Transport

Koh Chang Transfer FAQs

FAQs for transfers to Koh Chang

Frequently Asked Questions about Transfers to Koh Chang

Please read if you need any additional information about the transfers, vehicles or drivers.  You will find answers to the most common questions that I get asked here. 

What is included in the cost of the private transfer?

All of the prices listed include:

  • Tax
  • Driver
  • Gasoline
  • Expressway Tolls
  • Ferry Tickets

There are no hidden fees or extras.

What if I don’t see my departure point or destination location listed here?

If you don’t see your departure or destination mentioned on this page – just let us know! We’ll do our best to help you arrange travel to or from Koh Chang no matter where you’re starting from. We’ve helped travelers arrange transfer from Ayutthaya, Kanchanaburi, Hua Hin, Korat, and other locations – but since they aren’t very common – I haven’t listed all of them here.
Just let me have the details of your trip and I’ll check what’s possible.

Why should I take a private transfer to Koh Chang instead of a shared minibus?

Many travelers prefer private transfers over flying or shared transfers because they’re affordable and convenient. And for anyone coming from Bangkok who wants to go directly to Koh Chang, the options are limited.

If you want to get there as quickly as possible, you can fly – but the cost for a family of four is over double the cost for a safe and easy private transfer.

If you want to go as cheaply as possible, you take a public bus or mini bus – but many people find these options too slow or overcrowded.

It’s also possible to take a public taxi from Bangkok – but this can be a hassle if your driver gets lost (which happens often), or if they don’t speak your language.

Many travelers coming from Bangkok choose private transfer as an alternative to these other expensive or tedious options.

If you’re coming from Phnom Penh or Siem Reap in Cambodia, options are even more limited – especially if you want to avoid all the scams and make sure you don’t get ripped off! You may have read some horror stories on travel websites or in your guidebook. To avoid these shady transfers you either fly to Bangkok first, or buy a shared mini bus ticket from a legitimate company with a good reputation – both of these options can be very expensive!

If you find a mini bus service from Cambodia that seems like a cheap and fantastic deal – be wary. The reason they’re so cheap is because this overland route is notorious for rip-offs and scams along the way.

Coming from Cambodia by land usually takes around 12 hours, so if you are looking for a good compromise for cost, comfort, time, and safety – private transfer is a great option.

Koh Chang transfer review

When and how do I pay for my transfer to Koh Chang?

Paying for Private Transfer – your choice! Unless you’re going to/from Cambodia (where you must pay the first driver at the border crossing), you don’t need to pay a deposit, and you can choose how and when you pay for any private transfer. If you’re coming to Koh Chang, the driver can stop at a bank or currency exchange once you get to the island. This will offer a much better exchange rate than you’d find at the airport.

Paying for Shared Minibuses. For shared mini buses, we can help book tickets with trusted and reliable transfer companies. See the information below to find out how to pay for your shared mini bus transfer:

From Trat Airport – Tickets for seats on a shared minibus service are available between Trat Airport and hotels on Koh Chang, and for people flying BKK to Trat on Bangkok Airways.  Tickets will be booked for you after you have paid online by Paypal or credit card.

From a hotel in central Bangkok or  Pattaya / Jomtien – For these transfers, tickets will be booked for you after you have paid online by Paypal or credit card. The minibus used will be a new model Toyota Commuter with seatbelts and air-conditioning. Prices are the same if travelling in the opposite direction, from a hotel on Koh Chang to a hotel in Bangkok, Suvarnabhumi Airport or a hotel in Pattaya or Jomtien.

From Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) – It is now possible to book tickets online for the shared minibuses from Suvarnabhumi (BKK) to your hotel on Koh Chang. Before, you could only book tickets at the airport in person. You can book tickets online through 12go.asia – a reputable online transport booking site.

How far in advance do I need to book a transfer?

For most shared or private transfers to Koh Chang, you can book up to 24 hours before departure – but availability depends on what’s still available. It’s a good idea to book as early as possible to make sure you have locked in your spot.

For transfers to/from Cambodia, we work with a Cambodian partner agency since tourist vehicles from one country can’t enter the other – so a change of vehicles is required at the border. To accommodate this, please book Cambodian trips at least 7 days in advance.

Where and when do I get picked up or dropped off?

A private transfer will pick you up whenever and wherever you choose.

All of our private transfers are “door to door” – meaning we meet you at your hotel, the airport, or wherever you choose, and drop you off directly at your final destination. We promise to never leave you at a bus station, ferry pier, or another location unless that’s EXACTLY where you want to go.

A shared minibus transfer pickup spot depends on your departure point. Take a look below to find out where your driver will meet you:

Private or shared transfer from Trat Airport – You’ll be picked up in the Arrivals area of the airport. Just look for the driver holding the sign with your name on it.

