Pattaya airport guide (U-Tapao airport)

Pattaya airport guide (U-Tapao airport)

Pattaya airport guide (U-Tapao airport)


Thailand has among the most modern airports in the world. That’s in terms of how they’re being built, easy access, and facilities being provided. One such airport is Pattaya Airport, also known as Utapao International Airport. It’s UTP code that’s IATA.

The airport has an International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) certification, which means it meets all international standards set.


Pattaya airport is about one hundred and forty kilometers southeast of Bangkok, in Ban Chang, Rayong. It is the closest international airport to Bangkok, apart from Suvarnabhumi and Don Meuang.


Pattaya Airport or U-Tapao International Airport is located approximately halfway between Pattaya and Rayong, approximately 40 km from each town.

The U-Tapao Airport is also a Royal Thai Navy Air Station and home to the Navy’s First Air Wing.

It is isolated from the main terminal-which services are scheduled and charter flights-

For that reason, during take-off and landing, passengers are often told not to take photographs from the window.


Pattaya airport guide (U-Tapao airport)


A limited number of regular domestic and international flights operate at the airport, with other airlines operating only three to four days a week.


Destinations include in Thailand

  • Phuket

  • Koh Samui

  • Chiang Mai

  • Hat Yai

  • Udon Thani


In China

  • Shanghai

  • Macau

  • Nanchang

  • Nanning


In Malaysia 

  • Kuala Lumpur




There are proposals to expand U-Tapao’s commercial capabilities further, essentially making it the third airport in Bangkok.


Background information about Utapao airport


Pattaya airport is a well-developed airport serving both the general public and the civilian army. It serves as the Utapao Royal Third Navy Airfield. The airport was established to meet international standards as a result of the country’s increased demand for flights.

Beyond their potential, the two international airports in Bangkok have been underlined, making the government take the step to make Utapao airport another international destination for airlines.

The airport had not been well known or established until recently and only accommodated some flights, not scheduled. In 2015 Utapao Airport was used by just 170,000 passengers.

However, this leaped to 710,000 in 2016 and 1,200,000 in 2017. So, it makes it one of the world’s fastest-growing airports.

It had a limited number of local and international flights, but mostly due to the expansion of AirAsia’s flights and the increasing number of Chinese airlines. Terminal 2 is the most recent phase in the Utapao Airport expansion and upgrade.

This addition means it’s capable of handling up to 3,000,000 passengers a year. In the coming years, additional terminal and also the building of a second runway will be discussed with the Royal Thai Navy, which owns the site, the civil airline authorities, and the government of Thai.

The second runway is expected to be 3,500 m long and able to accommodate Airbus larger aircrafts flights.

It is anticipated that the U-Tapao expansion project will allow Utapao / Pattaya airport to handle 15 million passengers over the next five years, 30 million over the next 15 years and 60 million over the next 20 years.

It is an ambitious initiative also connected to the strategy of the Thai government to grow and introduce hi-tech industries to the east of Thailand. The site’s News section provides more detail on the airport’s expansion plans. Terminal 2, which opened at the beginning of 2019, is now fully operational.


Pattaya airport flights


Utapao airport is the nearest domestic and international airport to Pattaya, just a 40-minute drive from Pattaya.

Hence, Making Utapao very convenient for anyone who visits Thailand from Pattaya or multiple destinations outside the country. In addition, cheap domestic and international flights make it comfortable for residents of Pattaya, particularly those who are looking for affordable and easy ways to travel to distant locations in Thailand.

The increased number of international and domestic flights arriving and departing from Utapao airport has made this a common route, and there are now several choices.

There are various domestic and foreign airlines operating from airport Pattaya. Thai Air Asia, Bangkok Airways, Emirates, and Air Asia are amongst the airline brands that fly more frequently. Besides this, Pattaya’s most common sectors are Pattaya to Phuket, Pattaya to Koh Samui with 14, 14 weekly flights, respectively.

