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Hua Lamphong Railway Station

Rail transport was introduced to Bangkok in 1893, and the national railway network was developed during the 20th century. Modern rapid transit in Bangkok includes several rail systems: the BTS Skytrain which opened in 1999, followed by the MRT, Airport Rail Link and SRT Red Lines.


Bangkok's first rail line was the private Paknam Railway linking Bangkok to Samut Prakan which opened in 1893. The national railway network was subsequently developed and first opened in 1896, linking Bangkok to Nakhon Ratchasima and then expanding to reach Chiang Mai, Nong Khai, Ubon Ratchathani and Su-ngai Kolok.

Electric trams served the city from 1894 to 1968. In the late 1800s and early 1900s, King Rama V eagerly built a tram network for Bangkok by employing foreign engineers and technicians, especially Danish engineers. However, due to a lack of interest and maintenance, the tram network was completely scrapped in 1968.

Although proposals for the development of rapid transit in Bangkok had been made since 1975, [1] leading to plans for the failed Lavalin Skytrain, it was only in 1999 that Thailand's first rapid transit system, the BTS Skytrain, began operation.

The underground MRT subsequently opened in 2004, the Airport Rail Link began operation in 2010, and the SRT Red Lines began trial operation in 2021.

Inter-city and high-speed rail

Krung Thep Aphiwat Central Terminal

Bangkok is the location of the Krung Thep Aphiwat Central Terminal, the central rail hub for most long-distance trains as of 2023, as well as the older Hua Lamphong station, both operated by the State Railway of Thailand (SRT). From Bangkok, trains travel on the Northern Line to Chiang Mai, the Northeastern Line to Nong Khai and Ubon Ratchathani, and the Eastern Line to Aranyaprathet, and the Southern Line, which terminates at Su-ngai Kolok and has a connection to Malaysia (the other Southern terminus is Thonburi).

High-speed rail

There are multiple planned high-speed rail lines in Thailand. The Bangkok–Nong Khai high-speed railway and Don Mueang–Suvarnabhumi–U-Tapao high-speed railway are under construction as of 2023. The Krung Thep Aphiwat Central Terminal will act as a future hub for all high-speed services.

Commuter Rail

Commuter rail at Hua Lamphong Railway Station

In addition to long-distance services, the SRT also operates a few daily commuter trains running from and to the outskirts of the city, and the newer electrified SRT Red Lines.

Mass Rapid transit (Metro Train System) in Bangkok

Bangkok is currently served by four rapid transit systems: the BTS Skytrain, the MRT, the Airport Rail Link, and the SRT Red Lines.

System Began operation Lines in operation Lengths in operation Stations in operation Operators
BTS Skytrain 1999 3 70.05 km (43.53 mi) 63 BTSC under concession from BMA
MRT 2004 4 135.9 km (84.4 mi) 107 BEM (Blue Line and Purple Line)

Eastern Bangkok Monorail (Yellow Line) under concession from MRTA Northern Bangkok Monorail (Pink Line) under concession from MRTA

Airport Rail Link 2010 1 28.6 km (17.8 mi) 8 Asia Era One under concession from SRT [2]
SRT Red Lines 2021 2 41 kilometres (25 mi) 14 SRT
Total 10 275.55 km (171.22 mi) 162
Map of current & future Bangkok Mass Rapid network as of June 2023

BTS Skytrain

BTS Skytrain

The Skytrain consists of three lines, totalling 70.05 kilometers (43.53 mi): Sukhumvit Line running southwards from Khu Khot Station along Phahon Yothin Road and then eastwards along Sukhumvit Road to Kheha Station in Samut Prakan. The Silom Line runs eastwards from National Stadium Station in Pathum Wan District, then southwest along Ratchadamri, Si Lom, Narathiwat Ratchanakharin and Sathon Roads, crossing the Chao Phraya passing Wong Wian Yai Station in Khlong San towards Bang Wa Station in Phasi Charoen District. Both lines are elevated, and interchange at Siam Station in Pathum Wan. And Gold Line (Bangkok) which run along Charoen Nakhon in Khlong San from Krung Thon Buri Station that interchange with Silom Line to Khlong San Station at the end.

MRT (Metro)

MRT Purple Line

The MRT system opened in July 2004, and currently consists of four lines, the Blue Line (partially underground heavy rail), Purple Line (above-ground medium capacity rail) and Yellow Line and Pink Line (monorail). The Blue Line runs for 37.1 kilometres (23.1 mi) from Tao Poon Station in a southward arc through the east along Ratchadaphisek Road, via Hua Lamphong, where it connects to the central railway station, to Lak Song. It has 38 stations, and connects to the BTS system at BTS stations Mo Chit, Asok, Sala Daeng and Bang Wa. The Blue Line was extended to form a circle in 2020. The Purple Line opened in 2016.

Although initial passenger numbers were low, these systems have become indispensable to many commuters. The BTS reported an average of 392,167 daily trips in 2010, while the MRT had 178,334 passenger trips per day. However, relatively high fare prices have kept these systems inaccessible to a portion of the population. The Pink and Yellow monorail lines opened in 2023.

Airport Rail Link

The Airport Rail Link, opened in August 2010 after many delays, connects the city centre to Suvarnabhumi Airport in Samut Prakan Province to the east. It is operated by the SRT, and offers services between the airport and Makkasan where it connects with Phetchaburi Station of the MRT. It terminates at Phaya Thai Station, where it connects to the BTS. Its eight stations span a distance of 29 kilometres (18 mi).

SRT Red Lines

The Red Line Mass Transit System Project is a commuter rail system serving the Bangkok Metropolitan Region. Construction began in January 2009 and free public trial operation began on 2 August 2021, with full commercial service beginning on November 29, 2021 when Bang Sue Grand Station opened. It consists of two lines, the Dark Red Line and Light Red Line.

