Phuket International Airport Expansion

The international airport on Phuket is crucial in promoting the tourism industry in Thailand. Phuket is an incredibly popular tourist resort and as such in excess of 11 million passengers pass through the gates each year in terms of arrivals and departures.

The airport is the third most utilised airport in the whole of Thailand, coming only after Bangkok’s Don Mueang Airport and Suvarnabhumi Airport.

The airport has three terminals. Terminal 1 is used to welcome passengers who have arrived on international flights. Terminal 2 is for domestic passengers and the recently opened Terminal X is utilised by chartered airlines.

The airport has undergone significant changes in terms of expansion. Although the renovations to the airport have not yet been completed, it is hoped that all construction work will be finished by mid-2016.

The director of the airport, Prathuang Sornkham has stated that “Originally, completion of the project was scheduled for mid-2015, but a number of difficulties faced by contractors – including heavy monsoon rains – has caused the project to be pushed back to the middle of 2016,”

He went on to say that “The number of visitors to Phuket is growing fast, largely due to the increasing popularity of its resorts and its reputation as a global tourist destination. Passenger numbers are expected to soar to 12.5 million by the end of this year, well over the 6.5-million-a-year capacity the airport was built to handle,”.

Due to the delay it is expected that the 12.5 million capacity that the expansions were intended to assist in accommodating will have been exceeded by the revised completion date of 2016.

The planned expansion includes for a brand new international terminal which is intended to cope with the huge demand placed upon Terminal 1 by the influx of international passengers who come to Phuket each year.

Also included is the refurbishment and improvement of Terminal 2 for domestic passengers, as well as a new car parking area and cargo office.

Also under consideration are a new runway to work alongside the existing runway already in use at the airport, as well as a new rail link between Phuket International and nearby Krabi airport. The latter is assumed to ease congestion in the already busy Phuket.

The airport currently services a number of important international flights from nearby places such as Beijing in China and Singapore, to more far-flung destinations including Moskow, Frankfurt and Perth.

The airport is situated in the north of the island, and is a mere 30 minute drive from Phuket City.

With these exciting expansion plans for Phuket International Airport the number of tourists coming to the island is bound to increase, which in turn will lead to an upturn in local trade and businesses here on Phuket are bound to feel the benefit of this upsurge of visitors.

At the time of writing this post there are currently 37 cities with nonstop flights to Phuket, Thailand (HKT):

Abu Dhabi – United Arab Emirates
6h 40m
Bangkok, Thailand
1h 20m
Thai AirAsia, Thai, Bangkok Airways
Beijing, China
5h 55m
Air China, Hainan
Changsha, China
4h 5m
China Southern
Chengdu, China
3h 50m
Sichuan, Nok Air, China Eastern
Chiang Mai, Thailand
2h 5m
Thai AirAsia, Bangkok Airways, Thai Smile
Chongqing, China
4h 5m
Orient Thai, Sichuan
Doha, Qatar
6h 35m
Qatar Airways
Dubai – United Arab Emirates
6h 10m
George Town, Malaysia
1h 15m
Guangzhou, China
3h 40m
China Southern
Guiyang, China
3h 30m
China Southern
Hangzhou, China
5h 55m
Beijing Capital, China Eastern
Hat Yai, Thailand
1h 5m
Bangkok Airways
Hong Kong
3h 30m
Dragonair, Hong Kong Express, City Airways
Ko Samui, Thailand
1h 0m
Bangkok Airways
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
1h 20m
AirAsia, Malaysia
Kunming, China
3h 5m
China Eastern, Lucky Air
Manila, Philippines
3h 55m
Cebu Pacific
Melbourne, Australia
8h 55m
Moscow, Russia
9h 20m
Aeroflot, Transaero
Nanjing, China
5h 5m
China Eastern
Nanning, China
3h 20m
Orient Thai
Perth, Australia
6h 30m
Virgin Australia
Saint Petersburg, Russia
10h 5m
Seoul, South Korea
6h 35m
Korean Air, Asiana, EASTAR JET
Shanghai, China
5h 10m
Shanghai Airlines, Junyao, Spring
Shenzhen, China
3h 25m
Shenzhen, China Southern
1h 50m
Silkair, Jetstar, Tigerair
Sydney, Australia
9h 10m
Udon Thani, Thailand
1h 45m
Thai AirAsia
Utapao-Rayong-Pataya International Airport, Thailand
1h 40m
Bangkok Airways
Wuhan, China
4h 5m
China Southern
Xi’an, China
4h 55m
Orient Thai, Beijing Capital
Yekaterinburg, Russia
8h 40m
Zhengzhou, China
5h 0m
China Southern
Zurich, Switzerland
11h 0m


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