Booking: boat routes from Koh Phangan or Koh Tao to Koh Samui (and reverse), tickets, timely organization. [farparants tip]

Many guests still are confused about the boat routes and times to get from Koh Phangan and Koh Tao to Koh Samui or reverse.

This topic will be divided into 2 cases.

Case 1. You manage to cross these islands by yourself and 2. Let it be done with the organization by a travel agency.

Let’s start with case

1. traveling by yourself.

Some travelers would like to challenge their adventure by not booking the transfer with travel agencies and want to arrange boat transfer by themselves on-site or on the internet.

Firstly, where to book the tickets? There are 3 places to book it.


1.  At the hotel reception, the hotel does provide you not only accommodation but boot transfer service too which provides b1.y other providers.


2. At the ferry/boat counter directly. But this case will happen less.

Due to that the ferry counter is normally located far away from your hotel.

Just in case you are staying not in the hotel but in a rented house and nobody/reception to arrange it for you.

If you are not sure about booking on the Internet, you need to come to the pier/counter and buy it directly.


3. On the Internet, the common ferry provider does offer a booking system on the internet you can easily make it done via your phone.

Most ferry provider has an admin staff who will support you with the booking via phone.


During the high season, most boats are fully booked you need to book the boat ticket in advance even before you get to Thailand.

The recent days things have been easy, many boat organizers post booking systems on their website and people can book the tickets online.

Since there are many boat providers, you can compare the prices, but I would say the prices are not much different.

So let’s select the ones who are the most trustworthy. There are two more things to know besides price and departure time: where the pier is and what kind of boat.

There are several piers where people get to Koh Tao and Koh Phangan. Knowing where the nearest pier to your hotel is will reduce the taxi

Price. With speed should last about 20 – 30

minutes between Koh Phangan and Koh Samui and 1.5 hours between Koh Tao and Koh Samui with a catamaran ferry.

But the actual drive normally takes about 1 hour to Koh Phangan and 2 hours to Koh Tao.


Common Piers in Samui


Common Piers on Koh Phangan

Common Pier on Koh Tao


Booking by yourself


  • flexible


  • Less responsibility of any issue.
  • No contact person if any change of schedule

Case 2. Book the boat via a travel agency

Book it via a travel agency which you have also booked your hotel.

The agency offers not only hotel booking but also many other services including all land and boat transfers.

You might think you have to pay more than usual by booking via the travel agency. It should but not much.

The exceeded price accounts for booking service and is worth it for all conveniences and safety.

Booking via a travel agency covers the case if something wrong happens or is not going to be in working order.

So, you are safe. Some travel agencies even sell you the price the ferry company sells.

Really? Yes, it is an additional service from the travel agency. But depends on each agency.

The travel agency will inform you what kind of boat and what time should be the best for your plan.

If you want to make sure that everything will go smoothly with your across to the islands,

you better book the transfer with your travel agency, you will have someone namely a customer service representative at the local to speak with in case of any problem.


Normally, the agency will book the public boats for you.


Now read this, it is very important!


Some hotel in Koh Phangan have their own boat transfer.

*** Some hotels in Koh Phangan, for instance, Panviman Resort, Santhiya Resort, Anantara Rasananda, and Buri Rasa Koh Phangan, do provide their own speed boat transfer to their customers.

So, if you are staying in these hotels, the agency will book the hotel’s speed boat for you.

Because the agency is closer friends with these hotels, it is easier to deal case of any issues if something happens on the boat. That is why with the boat of the hotel directly, no ticket requirement.

The customer service representative often got calls from guests

referring to this issue:

Customer service person: Hello how can I help you, sir/madam?

Guest: Yes, we are going to leave for Koh Phangan tomorrow and still don’t get the boat ticket from you.

Customer service person: hold on, what is your name and hotel, sir?

Guest: Ah sorry, my name is Alex in hotel…

Customer service person: Okay sir, you will travel to Koh Phangan by private transfers to the Hotel directly,

that is why you don’t need to show the boat ticket sire, the driver already knows your name (hotel guest).

Guest: Ah understand, thank you very much for the info.

Customer service person: you are welcome sir/madam.


The travel agency additionally has a customer service person who

helps the customers at the airport. If you have the transfer with the travel

agency, you have this person at the airport. He/She will give you the boat tickets and drive you to the Samui Pier or welcome

and help you at the Samui airport when you come from Koh Phangan or Koh Tao, so it is very comfortable this way. 

This choice is however not flexible for tourists who are not patient. Especially for the trip back from Koh Phangan/Koh Tao.

Sometimes the boat time that was managed by the travel agency doesn’t fit the

flight time in Samui. The boat from Koh Phangan/Koh Tao doesn’t head out every

hour but every 3-4 hours. The ferry boat will head out from Phangan to Samui

Pier at 9:30 12:30 and 16:30 If you have the flight to Samui Airport at about 20:00. The

travel agency prefers to book for you the boat at 12:30 to make sure that you

will come to Samui Airport in time.

The boat at 16:30 has a high possibility that you will miss your flight.

Of course, you will come to Samui very early, But no worries, Samui airport is located near the center of Samui: Chaweng which is the biggest center of Samui,

you can do activities like shopping, restaurants, spas, and massage at reasonable prices here.

You don’t need to wait only at the airport.

This way is of course this is not that convenient for you but this will make sure that will 100 percent not miss your flight at Samui Airport. 

The question is: even though, can you still change it?

the answer is: Yes, you can, just speak with your local service person but he will explain to you first that you will possibly miss your expensive flight if you postpone to the later boat.

If you are sure to do that, he/she will change it for you, but that will be your own risk.  

We can never trust the sea, if there are big waves/rough sea the boat might be


But if everything runs smoothly, you will save a lot of your time. So, it is a great bet.

Booking via a travel agency

Booking via a travel agency


  • Your travel agency is fully responsible for all issues
  • The local expert staff will manage it for you


  • not flexible: you cannot select the boat schedule, especially boat time from Koh Phangan to Samui to get your return flight. If you have the return flight at 20:00 at Samui Airport. You should come with the boat at 12:30 to Samui.

Why the agency would you the very early boat from Koh Phangan to Samui (to the airport)

this is the reason #I have a flight at 20:00 why should I take the ferry at 12:30 from Koh Phangan to Koh Samui? [farparents tip]

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