Should You Rent a Car in Bangkok?

Bangkok in Thailand is a wonderful place to visit for business or pleasure. There are so many things to see and do that it can be overwhelming. If you’re traveling there, one of the wisest things you can do is hire a rental car to get you around. This is easy because major airports usually offer car rental counters where you can easily book, pay for, and pick up a car.

Things You Should Remember

Car rental in Bangkok airport is exceptionally convenient and easy if you need to get around the city and environs. But there are also some key things that you need to remember when you rent a car in another country. Consider the following advice:

  1. Are You Allowed to Drive?

Even if you have a driver’s license in your own country, you might need some extra documentation to be allowed to drive in Thailand. Unless you have a Thai driver’s license you will need what is called an International Driver’s Permit – or IDP.

The IDP is not very expensive and you really should organize it before you leave your own country if you know ahead of time that you’ll be renting a car. This is a permit that essentially translates your official driving license and permits you to drive in another country.

The last thing you want is to arrive at the airport car rental counter and find that you’re asked to present an IDP when you have not organized one. It’s easy enough to arrange and not particularly pricey.

not particularly pricey.

  1. Know What You’re Doing and Be Comfortable

No matter how much driving experience you have in your own country, you have to be aware that the driving rules and conditions are different in other countries and cities. Bangkok is a busy city with many people. There are many pedestrians and others who are on the road.

For many people coming from other countries, the road rules in Bangkok can seem a little chaotic. There may also be hills, paved streets, narrow roads, and winding roads to navigate. You must make sure that before you even rent a car that you are comfortable driving under these potentially more stressful conditions.

The other thing you need to think about is the car itself. For example, many cars are manual transmissions, but if you only have experience in an automatic, you will need to either get used to a manual transmission or pay extra for an automatic car. The last thing you want is to have to deal with foreign road rules and stressful driving conditions when you are also unfamiliar with the way the car drives.

Lastly, also ensure that the car you’re going to rent is physically comfortable for you and your passengers. Driving in comfort will also reduce other stress factors and their effect on you as a driver.


Renting a car is as easy as reserving one ahead of time and then going to the car rental counter at the airport. However, it’s also wise to bear in mind some of the limitations and potential issues and problems that you might also be facing.