Private transfer Bangkok Airports – Since minibuses are limited to 90Km/h, you need to leave Suvarnabhumi Airport by 14:00 or from Don Muang Airport at 13:00 if you want to arrive in Koh Chang the same day.

For transfers from Suvarnabhumi (BKK) airport, the driver will meet you at the signposted ‘Meeting Point’ next to ‘Entrance 3’ on the Arrivals Level of the Airport. Just follow the signs to it from the Baggage Claim area. In case of problems finding the driver you will be given a contact number you can call for help.

Budget airlines use Don Meuang Airport (the old airport) and not Suvarnabhumi. If you have connecting flights, plan on it taking, at the minimum, an hour or so to get between the two airports in a taxi. There are now two terminals at Don Meuang. Terminal 1 is for International flights. Terminal 2 for Domestic flights. There are signposted meeting points in both terminals.

Shared minibus from Bangkok City Hotels – Pick up time for the shared minibus to Koh Chang is around 08:00 – 09:00, depending on where you are staying in Bangkok – You will be advised of the pick up time when your booking is confirmed, and you will arrive on Koh Chang mid-afternoon at your hotel.

Pick ups are possible from most hotels in the main central tourist areas of downtown Bangkok, such as: Silom, Sathorn, Khao San Rd, Pratunam, Sukhumvit Soi 1-29 and Soi 2 – 24. The pickup time is around 08:00 – 09:00, and you will arrive in Koh Chang mid-afternoon. We’ll confirm your pick up time with you when we confirm your booking.

Shared transfer from Pattaya – This shared minibus picks up from hotels in Naklua, Pattaya and Jomtien beach. They also drop off in those same areas if you’re coming back to Pattaya from Koh Chang. From Pattaya the pick up time is around 07:00 – 08:00am depending on where you are staying. You’ll get to Koh Chang around lunchtime. Coming from Koh Chang the pick up time is 08:30 – 09:00am.

Pick up and Drop off in Cambodia – If your booking a private transfer, the driver will pick you up from your hotel in Siem Reap, Phnom Penh or Sihanoukville. If you leave your hotel early morning after breakfast, you will arrive at your destination in the evening.

These transfers use our Cambodian partner agency since tour vehicles from one country can’t enter the other, so a change of vehicles at the border is required. To accommodate this change, please book your Cambodian transfer at least 7 days in advance. When we confirm your booking we’ll advise you on where the 2nd driver will wait for you at the border crossing.

Pickup in Koh Chang – There are two shared minibus services from Koh Chang during High Season. Both of these pick up from hotels on the island around 09:00 and 13:00. In Low Season there is a morning service only.

Drop off on Koh Chang – For shared minibus transfers, your driver will drop you off at your hotel – and will stop at other hotels along the way. If you’re staying in the Southeast end of Koh Chang, you will need to take a private transfer from Trat Airport since the airport minibuses don’t go to that part of the island.

How many hours will the transfer to Koh Chang take?

Travel times depend on the time of year. The trip tends to be longer during high season when the roads and ferries are busier.

For most of the High Season the travelling time from Bangkok to Koh Chang will be around 6 to 8 hours long. This includes time to stop on the way for coffee, snacks, etc. There are, of course, unknown factors such as an accident causing gridlock in an area of Bangkok or roadworks enroute – which thankfully are quite rare.

If you have travelled in Thailand before, you will notice that most van drivers will now go slower than they did before. This is because all passenger vans are now required by law to have a GPS tracker fitted so they don’t speed. This is monitored by the government and fines are automatically issued to any drivers breaking the 90km/h speed limit. So if it feels like the driver is going too slowly compared to other traffic, this is just because he is obeying the law.  Whereas other drivers aren’t.

Once you’re on Koh Chang, the time it takes to get to your hotel depends on where you’re located. Koh Chang is a pretty big island so if you are on the South coast in Bangbao it will take around an hour to get to the ferry pier, whereas if you are on White Sand beach it’ll only take 10 minutes or so.

Likewise, if you are staying around Khao San Road in Bangkok, compared to somewhere like Sukhumvit Rd, then it will take 30 mins or so longer to get onto the overhead expressway and out of the city centre.

Bear in mind that Koh Chang is getting increasingly popular, but the number of ferry services hasn’t yet increased to compensate. This is important to remember during Thai holidays and on weekends – since there will often be long queues at the piers. Unfortunately there isn’t much your driver can do about this, but we will make your wait as comfortable as possible.

In an effort to make your trip as fast as possible, all of our drivers use the quicker “Ferry Koh Chang” boat service rather than the slow “Centrepoint” ferry which has less frequent departures.

