How to get from Krabi to Penang?
Penang is a cultural melting pot located on the northwest coast of Malaysia. For such a small island, Penang has so much to offer – vibrant culture, colourful heritage, amazing food, urban wonders, and untouched rainforest. At its heart is George Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and a city rich in history.
It’s the perfect place for cultural immersion after days of sun and sand in Krabi.
There are 3 ways to travel the 490km distance from Krabi to Penang: a 10-hour minivan, which costs $32, an indirect 8-hour minivan from $30, and a 5 to 6-hour indirect flight (excluding transfer time) with a price from $81.
Minivan, Minivan via Hat Yai or Flight?
|Minivan||10 hours||$32||Check minivan tickets|
|Minivan via Hat Yai||8 hours||$30||Check minivan tickets|
|Flight||6.5 hours||$81||Check flights|
The minivan is our preferred option when travelling from Krabi to Penang. You can either take a direct 10-hour minivan from Krabi to Penang or take 2 minivans for 8 hours (excluding transfers) – from Krabi to Hat Yai and then from Hat Yai to Penang.
Also, the minivan operates with much fewer emissions compared to the 2 flights you will have to take otherwise.
There are no direct flights from Krabi to Penang, so you’ll have a few hours of layover in Kuala Lumpur. The fastest indirect flight takes 5 to 6 hours. Note though that considering the transfers to and from the airports, you don’t really save a lot of time with the indirect flight, and you spend so much more!
A few notes when crossing the Thailand-Malaysia border
Do be careful about what you try to bring in to Malaysia. You’ll have to pay hefty fines or receive heavy punishment if you are found with any of these:
- More than 1-litre of liquor
- Even a few grams over the 225g-limit of tobacco per person (that’s around 200 cigarettes)
- Over 3 new wearable items and 1 new pair of shoes
- More than 1 electric or battery-operated personal hygiene equipment
- Pornographic materials
- Unlicensed weapons, counterfeit bills or coins and illegal drugs. These can lead not just to huge fines but even the death penalty!
For more details, visit Malaysia’s Customs Department website.
Itinerary from Krabi to Penang
- 10 hours
Indirect Minivan via Hat Yai
- 4 hours
- Hat Yai
- 4 hours
- Krabi City Centre
- 25 minutes
- Krabi Airport
- 5 hours 40 minutes
- Penang Airport
- 30 minutes
- George Town
Krabi to Penang by Minivan
Duration: 10 hours
Cost: 1,000 THB ($32)
Although it takes 10 hours to travel by land from Krabi to Penang, we think the minivan is still a good choice. It picks you up from your hotel in Krabi and takes you straight to George Town in Penang. And it only costs 1,000 THB ($32), more than half the price of taking an indirect flight!
Bai Ngoen Krabi Tour offers only 2 trips daily, so we recommend you book online on BookAway to secure a seat. Below are the minivan schedules from Krabi to Penang:
|Bai Ngoen Krabi Tour||07:00-18:00|
|10 hours||1,000 THB ($32)|
The minivans park at Komtar Terminal, which is within walking distance from most hotels in George Town.
Customs & Immigration
Around 5 hours into your minivan journey from Krabi to Penang, you will arrive at the Danok Sadao-Bukit Kayu Hitam border. Located between Thailand’s Songkhla Province and Malaysia’s Kedah state, this is the two country’s busiest land border.
This isn’t as complicated as other borders in Southeast Asia though. Immigration offices on both sides of the border have drive-through lanes, although you might still have to get off the minivan with your luggage for customs.
Krabi to Penang by Indirect Minivan via Hat Yai
Duration: 8 hours, excl. transfers
Cost: 930 THB ($30)
Ten hours straight on the road too long for you? There is also an option to divide your minivan ride from Krabi to Penang with a stopover at Hat Yai. If you take this route, you’ll have 1.5 to 2 hours in Hat Yai to stretch your legs and eat lunch.
Step 1: Krabi to Hat Yai by Minivan
Duration: 4 hours
Cost: 400 THB ($13)
My Son Krabi Tours offers 2 daily minivan trips from Krabi to Hat Yai. They operate on the following schedules:
|My Son Krabi Tours||06:00-10:00|
|4 hours||400 THB ($13)|
They offer free pick-up from any hotel in the resort town of Ao Nang. If you’re staying somewhere else, it’s best to contact the operator beforehand to know where you can board the van.
