Oohhh that alarm was just too, too early and we both had a rubbish sleep with a combination of noisy guests and anticipation of getting on the road again. Luckily the Darwin airport hotel is only a short walk away so we were lined up at check-in by 4:45AM. At this hour there was no other flights so getting through security was a breeze as was the same with immigration so we were in the departure lounge just after 5:00 AM.
I was able to grab some Thai Baht from one of the ATM's but a word of warning that the exchange rate from these machines is pretty terrible but I suppose you are paying for the convenience. Our Jetstar flight is via Singapore which is a 4 and a half hour flight and although it was full plane we both managed a few short naps during the flight.
Arrival in Singapore was as smooth as it usually is at Changi Airport with everything being well signposted with plenty of security screens in operation to speed up the procedure. We were able to pick up a free wifi log in voucher from one if the information booths by producing our passports. Then grabbed a coffee and made our way to the next departure gate and settled down for the 45 minute wait till the next flight.
Another full plane for the Bangkok flight but this time we had front row seats which are great for getting a quick get away on landing but for me there is actually less leg room having no seat in front to stretch my legs under, just the bulkhead in front.
We arrived at Don Muang airport right on time and were probably the first to get off the plane and first at immigration. No waiting, just a quick stamp and through we went. Our departure to KL is over the 30 day tourist visa stay so we will be doing the obligatory "visa run" to Cambodia for 3 days later this month.
After exiting the customs area, no check at all, we were able to locate the "Dtac" mobile booth to purchase 2 local SIM cards and have the girl there set it all up for us. Then it's down one level and follow the signs to the taxi ranks. There is a choice of types of taxis to use whether you require a minibus or just the "normal" type. Dependent on what type you need there is a ticket machine that issues you with a numbered ticket that corresponds to the taxi you have been allocated.
Our driver had very little English but we had printed off the address of our accomodation in Thai to show him. He was able to program the address into his mobile phone and google maps did the rest. These official taxis are supposed to use the meter but it pays to tell the driver you want to before starting off. Our driver actually had a baseball cap over his that he removed after I told him we wanted to use the meter. Also be aware that it is expected that if you use the tollway that you will pay the tolls at the booths, usually 50 baht.
To be continued........