This is an account from one of our community members. I have been to Thailand myself a couple of times and I believe it is one of the top holiday destinations globally when one considers value for money and the exceptional quality of service. This is a three part series of her trip.
Asia is my favourite continent. It is an amazing continent. Full of adventure, culture and style. How did our adventure begin? The plan was to go to Seychelles in November. My travel partners (made of a group of about seven to eight people) and I had spent about four to six months planning an amazing vacation, checking out rental apartments, things to do, islands to visit and so on.
photo credit: Reddit
About three months to the agreed time for the proposed trip, the cost for the Seychelles holiday trip was way above budget, partly due to cancellations from people. Therefore while surfing through various travel sites (which I do often), I thought why not Thailand? It just seemed so adventurous and affordable (it was really affordable). So I called two of my friends that had not backed out and asked if changing our itinerary to Thailand was ok and they were excited. One of the two people finally backed out but my eventual travel paddy was still in the game and that was all I needed.
The planning began (the planning is such an exciting phase for me), we planned everything to the very last detail. After weeks of researching, we considered our available leave days and the cheapest return ticket. We finally decided on ten days to visit three amazing cities in Thailand.
We picked these three cities (Chiang Mai, Pattaya and Bangkok) because they offered different things. Chiang Mai was our first destination; it offered traditional and cultural Thai scenery. Pattaya was all beach and chilling then finally Bangkok, the city life filled with shopping, spa, nightlife and eating.
Thailand is not a very expensive place to visit being that it is far from Nigeria. It was such an amazing trip. I had saved a minimum of N30, 000 to N40, 000 a month to afford the trip, which came to about N500, 000 (we could have done with less). We bought our tickets on “Travelstart” for N165, 000 from Abuja to Bangkok on Egypt Air (I would however encourage purchasing tickets directly from the airline, as it’s easier to make changes to your trip. Except of course you get a better deal somewhere else. I only use ticket agency sites to compare prices).
photo credit: Busbud.com
We each budgeted a minimum of N5,000 a night, which got us rooms at amazing 4 star hotels, giving a total of N50,000 each for 10 days (did I mention that Thailand is very affordable). We kept aside another N30, 000 for tours and adventure, N25, 000 for our return ticket and transportation within the three cities and N5, 000 per day for feeding (total of N50, 000 each), N50, 000 for other expenses such as cab, train, beach chairs, food market, and so on with a final budget of N100, 000 for shopping (it was more than enough, they have so many quality items and at very affordable prices). We each ended up spending a total of about N450,000 on the entire vacation (kindly note dollar was N195). If we really wanted, we could have spent less by staying at three star hotels, doing less tours and less shopping.
Phase One: Travelling from Abuja to Bangkok
photo credit: Landt
I was super excited and so was my friend. We got to the airport and it was as if the Nigerian immigration officers were sent to dampen our joy (mchewwwwwwww). Due to a lot of drug trafficking that happens in Thailand it was like a red flag saying we were going to Thailand. We also had to show we had enough cash (dollars) for our trip and that we were honestly just going for a nice vacation. We finally boarded and the flight to Egypt (transit) was smooth, but there was no entertainment. Our flight from Egypt to Bangkok was so amazing, not necessarily because the flight was smooth, or that the food and in-flight entertainment were good, but because the flight was not full (I am sure some of you understand the feeling). I guess that was the advantage of travelling to Thailand on a weekday in November. We just took a full four seat row and felt at home. Talk about feeling like a first class flier on an economy budget.
photo credit: laviniaplonka.com
The next two phases of her travels will be posted.
To read up on more of her travels, you can visit her page