A ticket costs 400 THB ($13) when you book online with BusOnlineTicket. The journey takes 4 hours and the minivan parks at Hat Yai Bus Terminal, located 3km south of the city centre.
Step 2: Hat Yai to Penang by Minivan
Duration: 4 hours
Cost: 60 THB ($2) + 470 THB ($15)
From Hat Yai Bus Terminal, you’ll have to take a 10-minute taxi or songthaew to the city centre. KST Travel and Nominatee Tour depart from their respective offices in the city, while Adang Sea Tour offers free pick-up from the centre.
Below are their schedules:
|4 hours||470 THB ($15) |
+ free drop-off
|Adang Sea Tour||09:00-14:00|
3 hours 45 minutes
|630 THB ($20)|
+ free pick-up
|4 hours 30 minutes||470 THB ($15)|
Travel time from Hat Yai to Penang is around 4 hours. You can easily book your ticket online via BookAway, with fares from 470 THB ($15).
Nominatee Tour and Adang Sea Tour drop off passengers at Komtar Bus Terminal, which is within walking distance to most hotels in George Town. If you want to be dropped off at your hotel in the city centre, book with KST Travel.
For more info, check out our page from Hat Yai to Penang.
Customs & Immigration
Around 1.5 hours into your journey from Hat Yai to Penang, your minivan will stop at Danok Sadao in Songkhla Province for Thai immigration & customs. And then, they will take you across the border before stopping again at Bukit Kayu Hitam in Kedah for Malaysian immigration & customs.
Drive-through immigration booths are available on both sides of the border, so the procedures are quite simple. However, you will still have to get off the minivan for a customs check!
Krabi to Penang by Flight
Duration: 6.5 hours, excl. transfers
There are no direct flights from Krabi to Penang, but you can book an indirect flight that makes a stopover in Kuala Lumpur. The fastest indirect flight takes around 5 to 6 hours.
Although it seems like you are able to save 4 to 5 hours compared to taking the minivan, keep in mind 2 things: you still have to add the travel time to and from the airports, and you have to be at Krabi Airport at least 2 hours before your flight.
When you add all that up, you don’t really get to save a lot of time when taking the flight and you have to pay double or triple the minivan rate! Still want to take an indirect flight from Krabi to Penang? Below is a step-by-step guide:
Step 1: Krabi City Centre to Krabi Airport by Minibus or Taxi
Duration: 25 minutes
Cost: 250 THB ($8)
If you’re coming from Krabi city centre, we recommend taking a taxi to reach the airport. It takes only 25 minutes to cover the 15km distance. You can hail one from the street or book online beforehand via Klook. Rates start at 470 THB ($15) for a 3-seater car.
If you’re coming from other areas like Ao Nang and Ao Nam Mao Pier, you have the option to book a cheaper shared minivan. A ticket costs only 250 THB ($8) when you book a ride via 12go.Asia. Take note that travel time with the minivan is 1.5 hours
Krabi Airport Shuttle operates on the following schedules:
|Ao Nang |
|1 hour 30 minutes||250 THB ($8)|
|Ao Nam Mao Pier||06:00-07:30|
|1 hour 30 minutes||250 THB ($8)|
Step 2: Krabi Airport to Penang Airport
Duration: 5 hours 40 minutes
Cost: 2,070 THB ($66)
The length of the fastest indirect flight from Krabi to Penang varies every day. Normally though, it takes 5 to 6 hours.
Air Asia often offers the cheapest flight from 2,070 THB ($66). Try to book early as fares can be much more expensive as the travel date gets closer.
Step 3: Penang Airport to George Town
Duration: 30 minutes
Cost: 30 MYR ($7)
Penang Airport is located 18km south of Penang city centre, George Town.
To complete the final step of reaching your hotel, you have two options: take a 30-minute taxi or the 1-hour bus. Rates start from 30 MYR ($7) and 3 MYR ($0.70), respectively. There are several bus lines available from Penang Airport to George Town, so make sure you board one that stops near your hotel.
More routes to Penang
More routes from Krabi
Most popular routes in Malaysia
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