Thursday, December 22, 2011
THAILAND: PANTHIP and The Tuktuk Ride
On day 2 of Bangkok, woke up at around 10 am. Inside the dorm type bedroom, I met two other tourists, one was Mo from Trinidad and Tobago and Tom, from the UK. We talked what were their plans. Mo was tired and Tom told me he wanted to go to Panthip City to look for electronics. It is Bangkok's biggest mall for electronics. Since I had no itinerary yet I went with him. We just walked from the guest house to the Mall simply following the map David, owner of the guest house, gave us. It was almost 30 minutes of walking under the scorching heat of the sun.
In a PC Shop in Panthip w/ the owner. (forgot his name) .Tom bought a card reader while I bought a media player.
After strolling in the Mall for about three hours, we took our lunch in the Food Center. It was about 3 Pm when we decided to go back to the Guest house. We planned to watch a Muay Thai Fight that evening. When we were about to get out from the Mall, a Tuktuk driver approached us and asked where we were heading. We told him we were going to buy some clothes in another shopping mall known for cheap prices, I forgot the name and we negotiated how much was his charge. He settled for only 50 baht. 'Twas fine since it was far and traffic was terribly busy. Tuktuk is the best mode of transportation in Bangkok during rush hours. It can navigate even on narrow roads. Just don't mind the fumes coming out from the cars and other vehicles.
THE TUKTUK DRIVER'S SIDELINE-COMMISSION SCHEME OF HELPING TOURISTS
While we were cruising the narrow roads of Bangkok, we wondered why the Tuktuk driver stopped. We got down and checked out; is was a TAILOR. Since the driver got inside, we got in also. They were talking in Thai, and the Indian owner approached us. He spoke to us in English and asked what we wanted. Since we saw beautiful suits displayed in his shop we just pretended to be interested. But upon asking how much was the cost of the suit : pants, jacket, tie and vest- it was only 5000 baht. I was amazed with the price and the quality so I told him to get my measurements.( Back in Cebu or Bohol the price is more than 15k. ) I asked him how long will it take and he said they will deliver it to our guest house in the evening. Tom also ordered one when he learned it was cheap. Although it was never in my plan and budget, I was glad they accepted credit cards. When they finished getting our measurements we left , rode back the TUKTUK and straight to the guest house. Later we realized that these DRIVERS were really trained to help tourists and bring them to any store that you want and in return they get incentives/commissions for bringing in customers.
The pants and jacket I ordered from BIONDI TAILOR w/o the vest when I left BKK Airport for Vietnam.