Thai Air Asia airline 101 departs from Pattaya airport at 6:30 a.m. to Chiang Mai, followed by Thai Air Asia airline 2001 to Udon Thani at 7:55 a.m.

Whereas the last flight leaving from Pattaya airport at 7:55 p.m. is Thai Air Asia airline 430 to Hangzhou.


Pattaya airport guide (U-Tapao airport)


Pattaya airport code


Thailand’s airports have International IATA and ICAO codes. An IATA airport code is composed of three-letter code identified by the International Air Transport Association (IATA), which designates many airports around the world (including Thailand).

The characters displayed prominently on the baggage tags attached to the check-in desks at the airport are an example of how those codes are used.

The ICAO airport code is an alphanumeric four-letter code designating every airport in the world. The International Civil Aviation Organization determines such codes. A

ir traffic control and airline activities such as flight preparation use the ICAO codes. These are not the same as the general public’s IATA codes, which are used for airline timetables, bookings, and handling of luggage. Pattaya airport IATA code is UTP.


Pattaya airport to Pattaya city (Pattaya airport transfer)


Getting from U-Tapao Airport to Pattaya and nearby seaside towns is conveniently accessible.

At the terminal exit, the taxi/bus service desk will help arrange transportation to your final destination, be it Bangkok, Pattaya, Phe Pier (for Koh Samet), or Trat Pier (for Koh Chang). A car rental service desk is also nearby.

You can see counters for taxi services to hotels in Pattaya when you reach the Utapao Arrival district. There are three taxi counters right outside the U-Tapao exit door. Taxi prices are set at 1,000 Baht. (No haggling.) That’s a very easy way to get there.

But, if you’re willing to ride in a minibus or take the time to pre-book a taxi from Pattaya to meet you, there are a few cheaper choices. The same counters also sell tickets for minibus services provided by the 250 Baht.

You can book a taxi, by phone, via the website or, nowadays, more generally, a transport company’s Facebook page. is a popular website covering transportation across Asia. You may also use this platform to book your ride to or from the airport either by private car or Minibus (1,000–1,500 Baht).

Uber left Thailand in May 2018 when it was sold to a rival firm, Grab, for the operations.

Grab is a company headquartered in Singapore and operating across the world. It can be used to order anything from a motorbike taxi, public taxi, private car, or limousine.

Only download the Grab Taxi app to your computer, and go drive. Grab cars usually charge about 800 Baht for the Pattaya ride.


Pattaya airport to Phuket


Pattaya and Phuket are two of the most famous beach resort destinations in Thailand, so they have several similarities. There are some significant differences too, which make both places a desirable stop on tour around Thailand for many travelers.

Nearer to Bangkok, Pattaya is the ideal place to go for the beaches and nightlife and is famous for Thai nationals and tourists alike.

While Phuket is also a busy resort, it has more beautiful beaches and may not be as loud as Pattaya.

There is a special feeling at this destination in Southern Thailand.


Flights from Pattaya airport to Phuket


Catching a flight is easily the easiest way to get from Pattaya to Phuket for anyone in a rush, as there are direct flights between the two airports. The reported flying time ranges from 1 hour 25 minutes with Thai AirAsia to 1 hour 40 minutes with Bangkok Air, although the real flying time is possible between the two!

For these two carriers, Thai AirAsia is significantly cheaper than a Bangkok Air ticket-about half the price. And there’s certainly not much point in wasting more money on flying with a more expensive airline for a short flight like this.

Be conscious, however, that Thai AirAsia does not offer checked baggage allowance, so if you have big bags you can’t carry-on, you’ll have to pay extra to have them checked into the hold. With Bangkok Air, you get a baggage allowance of 20 kg included in the ticket price.

From Pattaya, you can depart from U-Tapao Pattaya Airport, which is about 40 kilometers from Pattaya center. Driving to the airport will add some time to your overall trip, but it is convenient enough to do so daily as minivans and taxis drive between them.

