Getting around Thailand and self travel is cheap, efficient and fast. Unless you travel by plane, getting around Thailand on long-distance journeys can be arduous, especially if a shoestring budget restricts you to hard seats and no air conditioning.
Nonetheless, the wide range of transport options makes travelling around Thailand easier than elsewhere in Southeast Asia. Buses are fast, cheap and frequent, and can be quite luxurious.
Trains are slower but safer and offer more chance of sleeping during overnight trips; moreover, if travelling by day the scenery is much better. Inter-town songthaews, air-conditioned minibuses and taxis are handy, and ferries provide easy access to all major islands. Private chartered cars are also a good travel alternative, although pricier.