk-tuks. These are also used to transport fresh produce or other goods around the city.
The modern tuk-tuks are environment friendly that run on 4 stroke using 250 cc LPG or CNG engines. These offer modern design assuring comfort of the passengers and additional space for baggage. Thailand manufactured tuk-tuks are exported to other parts of the world, reason being their popularity and convenience attracting the consumers worldwide.
How to book a Tuk-tuk ride?
Tuk-tuk is a tourist vehicle in Thailand. You will hardly find the local commuters on these three-wheeler rickshaws unless they have heavy packages with them. Thus, it is easy for a visitor to find a tuk-tuk. Drivers seek to grab out passenger’s attention, especially in tourist areas and will often honk or yell ‘hello’. You can find them grouped around popular tourist destinations. If you want to book one, you can out-stretch your arm in the air. The make and style of tuk-tuks make them one of its kind throughout the world. Tuk-tuks have covered seating area for the passengers at the back. They are colorful, open-air and provides a fun chaotic commute.
Important Points to Consider before going on a tuk-tuk ride
- In India many times you need to haggle with the auto-drivers for charging a reasonable amount. So, it is in Thailand, there are no meters in tuk-tuks, and you need to barter for your fare. The fares vary, depending on the distance, time of the day, traffic on the road, and mood of the driver.
- For example, a very short trip will cost you around 30 baht. You can book a trip for 4 kilometers or less at a cost of 60 baht. However, if you are travelling late at night the price will be around 150 baht for the same trip.
- It is suggested to settle on a fare before you aboard one or else the driver may ask you for a hefty amount at the destination. The negotiation and haggling are required because the drivers always ask for an inflated rate, especially when identifies that you are a tourist. A tip is to negotiate at-least 5-15 baht off the quoted amount.
- You can try and book a tuk-tuk at a cheaper price by talking to different drivers at the same time to create some competition among them.
- You need to be alert of scams as you may easily find a tuk-tuk charging you extremely low rate and later will take you to gem shops or tailors, where you will be pressurized to purchase one or the other thing. In turn, the drivers will receive paybacks in the form of a gas voucher or some money.
- These modified rickshaws are perfect for short trips. They will cost you almost the same or even cheaper than a cab for the same distance and will move a lot faster.
- Avoid taking a tuk-tuk in peak hours from 07:00-9:00, 16:00-19:00, reason being the traffic is usually heavy and these rickshaws get stuck for hours.
- Make use of GPS navigation system, in order to track your exact location from your destination and avoid getting ripped off, at an unknown location. Sometimes, the driver may lie to you about how far is your destination.
Tuk-tuks provide authentic travel experience and the best way to travel short distances. So, now when you have a good idea about the tuk-tuks making the most recognizable transportation features, running on the roads of Thailand. You can plan a trip and experience the tuk-tuk rides across the popular corner of the cities.