Phuket Travel is a tour and bus company that specializes in a bus service between Bangkok and Phuket, and it is one of the most well known operators in Thailand for this route. The service runs between Bangkok Southern Bus Terminal (Sai Tai Mai) and Phuket Bus Terminal 2 (located in Phuket town, where Thoranee Thong intersects with Thepkrasattri Road).
Routes served by Phuket Travel
The company runs a daily schedule of four departures every day in both directions, and the journey duration is around 14 hours. They do not run a morning service, so all journeys are overnight.
From Bangkok to Phuket, the departure times are 4.30pm (Express), 5.40pm (VIP), and two departures at 7.30pm (an Express and a VIP service).
From Phuket to Bangkok, the departure times are 4.30pm (Express), 5.20pm (VIP), 6.30pm (Express) and 7.00pm (VIP).
There’s also a more limited service between Bangkok and Phang Nga, with two overnight buses leaving between 6pm and 7pm daily.
Keep in mind
Phuket Travel has two types of bus - the Standard Express and the VIP. The Standard Express is adequate if you are on a budget, with a ticket costing around THB650, whilst the VIP service costs around THB1,000.
The buses have air-con, a steward, toilets, and they provide some refreshments (bottle of water and muffin). In addition to these facilities, the VIP buses have more comfortable seats, extra legroom, and you will be provided with some free food at the rest stop. However, if you are taking an overnight bus, then this meal will not be provided until around midnight, so you may want to take additional snacks aboard!
As with any service, there are both pros and cons of choosing to travel with Phuket Travel.
Starting with the pros, the buses are comfortable (especially VIP), and they even provide a blanket and pillow to increase your comfort when sleeping.
They are also generally quite clean, and the air-conditioning does a good job (perhaps a little too good, see cons!).
The bus staff are fairly considerate, and the TV and lights are turned off during the night so that everyone can sleep.
The service is timely and the advertised journey duration is generally accurate.
The drawbacks of this service are that the A/C is too cold (pack a jumper to wear!) and the bus drivers do not speak very good English, so are unable to assist with any queries you may have.
There have also been reports of some of the drivers not sticking to speed limits, but it is quite common for Thai drivers to speed, so this is not a huge surprise.
The advertised Wi-Fi is apparently not very good, but again most buses advertise some sort of internet service, but due to overuse the signal can be very weak.
The drivers have also been known to blast very loud music, but this is usually turned off at night.
Compared to the other operators that run a service between Bangkok and Phuket (e.g. Phuket Central Tour and Bus Express), Phuket Travel are the same price-wise, but the reviews suggest that Phuket Travel offers a far superior service.
In general, travellers tend to have rather a positive experience from using Phuket Travel’s service. Many report that the ride is quite comfortable and mention that drivers do stick to the speed limits.
Note that if the food is served at the stop, there is a choice of stalls with Halal meals – which is common in the south of the country. Travellers also consider free refreshments and the choice of meals decent.
It is not a rare case that buses arrive to their destination ahead of the schedule. Take it into consideration if there are people meeting you at the bus station.
All in all, travellers agree that Phuket Travel is a great choice especially if you are
on a budget.