On the radio this morning, I heard a news report about thirty foreign and Thai tourists who were robbed by their bus crew and then later abandoned by the side of the road. Apparently they were on their way from Krabi to Khao San Road in Bangkok when the bus stopped for a toilet break at a petrol station. When one of the passengers came back from the toilet he noticed the bus crew rifling their bags. He informed the other passengers and told them to check their bags. They then realized that some valuables had been stolen. The crew then abandoned them and ran off.
When I heard this, I thought that maybe the news team had played an old tape accidentally. Just a few months ago, in November, the exact same thing happened. This time they were going from Chiang Mai to Khao San Road. The passengers this time were sleeping. When they woke up, they discovered over 150,000 baht of valuables stolen. They confronted the bus crew who then abandoned them by the side of the road in Ayutthaya province.
This kind of thing is becoming so common here in Thailand. These two incidents were reported in the newspapers only because the passengers were abandoned and the tourists filed a police report. Over at www.BangkokScams.com we receive many reports of tourists being drugged or having their belongings stolen on long distance bus trips. However, some people don’t find out until much later when it s too late. Many of these robberies are connected to private companies operating out of Khao San Road. Our advice to you is NOT to book any bus tours on Khao San Road as we have received so many bad reports about many of them. But instead go to the appropriate bus terminals and book your tickets there. If you book on Khao San Road, make sure you use a company which other people have recommended and found to be reliable.
If you have witnessed a scam in Thailand, please report it at www.BangkokScams.com. By sharing your knowledge, we can help more people to be street savvy and to enjoy their holiday in Thailand.