The pros and cons of hiring a private tour guide in Bangkok are pretty straightforward. It’s an amazing city to take a vacation in, with or without a local guide. The exotic and beautiful temples are magnificent to look at and learning about the history of this ancient culture will make the trip to Bangkok an incredible experience. The trip will definitely let you escape from your real life troubles back home and just soak up the southeast Asian sun and atmosphere. You can look at the points below to see if your style of travel would benefit more or benefit less by hiring a private guide for a tour of Bangkok. There are probably more pros and cons of hiring a local guide that you may think of depending on your situation, but below are the general aspects of any trip.
Pros and Cons of Hiring a Local Guide in Bangkok
If you hire a private guide in Bangkok, you can leave the itinerary and schedule all up to the guide. You just need to show up at the start of your tour and follow the guide around. So there’s no need to research anything about what the highlights of the city are or how to get there. And you don’t need to think about finding places to eat or worry about not being able to communicate with the local people. If you don’t want the hassle of doing this or you just don’t have the time to do this, a private tour with a local Bangkok tour guide is the best choice for you. On the other hand, even if you’re meticulous about researching the places you want to visit and don’t want to just go to the generic tourist spots in the city, you can request a tour of just the spots you want to visit and have the guide take you there. Or you can, for example, request a tour off the beaten path and explore hidden gems of the city. Only local guides who know the city intimately will know about these kinds of places. This tour requesting option is not something they offer at any tour company, so GoWithGuide can offer you something special, completely customized to your needs.
There are people who like to enjoy spontaneous moments and to discover things for themselves on random strolls through a foreign city. It’s a real adventure if you yourself don’t know where you’ll be going from the moment you leave the hotel. If you’re a person who doesn’t really create an itinerary for themselves during a trip and likes to decide how much time to spend at a location while they are actually at the place, joining a tour which has any sort of schedule or itinerary wouldn’t be the best choice for you. Of course this kind of trip is not for everyone, but it’s fun and exciting in a mysterious sort of way. An intrepid, outgoing, and easy-going person who doesn’t really worry about getting lost or not being able to see all the sightseeing spots they have in mind and would rather do what they want when they want would probably enjoy touring the city by themselves rather than having a tour guide with them.
Getting around on the public transportation system or taxis to all the sightseeing spots you want to visit also needs a bit of planning transportation-wise. You need to figure out which spots are close enough together so that you can see them on the same day, and which you should leave for a second day of sightseeing. You also need to figure out how to get to the first sightseeing spot from your hotel, what the best way is to travel from place to place on your itinerary, and lastly how to get back to your hotel. This can take a lot of research depending on how developed the transportation system is around the places you want to see. If you’re traveling around Bangkok with a local private tour guide, you don’t need to think about these things, since they’ll know the way intimately. And you won’t get taken advantage of when using a tuktuk or taxi since you’ll be with a local person who can watch out for things like that on your behalf. Tourists sometimes are billed higher prices or are taken on roundabout routes, or taken to a souvenir shop on the way to the requested sightseeing spot. They are paid a commission by the shop by bringing customers to them. This kind of unpleasant experience is not something you want to happen so being with a local person can be very reassuring. You can also hire a private car for your tour if you want. Bangkok is a very hot and humid city, so if you or the other participants of your trip aren’t up for walking around in the heat for hours, being able to hire a private car and local driver just for yourselves is a very helpful option.
Trying to figure out how to get from one place to another, talking to the local people and asking around can be part of the fun of traveling to a foreign country. You get to discover things about the local transportation system on your own without a guide. Conversing or haggling with the tuktuk or taxi drivers in order to get the best price is an experience you can’t have anywhere else. Getting from one place to another becomes an adventure in itself. And once you get through the day without anyone’s help, you’ll feel very satisfied with yourself. But this can sometimes take a lot of time which leaves less time to enjoy the sightseeing spots themselves. If you want make your sightseeing efficient, it’s much easier and faster following around a person who actually knows the way.
