Phuket, Thailand

Getting In


By Plane

Phuket International Airport is located in northern Phuket and is Thailand's second busiest airport after Bangkok. There are frequent flights to and from Bangkok as well as direct flights between other airports in the region including Singapore and Kuala Lumpur. There are also charter flights in high season from cities in Europe and Asia including the Scandinavian countries, Russia, Sweden, Taiwan and Korea.

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International Flights
International flights to Phuket include from the following countries:

  • Australia - Flights by Air Asia (via Kuala Lumpur), Jetstar (direct or via Singapore) and Tiger Airways (via Singapore) from major cities in Singapore.
  • Malaysia - Flights by AirAsia from Kuala Lumpur (LCCT), FireFly (using small ATR-Turboprop aircraft) from Penang and Malaysia Airlines from Kuala Lumpur. 
  • Singapore - Flights by SilkAir, AirAsia and Tiger Airways from Singapore.
  • Indonesia - Flights by AirAsia from Jakarta (Java) and Denpasar (Bali).
  • Hong Kong - Flights by Thai Airways, Dragonair and AirAsia from Hong Kong, with connections from many cities across the world.
  • Korea - Flights by Asiana Airlines and Korean Air have non-stop services to Phuket from Seoul, with connections from Japan and North America.
  • Taiwan - Flights by China Airlines from Taipei, with connections from Japan, Korea and the Americas.
  • Scandinavia - Flights by Thai Airways from Copenhagen and Stockholm.
  • United Arab Emirates - Flights by Emirates from Dubai.
  • Qatar - Flights by Qatar Airways from Doha.

Phuket International Airport by F3rn4nd0

Domestic Flights
There are direct flights to Phuket from several major cities in Thailand:

  • AirAsia flies to Phuket from Chiang Mai direct twice a day, affording an opportunity to combine a beach holiday with experiencing the wildlife and exotic cultures of northern Thailand. The airline also has flights from Bangkok, Udon Thani and Ubon Ratchathani. 
  • Bangkok Airways has a monopoly on direct flights between Phuket and U-Tapao International Airport (near Pattaya) and Koh Samui. They also have several flights a day from Bangkok.
  • Thai Airways has several flights a day from Thailand's capital of Bangkok and once daily from the northern city of Chiang Mai.
  • Together Nok Air and Orient Thai offers several flights a day from Bangkok.

Note that from Bangkok, Thai Airways and Bangkok Airways fly from Suvarnabhumi Airport whereas AirAsia, Nok Air and Orient Thai fly from Don Muang Airport.

Thai Airways flight in Phuket by Andy Mitchell

Ground Transport
To get from Phuket Airport to your destination on the island, there are several options:

There is a municipal airport bus (air-conditioned) service operating from 6:30 am to 8:45 pm. departing every 60-90 minutes to Phuket Town. The fare is 85 baht and the journey takes one hour. Local buses run from there and the Ranong Street Market to all the major beaches until around 18:00 for 25-40 baht. The bus will stop anywhere along its route if you signal the driver.

The minibus services are good value and faster than the municipal buses. To Phuket Town the fare is around 100 baht, Patong 150 baht and Kata Beach 180 baht. If you miss the first group of buses, you may have to wait until the next plane arrives because the buses don't leave until they are full. The minibuses will often stop at a travel agent along the way. They'll ask you where you're staying and try to sell you a hotel. You're not obligated and just name the hotel that you booked. They will inform the driver who will drop you off at the hotel. A little annoying but over in 10 minutes.

There are metered (yellow) taxis as you exit the airport building (ignore the touts) and you'll see a stand. Tell your destination to the staff at the stand and they will give you a paper with the taxi driver number in case you need to report a problem. Fares to destinations in Phuket cost 600 baht upwards. The rate is what is displayed by the meter plus a 100 baht airport fee. You may stumble upon a freelance taxi driver that will take you from the airport to Patong for a flat fee of 450 baht.

The blue limousine taxis from the airport are expensive, costing 600-700 baht to Patong and around 800 baht to Phuket Town. The airport co-op booth tucked away towards the back is a little cheaper than the competition. It is likely that your limousine will also stop at a travel agent trying to sell you hotel rooms and as well as tours. Before you purchase your fare, insist that you do not want to stop at any travel agency along the way, though they will try to justify the stop.

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