Where to Stay in Thailand

Most Thai cities offer several kinds of short-term accommodations for budget travelers. Because traffic is so bad in Bangkok, it doesn’t make sense to sign a lease until you’ve determined where you’ll be working, so use short-term lodging until you’re ready to settle down.

Thai Hotels

Hotels in Thailand typically offer several classes of rooms. For about US$25-35, you’ll get a nice room with a double bed, but it will have neither a fan nor air conditioning, and no private bathroom. The more of these amenities you request, the more the room will cost. For a room with the works, expect to pay around US$50-65 per night.

Before paying for your room, ask to see it and make sure everything (fan, air conditioning, plumbing, etc.) works. Also, room rates are often negotiable and are commonly increased for foreigners, so unless prices are posted, don’t be shy about bargaining.

If you’re a male traveling alone, you’ll probably be asked whether you want to hire a female companion for the night.

Guest Houses

Guest houses are essentially private “mom and pop” hotels. They are common in Thailand, and are very popular among budget travelers.

There are dozens of guest houses in Bangkok, especially in the Banglamphu area and on Khao San Road near the Democracy Monument, as well as the Thewet and National Library areas. Rates vary widely depending on quality.

Again, ask to look at the room before you pay.

Youth Hostels

Thailand has youth hostels in the major cities.

Guests must be members of the Hostelling International to stay. It’s worth getting a membership.


The YMCA runs hotels in several Thai cities. They cost a bit more than youth hostels, and are more formal.

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