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The Complete Thailand Driving and Rental Guide

Hiring a car to drive in Thailand can be very pleasant as highways are well maintained throughout the country. However, when you are driving in the big cities, heavy traffic may make your road trip far more challenging. This brief guide will provide a complete cover-up aiming to help you when planning a trip to Thailand.

  • Speed Limit and Traffic Signs
  • Seatbelt and Child Safety
  • Parking, Fuel and Toll
  • Traffic Violation
  • Driving Licence and Age Requirements

Speed Limit and Traffic Signs

Driving in Thailand is on the left-hand side of the road. Some driving norms in Thailand can somewhat be seen as particular depending where you come from. For instance, tailgating is quite common and accepted by the locales, and people often cut each other off or cut into lines of cars.

Speed Limit

The speed limits for Thailand are 90 km/h on open roads, 50km/h in towns and 120km/h in motorways unless signs say otherwise.

Traffic Signs

There are mainly three types of road signs in Thailand, including regulatory signs, warning signs, and informational signs. 

Thailand regulatory signs have different shapes, most of them featuring red border and white background. Note that the Stop Sign is written in Thai language instead of English or by pictogram, but a typical Octagon is applied to imply its meaning like most of the countries.

Thailand_Traffic_Sign_StopStop(Thai Language)Thailand_Traffic_Sign_Give_Way_Thai_LanguageGive Way(Thai Language)Thailand_Traffic_Sign_Slow_DownSlow Down(Thai Language)Thailand_Traffic_Sign_No_OvertakingNo OvertakingThailand_Traffic_Sign_Give_Way_To_Oncoming_Vehicles_Used_To_Traffic_Bottleneck_PointsGive Way to Oncoming Vehicles Used to Traffic Bottleneck Points

Thailand warning signs mostly feature a yellow background with black pictogram.

Thailand_Traffic_Sign_HumpHumpThailand_Traffic_Sign_Divided_Road__BeginsDivided Road BeginsThailand_Traffic_Sign_Divided_Road_EndsDivided Road EndsThailand_Traffic_Sign_Pedestrian_CrossingPedestrian CrossingThailand_Traffic_Sign_Wild_Animals_CrossingWild Animals CrossingThailand_Traffic_Sign_No_Overtake_ZoneNo Overtake Zone

Thailand information signs are blue with rectangular or square shapes.

Thailand_Traffic_Sign_Dead_EndDead EndThailand_Traffic_Sign_ClinicClinicThailand_Traffic_Sign_End_of_MotorwayEnd of Motorway
*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Seatbelt and Child Safety

Seatbelt Laws

A new law has come into effect from the 5th of April 2017, stating that passengers in the rear seat of a car are now required to wear seatbelts in addition to the driver and front seat passenger. Failure to do so can result in a fine of up to 500 Thai Baht.

Booster Seat Laws

The Thailand law states that children should be restrained in an age-appropriate system. Children under 12 years old should not sit in the front of a vehicle. 

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Parking, Fuel and Toll

Parking

Because of the heavy traffic, parking in some Thai cities can be difficult to find. Parking rules and rates are usually marked on signs with English translations in tourist areas.


· Permitted Parking


- White rectangle on the road indicates a designated car parking space. Many shops, malls, restaurants, sights and hotels offer to park and if payment is needed, it will not be expensive.


- Yellow and white markings indicate a short-term parking space only, for usually no more than five minutes. These markings also indicate a bus stop. It is therefore not advised to park there.


· No Parking


- Red and white markings indicate a no parking zone, which means cars may not park here.

Thailand Parking Red and White Markings(Image from shutterstock.com)


- Multiple white diagonal lines indicate parking spaces for motorcycles only and no cars can park here.

Thailand Multiple white diagonal lines

Fuel Prices

The average price for Thailand gasoline price between July and November 2017 was 34.36 Thai Baht, and diesel was 26.79 on 4th Dec.2017.

Toll

Only the big Bangkok-area expressways demand electronic payment, while cash can be used in other places. The usual charge is between 40 and 50 Thai baht. If you do not have an electronic sensor (automatic deduction), do not go to the easy pass lane with blue marks on the ground.


