Thursday, May 30, 2013

Transportation: Thailand versus Texas

My friend who used to live in Chiang Mai, Thailand told me that the city did not have regular taxis. Tuk-tuks and Songtows are the way to get around. She also warned me that our entire family could not fit into a tuk-tuk, but we foolishly ignored that sage advice.

Trying to figure out how to fit 2 more adults into this Tuk-tuk.

I love this photo of us getting into a tuk-tuk because my husband looks so big next to it. Even though a sane family might think that this tuk-tuk looks full, we just crammed ourselves into this one.

Share your Songtow ride with others. 

Songtows are bigger, but you usually share the ride with other people. It's informal, public transportation without a set price or route. When you hail one and it actually stops for you, walk up to the driver and tell him where you're headed. If it's in the vicinity of where everyone else wants to go, you can get on. If not, too bad. You'll just have to wait for another one that's going in your direction, and the only way to figure that out is to stop one and ask. The red ones service central Chiang Mai and popular spots just outside the city. Yellow songtows are for further out towns twenty to thirty kilometers away. Most importantly, always negotiate your price before boarding.

Cool breezes and car fumes flow in through the Songtow's semi-enclosed sides.

These exotic modes of transportation are so foreign to a gal from Texas. It seems that the world still thinks that everyone in Texas wears cowboy hats and drives a pickup truck or rides a horse to get around. When I saw this dude going down South Congress Avenue, a few miles from the State Capitol in Austin, I just had to take a photo. It's a far cry from a tiny tuk-tuk.

Exactly what a tourist would hope to see in Austin, Texas

This post is part of Friday Daydreamin' at R We There Yet Mom? Y'all should head on over there for more travel inspiration.


  1. I love it. Reminds me of the photo I had with a friend - a 6'4" tall drink of water and me trying to get photos of ourselves inside a Philippine tricycle. :D

    Oh and i love that said cowboy has the denim, the boots and the hat -- cant get any more stereotypical than that!

  2. The tuktuk and songtows remind me of the tricycles and jeepneys in the Philippines. If I visit Texas, I really hope to see a cowboy like that strolling the street too. I was hoping you have a picture of all of you in a tuktuk. I guess on another post? :)

    1. I actually forgot to get one of all of us IN the tuktuk. My 10 year old ended up on that little box right next to the driver, and the rest of us squeezed in back with my daughter sitting on laps. It would have been ridiculously cheap to get another one, but we were afraid we'd get separated since we the driver didn't really know the place we were headed to.

  3. What a fun post. You know, my kids' were so excited to visit Texas because they thought they would see a real live cowboy. They were so disappointed when we arrived and discovered men in cowboy hats were actually few and far between.

  4. I love the tuk-tuk photo - your husband looks a bit skeptical that he's actually going to fit in it! We were very disappointed not to see a cowboy during our brief stop in Texas in December - my younger daughter says we have to go back to see a cowboy and buy her a cowgirl hat!

  5. LOVE IT!!!! Are you coming home this summer?? I would love to meet you!

    Sorry I am just now making it over from Friday Daydreamin! Busy 2 weeks!! Thanks for linking up - hope you do again tomorrow!


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