Flood prevention officials in Thailand have announced that Bangkok will be spared from flooding. The announcement came after it was confirmed that flood barriers in the main part of the city had done their job and much of the feared run-off from further north has already passed into the Gulf of Thailand. October 16-18 was seen as the critical period for Bangkok with run-off from further north combining with high tides. From a tourist point of view this is good news with the main tourist, downtown and commercial areas avoiding the floods. Unfortunately, some residential and industrial areas outside of the flood barriers in the northern and eastern suburbs of Bangkok haven’t been so lucky with flooding occurring in a number of districts.
All of the main tourist attractions in Bangkok are open as usual. Boats and ferries are running on the Chao Phraya River although it is possible you might get your feet wet at some of the piers where water has washed over. Metro and Skytrain services are also running normally. Train services to the north of Thailand remain suspended because of flooding to the north of Bangkok and some bus services to central and northern Thailand may also be subject to cancellations and delays or extended journey times. Bangkok international airport has been operating normally and there are no reported problems on the routes that lead to the downtown or central areas where most tourists stay.
Another high tide is due at the end of this month, but by the time that arrives even more of the run-off will have flowed into the sea and Bangkok’s river and canal levels should have dropped significantly. This means that there should be no risk of flooding in most of Bangkok. However, localised flash flooding is still possible just about anywhere in Bangkok between now and the end of the month in the event of torrential rain which can temporarily back up storm drains and drainage channels. This usually clears away quite quickly and should not be confused with flooding from the river or canals.