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How to get from Ho Chi Minh to Phnom Penh
When you want to travel from Ho Chi Minh to Phnom Penh, you have 2 options: you can cross the border overland by bus, or take a flight. A bus ride takes about 6 hours and costs around $12. Flying takes only 1 hour, but remember you will lose a lot of time to travel from and to the airport and have to be there 2 hours earlier!
Taking the bus is also a lot more sustainable for the environment. Taking the bus vs flying is often ten times less polluting than taking a flight on short distances like this.
2 ways to get from Ho Chi Minh to Phnom Penh
|Bus||6 hours||280,000 VND ($12)||Check Bus Tickets|
|Flight||1hr + travel to/from airport||1,550,000 VND ($59)||Check Flights|
Another advantage of taking the bus from Ho Chi Minh to Phnom Penh is the experience of course. Crossing the border overland makes you more aware that you are travelling to a new country. This is when the new chapter of your trip starts.
Continue reading for a more detailed description of your options to travel to Phnom Penh.
Ho Chi Minh to Phnom Penh by Bus
A cross-border trip offers a new travel experience. Why not have at least one in your itinerary? This route from Ho Chi Minh to Phnom Penh is one of the more popular ones and is also pretty straightforward.
Some popular bus companies that operate this route include Mekong Express and Giant Ibis Transport, Sinh Tourist. If you prefer a cheaper option you can also opt for Sorya bus. Their tickets cost only $12 and include pick-up if you are staying in District 1 in Ho Chi Minh.
The journey takes about 6 hours. See here an overview of the preferred bus companies:
Bus schedule from Ho Chi Minh to Phnom Penh
+ free pick-up
|280.000 VND ($12)|
Check Bus Tickets
|315.000 VND ($13.50)|
Check Bus Tickets
|The Sinh Tourist||06:30-12:30|
|325.000 VND ($14)|
Check Bus Tickets
|350.000 VND ($15)|
Check Bus Tickets
|Giant Ibis Transport||08:00-14:30||445.000 VND ($19)|
Check Bus Tickets
- Departs from the Sorya Bus Station along Phạm Ngũ Lão Street (backpacker street) in the city centre, or free pick-up in district 1
- Arrives at the Sorya theatre, close to the railway in the city centre
- Departs from Kumho Samco Bus Station along Phạm Ngũ Lão Street, near Elois Hotel in the city centre
- Arrives at Preah Sihanouk Boulevard, near Canadia Bank in the city centre
The Sinh Tourist
- Departs from the Sinh Tourist office along Đường Đề Thám Street in the city centre
- Arrives along House 315 & 307, Preah Sihanouk Blvd. in the city centre
- Departs from the Mekong Express Limousine Bus Station along Phạm Ngũ Lão Street in the city centre
- Arrives at the Mekong Express Limousine Bus Station near Chroy Changvar II Bridge in the city centre
Giant Ibis Transport
- Departs from the Giant Ibis Bus Station, along Phạm Ngũ Lão Street in the city centre
- Arrives at Giant Ibis Bus Terminal near Sisowath Quay in the city centre
Sapaco Limousine Bus
Some bus companies also operate vans through this route. While these can be quite uncomfortable, the one from Sapaco will be a totally different experience. This Limousine Bus offers a luxurious van trip for 420.000 VND ($18).
In our opinion, it’s worth spending a few extra bucks!
Vans leave at 6:00, 6:30 and 7:00 in the morning. There is also one afternoon trip leaving at 14:30.
Immigration Stop and Bathroom Breaks
There are 5 immigration points along the Vietnam-Cambodia border, but most buses pass through the Bavet/Moc Bai Border.
This entry point sells a visa on arrival for travellers who need a visa to enter Cambodia. Usually, the bus personnel will assist their passengers with the entry process. If not, you have to line up on your own. It’s not a very organised process, but you’ll make it through.
Most buses don’t stop for bathroom breaks before you reach the border. The first stop will likely be after you have just crossed the border. Here, you can also order a meal or buy some snacks with your last Vietnamese Dongs.
Tip: Always keep a lookout for the bus personnel or fellow travellers from your bus so you don’t get lost.
Ho Chi Minh to Phnom Penh by Flight
Many people book a flight when travelling to another country. The advantage is that the flight only takes 1 hour and that both airports are located within the city.
