Telling someone NOT to drive somewhere in Thailand could be condemning them to an accident at the hands of another. The final choice must be up to them.
I certainly agree with you on choice. I also agree everyone has to determine their own risk/reward ratio. We can also agree taking the BTS or MRT when in BKK is safer than a taxi, bus or motorbike. Sitting in a car is much safer than renting a MB or using a moto taxi. No debate there. The debate comes down to: is a farang safer driving/riding themself or relying on Thai drivers and public transport? I will restate my position. For most TP members, renting a MB is a bad idea. When you factor in the chance of injury, the risk of theft and unscrupulous rental agents, the downside far outweighs the upside IMO.
I really fancied hiring one in Kanchanaburi. I don't ride in England but I do cycle. I've changed my mind though.
A friend of a friend recently came off their hired moped in Thailand. Apparently the rule is that smaller vehicles give way in Thailand so if there is a big lorry turning onto a main road you have to give way to the bigger vehicle. Worth noting for anyone who does plan on hiring one.
[ Edit: Edited on 02-Feb-2009, at 04:07 by wanderitch ]
I think you have made a good decision. Yes, motorbikes are fun to tool around on while in SEA. I have rented a MB almost every one of my 15 trips to SEA. But, there is a huge downside if you fall off, have an accident or the MB is stolen. My best advice while in SEA: take public transport and get as much metal around you as possible. Train & Skytrain over the bus, bus over minivan, minivan over a taxi, taxi over a motorbike. Good luck with your trip to SEA.
Wander - there is NO such "rule"