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Travel in Thailand – From Koh Samui To Other Major Cities

travel in thailand - samui

To this day Koh Samui is one of my favorite places in Thailand.  It’s a great mixture of the island lifestyle with a pretty decent party scene.

However as you will quickly find out, Samui has one major drawback….the cost of flights.  Flying in and out of Samui can be three times more expensive than flying out of any other city in Thailand.

Why?

Well this is what happens when one airlines owns the entire airport.  They charge what they want and charge huge fees to other airliners that want to use their airport.  This is why you will always find the lowest cost flights in and out of Samui from Bangkok Airways.

How To Travel in Thailand From Koh Samui

Koh Samui to Bangkok:

Fast Option: Fly
– Book Through: Bangkok Air
– Price: 4,500 baht (150usd) – one way
– Time: 55 – 90 minutes depending on the airplane

Note: Any flight from Koh Samui will be the most expensive out of any flights within Thailand.  So this is one of the only times that the cost-per-time benefit may make taking the bus / boat the better option.

Medium Option: Fly and Boat
– Book Through: Nok Air
– Price: Starting at 2,000 baht (60usd)
– Time: 5 – 6 hours

Note: This is a new service that Nok Air recently started to offer.  You fly from Bangkok to the Surat Thani airport.  Then take a 45 minute shuttle from the airport to the pier.  Then you will take a Hi-speed Catamaran to Nathan on Koh Samui.  From here, you need to take a taxi or minibus to Chawang.

Slow Option: Bus / Boat
– Book Through: Any Thai travel agency
– Price: 1,000 – 1,400 baht (30 – 45usd)
– Time: 10 – 14 hours

Koh Samui to Chiang Mai:

Fast Option: Fly
– Book Through: Bangkok Air
– Price: 6,000 baht (180usd) each way
– Time: Starting at 2 hours

Slow Option: Bus / Train / Boat
– Book Through: Any travel agency in Thailand
– Price: 1,000 – 1,500 baht (30 – 45usd)
– Time: 20+ hours

Koh Samui to Pattaya:

Fast Option: Fly
– Book Through: Bangkok Air
– Price: 4,000 baht (120usd) each way
– Time: 1 hour and 20 minutes

Slow Options: Boat and Bus
– Book Through: Any Thai travel agency
– Price: 1,400 baht – 2,000 (45 – 60usd)
– Time: 10 – 14 hours + 2 hours from Bangkok to Pattaya by taxi or minibus

Note: You will be taking the boat and bus to Bangkok.  Then you will either take a taxi or mini bus to Pattaya.

Koh Samui to Phuket:

Fast Option: Fly
– Book Through: Bangkok Air
– Price: Starting at 3,000 baht (90usd)
– Time: 1 hour

Slow Option: Boat and Bus
– Book Through: Any travel agency in Thailand
– Price: 1,000 baht (30usd)
– Time: 10 hours

Koh Samui to Krabi / Phi Phi Islands:

Fast Option: Fly
– Book Through: Bangkok Air
– Price: 3,000 baht (30usd)
– Time: 1 hour

Slow Option: Boat and Bus
– Book Through: Any travel agency in Thailand.  Leave at 5am and arrive at 3pm.
– Price: 1,000 baht (30usd)
– Time: 10 hours

Koh Samui to Koh Phangan:

Fast Option: Speed Boat
– Book Through: Petcherat Marina
– Price: 700 baht (21usd)
– Time: 20 minutes

Slow Option: Slow Boat
– Book Through: Any travel agency in Samui
– Price: Starting at 150 baht (5usd)
– Time: 45 minutes

Koh Samui to Koh Tao:

Fast Option: Speed Boat
– Book Through: Any travel agency in Samui
– Price: Starting at 400 baht (12usd)
– Time: 2 hours

A Few Helpful Travel Tips:

1- The Bus Prices
There are two different types of buses in Thailand, the cheap Thai option, and the more expensive foreigner buses.  In all the above prices, I used the more expensive bus route.  Why?  All these buses that cost more will have air-conditioning, reclining chairs, and not stop every 5 minutes to pick up and drop off passengers which drastically adds additional time to the journey.

Also, if you want the best prices from the travel agencies, simply ask 3 different travel agencies what their best price is.  You’ll be surprised at how much negotiation room there is.

2- Links To The 5 Major Airlines in Thailand
Bangkok Air:
http://www.bangkokair.com/eng

Thai Airways:
http://www.thaiairways.com/

Air Asia:
http://www.airasia.com/ot/en/home.page

Nok Air:
http://www.nokair.com

One Two Go (Orient Thai):
http://flyorientthai.com/en/home/

FYI: You will get cheaper prices by booking your flight on these websites.  A travel agency will rarely save you any money for flights within Thailand.

3- Train
I rarely recommend taking the train in Thailand.  The train system always tend to be hours behind schedule, random break downs, and simply not comfortable.  If you decide to take the train anywhere, try the Bangkok to Chiang Mai route and make sure you get a sleeping bed.

Two great websites for Thailand train routes and schedules are:

http://www.railway.co.th/home/Default.asp?lenguage=Eng

http://www.seat61.com/Thailand.htm

Posted on Gods of Thailand September 3, 2013 in ,

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