Failing to pay the toll in time may lead to the car rental company paying on your behalf by debiting your credit card, charging a total amount of the toll fee and its management fee from your credit card. Please be aware that this management fee can be costly.  

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Traffic Violation

DUI Laws

Drivers who have had their licenses for over five years are allowed to have a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) of up to 0.05% when behind the wheel, while divers under 20 years are only allowed to have maximal BAC of 0.02%. A hefty fine of 60,000 THB and/or a 6-month prison sentence will be applied in case of DUI.


Foreigners driving after an excessive consumption of alcohol may also risk being deported, depending on the severity of the case.

Traffic Fines

Speeding fines in Thailand are between 200 THB to 400 THB. Parking in the wrong place or exceeding the time allowed will result in a parking ticket. Finally, parking in a non-parking area may result in a fine of 200 Thai Baht


Some of the fines can be paid on the spot. In case you have not paid a fine, your car hire company will collect the fine’s charge as well as an added administration fee directly from your credit card. 


Should you have questions in terms of traffic fines collection, you are always welcome to contact QEEQ for assistance. 

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Driving Licence and Age Requirements

As a tourist or visitor driving or renting a car in Thailand, it is necessary to have a valid foreign driving licence with a photograph. Many car hire companies require a full driving licence held for a minimum of 2 years with no major endorsements. 


If your domestic driving licence is not in English (Arabic, Japanese, Cyrillic etc), an International Driving Permit (IDP/IDL) or an official translation in English or Thai is required when you drive in Thailand. Please note that an International Driving Permit (often referred to as an International Driving Licence) does not replace the requirement for a regular driving licence. And you must carry your current overseas driver’s licence, IDP or translation with you all the time when driving in Thailand.


Minimum age in Thailand is 21 years(age may vary by car category). If you're 21-25, you are likely to have to pay a young driver fee. If you're 65 or older, you may have to pay a senior driver fee.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Guest reviews

1 /
M.Cahill

November 30, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

10Simple and easy- no fuss

Good value

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T.Khanna

November 28, 2022

Destination: Koh Samui

10Great!

Excellent team at Koh Samui Airport. Thank you.

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November 24, 2022

Destination: Koh Samui

9.7very good.

Good service.

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Noii

November 24, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

10Great!

Good staff and new car.

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November 24, 2022

Destination: Krabi

9Excellent

Enhance ur drop off place, eg: provide the clear instructions how to find drop off place and put big sign board in drop off place. Separate domestic and international drop off point.

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S.Charansarn

November 22, 2022

Destination: Chiang Mai

9.3Excellent

good experince

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November 15, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

8Good and fun, will book again with QEEQ as it get better price

The car condition hope can improve, the engine sounds loud and the car don't look like well maintained

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Aaron Tan

November 14, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

9.3Excellent

Would be better if you called them upon arrival, we had to walk to a different pick up point. Other then that, everything was smooth. Recommended!

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E.Siswanto

November 14, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

10Easy, convenient car rental service and process

Excellent

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อนิรุธ สาราลักษณ์

November 13, 2022

Destination: Chiang Rai

10Excellent

Easy!

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Alan Chua

November 13, 2022

Destination: Chiang Mai

8.7Very Good

Budget car rental price is very good.

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S.Wongsa

November 12, 2022

Destination: Khon Kaen

7.7Good

Car company it not at the airport, I didn’t get phone number to call when I arrived

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J.Chiu

November 9, 2022

Destination: Phuket

6.3average

On return, staff was not sure about the damages the car already carried, and asked me if it was new. I had to load up photos takens during pick up to show the damage was already there. this would be a dispute had i not taken pictures as proof. Rear wind screen is covered with a film that made viewing unclear.

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Y.Rong Wah

November 8, 2022

Destination: Chiang Rai

5Average

I already paid the car rental. And when I arrived still charge me 1440 baht for no reason. And gas not even full fuel. And ask me return for full fuel. I will never book again

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m.Tse

November 6, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

9.3Convenient

Staffs was very nice.

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J.Lee

October 27, 2022

Destination: Phuket

8.7Good trip but will be even greater with a safer car

The car back windscreen and 2 front 2 windows were blur and quite a driving hazard. Good to do something about it.

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T.Noisri

October 26, 2022

Destination: Phuket

8Very Good

There is many ants are in the car. Seems like the car is not clean properly.

