Getting to Pattaya
Being only 150Km from Bangkok, getting to Pattaya is easy, whether you’re travelling by minivan, bus, car or plane. The city is well connected with Bangkok via Highway 7 and Highway 3, which is ideal if you are planning on getting to Pattaya with a hire car, or jump in a minivan or bus. Pattaya does also have a small airport close by operating domestic flights, so there is also the option to fly from Bangkok Don Muang Airport to U-Tapao Airport in Sattahip, which lies approx 30Km from Pattaya. Hopping on a train to Pattaya is of course another option, although this mode of transport is much slower, infrequent and less reliable.
Travel by Minivan or Bus
A large percentage of people who visit Pattaya opt to jump on a public air conditioned bus from Bangkok because it’s cheap and convenient. Located adjacent to the Ekkamai BTS (Sky Train) Station on Sukhumvit Road at Soi 63 you’ll find the Eastern Bus Terminal. This is where the most frequent departures are from and the air conditioned buses leave every 30 minutes between 5am and midnight every day. Tickets cost approx 130 Baht making it a very affordable option for even those who are on the tightest budgets. It will drop you at the bus station in the north of the city from where you will be able to get a Baht Bus to your hotel in Pattaya.
Similar air conditioned buses leave from Bangkok’s Northern Bus Terminal in Mochit between 5am and 8pm. If you are staying closer to Khao San Road you’d be better placed to get a bus from the Southern Bus Terminal even though buses are less frequent and only depart roughly every 2 hours.
Getting to Pattaya by bus normally takes about 2 hours, although this time can vary considerably depending upon traffic. Whether you’re travelling alone or with friends, using the bus service is a great way to meet fellow travellers, or to simply catch up on some much needed sleep after a long haul flight.
Minivans are another popular choice for many travelling from Bangkok to Pattaya because more often than not the minivan companies will transport you door to door. Book your minivan journey in advance and you’ll be collected from your hotel in Bangkok and delivered to the front door of your new place in Pattaya. For this service you’re likely to pay closer to 400 Baht for the one way trip but if you’re looking for convenience and stress free travel it’s a great option.
If you prefer to travel in a little more privacy then you can always get to Pattaya by taxi. The official fare is around 1400 Baht, however, if you manage to find a taxi driver who is desperately in need of your custom, you may be able to grab yourself a bargain for nearer 1000 Baht.
Hire a Car
Hiring a car from Suvarnabhumi Airport is a great idea if you’re planning to explore beyond Pattaya during your visit. Although public transport is readily available in the city, having your own car does give you that extra bit of freedom to travel and explore at your leisure. Obviously, it goes without saying that you need to feel comfortable and confident driving in a foreign country and have a good knowledge of their road laws before jumping behind the wheel.
There are various well known car hire companies who operate out of Suvarnabhumi Airport, however, to secure the best deal possible we strongly suggest booking your car hire in advance online. That way your car will be ready and waiting when you get off the plane.
Flights to Bangkok
Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport is one of the busiest and most sophisticated airports in Asia with the second largest terminal building in the world. Airlines from around the globe operate out of this dominating airport and provide thousands of flights everyday to and from worldwide destinations. The spacious passenger terminal handles both international and domestic flights. It provides connections to all airports in Thailand as well as most major global destinations. The airport has a huge passenger terminal and is made up of no less than 7 levels and 7 concourses, providing passengers with everything they could possibly need and more. It also has a direct high speed rail link to the centre of Bangkok where it links up with the BTS Sky Train.
If you’re travelling to Bangkok from within Asia it may be more cost effective for you to use Bangkok’s smaller airport, Don Muang Airport. This much smaller airport situated the other side of the city accommodates only local and budget airlines in and around Asia. Although there is no comparison between the two airports, some find that for various different reasons it better suits them to fly into Don Muang rather than the much larger international airport.