Phuket Airport

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Overview Compare Airport Bus Smart Bus Shared Van Taxi To Stay

Phuket International Airport (HKT) offers numerous inbound flights daily and is one of Thailand’s busiest airports during peak season. Phuket province is one of the top island destinations in Thailand offering some of the most beautiful beaches in the country.

Phuket Airport also serves as a hub for many smaller islands in the southwestern part of the country. One of the most popular tourist islands, Koh Phi Phi, is just a short boat ride away.

How to travel from and to Phuket Airport

Phuket Airport is located 30 km (20 miles) north of Phuket Town and 40 km (25 miles) from Patong in Bangkok. In this post, we compare 4 options when travelling to and from Phuket Airport: the airport bus (1.5 hours), the smart bus (1-2 hours), a shared van (1-1.5 hours), and a taxi (30-60 minutes), Fares range from 100 THB ($2.75) to 655 THB ($18).

Transport modeDurationCostsAvailability
Airport Bus1.5 hours125 THB ($3.45)Check Bus Tickets
Smart Bus1-2 hours100 THB ($2.75)Read article for more info
Shared Van1-1.5 hours200 THB ($5.50)Read article for more info
Taxi30-60 minutes655 THB ($18)Check Private Transfers

If you are travelling to Phuket town, you can take the Airport bus for 125 THB ($3.45). These orange-coloured buses can take you straight to Phuket Town in 1.5 hours.

For all other locations, you can take a smart bus/shuttle bus for a fixed fare of 100 THB ($2.75). This option is quite slow since it makes several stops across the island.

Alternatively, you can also take a minivan outside the arrival hall. These shared vans will take you straight to your hotel but it could take more time depending on the stops made at other passengers’ hotels. The fare costs about 200 THB ($5.50) per person.

If you don’t want a shared transfer, you can get a taxi at the airport. Online booking is often cheaper with rates starting at 655 THB ($18) with drop-offs at any destination on the island. Just make sure your taxi driver turns on the metreto avoid extra high fares.

Itinerary from and to Phuket Airport

Phuket Airport to Phuket Town by Airport Bus

Duration: 1.5 hours
Cost: 125 THB ($3.45)
Duration: 1.5 hours
Cost: 125 THB ($3.45)

Taking the orange airport bus from and to Phuket International Airport is a cheap option and is perfect for those travelling on a budget.

This airport bus only operates between the airport and Phuket Town, with the last stop at the old bus terminal. If your hotel is outside of the route, you’ll have to arrange a second transfer.

The bus ride costs 125 THB ($3.45) for the 1.5- hour ride. You can pay the fare when you get on the bus.

Departure & Arrival stations

From Phuket Airport, the airport bus has hourly departures from 08:30 to 20:30.

If you are heading to the airport, you can catch the bus from the Phuket Bus Terminal 1. Buses depart every hour from 06:00 until 18:00 to Phuket Airport.

Airport bus schedule between Phuket Airport and Phuket Town

Bus OperatorScheduleCosts
From Phuket AirportHourly departures from
08:30 to 20:30
1.5 hours125 THB ($3.45)
Check Bus Tickets
From Bus TerminalHourly departures from
06:00 to 18:00
1.5 hours125 THB ($3.45)
Check Bus Tickets

We recommend booking your ticket via the provided links above to skip the queues at the airport and the bus terminal.

Note that most travellers do not choose this option because the bus doesn’t go to the west side of Phuket where you find most beaches.

See here the route of the airport bus:

  • Phuket Airport – Indigo Pearl Hotel – Baan Saku – Pranangsang Temple – Heroines Monument – Boat Lagoon – Erawadee Bypass/Baan Teelanka/Outlet Mall – Central/Big C/Lotus/Surakun Stadium – Phantep Countdown – Old Phuket Bus Terminal

Phuket Airport by Shuttle Bus/Smart Bus

Duration: 1-2 hours
Cost: 100 THB ($2.75)
Duration: 1-2 hours
Cost: 100 THB ($2.75)

The airport shuttle service operated by Phuket Smart Bus, provides a ride-share service to the island’s west coast. This blue and white coloured bus has a fixed fare of 100 THB ($2.75). The shuttle bus is a cheap way to get to the most popular destinations, but also slow because it makes many stops to drop off passengers along the way.

The smart bus has several departures from the airport from 09:00 in the morning until 21:00 in the evening.

Departure & Arrival stations

The smart bus departs from the New Platform in front of the domestic terminal. Among its drop-off points are the following:

  • Kamala Beach
  • Patong Beach
  • Karon Beach
  • Kata Beach
  • Rawai Beach (near Phuket’s southern tip)

Taking the smart bus is a good option to save some money if you’re staying near these beaches.

If you are heading to the airport, shuttle buses depart from Rawai Beach (near Phuket’s southern tip) every hour from 09:00 to 20:00.

Smart bus schedule between Phuket Airport and Phuket Town

Bus OperatorScheduleCosts
From Phuket AirportHourly departures from
09:00 to 21:00
1-2 hours100 THB ($2.75)
From Rawai BeachHourly departures from
09:00 to 20:00
1-2 hours100 THB ($2.75)

You can pay in cash as you board the bus, but try to pay an exact amount as they do not provide change. If you already have a Rabbit Card, which is widely used for transport payment in Thailand, then you can also pay using that.

