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Transport in Phuket

To get from the airport to your destination, there are several options:

  • Limousine (blue) taxis from the airport are expensive, costing 500-600 baht to Patong Beach or Bt 400 Phuket Town. The airport co-op booth tucked away towards the back is a little cheaper than the competition.
  • Metered (yellow) taxis (available outside the car park gates) cost 300+ baht.
  • Minibus services (basically door-to-door share taxis) charge 150-250 baht per seat. Any travel agent can arrange a ride for the way back to the airport, but if you want one from the airport, you'll usually need to charter the whole thing for over 1000 baht.
  • Airport shuttle bus service (6:30-20:30, every 30 minutes) to Phuket Town bus station costs 82 baht; local buses run from there to all the major beaches until around 18:00.

Departure tax is now included in the ticket price. The airport is notionally divided into Terminal 1 and 2, with some charter and low-cost operators using the second, but these are only a few hundred meters apart and connected by an air-conditioned walkway.
 

By train

There are no direct train services to Phuket. Travellers by train must get off at Phun Phin railway station in Surat Thani and continue for another 5 hours by regular bus to Phuket.

By bus
Buses to mainland destinations including Bangkok, Chumphon, Hat Yai, Krabi, Phang Nga, Ranong, Satun, Sungai Kolok and Surat Thani use the

BKS terminal off Thanon Phang Nga in Phuket Town.
The most reliable buses from Bangkok are the public BKS buses from the Southern Bus Terminal to Phuket. The journey takes 13 hours. There are also 2 private bus companies, Phuket Travel Tour and Phuket Central Tour.
From Phuket bus terminal to your final destination, you can take a motorcycle taxi, tuk-tuk, meter-taxi, or bus. A motorcycle taxi into Phuket Town will be about 10-20 baht; to most beaches 100-200 baht (negotiable).

By Car
Phuket is directly connected to the mainland by the Thao Thepkasattri Bridge. From Bangkok, take Highway 4 through Nakhon Pathom, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Chumphon, thence through Ranong province’s Kra Buri and Kapoe districts, Phang-nga province’s Takua Pa and Thai Muang districts and onto Phuket island. The total distance is 862 kilometres.


By boat
Ferry services connect from Rassada Port in Phuket Town to Ko Phi Phi and on to Krabi on the mainland twice a day, taking 90 minutes and costing 350/650 baht one-way/return, for each leg. It's usually a pleasant ride, but can be rather bumpy when it's windy.
There are also speedboats to Ko Racha (2 hours), the Similan Islands (about 3 hours) and other islands in the high season only. Boats and yachts can be chartered at Chalong Bay, the Boot Lagoon, the Yacht Haven and Royal Phuket Marina.