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Unguided Sectors

Some sectors of the Stray travel route where you'll cross the border into a new country are unguided. You'll say goodbye to your old guide meet a new guide once you've crossed the border. Crossing the borders can be a bit intimidating and time consuming but it's all part of the adventure! We've detailed what to expect for each of these days to ensure your unguided sectors go smoothly. 

Stray Asia Unguided Sectors

1. Phnom Penh (Cambodia) – Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam)

2. Bangkok (Thailand) – Siem Reap (Cambodia)

3. Vientiane (Laos) – Bangkok (Thailand)

4. Don Det (Laos) – Bangkok (Thailand) 

5. Siem Reap (Cambodia) – Bangkok (Thailand)


Phnom Penh (Cambodia) – Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam)

Passes that include this sector: Lot, Moc Bai

Optional add-on: Khmer, Mekong

Total estimated travel time: 6-7 hours, depending on the border crossing that day, road conditions and traffic arriving into Ho Chi Minh City. 

How to book

  • Your Stray Cambodia Tour Leader will book this on your behalf. Let them know when you would like to travel.
  • Alternatively, e-mail bangkok@straytravel.asia at least 3 days before you intend to travel. 

Important Notice: You must have a valid Vietnam visa to cross the border. You cannot process a visa on arrival at the Vietnamese border.

Timeline of the day

Pick-up: 7:30am from your Phnom Penh accommodation – confirm where you’re staying with your Tour Leader when he/she makes the booking.

Departure: 8:30am from the bus station

  • Travel 3-4 hours to Bavet border. There will be one rest stop along the way.

Border crossing: Exit the bus at Bavet border to be stamped out of Cambodia, then board the bus to drive to the Vietnamese immigration station. You will exit the bus again to be stamped into Vietnam.

  • You will need to have a valid Vietnam visa to cross the border in Vietnam. Visas cannot be processed at the Vietnamese border.
  • You may be asked to take your luggage with you to be scanned.               
  • You may be asked to pay up to US$5 in processing fees. This is normal.

Arrive: From the border it is a 2-3 hour journey to Ho Chi Minh City. You arrive at Pham Ngu Lao Street bus station at approximately 3:00pm-4:00pm.

Stray top tip: Buy snacks for the journey in Phnom Penh the day before you’re booked to travel.

Where to next?

  • If you are starting the Stray Vietnam tour, the Stray recommended accommodation & pick-up point is only a 5 minute walk from the bus station:

                  Khoi Hostel
                  373/11 Pham Ngu Lao Street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
                  Phone: +84 8 3838 6105

  • If you are travelling on either a Lot or Moc Bai “Flexi Pass” then your Tour Leader in Cambodia should have booked your accommodation.  Please ask your Cambodia tour leader for your accommodation booking voucher and directions.
  • If you have booked a Stray Ho Chi Minh City Arrival Pack, you will be met at the bus station and escorted to your accommodation.

Bangkok (Thailand) – Siem Reap (Cambodia)

Pass that includes this sector: Moc Bai and Khmer

Total estimated travel time: 9 hours, depending on the border crossing that day, road conditions and traffic around the major cities.

How to book

  • Please re-confirm your first day of travel prior to your arrival in Bangkok by emailing bangkok@straytravel.asia. Tickets must be collected from the Stray Bangkok office at least 24-48 hours in advance. You must bring your passport for the ticket to be issued.

Timeline of the day

Pick-up: 9:00am from the Bangkok Stray Shop or at a hostel in the vicinity of the shop (please confirm with our Bangkok staff if your preferred pick-up location can be made available).

Border crossing: From Bangkok, process through immigration at Poipet border. You will be asked to exit the bus to be stamped out of Thailand and into Cambodia.

  • Take all of your luggage with you to be scanned.
  • This is a very busy border crossing, so please be patient! It takes approximately 2 hours to process the immigration formalities.

Arrive: From the Poipet border it is approximately 3 hours to Siem Reap. You will arrive at the St Siwath, Weeraboontam Express office at old market which is located approximately 100 metres from the night market.

Stray Preferred Accommodation in Siem Reap

The Stray preferred accommodation & pick-up point in Siem Reap is:

                  The Living Quarters (Hostel 543)
                  No. 543 Wat Bo Road
                  Siem Reap

Siem Reap Welcome Night

Your Cambodia Tour Leader will meet you at the Living Quarters Hostel 543 at 7.30pm to welcome you and explain more about how Stray works. The next day is free day in Siem Reap and your Tour Leader can book you in for any activities you might want to do such as visiting the UNESCO World Heritage Angkor temples. After the welcome presentation you are invited to join your Stray group for a walk along the iconic Pub Street where you will get to know your new travel mates over a tasty dinner and cold drinks.


Vientiane (Laos) – Bangkok (Thailand)

Pass that includes this sector: Tom Yum

Total estimated travel time: 15 hours, depending on train departure time at the border and immigration processing times on that day.

How to book

  • Your Stray Tour Leader will book this on your behalf. Let them know when you would like to travel and confirm which accommodation you would like to be picked up from.

Timeline of the day

Pick-up: 3:00pm from your Vientiane accommodation – confirm where you’re staying with your Tour Leader when he/she makes the booking.