Lines in operation

Line System Stations Length Terminus Daily ridership Began operation
Initial part Last extension
     Sukhumvit line BTS Skytrain 47 53.58 km (33.29 mi) Khu KhotKheha 910,866 [3] 1999 2020
     Silom line 14 14.67 km (9.12 mi) National StadiumBang Wa 2021 (infill station)
     Gold Line 3 1.8 km (1.1 mi) Krung Thon BuriKhlong San 8,091 [3] 2020
Blue Line Metropolitan Rapid Transit (MRT) 38 47 km (29 mi) Tha PhraTao PoonLak Song 498,709 [3] 2004 2019
Purple Line 16 23.6 km (14.7 mi) Khlong Bang PhaiTao Poon 76,171 [3] 2016
Yellow Line 23 28.7 km (17.8 mi) SamrongLat Phrao 43,954 [3] 2023
Pink Line 30 Nonthaburi Civic Center ↔ Min Buri 2023
Airport Rail Link Airport Rail Link 8 28.6 km (17.8 mi) Phaya ThaiSuvarnabhumi 76,097 [3] 2010
Dark Red Line SRT Red Lines 10 26 km (16 mi) Bang Sue ↔ Rangsit 27,337 [3] 2021
Light Red Line 4 15 km (9.3 mi) Bang SueTaling Chan
Total 238.95 km (148.48 mi)

Future expansion

The entire Mass Rapid Transit Master Plan in Bangkok Metropolitan Region consists of eight main lines and four feeder lines totalling 508 kilometres (316 mi) to be completed by 2029.

New lines under construction are the Orange Line and an extension to the Purple Line and extensions to the Airport Rail Link.

Rolling stock

Line Class (family [a]) Image Manufacturer(s) Manufactured in
   Sukhumvit line
   Silom line
EMU-A1 ( Modular Metro) Siemens Mobility
SGP Verkehrstechnik
EMU-A2 Siemens Mobility
EMU-B1 and EMU-B2 CNR Changchun Railway Vehicles   China
EMU-B3 CRRC Changchun Railway Vehicles
   Blue Line EMU-IBL (Modular Metro) Siemens Mobility   Austria
EMU-BLE (Modular Metro)   Austria
   Airport Rail Link Modified Class 360 ( Desiro)
   Purple Line S24-EMU ( sustina [ ja]) Japan Transport Engineering Company   Japan
   Dark Red Line 1000 series ( AT100) Hitachi Rail
   Light Red Line 2000 series ( AT100)
   Gold Line INNOVIA APM 300 Bombardier Transportation
CRRC Nanjing Puzhen
   Pink Line INNOVIA Monorail 300
   Yellow Line

Ticketing and fare rates

MRT Blue line

There are many types of stored value cards separated by passengers' age. Elder card is for over 65 years olds and provides 50% discount from the full fare. Student card is for under 23 years olds and provides 10% discount from the full fare. Child card is for under 14 years olds and under 120 cm tall and provides 50% discount from the full fare. Adult card is for everyone doesn't provide any discount from the full fare.

The fare rates are counted by the number of stations, starting from 16 Baht for a station, increasing by 2-3 Baht for each station up to 42 Baht for 17 stations. [4]

MRT Purple line

Use the stored value cards as MRT Blue Line. The fare rates start from 15 Baht for a station, increasing 1 Baht for each station up to 29 Baht for 15 stations. [5]

For the passengers that don't have cards, the fare rates start from 17 Baht for a station, increasing 2-3 Baht for each station, then reach the maximum values at 42 Baht for 11 stations. [6]

Airport Rail Link

For the city line, the fare rates start from 15 Baht for a station, increase 5 Baht for each station up to 45 Baht for 7 stations. [7]


BTS has its own stored value cards called " Rabbit card". There are 3 types of Rabbit card: adult, student, and senior, with 100 Baht initial stored value. [8]

BTS fare rates start from 16 Baht. The costs is based on the distance travelled. Travelling between Wongwian Yai - Bang Wa stations, On-Nut - Bearing stations cost 15 Baht. 15 baht will also be added when travelling between these stations to the other station on the main line. There are now currently free access between Khu Khot - Mo Chit stations, and Bearing - Kheha stations which will not cost any money.

See also


  1. ^ If applicable only


  1. ^ Rujopakarn, Wiroj (October 2003). "Bangkok transport system development: what went wrong?". Journal of the Eastern Asia Society for Transportation Studies. 5: 3302–15.
  2. ^ "CP-led group to take over airport link". Bangkok Post. Retrieved 16 October 2022.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g "นิวไฮ! "ศุกร์ 11 ส.ค." ผู้โดยสารใช้บริการรถไฟ-รถไฟฟ้า 1.72 ล้านคน". เดลินิวส์ (in Thai). Retrieved 2023-08-22.
  4. ^ "Bangkok Expressway and Metro Public Company Limited". Retrieved 2017-05-04.
  5. ^ "Bangkok Expressway and Metro Public Company Limited". Retrieved 2017-05-04.
  6. ^ "เอาตารางราคา ค่าโดยสารรถไฟฟ้าสายสีม่วงมาให้ดูครับ (จากแผ่นพับ)". Pantip (in Thai). Retrieved 2017-05-04.
  7. ^ Rotfaithai.Com. "Rotfaithai.Com Forums-viewtopic-แอร์พอร์ต เรล ลิงค์เตรียมให้บริการระบบเช็คอินและขนส่งสัมภาระแล้ว". Retrieved 2017-05-04.
  8. ^ "About Rabbit Card". Rabbit. Retrieved 2017-05-04.

External links