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Toby Keps

Travelled to 12 countries / regions

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Backpacked across Thailand and Cambodia in 2019

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Asia > Cambodia > Siem Reap > Useful Info
Submitted on Jan 21, 2020 Useful Info

Best way to get from Bangkok to Siem Reap and vice versa

  • Siem Reap is located 375km directly east of Bangkok. These two cities are both super popular tourist magnets, and traveling between them is very easy
  • The two ways to travel between these cities are:
  1. By flight
  2. By bus
  • But all things considered, flying is the best way to travel between Bangkok and Siem Reap. Coach bus is a good for budget traveler with lots of time to spare


  • Option 1) FlightUser submitted photo of Siem Reap
  • You can hop on a short direct flight to travel between these two cities. This is the best way to travel mainly because of the short travel time
  • Flight time is just 1 hour
  • Fare will vary by airline, but from what I've seen should be about USD$90-$110 per passenger each way
  • Schedule:
  • Bangkok to Siem Reap: 9 daily flights departing at 7:45am, 8am, 10:10am, 10:35am, 1:30pm, 2:05pm, 5:35pm, 6:45pm, 7:10pm, 8:00pm
  • Siem Reap to Bangkok: 11 daily flights departing at 8:25am,9:45am, 9:55am, 11:55am, 12:15pm, 3:15pm, 4:00pm, 7:30pm, 8:30pm, 9:25pm, 9:45pm
  • To get the current departure times check the airlines' website or a search site like Kayak and Skyscanner
  • Flights are operated by AirAsia, Bangkok Airways, Thai Smile, and Lanmai Airlines. AirAsia usually has the cheapest fares, followed by Thai Smiles, and then finally Bangkok Airways. Personally, I like Thai Smiles (it's a sub brand of Thai Airways which is a fantastic airline)
  • Airport in Bangkok: there are two airports in Bangkok (Suvarnabhumi BKK and Don Mueang DMK). Most of the flights between Bangkok and Siem Reap depart from and land in Don Mueang but a small number also use Suvarnabhumi. You can read here about how to get from/to Don Mueang from the city; and here about how to get from/to Suvarnabhumi from the city
  • Airport in Siem Reap: there's only one airport in Siem Reap. You can read here about how to get from/to the Siem Reap International Airport from the city


