More Ubon Ratchathani history

In this blog entry Bob told us that he paid 24,000 baht for his new truck. I emailed him back and said that it seemed rather cheaper even 40 years ago so I asked him about other prices back then in the late 1960’s.

This is his reply. “In 1968, the American dollar was worth 20 baht. The Thais paid a housegirl 100 baht ($5.00) per month. You could ride the “baht bus” from camp to “downtown” Ubon for one baht (5 cents); a samlor cost 3 baht (15 cents) and a taxi cost 5 baht (25 cents). The waitresses at the clubs were paid 100 baht ($5.00) per month. They made more money in tips from the GIs. I thought the best fried rice was at the Playboy Club Restaurant for five baht (25 cents). A large bottle of Singha beer was 20 baht ($1.00) at the clubs or 13 baht (65 cents) at the open-air Thai restaurants. The best restaurant on the 9th floor of the Ubon Hotel served a great steak dinner for 30 baht ($1.50). I believe the beef was imported from Australia. You could get a Kobi steak dinner (huge hunk of meat) for 60 baht ($3.00). Gas cost about 2 baht (10 cents) per litre.”

Along with his reply he sent some more pics. Judging by some of the online comments received and some personal emails it would seem that a lot of readers are enjoying this series so I will keep it going.

He first of all sent two photos of a round-a-bout that used to exist on Upparat Road just north of the bridge over the Moon (Mun) River. The first picture was taken during the dry season and the other was taken during the rainy season.

In another email Bob wrote “I noticed on your blog that Michael Hare mentioned some information about buses in Ubon. I found a couple pictures of buses that I took in Ubon in 1968. I took the first picture near Base Supply (on base). This bus was free and was used to transport people around the base.”

“I took the second picture of a bus on the same road that runs in front of the Ubon Hotel and near the first intersection to the east of the hotel.”

“I took a lot of 35mm slides when I was in Ubon but the humidity caused some damage to them. I scanned them into my computer anyway. I imagine you have many Australians who follow your blog and perhaps some who were stationed at the base in the 60s. My picture 3 is of the inside of the Australian NCO club at Christmas 1967. Sorry about the poor quality of the print.”

4 responses to “More Ubon Ratchathani history

  1. More! More!

  2. This is great stuff, keep it coming! Makes me nostalgic for my first visit to Thailand in 1973 (lived in Hatyai and visited Chiang Mai and Sattahip along with Bangkok, but never made it up to the Korat Plateau or Ubon). However, the prices sound the same as in 1973.

  3. I have a picture of the Play Boy club in Ubon taken in 1966 when I was stationed there with the 8TFW. I’d like to send an attachment with the photo, but not sure what e-mail to attach it to. Have other photos of a F4 Phantom crash on the run way. Also a photo of the Lotus restaurant across the street from Indian Joe’s out door bar. A 40 oz. bottle of Segrans 7 was $1.70 on base. Three of us would drink the whole bottle in one setting.

    • Hi Jordan,
      I replied to your email but have not heard back from you yet. In case you see this message first then please do send me any photos that your might have. I would love to publish them as I know there are a lot of people interested (as well as myself) in this sort of history.

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