Thailand is a beautiful adventure high on any travel bug’s list. But getting to Thailand can be expensive, not to mention a very long flight if you’re flying from the U.S.
Tips on how to fly to Thailand include flying during the off-peak season, using flight watching apps and being flexible on the days that you fly, plus more.
If you’re ready to take visiting Thailand off your bucket list and make the long trek over to the tropical paradise, we’re sharing the tips you need to travel to Thailand without breaking the bank. Struggling to find flights that are affordable, when you want to visit, and making sure you’ve packed enough for your trip shouldn’t be taking away all of your joy and excitement for your visit.
Know Your Budget
Flying to Thailand can be expensive. You don’t want to spend your entire trip budget on airfare, so make sure you know your budget. If you have the availability to splurge, then being specific with your dates and flying during peak season is not a problem for you. But if you want to keep within your budget and save your cash for your actual stay, have a clear budget in mind so you know what your price range for your flight actually is.
Start Looking Months In Advance
The sooner you start looking for your flights, the better chance you are going to find ones that are affordable and under $1,000. When flying to Asia, it’s recommended that you book 90 days in advance, but sometimes, cheapest flights can be found up to 7-9 months out (171days out is optimal).
Be Flexible With Your Dates
Being flexible with your dates can totally help you get flights at a much cheaper rate than if you are fixed on when you go. Also, flying Monday through Wednesday is a great idea because not only will your plane be less crowded, it can save you an average of $115. Try to not fly on a weekend at all costs.
Go During Non-peak Season
Airfare can be as much as half the price as it normally is during November through March, Thailand’s peak season months. Sure, it’ll be a bit hotter than usual from March to May, but if you can stand the heat, traveling to Thailand during this time will save you big bucks on your airfare. Can’t stand the intense heat? Well, Thailand will still be warm, but it’ll be wet during the rainy season of May to November, however, you’ll still be able to travel and see all the sites you want to see, just maybe under a poncho.
Use Your Miles/Points Through Flight Hacking
Flight hacking may sound like a complicated thing to master, but there are websites such as Nerd Wallet, The Points Guy and Million Mile Secrets that will help you learn how to hack your next flight to Thailand. By learning how to combine points from credit cards, surveys, dining out, and shopping online, you can pool together some major discounts on airfare.
Create Flight Watches/Deals
Using flight apps such as Hopper and Skyscanner can help you create searches that you can monitor for when prices go up or down. Many people use Google Alerts as well to watch for a cheap flight as it notifies you when prices drop. Pro tip: if you put ‘anywhere’ into the destinations of Skyscanner you will be able to see the best travel deals around the world.
Fly Into Bangkok
And speaking of Hopper, the sky app shows flights around $200 cheaper flying into Bangkok rather than Phuket. If you want to go to Phuket, fly into Bangkok and then fly locally. You can make your way around Thailand via cheap domestic flights when you’re there. There are 51 different islands in Thailand, so you’ll probably find yourself hopping on a smaller flight during your trip. Bangkok will be your best bet price-wise and to fly into a major airport. Some domestic flights in Thailand are as little as $20.
Fly With a Layover
The flight to Thailand is long, especially when flying from the United States. Since you’re already on your way over to Asia, why not stop over in another exotic location that you’ve wanted to see as well? Breaking up your trip with layovers is a great way to enjoy one, two, even three different countries on your journey while also giving your back a rest from sitting nonstop in airplane seats. Some airlines that offer free stopovers are:
- Qatar Airways when you fly through Doha (up to 96 hours)
- China Southern when flying through Beijing, Guangzhou, or Shanghai (up to 72 hours)
- Air China when flying through Beijing or Shanghai (up to 72 hours)
- Finnair when flying through Helsinki (up to 5 days)
- Icelandair when fly between USA/Canada or 26 European stops (up to 7 days)
- Hawaiian Airlines when flying through Honolulu (no limit on days)
- Japan Airlines when flying through Tokyo or Osaka (up to two stopovers)
- Turkish Airlines when flying through Istanbul (free hotel room if no connecting flight w/in 10 hours of arrival)
- TAP when flying through Porto or Lisbon (up to 3 days)
- Emirates when flying through Dubai or Milan
- Etihad when flying through Abu Dhabi
- Singapore Airlines
Fly With Low-Cost Airlines
Even if you’re dedicated to a more mainstream airline like Delta, American, or United, you might want to think about flying with a lower cost airline to fit within your budget. Airlines such as AirAsia and Jetstar are usually priced below the market average. Make sure to check the reviews and read about each airlines rules and restrictions before flying with them so you aren’t surprised with hidden fees or expect amenities they don’t offer.
Search On Student Travel Sites
StudentUniverse and STA Travel have plenty of deals and discounts for students and adults under the age of 26. If you are a student or are flying with a student, you can find deals on flights, hotels, tours, activities, and flight transfers. You still want to look as far in advance as you can (as mentioned above, flights are usually cheapest around 90 days out), but this is a great way to find deals and discounts for your entire trip. They work with over 220 airlines, so you’re almost guaranteed to find a great deal not just to Thailand, but to most other international locations.
Be Prepared For How Long The Flight Is
Especially if you haven’t flown overseas before or to Asia, you want to prepare yourself for how long the flight is. Flying from New York or Toronto can be up to twenty hours, seventeen to nineteen hours when flying from LA, or eighteen hours from Vancouver. Of course, depending on the airline you fly on, you’ll receive certain amenities such as sleep masks, blankets, and pillows, but you want to make sure you bring enough snacks, waters, and entertainment to keep you settled in for such a long duration.
What month is cheapest to fly to Thailand?
Just like traveling to any other country, if you’re wanting to find the cheapest flights to Thailand, go during the offseason which is between March and September. The best month to fly for the most savings in May, which is great because the rainy season hasn’t started yet and it’s extra hot.
How long is the flight from the United States to Thailand?
It will depend on where you are flying out of, but in general, flying to Bangkok, Thailand from the United States is about 18 hours.