  • Option 2) Coach BusUser submitted photo of Siem Reap
  • Most visitors probably don't even know that it's possible to travel between Bangkok and Siem Reap by bus, but it's totally doable and cheap, albeit at the expense of taking a really long time and a very unfriendly border crossing
  • Buses run everyday so it's pretty easy to catch one if this is the transportation method you opt for
  • Travel time is 8-10 hours on the low end, and 15 hours on the high end. Most of the buses depart in the morning 7-9am and arrive in the afternoon. However, some buses also depart very late at night midnight-1am and arrive in the morning. The hours are dictated by border crossing
  • Fares is about USD$30-$32 per person each way, though you can often find fares a as low as USD$22 per passenger each way. However, if you're going from Bangkok to Siem Reap, you must also take into consideration the service fees and/or bribes you must pay at the Thai-Cambodian border to get your Cambodian visa on arrival, which will cost you USD$5-$20 (this is beyond the US$30 official visa fee, which you have to pay at the airport as well but at the airport you don't have to pay bribes)
  • These are all the main coach bus operators between Siem Reap and Bangkok along with their current customer ratings from 3rd party review sites:
  1. Giant Ibis: https://www.giantibis.com, rated 4/5 on Tripadvisor
  2. Transport Co.: http://home.transport.co.th, rated 3.9/5 on 12Go
  3. Nattakan: no website, rated 3.6/5 on 12Go
  4. Travel Mart: https://www.travelmartbkk.com, rated 3.5/5 on Tripadvisor
  5. Virak Buntham Express: https://www.virakbuntham.com, rated 2/5 on Tripadvisor
  • How to book bus ticket:
  • For all of these buses it's recommended that you book your ticket ahead of time to guarantee yourself a seat. The best way to do that is through their websites that I've listed above as this will guarantee that you get the lowest rate. However, you can also use 3rd party booking sites like 12Go, BusOnlineTicket, Bookaway, CambodiaTicket, and BusBud. Personally I recommend 12Go as they're the currently the largest travel booking site for Southeast Asia at the moment and their interface is very similar to traditional booking sites like ExpediaUser submitted photo of Siem Reap
  • Instead of booking online, another way to book is find a local travel agency in Bangkok or Siem Reap. In Siem Reap you'll find lots of them along Sivutha Boulevard in the old city, and in Bangkok you'll find many of them in Silom and Sukhumvit areas. Booking with local travel agencies will be usually cheaper than booking online
  • Finally, you can also gamble and book at the bus station (Bangkok Mo Chit Station and Siem Reap Bus Station, see more details below). I don't recommend doing this because there might not be any seats on the departure time you want
  • Bus station/terminal in Bangkok: the stations in Bangkok varies depending on which bus company you choose, it's best to check with your booking agency and your bus company. Some companies also depart from major bus terminals in Bangkok, including Mo Chit Bus Terminal (located here, Transport Co. uses it) and Makkasan Bus Terminal (located here, Giant Ibis uses it). All these stations are located very centrally in Bangkok so you can easily to get/from them with BTS/MRT trains or taxis
  • Bus station/terminal in Siem Reap: similar to Bangkok, the bus terminal in Siem Reap varies by operator and it's best if you check with your ticketing agency. However, Siem Reap Bus Station (located here) is the main bus terminal in the city and is used by Giant Ibis. You need to take a tuk tuk or taxi to get from/to this station for USD$2-$5
  • Thai-Cambodia land border crossing: when taking the bus between Thailand and Cambodia, you will be crossing the land border right here in the town of Poipet, Cambodia. Here's some information regarding this border crossing:
  • It's open between 6am and 10pm everyday. If you're taking the bus between Bangkok and Siem Reap you don't have to worry about the hours since the buses are timed to cross then it's open
  • The border is about 5 hours from Bangkok and 4 hours from Siem Reap
  • In terms of visa, all the regular visa rules to these countries apply:
  • From Siem Reap to Bangkok: likely won't need a visa to Thailand if you're from a developed country, but double check with Thailand Ministry of Foreign Affairs website regardless
  • From Bangkok to Siem Reap: most likely will need to get a visa on arrival at the border because Cambodia pretty much only exempts visa for nationals of ASEAN (Southeast Asian) select few other countries. Visa on Arrival officially costs US$30, paid in cash USD. The bus driver usually takes care of getting the visa for you at the border, you just give them the cash (they'll often asks for US$40-$50) and your passport and wait on the bus. Because of these expenses make sure you have sufficient amount of USD with you when you go to the border. I recommend bringing at least USD$60 USD cash with you with bunch of $5 and $1 USD bills just in case. To save some money you can get the visa on arrival yourself, but if you read these Google reviews about the border you'll know that this is an extremely unfriendly place and the border officials frequently demand bribes so it might not be something you want to deal with (if you do want to go down this route you should prepare some $1 USD bills or 100 baht bills to pay the bribes, which usually costs around 100 baht, or $3-$4USD; when you get to the Cambodian side you need to fill out the arrival card first, something that no one at the border will proactively tell you to do). Alternatively, instead of Visa on Arriva I recommend getting the eVisa to Cambodia ahead of time online (costs USD$36). This will save you lots of time and hassle at the border, and eVisa is accepted at this (Poi Pet) border. You can get the eVisa from the official Cambodian government eVisa website
  • The border is absolutely chaotic. Ignore anyone who approaches you about anything. They'll offer you to help do your visa, or say you need to do health check, etc., just ignore anyone who approaches you. The border guards turn a blind eye to these people and there's no order whatsoever