Booking transport in South East Asia

Booking transport in South East Asia

Sharing is caring!

If you are planning a trip to South East Asia then if you are anything like me your first step is to work out how you are going to travel from place to place. Luckily South East Asia, especially Thailand has some well-trodden backpacking routs. What this means is there it’s pretty straightforward when you want to travel around.

When I backpacked Thailand a few years back the only way to book your transport was in person at a travel agent or at the station. This made things a little bit more complicated as there were language issues, plus it was normally a cash-only affair. But for me, the biggest issue was when things go wrong… and let’s face it they oftern do!

I had a few hiccups when backpacking Thailand probably the worst one was when our transport just didn’t turn up one morning. Picture this is you will. It’s 5:30 am on New years day and I’m waiting outside my hotel for the driver to pick me up and take me to the ferry. This has all been booked, paid for and confirmed the day before. No driver. No phone number of someone to call and help me at 5:30 am and not a single taxi in sight. Well, it was new years day after al!

So What did I do? I walked for a very long time in what I hoped was the right direction until someone took pity on me and gave me a lift. Unfortunately, it was to the wrong port! Luckily for me, there were others in the same position and so one of the staff members took us all by minibus to the other port. I made the ferry by the skin of my teeth.

Things like this happened when backpacking, it goes with the territory. But luckily for you, things have moved on since my travel disasters in Thailand and you can now book all of your travel through third party companies like

What is was founded to provide a better and more efficient way of booking ground transportation when traveling. Traditionally you just went into a travel agent and paid the price they told you unless you had some good haggling skills and were able to talk down the price. You didn’t get to compare different busses, times or prices. But changed that.

It’s a search engine that allows you to compare buses, prices, times, basically everything so you can make an informed decision about how you want to travel from A to B.

Booking transport in South East Asia | Using

Pros and cons to using

Of course, with any third party booking site, there are some pros and cons you will need to weigh up. In my opinion, the pros outweigh the cons, but I wanted to lay them all out so you can make an informed decision when booking your transport in Thailand.

It is a third party and although there are no hidden costs with their prices may be a little more that you may be able to get if you go to a local travel agent and book directly. Although no one wants to pay extra for anything, this slight increase will give you a lot of great benefits. Also if you are a student you get a 10% discount anyway. For me, the biggest plus for using is that they have 24/7 support which means that if anything goes wrong there is always someone there who speaks English there to help you.

As well as the dedicated support team I love the fact that you can compare all of the buses and times yourself. I know this may seem like a small thing. But trust me it isn’t. When you are booking through an agent you have to rely on them to be trustworthy and that they are giving you the best advice possible, which unfortunately they don’t always do. With all of the information is there at your fingertips so you can make an informed decision without any stress.


As a quick roundup here are some more things I love about

  • 24/7 support
  • No hidden fees
  • Search and book 100% online
  • Hotel pickup for a small extra fee where available
  • Over 6.5k travel routes
  • There have service in 40 countries
  • 10% student discount
  • Pay by card
  • Great reviews (4.7 out of 5)

Search Bookaway now



Book your trip now

Are you ready to book your trip?  To help you get the best deals and service here are the companies that I personally use to book all of my travel online. I always shop around before booking anything, but these are my tried and tested starting places.

  • Skyscanner – I’m a bit fan of Skyscanner, it is who I use to book all of my flights. I often will check other like Google Flights or Momodo, but I always go here first and it is who I book 99% of my flights with. 
  • – I LOVE especially when I can book and cancel free up until a certain point, mostly because my plans are forever changing. It’s easy to use and has one of the widest selections. 
  • Airbnb – I’m not a huge user of Airbnb, but sometimes I do like to use it, and I ALWAYS check it before I book anything else. You can get some really cool places to stay here, and it is especially good in places like Cuba. If you don’t have an account and you click on this link then you will get $36 off your first booking.
  • Hostelworld – If you are looking for hostels then this is a great place to check first. They often have additional places that you won’t find on
  • Agoda – Although I don’t use it as much as, Agonda is especially good if you are traveling in Asia as they really do dominate there. 
  • Worldpackers – If you want to travel on the cheap and save money on accommodation then you need Worldpackers in your life. You can read more about it here. If you click this link to sign up and use the code CLAIRESITCHYFEET then you can get a 40% discount on your membership! 
  • Book a Way – If you are traveling in Asia and want to pre-book your transportation then is a fantastic site to do so. They have buses, trains, and cars.
  • RentalCars – Looking to rent a. car while you are away? I always book through Rental Cars as they do a search of all of the big sites and find the best deals. 
  • Welcome Pickups – Very occasionally getting from the airport to my accommodation is a total pain in the butt, or I’m traveling in a group and it makes sense to arrange a pickup. When I do I use Welcome pickups.
  • World Nomads – If you are looking for flexible travel insurance then it’s World Nomads all the way. I wrote all about insurance here if you want a more thorough review. 
  • SafetyWing – AsI’m a Digital Nomad and not moving around quite so much anymore I personally use SafetyWing now for my health insurance. I wrote a full review here
  • Viatour – Sometimes it can be a little expensive, but I like Viatour for somethings, especially if you can get a discount code! It’s also great for inspiration. 
  • Klook – If you are traveling in Asia, then Klook is great! You can book all kinds of tours, activities, and train tickets, plus they even have sim cards and WiFi.

Claire Summers

Dancer, producer, traveller, photographer, cake maker, dog lover and knitter of Christmas scarfs.

Leave a Reply