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Hire car Khao Lak to Krabi

Gold Coast
Level Contributor
24 posts
28 reviews
Hire car Khao Lak to Krabi

We have booked a Budget hire car for 10 days and will be driving from Khao Lak to Krabi in October. I have read that you don't need an international driver's licence if you have an English driver's licence, is that correct?

As this will be our first time driving in Thailand we would be most grateful for any survival tips that you may have :)

Thank you!

14 replies to this topic
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
157 posts
6 reviews
1. Re: Hire car Khao Lak to Krabi

No You need an IDP Check your travel insurance policy

Cheers Bat

Gold Coast
Level Contributor
24 posts
28 reviews
2. Re: Hire car Khao Lak to Krabi

Thanks Bat

My travel insurance doesn't mention anything but the car hire documents says that 'an international Driving Permit is required where the driver's licence is not in English" but I thought it was best to double check (we both have Aussie driver's licences)

Cheers

Edited: 05 August 2018, 10:55
Poulton Le Fylde...
Destination Expert
for Khao Lak, Khao Sok National Park
Level Contributor
45,458 posts
107 reviews
3. Re: Hire car Khao Lak to Krabi

To eliminate any doubt get an IDP.

Phillip Island...
Level Contributor
1,046 posts
73 reviews
4. Re: Hire car Khao Lak to Krabi

You do need an IDP and we hired through Budget and they were great. Dropped off our car to the hotel and then picked it up from another hotel! Great service.

Gold Coast
Level Contributor
24 posts
28 reviews
5. Re: Hire car Khao Lak to Krabi

Thank you, better to be safe than sorry!

Edited: 05 August 2018, 14:57
Gold Coast
Level Contributor
24 posts
28 reviews
6. Re: Hire car Khao Lak to Krabi

That's good to know, we'll organise the IDP :)

Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
1,494 posts
153 reviews
7. Re: Hire car Khao Lak to Krabi

OzViking,

Get an IDP from the RAC. Dont rely on anecdotal tales that it is not needed. You need to have it, and then, if stopped at a police checkpoint you will have no problems. You need to carry it and your Oz D/L at all times. Both will be photocopied by the Rental Car Company.

As to tips for first time driving.

The roads are good, the local drivers skills, less so,MUCH less.

There are quite a lot of road works on the road between Khao Lak and Krabi so be cautious. Big divets where the road has been cut up that come up unexpectedly, hard to see and lethal at speed.

Biggest tip - take your time.

You cant drive like at home. Right is not Might on Thai roads, you drive to survive.

Speed limits are ignored by many, double center lines ignored by most, so a car coming at you head on around a corner is not uncommon, you just have to move over. Some local drivers just think that they can flash their headlights at you and it gives them right of way. If you are going that bit slower you have time to react.

Most town speed limits are50km/h, open road 80-90. Fixed speed cameras in many town areas.

Many of the roads have a big center median that cant be crossed until you reach a U turn point so you need to watch out for traffic coming out of these and merging in. This also takes time to get used to when map reading/navigating. In some places you actually have to go past your turn and return on the other side of the road to make it.

The local motor bikes and scooters are allowed to travel against the flow of traffic in the far left lane in each direction, so it is not uncommon to have traffic coming at you on what is essentially the wrong side of the road. Takes a while to get used to. Slow moving traffic also uses this lane.

Be extra cautious around local markets and mosques. Lots of bikes, cars and people darting out from the side of the road.

Lots of very overloaded utilities, some can be amusing to look at, but you need to either stay well back or pass ASAP.

If it is wet or dark, slow down even more. A lot of cars and bikes dont have any lights! Coming upon a slow moving unlit truck, or bike with sidecar at speed on a wet road is not fun. Even those that do have good lights seem allergic to using them. We joke that the locals wont turn on their headlights in bad weather or darkness in case it drains the battery, but it does get scary.

Lots of Fuel outlets. You DONT leave your vehicle though. They pump, you pay :)

Allow the day for the trip.

There is some good scenery and places to stop. No shortage of good food and coffee stops. Depending on your chosen route you could visit Tiger Kingdom on the way.

Roads into Krabi city are quite busy, Ao Nang not so bad.

We find it useful to Google & Street view new routes, making notes of landmarks close to intersections etc before driving too.

Happy Travels

Gold Coast
Level Contributor
24 posts
28 reviews
8. Re: Hire car Khao Lak to Krabi

Thank you very much for your kind, informative and entertaining reply famwood, it is very much appreciated 🙂

Your advice will be invaluable on our driving adventure from Khao Lak to Krabi and we'll organise our IDP this weekend.

We're so used to fuelling the car ourselves I don't think we even considered that you could just sit in the car while someone else does it, ha ha!

Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
1,494 posts
153 reviews
9. Re: Hire car Khao Lak to Krabi

Cheers.

I often think wistfully of "service" stations in Thailand when I am stuck waiting to get to a bowser in Oz, while the cars in front are parked while their drivers collect a toasted sandwich and battered sav.

AHHH , first world issues!!??.

Enjoy your drive.

Ebbw Vale, United...
Destination Expert
for Santa Eulalia del Rio, Ibiza
Level Contributor
2,321 posts
163 reviews
10. Re: Hire car Khao Lak to Krabi

I hired a car from Budget in February 2018 and asked them before travelling if I needed an IDP, they told me that I did not need one. We had it for 2 weeks with no problems.

Phil

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