  • The van driver who picks you up will have your tickets, or collect them for you, upon arrival at the train station. You must pay a 10,000 kip departure fee and have your passport stamped out of Laos.

Departure: 5:00pm from the train station for the short 7 minute ride to the Thailand border.

Border crossing: You will hop off the train at the border (take your bags with you) and be stamped into Thailand. The next train is the overnight train that will carry you to Bangkok - it will depart the border at around 6:40pm.

Arrive: 6:00am the next morning at Bangkok Hualamphong train station.

Stray top tip: Sit in the front of the first carriage on the short ride from Vientiane to the Thai border and keep your luggage with you so you can be first off the train to process through customs. It can be a long wait otherwise!

Where to next?

  • Your Stray trip ends when you arrive in Bangkok, unless you have purchased a Bangkok City Arrival Package (speak to your Tour Leader or contact bangkok@straytravel.asia for more info).
  • A metered taxi to Khao San Road from the station will cost you between 100-200 THB, depending on traffic or simply proceed to the nearest MRT underground train station (Hua Lamphong station).

Don Det (Laos) – Bangkok (Thailand)

Pass that includes this sector: Full Moon

Total estimated travel time: 22.5 hours

How to book

  • Your Stray Tour Leader will confirm when you would like to travel back to Bangkok.

Timeline of the day

Departure: 8:30 am from the guesthouse in Don Det, unless advised otherwise by your Tour Leader.

  • You will travel by boat to Ban Nakasang and then on the Stray bus to the Pakse Bus Station (stopping en-route at the Don Kralor Border to drop off passengers going to Cambodia).

Pakse Bus Station: Transfer from the Stray bus onto the bus that will carry you across the border into Thailand. Depart Pakse at 3:30pm.

Border crossing: When you arrive at the border, check with the driver if you will be changing vehicles or staying on the same one and follow their instructions. Then, you must exit the bus to stamp out of Laos and walk across the border to be stamped into Thailand. You may be charged a 10,000 kip departure fee. Once processed, return to your bus or board the new one depending on your driver’s instructions.

Ubon Ratchathani Bus Terminal: From the border, it will take 1-1.5 hours to reach the Ubon Bus Terminal. Go to Platform 2 (subject to change, your tour leader or our Stray Bangkok team will confirm with you in regards to the platform number that you need to go to. At the platform, our Stray representative, Mr. Subin will be waiting with a Stray sign to give you your bus tickets to Bangkok. (Just in case you do not see Mr. Subin, go to the information counter and ask to make a free call to the Stray Bangkok team on +66 8 0102 0165 for assistance).  Your bus will normally depart Ubon at 8:00pm (subject to change and to be confirmed by your tour leader or our Stray BKK team).

Arrive: You will arrive at the Mo Chit bus terminal in Bangkok at approximately 6:00am the next morning.

Stray top tip: Make sure you buy some snacks for the trip before you leave Don Det. Feel free to contact the Stray Bangkok team at bangkok@straytravel.asia or call them on +668 0102 0165 if you need any help on this journey.

Where to next?

  • Your Stray trip ends when you arrive in Bangkok unless you have purchased a Bangkok City Arrival Package (speak to your Tour Leader or contact bangkok@straytravel.asia for more info).
  • There is a taxi meter service at the Mo Chit station. A meter taxi to Khao San Road will cost you between 100-200 THB, depending on traffic.  Or simply make your way to the nearby MRT underground train station (Chatuchak station) or BTS sky train station (Mo Chit station) to get to the city center.  E.g. Siam center, MBK etc. 

Siem Reap (Cambodia) – Bangkok (Thailand)

Passes that include this sector: MekongKhmer

Total estimated travel time: 9 hours, depending on the border crossing that day, road conditions and traffic around the major cities.

How to book

  • Your Stray Cambodia Tour Leader will book this on your behalf. Let them know when you would like to travel.
  • Alternatively, e-mail the Stray Bangkok team: bangkok@straytravel.asia.

Timeline of the day

Pick-up & Departure: There are two options for this travel day – tell your Tour Leader which time you would like.

  • 7:30am pick-up from your Siem Reap accommodation, depart at 8:00am from the bus station.
  • 8:30am pick-up from your Siem Reap accommodation, depart at 9:00am from the bus station.

Border crossing: It is approximately a 3 hour drive from Siem Reap to the Poipet border. You must exit the bus to process through immigration, getting stamped out of Cambodia and into Thailand.

  • Take all of your luggage with you to be scanned.
  • This is a very busy border crossing, so please be patient!

Arrive: Arrival time at the Bangkok bus station is either around 4:30pm or 5:30pm based on the departure option you chose above (and subject to traffic conditions).

Where to next?

  • Your Stray trip ends when you arrive in Bangkok, unless you have purchased a Bangkok City Arrival Package (speak to your Tour Leader or contact bangkok@straytravel.asia for more info).
  • A metered taxi from the station to Khao San Road will cost you between 100-200 THB, depending on traffic or simply make your way to the nearby MRT underground train station (Chatuchak station) or BTS sky train station (Mo Chit station) to the city center.  E.g. Siam center, MBK etc.  

 

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