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D.Tan

October 24, 2022

Destination: Krabi

9Overall good!

The drop off took over an hour as the office did not open until 7:30 am, but our flight was 8:25 am. Good thing Krabi Airport is small, so there was no problem going through security checks and going to boarding gate.

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October 19, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

3Poor

Terrible staff at the counter (night shift). I will not come back to use the service again.

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S.Lim

October 11, 2022

Destination: Krabi

9.3Good Experience with QEEQ and Keddy Europcar

While my booking was for a Nissan Almera (1500cc), I was given a Toyota Yaris (1200cc). The reason given to me was that the Nissan was not available. Other than that, experience with Keddy was good with smooth handing and taking over, and the car was ok to drive around Krabi - just need a little more pressure on the accelerator if you are overtaking.

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October 11, 2022

Destination: Khon Kaen

10Excellent

Good service, I like it

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D.Hopkins

October 10, 2022

Destination: Khon Kaen

9.7An excellent experience with QEEQ and Thai Rent A Car.

It’s the 2nd time I’ve used Thai Rent A Car at Khon Kaen airport and both times I’ve been very happy with the counter staff. They are very helpful and the process was very quick to collect and return the car. I was definitely use them again.

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P.Choocheepwattana

October 4, 2022

Destination: Phuket

10Excellent

I had to pay 300 THB upfront on early return fee

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September 27, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

10Very good service

Car condition was excellent and staff were also very professional and service oriented.

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September 27, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

9.7Fantastic experience and Service

Picking up the car was a smooth process. Staff was also very polite and service oriented. However, cleanliness of the car can be improved.

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September 26, 2022

Destination: Phuket

8Would do it again.

I got a larger car then booked, and had a lot of space. the car itself was well used and had lots of damage and since I picked it up late night I couldn't see all of it in the dark, so I was a bit nervous what would happen at drop off, but staff was easy and swift and no issues.

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LK

September 26, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

10Great experience

Easy and fast. Staffs are helpful. The car is good.

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LK

September 26, 2022

Destination: Chiang Rai

10Great!

The car is great. Staff is very helpful.

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LK

September 26, 2022

Destination: Nakorn Si Thamarat

10Everything is great.

The car was great.

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F.Lovas

September 23, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

8Overall it was great minor car issue with engine coming on after 2 days but new car was dropped off

No they needed to replace my after just 2 days engine problems My first car was below standard 2nd car was great

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P.Hirunyanont

September 22, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

9.3Excellent

Very nice staff and a good car. Easy on check-in and drop off.

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P.Manosoi

September 20, 2022

Destination: Khon Kaen

10Excellent

Good condition simple one. I would recommend to have censored at the back these day I think it’s a must.

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J.Lee

September 7, 2022

Destination: Phuket

7.3Happy traveler

We got to Phuket 7:40pm and the counter was closed. Had to call to meet the agent who was at the carpark. Fast and quick getting the car. BUT be very careful to inspect the vehicle for damages and point out every dents as on return they will try find something wrong to charge you. I had taken a video and luckily the previous client left their Invoice in the car and managed to prove the damage was already there before us. Vehicle well cleaned and in good condition.

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September 7, 2022

Destination: Phuket

8Very Good

ThaiRentACar does not recognized the fact that we have included full insurance in our booking and insist to collect an amount as deposit to cover damage claims if any. This can be inconvenient.

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ying nujaree

September 4, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

8.7Very Good

รถตามรุ่นแต่อยากให้มีรุ่นใหม่ๆ กว่านี้หรืออัพเกรดเครื่องเสียงในรถ

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D.Clinch

August 22, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

9.7Very please with the whole experience

Very pleased with fortuner - reasonably new and very clean. Well serviced and maintained with good features. Staff were efficient, friendly and helpful.

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T.KURIMOTO

August 18, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

9.3THAI RENT A CAR is No1

いつも使ってますが。受け渡しも引き取りもいつも早いです。信頼できる安心感があるので、他は考えられない

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August 16, 2022

Destination: Udon Thani

8.7Very Good

ขั้นตอนการรับรถใช้เวลาค่อนข้างนาน ประมาณ 20 นาที รอเอกสาร และเซ็นต์หลายใบ

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CHEE

August 16, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

7.3Easy to Book, Fast Pickup and Dropoff.

