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Thailand Travel: How To Use The Free Bangkok Airport Shuttle

Traveling to Thailand? This post will be short, sweet and, hopefully, informative.

In Bangkok, there are two international airports:

Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) and Don Mueang International Airport (DMK).

If you’re flying into the country from outside of Asia you’ll likely be flying into BKK; however, if you’re looking to explore Thailand via one of the many budget airlines like Air Asia, Nok Air and Thai Smile you’ll likely be heading out of DMK, the world’s largest low-cost carrier airport.

I was exploring Chiang Mai (Thailand) and Bhutan during my three-week trip, using Bangkok as my home base for a night before and after each. I booked an airport hotel — which I highly recommend, but more on that below — called the Golden Jade Suvarnabhumi Hotel.

To and from BKK I was able to access their 150 baht (~$4 USD) shuttle, while to get to DMK about 45 minutes away using their affiliated taxi cost me 700 baht (~$19).

PSST, DON’T FORGET TO PIN THIS POST FOR LATER!

How to Get Between the Airports in Bangkok for Free

If you need to get between the airports, a budget-friendly option is the free airport shuttle. I used this shuttle when flying in from Chiang Mai, landing in DMK and needing to get to the Golden Jade Hotel. To save some money, I took the shuttle over to BKK to get a cheaper taxi to the hotel, as BKK was way closer. Note that you will need to show proof of flight to get a ticket for the shuttle (in the form of a rubber wrist stamp), though luckily my flight to Bhutan was early the following morning which was good enough for the shuttle attendants. At DMK, I walked to Gate 6 in the arrivals terminal, walked outside and went up to the shuttle desk to get the stamp.

The shuttle looks like your average local public bus, though with luggage racks, decently comfortable seats (they’re padded and everyone is seated) and air conditioning. I had been nervous everyone would be squished together with their baggage like when you get shuttled to an airplane when boarding (or ride the NYC subway or JFK AirTrain), but it was actually quite pleasant. The shuttle comes about every 30 minutes and the ride is about an hour, dropping you off at the passenger terminal on the 4th Floor, Gate 5 of BKK.

Note the driver will not make stops in between the two airports.

I personally didn’t use the shuttle going in the other direction (BKK -> DMK); however, I’ve heard it’s the same routine, and you can grab the free shuttle from Door #2 at BKK.

As for the Golden Jade, I recommend this hotel for those just needing a place to crash near the airport. I’ve been to Bangkok before and wasn’t looking to go crazy on Khao San Road. I just wanted a clean hotel with strong Wi-Fi, a hot shower, air conditioning and breakfast included, which Golden Jade offered for about $20 per night.

Want a private transfer option? KiwiTaxi offers affordable transfer between airports, as well as anywhere else you may want to go in Bangkok.

Bonus Tip: Wondering where to stay in Bangkok? It’s wise to stay near the Skytrain (BTS) and underground (MRT) rail systems!

Bonus Bonus Tip: While Bangkok has much to offer, don’t forget to get out and explore other great Thailand destinations like Chiang Mai and Koh Chang.

Do you have any Bangkok airport or Thailand transport tips to add? I’d love to hear in the comments below!

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Getting around in Bangkok can be hectic, especially if you’ve just arrived. This posts shares information about using the FREE Bangkok airport shuttle to help you travel to and from the city’s main airports. Then you’ll be able to explore best cities in Thailand!

Recommended:

How A Trip To Thailand Inspired One Traveler To Start A Nonprofit [Blog Inspiration]

Thailand’s Best Street Food: The Complete Guide to Streetside Dining in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket and Other Areas by Chawadee Nualkhair [Great Reads]

Clever Travel Companion Pickpocket-Proof Garments [Travel Safety]

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11 Comments

  1. Patrick on May 17, 2016 at 10:46 am

    Bangkok is an awesome city. Been there three times and I intend to go for a fourth 🙂

    • Jessie Festa on May 17, 2016 at 11:24 am

      @Patrick: Agreed!

    • George Ryon on November 15, 2017 at 11:52 am

      I’ve been there more than 20 times and as Arnold says “A’ll be back”.

  2. lucy on November 13, 2017 at 7:34 am

    good … morning day night – to you
    thank you for this page – helpfull
    still question – where to get information – about possibility and allowance to take FREE SHUTTLE or even want to pay for it – to bring me from BKK AIRPORT TO DMK
    I have a flight ticket booked to travel on from DMK to CHIANG MAI
    but that will be 5 DAYS LATER ..
    arriving DEC 15 BKK – leaving DMK on DEC 20 … –
    my plan is to get from BKK INT to DMK TRAINSTATION to catch train to AYUTTHAYA – than train back 5 days later to DMK

    • Jessie Festa on January 3, 2018 at 3:39 pm

      @Lucy: Hmm not sure about that. I’d ask as soon as you arrive if you can still use it.

  3. Wendy on November 24, 2017 at 6:16 pm

    Saved me with the shuttle tips! I was waiting in the wrong area and had not checked in at the desk. I found your blog and quickly redirected. Thanks!

    • Jessie Festa on January 3, 2018 at 3:37 pm

      @Wendy: Ahhh that makes me so happy!! 🙂 Glad to help!

  4. Chad on February 15, 2018 at 1:46 am

    Hi Jessie, You article is very helpful. I would like to ask is there a free shuttle bus coming from DMK to BKK and what time is the earliest time?

    Cheers,

    • Jessie Festa on February 15, 2018 at 9:41 am

      @Chad: I’m sorry, but I’m not 100% sure. This post had pretty much all the info I know just based on my experience.

  5. Lei Chia on July 17, 2018 at 3:34 am

    Bangkok is the great place to travel, and your post is very helpful for me.

  6. david anthony maddocks on December 30, 2018 at 12:46 am

    Used the shuttle on my last trip and will use it again this time. OK if you have plenty of time between flights. Thanks for the Info 🙂

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