Koh Chang Banks
Koh Chang did have branches of all the major Thai banks in White Sand Beach but due to the pandemic, many have shut – either temporarily or permanently, still too early to say.
Bangkok Bank (next to Advice Shop opposite Koh Chang Lagoon) and Krung Thai (opposite the mini Pattaya bar zone) are still in operation. Normal hours are 08.30 to 15.30, Monday to Friday. They both used to also open at weekends but this may be currently affected by the lack of customers.
In Chai Chet, at the front of VJ Plaza, there is a sub branch of Siam Commercial Bank with a foreign exchange counter. In Klong Prao Beach, opposite the 7/11 just before the temple, the Government Savings Bank operates an exchange and Siam City Bank has a small branch/exchange near to the 7/11 at the northern end of Kai Bae Beach.
Resorts and bungalows may also change money but their rate is not as competitive as the banks themselves.
Banks in Koh Chang buy dollars but are reluctant to sell them, so if you are going to Cambodia and need dollars, then ask around in shops and resorts local to you, change money over in Trat or take baht.
Koh Kood and Koh Mak do have a ATMs, but they frequently run out. Some resorts on both of those islands do offer cash off credit cards for 3% to 5%.
Koh Chang Mobile Phones
Mobile telephone coverage is excellent across the island, with both 3G, 4G and 5G available. Using your own phone is not a problem, but it will be very expensive.
If international roaming is turned on, the phone is constantly connected to the data network, meaning astronomical bills are run up in a very short space of time. Check with your carrier before you leave for the best tariff and when in Thailand, switch international roaming off when not needed and use the wifi connection for your internet.
The better option is park your number, remove your sim card and replace it with pre-paid sims or pay-as-you-go sims from companies such as Dtac (Happy), AIS (12Call) and True Move. As you emerge from Customs in Arrivals Level 2 Suvarnabhumi Airport, you’ll find them all in a line. The prices range from 50bt to 300bt for the card, with all sorts of different options, packages and credits. You need to give your passport details.
Internet shops on the island will make international calls for you at 20bt to 40bt upwards per minute, depending on the country. Cambodia is particularly expensive.
Another way is to use dial-around numbers, which work with either your own sim or with a new sim as above, see the respective companies websites (which have English translations) for details. AIS, for example, uses 00500 + country code + city code + number with rates at 5bt to 10bt a minute.
The dialing code from Thailand is 001 + country code + city code (dropping the zero) + number. To Thailand, it is 00 66 or +66 + city code (dropping the zero) + number. Area codes for Bangkok are 02, for Trat and Koh Chang, 039. Most mobile numbers begin 08 or 06.
For mobile repairs and advice, try either of the shops, TS-Mobile opposite Tesco’s (after the temple) in Klong Prao or OG-IT opposite Morgan in Kai Bae. OG-IT repairs laptops as well. Repair of Apple phones can be more problematic as they often need to be sent away.
Big C in Pearl Beach also has a useful phone accessories franchise just inside by the door.
Koh Chang Internet
Koh Chang now has fiber optic internet, with speeds up to 100Mbps/30Mbps but not all places will have upgraded from the older ADSL. Almost every resort has WiFi in the common areas and inside your rooms, but connections and speeds, even in the luxury spots, can be poor.
There are still some internet shops on the island with rates at 1bt a minute, 40bt an hour. Printing is 5bt to 10bt a sheet for b/w, with colour maybe double. Fax machines are rare but the best place to look is within the larger hotels and resorts, which have business centres for the guests. Costs are as much as 50bt per page.
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