In our efforts to help you keep your style here in the land of smiles, we offer up these kernels of hassle saving taxi tips, and some more language bits to help you on your way to complete mastery of the Thai vernacular.

In Phuket it’s pretty easy to negotiate you way round in taxis as when it comes to fares there isn’t to much negotiating to be done; you’ll notice all the taxis are on the same team and will stick gun ho to whatever price is first quoted.

However if your travels should take you up to the big smoke that is Bangkok, than there you will find quite a different set of rules. By law all cabs have to use the meter, though as you can easily be mistaken for a walking cash point do not be surprised if the taxi driver tries to charge you a flat rate. These price rarely reflect the actual cost of a metered journey. Around heavily Farang infested sites it might take a few tries to get a taxi driver that will use his meter and is just happy for the fare. Avoid older or beat up looking hacks and make sure that the meter has been push as in the jubilant joy of picking up Farang, this can sometimes be overlooked. Generally speaking most cabbies are happy to practise their limited English with passengers and will always know the best place to go for those three basic Farang food groups Massages, Shopping and Bars.

Tuk Tuks are certainly the quintessential Thai experience, but command the respect of a their own article (stay tuned for upcoming article “Tuk tuk and away”} as there are a total different set of rules and attitudes these fun little buzz boxes operate by.

Following is some easy to use Taxi Thai {we of course assume that you have already communicated where it is you are going or at the very least completely confused the issue.}

I would like you to use the meter                              Me-ter

This is pronounced with a drawn out stress on both syllables as you gesticulate your hand, open and palm up at the meter.

Left                      Leo Sai  {this one is easy to remember cause it sounds like left side….kind of.}

Right                   Leo kwah {this one is easy to  remember cause it doesn’t sounds like left side.}

Go straight.                  Drong By

Remember to always add Krup for the guys Ka for the ladies at the end of each sentence as it is polite. Remember being happy and polite goes along way here. If you forget your manner when speaking with your taxi driver, it will generally be you that will go a lot further.