Before you rent a Scooter in Thailand there are a few things that you must do first.
- Spend some time, not a lot, to read through some reviews. Not all the smiles and welcomes are the same when the Scooter is returned with a scratch or some damage. There are many decent places you can rent from and a few you should avoid. Reading reviews BEFORE you hire is the most important thing any backpacker should do.
- Make sure you know the laws. Riding without an international license is an offense in Thailand no matter what you have heard. Many police will not worry but in Chiang Mai, the chances are if caught you will receive a fine. The official charge is 400 baht and then you can keep riding for 3 days without needing to pay again if you were pulled over.
- Make sure you can ride in the traffic. If you are uncomfortable, make sure the staff takes the time to show you how to ride properly BEFORE you head out.
- Choose the right Scooter for your needs. Cheapest isn’t always best. OK so I know you are on a budget but there is no point hiring a Scooter at 99 baht and spending most of your day at a mechanic repair a broken belt. If there are 2 people on a Scooter and you want to go into the mountains then you will need to spend a minimum of 179 or 199 baht depending on the course you take. But then again if its just one person and you only want to explore the city then why pay 179 when the 99 is sufficient!
- Don’t carry too much. If you are going on a big trip for a few days why carry all your things. Make sure that the company you hire from has storage available and is secure with video cameras etc.
- Make sure the company is contactable. If you need help can you call them for assistance? What are the hours of operation? Do they have a method of contact besides phone eg WhatsApp, Line or email?
- What are the company policies and extra fees eg what do they charge if your late, who pays for a brake down, can I extend if I need to, etc. All these things can save you a lot of money in the end.
At the end of the day, you are here to enjoy your holiday and want to rent from a company that will not rip you off or takes advantage of you. You just want a good Scooter and feel confident that if something went wrong you will be respected and not ripped off.
Bamboo Bikes Chiang Mai is a company built on repeated customers or customers recommended by previous ones. We love to be with you and feel part of your holiday. We want to add to it not detract. The company is run by an Australian with Thai staff so English in the first language is available as well as local knowledge.
Whether renting from us or someone else we wish all a safe and exciting time in this beautiful part of the world.
Sabi Sabi – Team Bamboo