If you are heading from Koh Chang to Suvarnabhumi or Don Mueang, we might give you a pick up time that’s earlier than you request. This is just in case there are delays at the piers. It’s better to have to wait an extra hour in the comfortable A/C at the airport than to miss your flight.

Can we stop along the way during our trip?

Yes. If you’re taking a private transfer you can stop to take a break for coffee, snack or toilet when you please. Just let your driver know.

On shared minibuses, the driver will stop for lunch / toilet break / snacks.

Drinks, snacks and lunch are not included in the cost of your transfer, so make sure to bring a few hundred Baht in cash if you want to purchase something.

Can the driver do a detour for sightseeing?

No.  He will take you from A to B by the most direct route.  But if you want to make a stop on the way e.g. Chanthaburi Old Town, or a couple of hours in Pattaya for shopping, then that is possible so long as it is arranged in advance.  But there will be a surcharge of between 500 – 1,500 Baht depending on where you want to stop and for how long.

Are children’s car seats provided?

Car seats for infants and children up to around 5 years old can be provided for an extra 200 Baht per seat. If you’re taking a private transfer then there is a maximum of 2 seats available per vehicle.

The ticket price for adults and children are the same for shared minibuses, but babies are free if they sit on parent’s laps.

Do you offer any discounts for transfers?

Yes we do! We offer a 500 Baht discount for round trip private transfers from Bangkok > Koh Chang > Bangkok.

What safety concerns do I need to be aware of?

Thailand has very similar road safety laws to many European countries. In a greater effort to enforce these, the government now requires all commercial vehicles to install GPS tracking systems.

These systems require the drivers to swipe their license at the start and finish of their trip, and limit the vehicle’s speed to 90 km per hour (the legal speed limit). This monitors who is driving, and how many hours they drive in a day.

All passenger vans must be fitted with these tracking systems by the end of 2017 at the very latest, and will not be able to renew their annual license without it. The information is relayed in real time to the Land Transport office and automatic fines are issued to speeding drivers.

The vehicles we use for transfers are all fitted with GPS trackers and seatbelts, so there’s no need to worry. The use of seatbelts for passengers in cars and vans is also now mandatory.
If the police stop the vehicle and passengers aren’t wearing seatbelts, it is the driver who will be fined. So, please use them. :)

Koh Chang transfer review

Who will be my driver and what kind of vehicle will they use?

We only use services from very reliable and careful drivers based on Koh Chang. Most of whom we’ve known for a few years or more.  At busy periods, eg New Year, drivers from Bangkok are also used. All drivers and vehicles are properly licensed in accordance with Thai regulations.

You may find services a few hundred Baht cheaper than ours, but we don’t want to leave our friends in the hands of unreliable drivers with rusty vehicles and loose timelines. The reason we don’t use public taxis or the absolute cheapest service available is because we want to make sure we’re offering safe, comfortable and reliable service.

The minibuses are newer model Toyota Commuter minivans, similar to the ones in the picture below. For transfers by car, in the majority of cases the vehicles are either Toyota Camry, Wish, Innova, Altis or Honda CRV or HRV – these are suitable for 2 adults plus luggage.

For people who need a little more room – couples with loads of luggage, families or ‘large’ or ‘tall’ people – the minivan is the best option as there’s far more space.

Take a look below to see some of our vehicles.

What happens if there are delays due to traffic or the vehicle breaks down etc?  Can we claim compensation?

The driver will do their utmost to get you to your destination as quickly as possible – without breaking speed limits.  However, if there are unexpected delays due to the ferry being busy; traffic jams; accidents en-route etc neither the driver nor myself, iamkohchang.com or Go East Tour, Koh Chang will be liable for any losses or compensation.

Likewise, if there is a mechanical failure with the vehicle.  The driver will endeavor to fix the vehicle or head to the nearest garage or we will arrange for a replacement vehicle to come and pick you up you as quickly as possible.  There will be no additional charges for this.  Very occasionally breakdowns and delays do occur.

** Please note that by booking a transfer you signify that you are aware of this and that we are not liable for any compensation claims if an accident, breakdown or delay occurs.  **

What is your cancellation or refund policy?

Tickets for the shared minibuses are 100% refundable up until 48 hours in advance. If you change your plans, just email me and I will refund you within a few hours.  Late cancellations, within 48 hours of pick up time cannot be refunded.   

For private transfers, so long as you give me 24 hours notice then it;s no problem to refund you in full (if you have paid by Paypal).  Refunds are always processed within a few hours. 

If you have more questions, feel free to contact me. Or if you’re ready to reserve your vehicle, then click one of the links below . . . .

Click here to jump to the private transfer booking form

Or here to book shared minibus tickets