I needed to go from Patong to Chiang Mai and was contemplating flying with AirAsia. Since I had a checked luggage in the form of a backpack, I would need to pay extra for it.
In order to save some money, I decided to take the bus from Phuket to Chiang Mai.
From what I researched, Green Bus Thailand is the only bus company that travels from Phuket to Chiang Mai directly. One bus per day travels this overnight route starting at 3 p.m.
Green Bus Thailand has the option of purchasing tickets in advance. I decided against this in case I wasn’t able to make it to the bus terminal in Phuket Town on time.
Before I left Patong around 11 a.m., there were about 28 free seats on the bus to Chiang Mai. I felt there would be seats available when I arrive to the ticket booth.
When I left my hostel in Patong, I first needed to catch the bus to Phuket Town. The bus stop is right in front of the police station at the corner of Thanon Bangla and Thawewong Road. There are also more stops along the beach. It comes every 30 minutes and costs 30 baht. The ride was about 30 minutes and drops you off at the market which was the last stop.
From the market, I took another bus to terminal 2 for 20 baht. The bus took about 15 minutes to arrive and the ride was 15 minutes. Make sure not to go to the old bus terminal.
Finally, I was inside terminal 2 in Phuket.
When I bought the bus ticket from Phuket to Chiang Mai, I was surprised there was only 2 available seats. Something didn’t add up regarding the 28 available seats a few hours prior.
Anyways, I bought my ticket to Chiang Mai for 1646 baht.
When I departed at 3 p.m., the attendant gave everyone a small bottle of water and 2 packages of cookies.
The seats on Green Bus reclined to about 145 degrees. It was a good way to relax or sleep without taking up the leg space of the person behind you.
Surprisingly, the seats also have a massage feature. It was not easy to function and there was a long delay in the seat actually massaging the back. But when it was working, it was nice.
The seats had LCD screens. There were movies available to watch but not the greatest selection.
The bus did make stops along the way to pick up more passengers and for breaks.
The bus had one driver and one attendant. During the trip, the bus changed the driver and attendant.
Dinner was served late at 9 p.m. But Green Bus provided dinner at a restaurant and not inside the bus. The food was great and fresh.
The next morning, more cookies and water was provided.
Around noon, the bus picked up rice and chicken with fried onion from a vendor along the road. The vendor had the warm food packaged and ready to give to the bus attendant. This time I ate the meal on the bus.
I finally arrived in Chiang Mai around 2:30 p.m., just to save about 800 baht by avoiding air transport.