The Phuket Smart Bus route looks like this:

  • Phuket Airport – Thalang Public Heath Office – Baan Khian – Boat Avenue Cherngtalay – Tesco Lotus Cherngtalay – Surin Beach – Phuket Fantasea – Big C Kamala – Bangla Police Box – Karon Circle – Kata – Sai Yuan – Rawai Beach

For more info, you can check out the Phuket Smart Bus website.

Phuket Airport by Shared Minivan

Duration: 1-1.5 hours
Cost: 200 THB ($5.50)
Duration: 1-1.5 hours
Cost: 200 THB ($5.50)

Alternatively, if you don’t want an additional transfer to your accommodation from the airport, you can take a minivan just outside the arrival hall. This option will conveniently take you straight to your hotel in any part of the Phuket city centre.

Shared vans are cheaper than a taxi and fares cost around 200 THB ($5.50) per person.

The downside of taking a shared van is that you will have to wait until it’s full. Also, it can take a bit of time as it makes several stops at other passengers’ hotels.

These minivans have service counters located inside and outside the arrivals hall at both Domestic and International terminals.

Phuket Airport by Taxi

Duration: 30-60 minutes
Cost: 655 THB ($18)
Duration: 30-60 minutes
Cost: 655 THB ($18)

If you want to get to your destination faster, head out of the Phuket Airport’s arrival area and head to the far right to get a taxi ride.

There is a taxi counter where you can get a ticket for a metered taxi. But be aware that even with the ticket, some drivers will attempt to give you a flat rate. Use your negotiating skills as they can sometimes quote very high prices.

Taxis from Phuket Airport

Phuket Town30 minutes600 THB ($16.50)
Patong Beach40 minutes650 THB ($18)
Kata Beach/Karon Beach1 hour700 THB ($19)
*Excluding Airport Surcharge Fee

A taxi from Phuket airport to Patong beach costs about 700 THB ($19), plus an additional 100 THB ($2.75) airport fee. As usual in Thailand, ensure your taxi driver turns on the metrewhen leaving. It doesn’t seem to happen anymore but better be sure to avoid endless bargains!

Even better, book a taxi online in advance via Klook. Taxi fares start around 655 THB ($18) from the airport for a 3-person car. It’s an “all area” ride, which means the fare is fixed for all the destinations across Phuket.

Reserve a taxi via Klook

Another option is to arrange a private transfer with your hotel in advance.

Note: Grab taxis are a convenient way of travelling, however, Grab taxis are not allowed to pick up passengers at Phuket airport.

Additional airport surcharge

When travelling from the airport by taxi, you are required to pay a 100 THB ($2.75) surcharge in addition to the fare. This surcharge is only for taxis leaving the airport. If you are travelling from your hotel to the airport, you do not have to pay this surcharge.

Car Rental from Phuket Airport

Aside from taxis, there is also a car rental option that you can choose if you want to be in control of your trip. You can choose from popular companies, such as Hertz, Pure Car Rental, Phuket Drive Car Rental, and CTT Phuket Car Rental.

We recommend cars that are offered by Skyscanner, as they are normally cheaper. Rates start from 675 THB ($18.50) for a 24-hour rental. Remember that the rates depend on how early you book, so we recommend booking at least weeks in advance to get the best deals.


Our favourite places to stay in Phuket

Bearpacker Patong Hostel

Just 200m from Patong Beach and the famous Patong Walking Street, this hostel is a great location if you’re looking for a social and fun atmosphere. The rooftop pool and lounge area are great for meeting others and there are a bar and restaurant onsite. The dorm bunks are extremely comfortable and offer curtains for your privacy. Newer hostel with modern furnishings. 

  • Excellent location
  • Rooftop pool
  • Bar and restaurant onsite
  • Social atmosphere

Single bunk starts at $16 per night

Read more

Goodnight Hostel

Located near Old Phuket Town, this hostel boasts a fitness facility, garden, terrace and lounge area onsite. Just steps away from bars, restaurants, and countless sights, this hostel is exactly where you want to be.  Staff are extremely helpful and will assist in booking tours or travel arrangements. Breakfast can be added to your stay for just $3 per day.

  • Great location
  • Fitness facility
  • Helpful staff
  • Very clean and comfortable

Private room starts at $12 per night

Read more

Aekkeko Hostel

This hostel is set in central Phuket Town within walking distance of numerous bars, restaurants, and sights.  It is vibrant and colorful making for an enjoyable atmosphere and they offer a lovely shared terrace for relaxing or socializing. The staff will welcome you like family and you will feel right at home here.  

  • Excellent staff
  • Ideal location
  • Terrace
  • Clean and comfortable

Private room starts at $26 per night 

Read more

Book a Bed Poshtel

The perfect location set in Phuket Town, just 700m from Old Phuket Town, this hostel is within walking distance to all bars, restaurants and numerous sights.  The outdoor pool set in the garden and shared lounge area is the perfect place to unwind and cool down. Private rooms offer great views of the city. 

  • Ideal location
  • Swimming pool
  • Garden and lounge area
  • Walking distance to many sights

Private room starts at $46 per night 

Read more