In order to travel to Thailand, most tourists coming from western countries do not need a visa. Your passport must have been valid for at least half a year, and you will receive a residence permit stamp, which is valid for 4 weeks.
Please note that only a stay of 15 days is approved at the re-entry to Thailand after trips to Burma.
If you wish to stay in the country for longer, or you intend to visit a neighboring country in the meantime, you should go to one of the Kingdom of Thailand’s consulates and obtain a tourist visa, together with any necessary entry permits.
Since the regulations are subject to regular changes, often at short notice, please contact us and ask us about the current situation!
Phuket: Arrival and Departure
Flying to the Island of Phuket
Phuket has one international airport. There are direct, non-stop flights from Germany with LTU and Condor Airlines. Alternatively, you can fly to the country’s capital, Bangkok.
There are flights between Bangkok and Phuket just about every hour. Almost all airlines have direct flights between most European capitals and Bangkok’s international airport. The flight from Germany is about 10 -11 hours long.
Please note that Phuket’s airport is about 50 km from the most famous beaches, like Patong, Kata, or Karon Beach. There are taxis at the airport (about 800 Baht), as well as minibuses (about 200 Baht) and an airport shuttle, which only travels to Phuket’s bus station (52 Baht).
Taking the Bus to Phuket
Thailand also has excellent bus service, which connect Phuket to the mainland thanks to the bridge. The regular buses and the Aircon buses are relatively cheap and in service all day, with buses going both north (to Suratthani, Chumporn, Hua Hin, and Bangkok) and south (towards Krabi, Trang, Satun, or Hat Yai) running at least every hour.
You can catch the bus from the bus station in Phuket Town.
There are also “mini-buses” or vans which transport tourists directly to the beaches. They leave from Phuket about two or three times a day, and travel to tourist spots like Koh Samui, Krabi, Trang, or Hat Yai, for a price of 50 to 350 Baht, including pick up at your hotel.
Another, comfortable option is to travel to Bangkok with a VIP bus. These buses also leave from the bus station, but mostly at night.
VIP buses only transport 24 passengers at a time, so they have very comfortable reclining seats, similar to business class seats in an airplane. Snacks are served in the evening, including soda and donuts, and coffee is served when you wake up in the morning, just before arriving in Bangkok.
The bus also makes a 30 minute stop for dinner, which you pay for, usually near Suratthani on the way to Bangkok. A one-way ticket to Bangkok costs 800 Baht.
Of course, all of these buses also make return trips, so you can use the same schedule to return to Phuket from the places mentioned.
Unfortunately, Phuket does not have a train station
The Weather and the Best Time to Travel to Thailand
It is warm all year round in Southern Thailand. The seasons are determined by the amount of rain.
For Phuket (and Krabi, Khao Lak, Phi Phi, and Koh Lanta) the peak season runs from Nov. 1 to April 30. During the monsoon season (May 1 to the end of October), the sea is less calm, it is cloudier, and there is often heavy rain, which is important for the lush flora.
The locals enjoy this time, the beaches are less crowded and hotel prices can go down by up to 50%. However, there can also be weeks of nice weather even during the rainy months of September and October.