How could you survive in Bangkok with just 100 baht? This guide will not only show you how to survive, it will also show you how to have an awesome day out in Bangkok. Yes, you may be labelled as being a ‘bird poo farang’ – farang kee nok (Thai slang for a cash strapped foreigner) after following this guide – but we are unashamedly getting right into the bird poo here. Bring it on . . .
Pin that Map
We need to begin in a location somewhere in Bangkok. So, let’s close our eyes and stick a pin in the map . . . and . . . it turns out our location is Rama II road in the Bangkhuntian district.
A Hearty Breakfast
So, you wake up early, get dressed and stick that wallet containing your amassed fortune of 100 baht into your pocket proudly. You need some good food inside you and you have three good options. Option 1 is to find somewhere serving Kaao Geeng, where you can have green curry and rice with a drink of water. This will set you back 30 baht. Or just find any 7/11, buy mama noodles in packet form for around 15 baht, plus make yourself a coffee with the 7/11 kettle for another 10 baht, totaling a 25 baht expenditure. However, to get the best bang from your buck/baht, the local market would be a good choice. At the local market you can buy a bag of rice and a range of different foods in plastic bags sealed with rubber bands for around 20 baht. In this hypothetical scenario we’ll opt for the market option, plus buy a 7 baht bottle of water from 7/11 to go with our breakfast.
One Cool Customer
We had a pretty healthy breakfast, so let’s capitalise on that by taking a 1 hour walk. We are going to head for Central Rama II for this as it has air conditioning and is great for window shopping. To walk for one hour around this shopping mall you could walk all around floors 1, 2, 3 and 4 then in reverse from floor 4 back down to floor 1. Free air conditioning, window shopping and listening to music through your earphones whilst taking a healthy walk. Don’t forget to try the free food samples around the supermarkets.
After your walk you may want to head out to one of the many gyms that have opened up offering a free initial visit to the gym. It’s a win/win situation, as you get a free afternoon at the gym, plus as a benefit for the gym owner, you may decide to join the gym at some point in the future. So, you enquire at the front desk about the gym, they take you on a quick tour, then let you loose to enjoy your free day pass at the gym. You’ve already done some light cardio on your walk, so why not hit the weights or do some bodyweight training? After which, the aim is to chill out, so it’s off to the sauna, then have a cold shower and head into the steam room, then repeat those three steps until you’ve had enough of totally relaxing. Water at the gym will be free, so fill your body up with O2.
Lunch with a Punch
You’ve had plenty to drink, so now it’s time to head back to the market for some sticky rice, which is 5 baht for a bag, and some spicy Laab Moo (minced pork in herbs and spices) which will be around 20 baht for a bag. If you are a vegetarian you can pick up some mixed vegetables in oyster sauce for the same price.
Better than eating lunch around the market would be to go to The Park, which is a free park to enter behind Central Rama II. Here you can sit under some tree shade looking over the small lake and enjoy having lunch. Then why not have a nap listening to bird song amongst nature?
Nightlife and the Power of the Horse
It’s time to go out for the evening and head for the nearest ‘lao dong’ stall. If you haven’t experienced drinking at a lao dong stall yet, you’ll recognise them by seeing bowls of (usually brownish-red) lao dong which will set you back about 10 baht per shot. The stuff will blow your head off. The local lao dong server will clue you up on the magical effects of drinking lao dong, with each bottle giving a certain effect, such as acquiring ‘the power of the horse’.
After 3 shots, setting you back 30 baht and a good evening chatting to the locals, you are feeling more than merry and you have the munchies. So, it’s time to head to 7/11 and make up some mama noodles using the free hot water kettle, which will cost around 15 baht.
Hitting the Sack
In 7/11 you check your pockets to see if you have any change left, and to your surprise you find you have 3 baht left which you drop into the charity box on the 7/11 counter. Then, you head back home and hit the sack. You’ve had an eventful day.
Expenditure for the Day
27 baht – rice, curry and water for breakfast.
25 baht – sticky rice and Laab Moo.
30 baht – Lao Dong.
15 baht – mama.
Total expenditure: 97 baht