Date: 21st November 2012
The plan for today was to rent two bikes and ride all the way to Promthep Cape, a popular viewpoint at the southern tip of Phuket island. But after breakfast, we first walked towards Patong beach.
It wasn’t too crowded and we got our feet wet for a while
The skies weren’t the brightest today, and we decided we would hit the waters when it got warmer
We then went around looking for bike rentals. I had already read up on scams in Phuket and one of the most common advices handed out were to avoid the vehicle rentals on Beach Road.
I don’t remember if it was originally ฿300 baht for 24 hours, but we ended up renting two of these Honda Click bikes at ฿150 each. We told them we would return them by 7pm-ish.
Be careful when you rent any vehicle in Thailand, especially Phuket. Vehicle rental scams are common here and don’t go by the cheapest rate being offered. The scammers make money by claiming you scratched the vehicle upon return, when in reality, the scratch was always there — you just didn’t notice it when you took it. The going rate for a Honda Click and like are around 200-300 baht a day. The place we rented from was right next to our hotel and she insisted I hand over my passport (original) as security. I usually never agree to that, but she gave me a form to fill up stating she would return it upon giving the bike back, and provided there are no damages/scratches on the bike. It’s an agreement I had to sign and she put my passport in a password-protected locker.
You may find other places that just request a passport copy, but we bargained it down to ฿150 because we didn’t need the bike for 24 hours. So handing over my passport was something I had to agree to as part of the bargain. I also took photos of the bike from all angles in front of her. Something I always do before even starting the engine.
I carried a map of Phuket and Ramesh had Google Maps on his Nexus. We drove down Walking Street, which is open to traffic during the day.
Walking Street was awfully quiet as all the bars open late
We were going across the hill over to Karon beach
I hoped the skies would clear up
And sure enough, it did
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