The best way to get to Phuket is to fly there. The only other realistic option is by bus, which takes in excess of 12 hours from Bangkok. The train by-passes most of the Andaman coast, so it is not really an option.
Domestic Airlines Serving Phuket
If trying to get to Phuket from Bangkok, or elsewhere in Thailand, there are a number of domestic airlines serving the island, both full service and budget carriers.
- Thai Airways
- The national flag carrier flies to almost all major tourist destinations. Their web site allows you to view schedules and seat availability. You can book and pay online for paperless travel.
- Bangkok Airways
- The nation's second carrier is almost solely responsible for developing special destinations such as Samui and Sukhothai. Their now extensive network covers several countries and many of the major world heritage destinations of Southeast Asia. They have some limited e-ticket capability.
- Air Asia
- Air Asia was the first budget airline to go regional. Based in Malaysia, Air Asia started flying in Thailand in 2002, and has a reputation for offering some of the lowest fares around. Thai destinations include Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Hat Yai and Phuket. The airline also flies from Bangkok to Kuala Lumpur and from there on to Bali, Singapore and other destinations. If considering Air Asia, it's important to keep in mind that the fares go up the closer you get to your departure date. To get the cheapest fares you need to book at least three months in advance.