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How to Travel from Phuket to Koh Samui

How to Travel from Phuket to Koh Samui

By Chris QuanUpdated Feb. 28, 2022

The distance between Phuket and Koh Samui is about 345 kilometers (214 miles). There are three main ways to travel from Phuket to Koh Samui:

  • Direct flights (recommended)
  • Bus + ferry
  • Private transfer (car) + ferry
  Direct Flights Bus + Ferry Car (Private Transfer)
Cost From 3,172 THB (US$95) From 600 THB (US$18) From 6,672 THB (US$200)
Time 1 hour 9½ hours 6–8 hours
Advantage Easiest, fastest Cheap Door-to-door service
Less expensive if shared with 2–3 people
Disadvantage Expensive Slow, connected trip Still slow
Recommended for Couples, friend trips Budget travelers Families
Rating *** * **
Phuket to Koh Samui

1. Direct Flights (Easiest and Fastest)

  • Cost: from 3,172 THB (US$95) p/p
  • Journey time: 1 hour

This is the most recommended way to get to Koh Samui from Phuket.

Phuket has two direct flights to Samui International Airport (USM) daily, supplied by Bangkok Airlines, at 1pm and 4:30pm.

The Samui airport is only about 3 kilometers (1.8 miles) to Chaweng Beach, one of Koh Samui’s most popular beaches. That’s only 8 minutes’ driving.

Is there a cheaper flight from Phuket to Koh Samui?

No. Currently only Bangkok Airlines has direct flights. A cheaper flight from Phuket to Surat Thani (US$65) + airport–port transfer (~US$20) + ferry (US$8-18) is no cheaper. The total cost is about the same as taking a direct flight (US$95), but much more time-consuming (the whole journey takes 7 hours).

2. Car (Private Transfer)

  • Cost: from 6,672 THB (US$200) per car
  • Journey time: 6–8 hours

You can book a taxi online for the transfer very easily. This option is most likely to be chosen for its door-to-door convenience or because there is no connecting flight available from Phuket to Koh Samui. You will be transported from your hotel in Phuket or Phuket airport to your hotel in Koh Samui. Short stops are counted in the journey time and can be had at your convenience.

3. Bus + Ferry (Cheapest)

  • Cost: from 600 THB (US$18) p/p
  • Journey time: 9½ hours

Phuket Bus Terminal 1 has minivans “to Koh Samui” from 8am. A minivan will take you to the Surat Thani ferry (included in the bus price) for the crossing to Nathon Pier in Koh Samui.

Though it is the cheapest way, some disadvantages come with it. It is relatively uncomfortable, awkward, and time-consuming, making it “the backpackers’ option”. The minivan doesn't always leave on schedule, and the driver will collect passengers on the road, which may take extra time. The free luggage allowance is 1 item per person, and you will be asked to pay for excess luggage.

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