Minivans are pretty much cheaper than taxis, but since it’s shared, you’ll have a longer ride because it’s likely to wait until it’s full boarded before you leave, or you can make multiple stops along the way. If you’re trying to get to the airport to catch a flight to Phuket, this might actually be a little stressful, so be sure to give yourself enough time if you’re traveling by minivan to the airport.

There are various options for traveling to Phuket Town or one of the other resort areas once you arrive at Phuket International Airport, including shared minivans and taxis, and often you can arrange pick-ups with the hotel or guesthouse you’ve booked to stay at.

Though with the time it will take to get to Pattaya Airport, and then to your hotel from Phuket Airport, flying is still easily the fastest way to get to Phuket from Pattaya. Check out the 12Go. Asia website for great airline ticket rates and book with confidence, and try to book your tickets for the best offers on fares as soon as possible.


Pattaya airport guide (U-Tapao airport)


From Pattaya to Phuket by Bus


Being significantly cheaper than catching a flight, Pattaya, by bus to Phuket, is a very common way of traveling, particularly for anyone on a tight budget, which is getting around Thailand. Busses are a comfortable and inexpensive way to get across Thailand, and the only downside to traveling by bus is the time it takes to get anywhere.

There’s the lower cost on the plus side, and some travelers would appreciate the fact you don’t have to find your way out to your hotel from Pattaya Airport or Phuket Airport. That said, you’ll need to get to the bus departure point and then find your way to your accommodation from the Phuket Bus Terminal.


Pattaya to Phuket by Taxi


One final choice you may want to consider is to go from Pattaya to Phuket by private taxi. With the taxi, the main downside is the very high cost. It’s considerably more expensive than the most expensive flight, but if you’re traveling as a family, you may think it is worth the price. Traveling by taxi to Phuket is marginally faster than traveling by rail, but not enough to make it a truly strong contender. Travel time is about 15 hours.

So flying, taking the bus, or traveling by private taxi are your options for getting from Pattaya to Phuket. For airfares not costing the world, if you want to get to Phuket quickly, this might be the most practical way to fly.


Pattaya airport guide (U-Tapao airport)
Pattaya airport guide (U-Tapao airport) – Some relax sitting with a coffee at the Bangkok Airways lounge


Utapao international airport expansion


Seeing that the two international airports in Bangkok operate beyond capacity, the government aimed to turn U-Tapao into a third major airline destination.

The new second terminal was meant to increase airport capacity from 800,000 to 3 million people per annum. Terminal 2 was opened partially in November 2018 and formally opened in February 2019.

Forty-one direct flights land weekly from China, with more airlines scheduled to announce shortly. Rear Adm Worapol Tongpricha, director of the airport, said that the 620 million baht terminal is the beginning of a first-phase construction in three years. The government would further raise capacity to 15 million people in the second phase.


Where can you fly to Pattaya Airport?


There are various domestic and foreign airlines operating from airport Pattaya.

Thai Air Asia, Bangkok Airways, Emirates, are amongst the airline brands that fly more frequently.

Besides this, Pattaya’s most common sectors are Pattaya to Phuket, Pattaya to Koh Samui with 14, and 14 weekly flights, respectively.

Thai Air Asia airline 101 departs from Pattaya airport at 6:30 a.m. to Chiang Mai, followed by Thai Air Asia airline 2001 to Udon Thani at 7:55 a.m., whereas the last flight departing from Pattaya airport at 7:55 p.m. is Thai Air Asia airline 430 to Hangzhou.


How far is Pattaya Airport from Pattaya?


The distance between Utapao Airport or Pattaya airport (UTP) and Pattaya is 31 km, and the road distance is 41.8 km.


How do I get from Pattaya to the airport?


Getting to the airport is simply because of the many available transport services. Whatever city you come from, you can get a transportation service that will help you get there at the right time.

If you want to get to Pattaya city airport, you can choose to fly with a minibus in the Central Festival district. You can opt for air-conditioned buses stationed at the Eastern Bus Terminal if you are from Bangkok.