How you think about the price of a tour depends on your priorities. If you only have a limited amount of time to spend in Bangkok city, for example one day before moving on to spend time at a beach resort, you want to use your time wisely. And probably hiring a local guide to provide a private tour for you, is the most efficient way to see most of the highlights of Bangkok in one day. And tours you can have are not limited to sightseeing, as you can also have a food tour if you’re a foodie who likes to experience all the local food. There are a whole lot of possibilities for tours with local guides. And plus you don’t have to worry about getting lost, or trying to explain to restaurant staff with limited English about any food allergies you may have, or trying to understand about the information provided at the various sightseeing spots, etc. You’ll have your own translator for the whole day so you can tour the city while feeling safe and sound with a local guide at your side.
If you don’t hire a guide for a tour, of course you won’t have to pay for that extra fee. How much the guided tour costs and how big of an effect it will have on the funds you have set aside for your trip depends on your economic situation. People who only have a very limited trip fund cannot afford to use money on anything but the very minimum for sightseeing. And that’s fine, because everybody should enjoy their own trip to Bangkok in their own way. The only downside to this is that you will be completely on your own. It’ll be up to you to navigate the city, to figure out in what order the best way to sightsee is, to figure out what kind of food you’re ordering and what it’ll taste like, and to try to get your point across to any local people who may not be able to speak English. Some of these things may prove to be a bit difficult for some people.
If you tour the city with a local Bangkok tour guide, they will most certainly be able to provide more information on the history, culture, and traditions in Bangkok than a guidebook can. You can actually have a conversation with them rather than just read the information, so if you’re curious and have a lot of question, speaking with a person who is actually from Thailand will be much more satisfying than reading an explanation. And if you’re traveling by yourself, you won’t be lonely while sightseeing or eating your meal, and you even have someone to take your picture for you at the beautiful temples of Bangkok. You can even choose your guide if you look at the list of guides. See their profile pages and read about them to find out what kind of person they are. And see their introductory videos to hear them speak and figure out how much English or another language they can speak. Seeing their picture before the day of your tour should make finding them on the day of the tour that much easier.
Having a local guide and translator with you means you rely on them completely and don’t have to make any effort yourself. This diminishes any surprises or discoveries along the way that you may have experienced by chance if you were wandering around alone. You also really don’t know what kind of guide you’ll get until you meet and talk to them. You may realize that they’re not the type of person you want to spend a whole day with. They may not take your picture just the way you want or they may take you to a restaurant that’s not really your style. Diminishing this risk by finding out about or communicating with the guide you are thinking about having a tour with is a good idea.
There are only pros for this item on the list because who doesn’t appreciate a little help when they need it?
If you’re going to be traveling with a companion that has a disability or is in a wheelchair, you’ll probably want to find out if the places you’ll be going to are wheelchair accessible. This includes bathrooms as well as the sightseeing spots themselves. You may need to visit a hotel to use their bathroom so a detailed schedule with bathroom breaks needs to be created. This will be very difficult to do without a local guides help. Even if they don’t know about accessibility, being local means they can call ahead and check on it for you. Help with little things like that are essential to making your trip an enjoyable for everyone involved.
Another instance you could use a little help is in the event of a marriage proposal. A lot of people find that the right time to make a proposal to their significant other is on a trip. Finding the perfect moment or romantic spot to do this is very important as you can imagine. So leave it up to a private tour guide in Bangkok to find the perfect place for you and the perfect time to visit. They can also help with translation when you need to request help to the staff of local restaurants or event spaces.
Have you decided whether or not you need to have a local Bangkok tour guide for your trip? It takes a lot of thought about what kind of trip you want to make your vacation before making a final decision. And even if you decide after you arrive in Bangkok that you actually wanted a guide for a tour, it's not too late. You can just get online and find a guide who's available to take you on a tour. Bangkok is a beautiful city to visit so make sure to enjoy every single minute of it!