However, if you include the time you need to travel to/from the airport and the extra 2 hours you need to be there in advance, it will take more or less the same time as the bus.
If you still want to take a flight, you can book one from 1,370,000 VND ($59) but get more expensive closer to the travel date. Cambodia Angkor Air, Vietnam Airlines and Qatar Airways offer few trips daily.
Visit the Phnom Penh Airport page to find out the airport to the centre of Phnom Penh.
Our favourite places to stay in Phnom Penh
Sla Boutique Hostel - Budget Friendly
Sla Boutique hostel is located just around the corner from the Royal Palace and there are many street food stalls nearby. The staff are very helpful and willing to arrange joint rides for guests to S21 or the Killing Fields. In the dorms, curtains and lockers are provided for extra privacy.
Double Bed from $11
Onederz Hostel - Mid Range
Located along the lively riverside area, you’ll ﬁnd plenty of restaurants, bars, and street food options around Onederz Hostel. The clean and comfortable rooms are perfect to get a rest, while the rooftop bar invites you to enjoy a cold beer and socialize with other guests!
Standard Double Room from $26
TAO Riverside Residence - Treat Yourself
As the name reveals, TAO Riverside Residence is located along the river and sits just 500m away from the Royal Palace. The Residence offers modern, riverfront accommodations. These spacious apartments include kitchenettes, super comfortable beds and excellent Wiﬁ connection. (Hint: Perfect time to upload all the pictures from your trip!)
Deluxe Double Studio $60
Phnom Penh Travel Guides
Top 12 things to do in Phnom Penh
The Ultimate Phnom Penh Travel Guide
Routes from Phnom Penh
Most popular routes in Cambodia
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Based in Bali, Maarten’s passion for travel is undeniable. In 2016, he decided to quit his job as a stock analyst and started doing what he always dreamed of: travelling through South East Asia and helping other people plan their trips. When he is not working on Gecko Routes, you’ll find him surfing in the ocean or exploring the best gems of Indonesia.
Do you know if it is necessary to buy the tickets in advance? Or can we just arrive to the bus stop before departure and buy tickets?
Beause when trying to buy tickets by the links here the prices are much higher (35$ and up)…
Thanks a lot!
Hello, Jasmin! Thank you for bringing this to our attention. It seems though that bus rates from Ho Chi Minh to Phnom Penh have increased a lot since we last updated this post. See here a bus schedule for Giant Ibis, where a bus ticket costs $41. If you book the same bus with BookAway, it only costs $36. So it’s actually cheaper on BookAway.
But to answer your question, we would still recommend booking your tickets beforehand. You will need to get an e-visa beforehand anywayws so why not book the bus ticket at the same time. We hope this helps! Safe travels!
we would like to take a bus from HCMC to Phnom Penh tomorrow and get a visa on arrival at the border. Will the bus be waiting for us? How long does it take to get a visa (we are German and Austrian citizens). Thank you for your information!
Hello Claudia! The bus is a pretty easy way to cross the border. You can read the exact details on the booking page as it can vary slightly per bus company. When I did this border crossing a couple of years ago, it went very easy. The bus will wait till everyone gets the visa stamp so no need to worry about that. It normally shouldn’t take much more than 30 minutes. Be sure to get the e-visa prior to departure tho. You can find more info about the Visa’s on this page: https://www.cambodiaonlinevisa.com/. Safe travels!
Hi. Are land borders now open for Cambodia? My friend and I are planning to travel from HCMC and would like to the bus?
Hello Sudarthi, in the latest info I can find, I read that the land borders with Cambodia and Vietnam are still closed. This means you won’t be able to obtain a visa and therefore you cannot enter Cambodia from Vietnam via land.
Although Cambodia announced they will resume visas on arrival for people entering by land, I couldn’t find an official update about this yet.
Hi Marteen! We are planning to travel to Cambodia from Ho Chi Minh City, can you please tell us more about the visa process? Can you pay directly at the boarder in Vietnamese Dong? Is it worthy to apply for a e-visa instead? Many thanks!!
Hello Alice! If you travel from Cambodia to Vietnam, you cannot get a visa on arrival at the border. This means you need to have an e-visa or letter of approval to get the stamp. If your country is eligible for a Vietnamese e-visa and you stay less than 30 days, you can order this online.