A man who hired a taxi to drive him from Pattaya to Bangkok was robbed of his luggage on Wednesday night. In his bag he had money, credit cards and other valuable items as well as clothing and sundries. The taxi driver stopped at a PTT service station to get gasoline and the man went to the toilet leaving his bag inside the car. When he returned the driver had gone. The victim was able to contact Chonburi police to make a complaint, however he could not ID the driver.
While such events are rare in Pattaya it pays to use common sense. If you are travelling alone in a taxi, take a photo on your phone of the drivers ID or licence plate. And of course don’t leave valuable items unsupervised. If you are looking for a taxi service we have previously used Nam taxi (http://www.namstaxipattaya.com) to travel between Pattaya and Bangkok but we are not associated with this service. If you do use a private car service be aware that not all operators will have the correct insurance in the event that you are injured in an accident, and some travel insurance will not cover you for travel in a vehicle that is not correctly licenced to carry paying passengers. In this case, the Yellow Pattaya and Bangkok taxis are the safest option, as they are legally required to have insurance and also the driver has to have his photo ID displayed in the car.
It is highly recommended NOT to travel by van. The van drivers are notorious for dangerous driving, speeding at up to 160km/h on the highway and changing lanes rapidly without indicating. Taxi and private car drivers may do this also, but if you are the only passenger you have more leverage over the driver compared to a van where there are many passengers so you cannot threaten to just get out.
Both the government bus, and Bell bus from Bangkok/Suvarnabhumi are reliable and generally considered safe, however beware that drivers work long hours and can frequently be seen napping between departures. This could easily contribute to an accident.