If you fly into Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok, and are then flying to Chiang Mai or other places in Thailand, you may be flying on an airline that departs out of Bangkok’s second airport, Don Mueang.
If you haven’t traveled from Suvarnabhumi to Don Mueang, you may be a little confused as to how to get there, as well as what is the fastest and cheapest way to get from Suvarnabhumi Airport to Don Mueang.
Thankfully, there are three options that are fast, easy, cheap and, in one case, free.
Free shuttle bus from Suvarnabhumi to Don Mueang and vice versa
The easiest and cheapest option to get from Suvarnabhumi to Don Mueang is the free shuttle bus because, yes, it is free.
This bus runs every day from 5am until midnight, and it is very easy to find and to take. The trip will take around 45 to 50 minutes depending on traffic, sometimes a little more.
At Suvarnabhumi Airport, you will find the free shuttle bus to Don Mueang on Level 2 between Gates 2 and 3.
If you are at Don Mueang, you will find the free shuttle bus at Terminal 1. There is a blue counter right where the bus stops — just outside the doors leading to Gate 5.
The bus does not stop anywhere except at both airports so, if you expect to take it to get somewhere else in Bangkok, you will be sorely disappointed.
You must also have your ticket for your ongoing flight with you (a paper ticket or an electronic ticket on your phone is fine), as you will not be allowed to get on the bus without it.
If you fly into Suvarnabhumi one day and your flight is out of Don Mueang the day after (or vice versa), you will not be allowed to take the free airport shuttle bus. You will have to look for other transportation options instead.
Which leads to the next option for getting from Suvarnabhumi to Don Mueang, or vice versa.
Public bus #555
If you cannot take the free shuttle bus, do not despair, as you can still get from one airport to another extremely cheaply.
In that case, you will want to look for public bus #555. It leaves both airports every 30 minutes, takes around an hour for the trip and costs 36 baht (approximately $1.10). The first bus is at 4am, and the last bus is at 11pm.
Taxis from Suvarnabhumi to Don Mueang
If you do not want to take the public bus to Suvarnabhumi Airport or Don Mueang, then your last option is a taxi.
While this is your most expensive option it is still probably much cheaper than in your home country, it is also your fastest option, so take that into consideration if speed is important.
A typical taxi from Suvarnabhumi to Don Mueang or vice versa takes about 45 minutes. If the traffic is particularly bad, it can take close to an hour, but would still be the fastest way to get there as, in the case of bad traffic, buses would be even slower.
The cost of a taxi is around 500 to 600 baht ($15.70 to $18.75). That includes the toll fares the taxi driver will have to pay as you drive. Try to have those in small change (20 baht notes are helpful), but the driver will give you all your change back if you have to pay with a larger denomination of note.
With taxis, do not take a taxi that tries to get you to agree to a specific fare. Not only is it illegal, but you should always take Bangkok taxis that use the meter. They are accurate, cheaper and that is the law.