The train links in Thailand are fantastic; spanning the length and breadth of the country from Chiang Mai in the North, all the way into Malaysia in the South or into Laos in the East. One of the great things about traveling in Thailand by sleeper train is that it offers an economical way to get around the country, as well as saving you the price of a hotel! I traveled in Thailand by sleeper train a number of times when I lived in and absolutely loved it! The first time we traveled this way, we were in second class and it was a great way of meeting the locals as well as other travelers. The seats face each other in groups of 4 during the day and in the evenings they convert into (rather cozy) bunk beds. Each bed has a curtain for privacy when you’re asleep and need it if you need to get changed. Most trains also provide a blanket and small pillow to keep you warm and comfy.
The second time I traveled in Thailand by sleeper train, I was in first class and this included a private cabin for 2 people with a washbasin. Some of the cabins next to each other have an adjoining door which is great if you’re traveling on a Thailand trip with friends or as a family (though you’ll need to request this when you’re booking your tickets). The beds in the cabins follow the same principle as the ones in a second class where the seats get changed into bunks in the evening by the guard.
There’s also a buffet car on board, so if you start to get peckish you can tuck into a meal or a few drinks at the bar and maybe get chatting to some new friends. You might also notice that during the train’s stops, local food vendors hop on board with more traditional snacks on offer.
Though a lot of people worry about this, sleeping wasn’t a problem for me at all whilst I was on board. In fact, I found it very easy to be swayed to sleep and actually found it quite comfy, and although the train does stop every so often during the night, you probably won’t even notice.
For shorter day time journeys you have the choice of 1st, 2nd, or 3rd class travel, depending on the route and type of train used. The third class is the most basic form of transport but can be quite fun, and as a foreigner, you will definitely be the center of attention during your Thailand travels!