1. Travel

Don Muang Airport

By

Don Muang Airport Overview:

The large, modern Suvarnabumi Airport opened in 2005, replacing cramped and dated Don Muang Airport. The new airport is less than 20 miles from the center of the capital and serves the rest of Thailand, Asia and the world. The airport has two terminals, an international terminal and a domestic terminal, both under the same roof.

Although there is just one international terminal, it can take up to 20 minutes to walk from one end of the terminal to another, so plan ahead to give yourself extra time.

Don Muang Airport (also spelled Don Mueang)was originally slated to close down once Bangkok's new airport, Suvarnabhmi Airport opened in 2006. After just one year, Don Muang re-opened for limited flights and since then the Thai government has gone back and forth on what role, if any, the old airport should play. Partly because of congestion at Suvarnabumi, transportation officials decided as of October 2012 to keep Don Muang open and use it for domestic flights and some budget carriers. There are still some exceptions to these rules, though, so pay careful attention to your tickets when traveling in and out of Bangkok. Currently, Air Asia, Nok Air and Orient Thai Airlines fly in and out of Don Muang. Thai Airways does not have domestic flights out of Don Muang.

Before the new airport was opened, Don Muang handled over 30 million passengers per year, a surprising number considering how small the airport feels! There are two terminals, one domestic and one international and the airport has two runways and 33 gates, so it's a large airport by global standards.

Though many have grumbled that the they have to fly out of the old airport, Don Muang is much closer to the city than Suvarnabumi, and because it's only handling about 8 million passengers per year, it's much less congested.

  • Don Muang Airport Name and IATA Code.

    Don Mueang International Airport (DMK)

  • Airport Contact Information.

    Airport Call Center: +66 (0)2 132-1888

    Don Muang Airport Website.

  • Immigration Lines.

    At east for now, the immigration lines at Don Muang are moving quickly and the whole process whether leaving or arriving should take less than 20 minutes. Make sure you have your departure card filled out before you get into line (it's stapled to your passport when you arrive), though, or you may get sent to the back of the line. If you're not sure whether you need a visa, read up on Thailand's visa requirements though chances are you will not need to get a visa before you land.

  • Airport Facilities.

    Don Muang is an old airport built on the two-story model (one level for arrivals and one for departures) but has recently been refurbished so is generally clean and well organized but feels markedly unmodern. There are limited fast food outlets, including a Burger King, a noodle shop, a coffee shop and a Thai restaurant. There are also currency exchange booths and ATMs in the arrivals hall, as well as taxi and car services. If you need to rent a car at the airport, there is an Avis counter.

  • Emergency Services.

    There is a medical clinic with trained staff open between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. on the first floor of Terminal 1.

  • Shopping.

    The airport has one large duty free shop in the international terminal selling a selection of mostly cosmetics and liquor. This is the same operator, King Power, as you'll find in the international airport, though the selection at Don Muang is limited by the size of the airport. The domestic terminal has a handful of gift shop and a bookstore. Overall, the shopping at Don Muang is mediocre.

  • Waiting Areas.

    Though it's not as new and aesthetically pleasing, Don Muang has better waiting areas than Suvarnabumi (one of the major criticisms of that airport) and in the departures halls there are dozens of rows of comfortable seats. These areas can get crowded.

  • Airport Transfers. The only ways to get from the airport to the center of Bangkok are by bus or by taxi. The Airport Rail Link is not available for Don Muang (it is possible to take a train from the airport to Hua Lumpong, . If you need to switch to Suvarnabumi to catch another flight, the AOT provides a shuttle bus though it may be faster to take, and pay for, a private taxi.
  • Airport Hotels.

    There are no hotels directly at the airport, but there are some just across the street and in the general area. Because Don Muang is so close to the city, it's often almost as convenient to head into town, even if you're just killing time until an early morning flight.

    1. About.com
    2. Travel
    3. Thailand Travel
    4. Transportation & Flights
    5. Bangkok's Don Muang Airport

    ©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.