Driving around Phuket Island

This is my final post on my travel in Phuket 2009. I dont think I want to, but I never know if I might be back in Phuket again.. Hope not.
Anyway, I just wanted to post information that might be helpful to those who are planning a trip there. I will add my my personall recommendatio on what to do.. or what not to do. Take it with a pinch of salt ok.. everybodys different, so you might enjoy what I dont…
#1 tip, avoiding looking like a rich arrogant white male, and avoid going with one..  I must say that I enjoyed Phuket alot more without the company of Doug, even tho he dont look anything like a rich nor arrogant…

Google driving map: From David's to Karon Princess

Google driving map: From David's to Karon Princess

#2 tip, David car rental is a pretty nicely run business across the street from the airport. They will have a driver pick you from the airport arrival to their doorstep, or walk over like we did… just a little comment, I have not yet confirm this, but my credit card that was used as a garantee at David is now unusable… why? have there been fraud charges during this time.. I have yet to find out.. hope its not. Anyway, try not to use credit anywhere in Phuket. My room at Karon was prebooked and paid using AsiaRooms. Have used AsiaRooms several times before and found them to be reliable. The reviews at AsiaRooms influenced me on the hotel choices… but why nobody mention about the frequent electric disruption!? 

Google Maps: Karon to Rolly Tasker

Google Maps: Karon to Rolly Tasker

#3 tip, if you were going to drive, prepare for it. Get driving instructions from Google! I found it very useful indeed. The local directions were good also, but .. try driving in a new place and try to remember all the things that lady said about turning right at that pink building…  And the girl at David didnt know exactly where Karon Princess hotel was.. what do you expect when there are a dozen large hotels and numerous little ones along Karon beach.

I have update my Platial page (which you can find on the right widgets column) to show my favorite places in Phuket.

#4 tip, I havent need to pay for parking yet. Parking at the mega malls are free. Parking on the outside of Karon is free. I was lucky to find free parking near to the central of Patong, the alternative would be to pay for parking at some strange looking spots. .. Anyway, its okay to assume that the white boxes on the side of the streets are legal parking spots and are free. Do not pay anybody who claim to be collecting the fee unless official, government receipt is given.. then again, how can you tell if its official or not if its all in Thai ?

#5 tip, avoid tutuks and touts! The asking price per pax per ride on a tutuk is 100 or 150 baht, even for a very short distance. Its just crazy! Rent a car and drive around is a much cheaper and less stressful way to see Phuket. I have gotten to the point where if I have to bargain again for anything, I would rather not buy it. It is stressful dealing with overly aggressive touts and knowing that they are out to rip you off even chance they get.

#6 tip, there is quite a fair bit of uphill/downhill winding roads across the island. Dont drive too fast, look out for the motobikes and pedestrains and animals! I bought extra travel insurance coverage just to be sure this trip dont turn out to be a long lasting nightmare of liablities and claims.

Okay.. quite a long list.. have I forgotten anything? Hmm.. drop me a note, let me know.. especially if you have something to share with me and readers of my blog.


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August 2009
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