There are also buses, private taxis, mini cabs, and vans providing transport from other towns to the airport.

The airport of Utapao is about 40 minutes’ drive from Pattaya and is the city’s closest domestic and international airport.

Thus, it makes Utapao the perfect airport for anyone visiting Pattaya or eastern Thailand to use.

Very few airlines have used the airport up until recently. Nevertheless, the number of flights is increasingly growing, and the airport is expanding to accommodate the increased demand.

Similarly, new transport systems are constantly introduced. So, keep revisiting this page for new or additional services may be running.


Public buses to Utapao


In May 2018, three bus lines connecting U-Tapao International Airport with three eastern provinces were launched to serve passengers.

These bus lines operate from the airport to Trat, Rayong, and Chonburi. Private transport companies run routes using air-conditioned buses with GPS monitoring systems.

The Trat service includes Chanthaburi at one of its stops, while the Chon Buri route also stops in downtown Pattaya and Sri Racha.

The buses used are micro busses which seat up to 19 passengers. Route 1 brings passengers arriving from U-Tapao to Trat and Koh Chang Island, covering 220 km in just over three hours, and stopping at Chanthaburi bus station.

The second, the shortest, the path passes nearby Ban Chang to Rayong Bus Terminal, covering 35 km in around half an hour.

The third route, w is 100 km long it will take approximately one and a half hours, goes to the bus station in Chonburi. This bus takes stops in Sattahip, Pattaya, and Si Racha close by. Four buses run daily on every route.


Private taxi and Minibus services


When you travel on AirAsia, you can take advantage of their minibus service to get between Pattaya and Utapao.

If you choose Pattaya Central as your starting point or destination, rather than the actual airport, you will be given an all-inclusive option, flight plus Minibus.

The Minibus picks up passengers in the city center from the Central Festival Mall side, or just from their Hotel, if it is located in the south.


You’ll need to get in contact with the minibus service and arrange a hotel pick up yourself


Similarly, if you’re going to Pattaya Airport and you’re heading to central Pattaya, the Minibus can drive you outside the same center.

Kitittron Transport, with headquarters in Pattaya, runs this operation for AirAsia. One thing We want you to keep in mind is that the Minibus always waits until it’s complete before leaving Utapao.

So you can land your flight on time, but you may find yourself waiting for another flight before the minibus leaves. Hence we suggest taking one of the private companies providing the same service and getting minibusses running on a set schedule.

Similarly, you can book a combined plane, bus and boat ticket on the AirAsia website if you are visiting Koh Samet and are traveling on AirAsia. Simply select’ Pier Samet (Na Dan)’ as your destination.

Quite convenient, but keep in mind that passenger boats only work during the hours of daylight. If you arrive late in the afternoon or at night, you will have to stay overnight on the mainland.

Both private taxis and shared minibusses run


The Minibus shared is 350 Baht/person. You will be picked from your hotel


Minibusses operated by Suvarnabhumi Burupha Bus Company between Pattaya and Utapao.

The buses depart from Pattaya by 08:00 and 12:00; While a departure from Utapao Airport by 10:00 and 16:30. Direct contact on telephone: 082-926-8769 or via their website- PPK Travel (Kungnang taxi) operates both shared minibusses and private taxis between Pattaya and the airport.

One way a private taxi is for 800 Baht. A private minibus is from 1200 Baht total for larger classes. Linked minibus fares are 300 Baht.

Crane travel service-The The service that also operates shared minibusses for 250 Baht, with a pick-up at your central Pattaya hotel. Bangkok Airways recommend us to its passengers to reserve a seat, and please call 081-377-2778.

Taxi Service to Nam-This is a small private taxi service that only uses women drivers. And it may be an option if you prefer a calmer driver or a single woman traveling alone.

They are based in Pattaya and can arrange transfers to Bangkok and locations in eastern Thailand by car, SUV, or private Minibus.


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