When is the Cheapest Time to Fly to Chiang Mai?
October to April is peak tourist season in Chiang Mai as the weather is warm and pleasant. Aim to book your flights to Chiang Mai at least eight weeks in advance for travel at this time. Chiang Mai flights are most expensive from mid-December to early February as well as during July and August. The rainy season lasts from June to October, so come armed with an umbrella.
When is the Best Time to Book your Flight to Chiang Mai?
Last-minute flights can be found all year, so keep your eyes peeled for bargain return flights on Netflights. Avoid the European holiday seasons and travel on Fridays or Sundays, which is when Chiang Mai flights are most in demand. The Loi Krathong Festival in November and the Flower Festival in April may also cause prices to spike. In general, the earlier you book your flights to Chiang Mai, the more options you have for routes and rates.
Flying to Chiang Mai International Airport CNX
As the primary gateway to Northern Thailand, Chiang Mai International Airport (CNX) was upgraded in 2014 and is now the fourth-busiest airport in the country. Located less than five kilometres southwest of the centre of Chiang Mai, it’s easy to reach the airport. There are no direct flights from the United Kingdom to Chiang Mai, but you can get there with just one stopover, although return flights with two stopovers may be cheaper. With Netflights, you can compare last-minute flights and return flights from Air China, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, China Southern Airlines, Etihad Airways, Eva Air, Lufthansa, Qatar Airways, Thai Airways and Turkish Airlines. All these airlines depart from London airports; London City, London Heathrow and London Gatwick are all options. You can also find cheap fights to Chiang Mai from Birmingham with China Southern, Emirates, Lufthansa, Qatar Airways and Turkish Airlines.
On Arrival and Getting Around the Airport
There are two terminals at Chiang Mai International Airport (CNX): one for international passengers and one for domestic travellers. Because it is a small airport with only one runway, it’s easy to navigate and requires no interterminal transport. Amenities on site include free Wi-Fi, ATMs and currency exchanges, duty-free shopping, restaurants, cafes and information desks.
Getting to the City from Chiang Mai International Airport CNX
You’ll find a taxi counter inside the airport on the first floor located opposite the domestic and international arrival lounges. There are also tuk-tuks available for hire just outside the airport; it’s a good idea to confirm the cost of your journey before leaving. The airport is located just ten minutes away from the city centre by taxi.
Why visit Chiang Mai?
The capital of the independent Lanna Kingdom until 1558, Chiang Mai still feels like it’s a law unto itself and has become a must-see for travellers seeking an authentic Thailand experience. Though touched by the modern world and its lively nightlife, the Old City has retained an ancient, small-town feel with its legacy as a cultural and religious centre still tangible in its graceful, religious architecture. There are, in fact, hundreds of Buddhist temples in this regional capital. The Wat Phra Singh from the 14th century and the Wat Chedi Luang from the 15th century are among the most awe-inspiring.
Criss-crossed with leafy boulevards and peaceful waterways, this is a city that can be enjoyed and explored on foot, It’s also a haven for foodies with a vibrant street food scene and ambitious eateries on cosmopolitan streets. The early morning Talat Pratu Market is a fascinating place to visit. Don’t miss the ‘Saturday Walking Street’, where pop-up stalls sell everything from herbs to musical instruments.
Don't Forget Before you Fly
Travellers entering Thailand on a British passport do not need a visa for stays no longer than 30 days. This is known as a visa exemption. If you intend to stay longer or use land borders frequently, then you’ll need to apply for a visa. Ensure that your passport is valid for at least six months from your time of entry and that there are no missing or damaged pages. The Thai baht can be picked up at currency exchange facilities in the airport, but you may want to bring enough with you for your onward journey.