the POSH Guide

the best of travel destinations and gear


Getting to Phnom Penh

The most practical way to get to Phnom Penh is by air. If you're starting your Cambodia trip in Seam Ream, and you have time, you can travel down the great inland lake Tonle Sap to get to the capital. You can also travel overland, although areas of the country are still considered unsafe for tourists. There is also a train from the Thai border at Battambang.

Airlines Serving Phnom Penh

Phnom Penh's small Pochentong International Airport is only a eight kilometers from town. The airport code is PNH, see the Asia Airports Guide for more information.

Bangkok Airways
Flies from Bangkok to Phnom Penh directly.
Malaysia Air System
The Malaysian national carrier flies internationally between Kuala Lumpur and major cities around the world.
Silk Air
This Singaporean subsidary of Singapore Airlines flies from Singapore to both Phnom Penh and Seam Reap.
Singapore Airlines
The Singaporean national airline flies daily between Singapore and Phnom Penh.
Thai Airways
The Thai national carrier flies daily to Phnom Penh from Bangkok.
Vietnam Airlines
The Viet national carrier flies to both Seam Reap and Phnom Penh from Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon).

In addition to the above, other airlines include China Airlines, China Southern, Dragon Air, EVA Airlines, Royal Phnom Penh, Shanghai Airline and Seam Reap (see Bangkok Airways).

Phnom Penh Arrivals

International arriving passengers should follow the signs to immigration and baggage claim. If you don't have a visa, your first stop should be the visa on arrival counter. You'll need to hand in your completed visa application form together with one passport size photo and your passport at the first counter, then wait for your name to be called to pick up your passport. When you pick up your passport, you need to pay the visa fee, which is US$ 20 for most visa types.

Once you get your visa, or if you already have it, you can head straight to immigration to have your passport stamped. You'll need your passport and the immigration form for passport control. Once you get through immigration, you can get your bags and proceed to customs. Have your customs form ready to hand to the officer. Sometimes the inspectors can't be bothered to come out of their office and you just leave your form in the bin provided.

Phnom Penh Airport Transfers

Just outside the exit from customs are counters for taxi or moto transfers into the city. Taxis charge a flat rate of US$7 which you can pay to the driver when you arrive at your hotel. If you want to save yourself some hassles, you can book your airport transfers in advance through Viator. The following services are available:

Phnom Penh Departures

Pochentong International Airport is a rather charming small airport. The structure is rather simple and utilitarian, but somehow avoids the bland gray could-be-anywhere decoration. A rich palette of earth tones covers the walls, and there are many local decorative accents.

After checking in for your flight, you proceed up an escalator and turn right. For domestic flights you proceed straight ahead, or for international turn right again to get to immigration. Once past immigration, you'll find a small collection of shops selling local items as well as duty free merchandise. The duty free selection is quite limited, even for a small airport.

In addition to the shopping, there is a small Rittaza Cafe for snacks as well as the Angkor Pub for drinks and more food. There is one shared lounge for business class passengers. Bangkok Airways operates a large and comfortable lounge open to all Bangkok Airways passengers. There are three internet terminals available for free use as well as a small selection of snacks and drinks.

Phnom Penh Departure Tax

Departure taxes have now been included in the ticket prices for all flights in Cambodia.