Getting around: Phuket shuttle, car hire and other transport options

Navigate your way around Phuket and see all the best attractions with ease on budget-friendly prices with these transport options.

The Thai island of Phuket is a popular destination for Australians and holidaymakers seeking sun and relaxation. From most centralised resorts, you’ll find it easy to wander to one of the main beaches such as Patong, Kata and Karon. Choose something more upscale and you may even find yourself lounging on your own private stretch of sand – accessed direct from your hotel, naturally.

Generally, public transportation is not commonly used but is the cheapest option to get from one of the main beaches to Phuket Town and vice versa.

Cars aren’t typically hired either as it’s often more expensive than other forms of transport like taxis and tuk tuks which can be hired from tourist shops and resorts. These can take you to all of the major attractions on the island in less time than public transport and still be affordable.

Motorbike taxis are ideal for nearby destinations. There’s also an option to rent a motorbike and head to sights on your own.

Image: Tourism Thailand

Phuket public transport

  • Types of transport: Local open-air buses are referred to as song taews and are painted bright blue. They run regularly from 7am–6pm between the main beach areas like Patong to Phuket Town. The destinations are written on the outside of the bus in English and they have no stops so you can catch them anywhere along their route. Your best bet to catch one is at the tourist police box across from Bangla Road in Patong and on Ranong Road across from Thai Airways in Phuket Town.
  • Paying for transport: You can pay for the bus in cash on boarding.
  • Getting to and from the airport: No public buses run from Phuket Airport. The Airport Bus is infrequent but has a fixed, reliable schedule and can take you to Phuket Town for THB90–100. Taxis or mini buses cost THB100–200 while a private taxi can cost up to THB500.
  • Best apps for getting around: Currently there are no apps for public transportation in Phuket. The Grab app is similar to Uber and can be used to get cheap, private transportation.

Taxis and Uber

  • Taxi: From the airport there is one limousine service with a fixed rate. Other taxis are metered and can also be found around town. THB100 is charged for taxis going to or from the airport. Metered taxis are difficult to flag down on the road so it is best to pre-book. Most taxis ask for a fixed rate though these prices can be bargained down. Tuk tuks, an open-air vehicle that sits passengers in the back on benches, are common and a cheap option for transportation. Always agree on the price before you leave for both fixed price taxis and tuk tuks.
  • Uber: Uber is currently not available in Phuket but a similar app called Grab is used widely in Asia. It includes both car and motorbike taxis.

Phuket car hire rental companies

Avis, Budget, Hertz, Europcar, Sixt and Thai Rent A Car are available for car hires at Phuket Airport. Use DriveNow to compare prices and find the best deal.






Phuket car hire deals

Holiday Cars Holiday Cars

10% off on all car hire

Valid on select dates on all participating car rental brands. Includes Avis, Hertz, Budget, Thrifty, Alamo, Enterprise and more. T&Cs apply.

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Get deal

Deal expires

Avis Avis

Earn more Qantas points

Earn more Qantas points when you ride with Avis. Get (4) four Qantas points for every $1 spent on eligible time and kilometre charges.

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DriveNow DriveNow

Hire a car and get your fourth day free

Hire a car with Budget Car Hire through DriveNow for a minimum of four consecutive days and get your fourth day free of base rate charges. Available for pick ups at the airport in Cairns, Gold Coast, Sydney and Melbourne (Tullamarine). Valid on select vehicles including family, full-size and SUVs.

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Rentalcars.com Rentalcars.com

Compare over 800 car hire companies worldwide

Rentalcars.com can help you compare major car hire company rates for the best price. Companies it compares include Hertz, Avis, Europcar, Thrifty, Alamo and Budget.

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Airport transfers

Avoid the hassle of finding a taxi or booking a mini bus at the airport by booking an airport transfer in advance.

Private Arrival Transfer: Phuket Airport to Hotel
Private Arrival Transfer: Phuket Airport to Hotel


Phuket International Airport Arrival Shared Transfer
Phuket International Airport Arrival Shared Transfer


Stephanie Yip

Stephanie is the travel editor at finder.com.au. On top of being an avid traveller, she's an all-round bargain hunter. If there's a deal on hotels or a sale on flights, she'll know about it. And she'll let you know about it, too. Though probably not before she buys her own ticket.

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