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Bangkok Launches Electric Boat and Motorcycle Taxi Services: Commute Innovation Begins in July

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Last August, commuters enjoyed traveling along Khlong Phadung Krung Kasem on boats. (Photo: Chanat Katanyu)

Get ready, Bangkok! Starting this July, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) is rolling out an innovative on-demand electric boat taxi service, promising to revolutionize your daily commute. This new service, unveiled by Krung Thep Thanakom Co (KT)—the BMA’s dynamic business wing—coincides with another major launch: the city-wide expansion of an app-based motorcycle taxi-hailing service.

The electric boat taxi service is engineered to seamlessly integrate with Bangkok’s existing electric rail systems, public buses, and motorcycle taxis. The primary goal? To boost Bangkok’s thriving tourism sector. Tharatporn Techakitkachorn, KT’s forward-thinking managing director, announced that the initial phase would commence in Khlong Phadung Krung Kasem and its tributaries, including Khlong Bang Lamphu, starting next month.

“Once we have fully deployed the city-wide service,” Mr. Tharatporn explained, “electric boat taxis will be cruising along several main canals like Khlong Lat Phrao.” He further detailed that these taxis can be hailed effortlessly through a specialized application, with fare calculations based on travel distance. Negotiations are currently underway with electric boat manufacturers to determine styles and prices for six- to ten-seat vessels. For the trial run in July, two cutting-edge prototype boats will be put into service.

And that’s not all on the transportation front! The BMA’s motorcycle taxi-hailing app, already in a pilot phase across four districts of Bangkok, is set to expand dramatically. Mr. Tharatporn noted that around 5,000 registered taxi motorcycles and 90,000 independently licensed riders will soon join the system, making it incredibly convenient for passengers to hail a ride with just a few taps on their smartphones.

Presently, most motorcycle taxi services can only be accessed through certain app-based delivery service platforms. However, the new BMA hailing app stands apart by exclusively focusing on motorcycle taxis, ensuring wide coverage across Bangkok. Mr. Tharatporn assured that fares would be reasonably regulated by KT, providing a fair and consistent service to all riders.

With these pioneering initiatives, Bangkok is poised to enhance its urban mobility dramatically. Explore the city in new, sustainable ways while contributing to a greener, smarter Bangkok!


  1. sara23 June 9, 2024

    Electric boats and motorcycle taxis sound like a great way to reduce pollution! Finally, Bangkok is taking steps towards a greener future.

    • David H. June 9, 2024

      True, but I wonder how reliable these services will be. The infrastructure needs to be top-notch to make it work.

      • sara23 June 9, 2024

        Good point. Hopefully, the authorities have planned everything out properly. It’s a big step, so fingers crossed!

      • Paul W. June 9, 2024

        The key is maintenance. If they don’t keep up with repairs and updates, this will be just another failed experiment.

  2. steve_the_gamer June 9, 2024

    These services are just gimmicks. They won’t solve traffic problems. What Bangkok needs is a better public transport system.

    • Vivian June 9, 2024

      Think about it, though. By diversifying transport options, they might actually alleviate some pressure on the current systems.

    • Janice June 9, 2024

      Totally agree! Multiple transport options might be just what we need to ease congestion.

    • Maxwell G. June 9, 2024

      Bangkok’s traffic is notorious, but integrating these services with existing transport could make a difference.

    • steve_the_gamer June 9, 2024

      Maybe, but I’m still skeptical. History shows these projects often don’t deliver as promised.

  3. Joanna Lee June 9, 2024

    An app for motorcycle taxis makes so much sense. It’ll make it so much easier for tourists to get around.

    • AF June 10, 2024

      Yet another app on top of Grab, Boat etc that already have bike riders.. I don’t get it, who thinks up these strategies.

  4. carlos9 June 9, 2024

    Wait, are they saying 90,000 independent riders will use the app? That’s a crazy number! How are they going to manage that?

    • Tech Guy June 9, 2024

      Managing scale like that is tricky. They need a super robust system to handle it.

    • Elena June 9, 2024

      Exactly! If the app crashes or malfunctions, it could cause a lot of chaos.

    • carlos9 June 9, 2024

      Yeah, they’d really need to ensure it runs smoothly. Glitches could ruin the whole user experience.

  5. Andy Read June 9, 2024

    This sounds like a dangerous mix. Electric boats are fine, but an on-demand motorcycle service? Accident rates are going to skyrocket.

    • Megan T. June 9, 2024

      People already ride motorcycles in Bangkok without an app. This could actually make it safer by regulating fares and riders.

    • CyclingJay June 9, 2024

      Megan’s right. Regulation might bring some discipline to the chaos on the roads.

    • Andy Read June 9, 2024

      I hope so, but I’m still not convinced. We’ll see how it pans out.

    • AF June 10, 2024

      am I the only one aware that Grab and other apps already have bike riders ..

  6. GreenFan2023 June 9, 2024

    Electric vehicles are the future! Can’t wait to see these services in action.

  7. Tommy C. June 9, 2024

    Will the boats be affordable, though? Innovations like these often come with a higher price tag.

    • Sophie M. June 9, 2024

      They claim the fares will be regulated, but who knows? We’ll have to wait and see.

  8. Amelia Jones June 9, 2024

    I’m excited about the electric boat taxis. It sounds like a relaxing way to commute.

  9. Nate June 9, 2024

    Does anyone know how environmentally friendly these boats and motorcycles actually are?

    • EcoWarrior June 9, 2024

      Electric vehicles are generally much better for the environment compared to gas-powered ones.

    • Green Thumb June 9, 2024

      Exactly. Less pollution and noise. Win-win!

  10. Steve June 9, 2024

    As long as the boats don’t clog up the canals. Could be a nightmare for Bangkok’s waterways.

  11. Linda M. June 9, 2024

    It’s about time Bangkok embraced electric transportation. Other cities are already ahead in this game.

  12. Hunter G. June 9, 2024

    Don’t be fooled! These projects are just ways for big companies to make money.

  13. Levi June 9, 2024

    This will be really useful for tourists. It’s hard to navigate the city as it is.

  14. Bong June 9, 2024

    This app for motorcycle taxis sounds like it will make it easier for us locals too.

  15. Jess W. June 9, 2024

    I wonder how this will impact the traditional taxi drivers. They already have a hard time.

  16. Carlos Santana June 9, 2024

    Are there any plans to expand this to other cities in Thailand?

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