Category Archives: Traveling

How to Get a Driver’s License in Thailand

Bangkok Traffic

For many people driving a car in Thailand isn’t the first option that comes to mind, when traveling around the country. There are a lot risks related to it, and so many affordable other options to choose from. Living in Bangkok, you really don’t need a car, at least as a single person or as a couple without kids, because of the convenience of BTS and MRT. But every now and then, it would be nice to jump on a car and drive away for the weekend. As most rental car services require a local license, it makes renting a car a whole lot easier to have one. Here’s how it’s done.

Preparations

If you have a license issued from your country, you don’t have to do the license from scratch. If you have an international license, or license from any English speaking country, you just need to contact your Embassy in Thailand, and ask for a magical thing called “embassy stamp” that clears almost everything in Thailand. But, if your license was issued in a non-English speaking country, you need to get a transcript from your country explaining what the driver’s license is for and what vehicles you can drive.

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Shanghai trip and Inside 3D Printing Shanghai Event 2014

After successfully getting the Chinese Visa done at the Chinese Embassy in Bangkok, we were all set to travel to Shanghai. The first edition of Inside 3D Printing Shanghai took place over 2 days at the Shanghai Exhibition Center. The show was coined to be a large one, and I think the local partner did a good job attracting visitors to the exhibits and conference. The total number was estimated between 2500-3000 over two days.

Inside 3D Printing Shanghai 2014

3DPI team this time consisted Ari and myself, and our goals for this show were to get video interviews with a number of industry experts including Wim Michiels from Materialise, Harry Kleijnen from Philips, Lionel Dean from FutureFactories, Maltesh Somasekharappa from Wipro and Ian Gibson from Deakin University. The video interviews is somewhat new concept to 3DPI.TV and we are still learning to climb the ropes. Filming in a noisy tradeshow environment can be tricky and changing the location constantly adds a little extra challenge to it.

The whole trip was amazing. Cathay Pacific treated us well from Bangkok through Hong Kong to Shanghai and back. The hotel we stayed in was probably the nicest I have ever been in: Langham Xintiandi. Just simply amazing service.

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How to Apply for Chinese Visa in Bangkok

*Edited March 14 2016 with hat tip to Mike Mason

The Chinese Visa Application Service Center has moved, as of Sept 2015. The new address is now 5th loor,1550 Thanapoom Tower, New Petchburi Road, Makkasan, Ratchathewi, Bangkok, Thailand, 10400. Visa / Passport photos are available on the 2nd floor, as are computers for printing out forms or documents. It is located at the Petchburi station on the Metro.

Applying for a Chinese Visa in Asia and especially in Bangkok as a foreigner can be troublesome. After a quick search through related forums can even increase the level of headache as everyone seems to give different advice. It doesn’t help much that some of the information is dated back couple of years.

Chinese Visa Bangkok

There seems to be a discrepancy regarding what documents are required for Chinese Visa application. Looking at the information on Chinese Embassy Bangkok website it seems like an easy process, but reading comments online makes the whole thing quite a lot messier. Calling the Chinese embassy service isn’t much use either. I tried 3 times: morning, after lunch and before office closing without any luck. The last frontier seemed to be just to go on-site and see how it all goes.

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Bali Trip

I have been planning to visit Bali since I came to Asia early 2000, but never really had the chance to make it happen. Known to be a popular tourist destination amongst Australians and developed Asian nations, Bali attracts over 3 million tourists annually. The beaches and waves are famous amongst surfers, but Bali offers cultural sites and natural attractions as well.

Bali Kuta Beach Chairs

A few weeks back I had a chance to finally visit Bali. Being more of a business focused trip, I didn’t unfortunately had much chance to enjoy the holiday activities, but had chance to get a glimpse what Bali is all about.

I arrived there Thursday afternoon and had no troubles getting through the airport procedures. Somehow the famous tourist destinations always make it very pleasant to enter. Finding a taxi to the hotel in Kuta beach was easy. The hotel I stayed in was a very positive experience. The staff was overwhelmingly friendly, included free breakfast that was more than instant coffee and toast. Overall the hotel, located right next to the beach, was bargain for the price. If you are planning to stay in Kuta and want an inexpensive hotel next to the beach check out Best Western Kuta Beach.

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Hotel Quickly App Review

Hotel booking, especially in Thailand, can be sometimes slightly challenging. There are so many options to choose from. Not only discovering the most suitable from the endless hotel offering, but also finding where to get the best price for the chosen hotel. Usually the online hotel booking services are the places to go, as they tend to offer better prices than booking directly through the hotel website, although not always. The big players in the field of online hotel booking such as Priceline.com with Agoda and Booking.com, and Expedia with hotels.com have been dominating the scene for years, but it seems that more and more new players with different concepts are moving into the lucrative hotel booking market.

hotel booking websites

I was recently introduced to one of the new comers called Hotel Quickly. They are targeting mobile only bookings through an app, which is available for iOS, Android and BlackBerry users. The founding team behind the app is also quite convincing, including startup veterans and former Foodpanda.com executives. Hotel Quickly tapping into the fastest growing ecommerce market in Asia – smartphone users – doesn’t really come as a surprise.

Enough with the introductions; lets dig into the app review.

App overview

The concept of the Hotel Quickly app is quite simple.

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