The counter staff was friendly, knowledgeable and clear with all instructions on car pickup, return, etc. Everything was fuss free and driver details were checked before confirmation.

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August 5, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

7.3Good

Should be more generous if the car is returned later. I wrote the flight arrives 12.30 hs, the booking was made 12 hs, which is not possible to pick up a car, when the flight arrives 12.30 hs. Then all the extra hours were charged. Many other companies do not charge up to 3 extra hours!

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July 22, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

7.3まぁまぁでした

車内をもう少し清潔にしてほしい

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A.Rimmington

July 19, 2022

Destination: Phuket

10Deposit not refunded

Deposit not refunded

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M.Aldhlaan

July 17, 2022

Destination: Phuket

10The perfect road trip.

Excellent service with unbelievable conditions, zero excess and another city drop-off with no extra charge. Counter staff were super nice in pick up and were extremely helpful when dropping off and we forget a power bank they drive back to the airport to return it. Extremely happy with the experience and highly recommended company.

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KW

July 11, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

9Convenient. No issues.

We ordered a Pejaro but got an equivalent: Fortuner which met out needs. At one time we had five persons with 5 golf bags and 5 hand carries and there was no problem with space. One of our friends returned the car at departure hall and called Thai Rent A Car staff. It was convenient. We returned ours at Floor 1 Gate 6. It was complicated to get there as there were no helpful signages. Perhaps it might be more convenient to allow customers to return at the departure area.

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Firdhaus

July 6, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

10Satisfied

Fast, smooth and seamless.

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N.METHAPIPATKUL

July 5, 2022

Destination: Chiang Mai

9.7Excellent

nice that insurance is included in the rent, other companies try to squeeze extra money to buy extra insurance while all cars already have one.

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A.Gandhi

July 5, 2022

Destination: Phuket

8Loved the experience and would do same more often

Reasonable

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H.Pudjo

June 20, 2022

Destination: Bangkok

8.3Very Good

Very good service, we will come back

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S.Kongmun

June 14, 2022

Destination: Khon Kaen

10Excellent

Everything is good

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TRT

July 12, 2022

Destination: Phuket

10Fantastic... totally painless.

Well done, was totally satisfied with the entire process.

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Best car rental deals in Thailand

Best rates found by QEEQ users in the last 30 days.

Frequently asked questions

Q1.What is an insurance excess?

The excess is the amount you'll only be liable for in case of damage(under Collision Damage Waiver) or theft(under Theft Protection) of the vehicle.
Information about the excess will be clearly stated in the price inclusion when you reserve a car on QEEQ.

Q2. How can I add an addtional driver?

You are advised to make a request upon your arrival at the rental counter. Additional charge per day will incur unless '1 Additional Driver Included' is stipulated on the rental.
Please note that the same licence and age requirement applys to the additonal driver. The addtional driver is supposed to present the required licence document along with the main driver at pickup.

Q3.What if I want to pick up or drop off my rental car out of office hours?

QEEQ will show you the car offers available at your chosen time on the search results.
However, pick-up or drop-off out of general opening hours may subject to an extra fee unless self-service pick-up or drop-off is available.
After you reserve a car on QEEQ, we will inform you of specific policy of the car hire company by email.

Q4. Can I take the hired car to another country or cross border?

If you want to pick up your car in one country and drop it in another, your search results will show you cars you can do that with.
If you're planning to cross any borders during your trip, bear in mind:
1. You may have to pay more.
There are often extra fees, taxes or additional cover you'll pay at the car hire counter.
2.It may not be allowed.
Depending on where you're hiring, you may not be able to take your car to another country.
Please email us if you want to take your hire car into a different country during your trip, and we'll talk you through your options.

Q5. Can I pick up my car at one location and return it at different location?

Yes. You can pick up the vehicle in one place and drop it off in another. An ‘one-way fee’ will incur. Whether it is inclued in the rental price or what additional cost may arise will be clearly stated at the time of booking on QEEQ.
Please inform the car hire company of your drop-off location when you pick up the vehicle or contact them directly during your trip. You will find a phone number on the rental agreement you signed at pickup.

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