After years of construction, Cambodia proudly announced a new international airport just under 50 kilometers from the Siem Reap city center in October 2023, allowing larger aircraft to land. Below we’ll cover a brief history of the new and old airports, transport options between the new airport (SAI) and the city of Siem Reap, and our favorite place you could stay while visiting Cambodia (our home, Crows Nest Apartments & AirBNB) – especially if you’re planning to visit the temples of Angkor Wat, Bayon, Banteay Srei, and more.

sai siem reap angkor international airport proximity to crows nest min
Proximity of SAI, Siem Reap Angkor International Airport, to Crows Nest Apartments & AirBNB in Siem Reap, Cambodia

Introduction to Siem Reap International Airport (SAI)

The New Siem Reap–Angkor International Airport (SAI) emerged as a visionary project in response to the increasing air traffic demands in the region. Construction began in the early 2010s, aiming to alleviate congestion at the existing Siem Reap International Airport and accommodate the booming tourism industry. The airport’s design incorporated modern amenities and state-of-the-art facilities to provide passengers with a seamless travel experience. Inaugurated in October 2023, the new SAI swiftly became a vital aviation hub, serving as a gateway to the iconic Angkor Wat temples and the bustling city of Siem Reap, playing a crucial role in connecting Cambodia to the rest of the world. Its rich history and strategic location continue to make it a key aviation hub in Southeast Asia. Its strategic location and advanced infrastructure have positioned it as a cornerstone of Cambodia’s air transportation network, catering to both domestic and international travelers.

Standing out front of SAI, Siem Reap Angkor International Airport

Transport Options from Siem Reap Angkor International Airport

Travelers arriving at Angkor International Airport in Siem Reap are greeted with three convenient transfer options to reach the city center (aka Krong Siem Reap).

  1. Taxis / Cars-for-Hire
  2. Private Shuttles / Mini-Vans
  3. Public Shuttle Busses

You can pre-arrange your transportation before you arrive or find the transportation desk upon arrival to book a ticket or hire a private car, offering a hassle-free and direct journey to hotels and attractions in Siem Reap.

Some hotels will arrange a private car or shuttle – which may still come at a cost to you.

Those seeking a more adventurous ride can explore public transportation options such as buses or public shuttles, providing a more cost-effective way to reach downtown Siem Reap while mingling with locals along the way. Multiple public shuttles leave the airport each day.

While technically not blocked from pickup or dropoff, tuk-tuk drivers don’t frequent the new airport like they did at the old one. There is a fee for drivers to use the brand new (and really long) road from the highway to the airport. At some point tuk-tuk drivers may resume service like they did at the old airport.

As the airport is about 50 kilometers from the city, plan for 60 top 90 minutes by car or shuttle. You’ll be leaving the airport on the newly built highway/expressway through rice fields and lovely farmland. Then you’ll turn west onto National Road 6 (aka Plough Six) where you’ll merge with drivers coming all the way from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap. Along the way into SR you’ll be driving by a large area that is earmarked for an entirely new city to be built – someday…

Walking one of the long hallways inside SAI Siem Reap Angkor International Airport.

Taxi & Private Car Services

Taxis or Private Cars can hold up to 4 persons are $35 per vehicle per one-way trip into the city. You can hire a car at the transportation desk. You can also pre-arrange a ride with your hotel or guest house – although it will typically still cost you.

Private Shuttles

Mini-vans or mini shuttle busses holding between 8 to 15 people are $40 per vehicle per one-way trip into Siem Reap. Private shuttles can be hired at the transportation desk or pre-arranged through your hotel or guest house.

Public Transportation and MiniBuses

The airport has their official Shuttle Bus service, which can be booked at the transportation desk. The rates are $8 per person for a single trip. You can also book a return ticket.

Time tables for the Airport Shuttle can be found here.

The shuttle will stop at 3 convenient locations in the city:

  1. one on the east side of town at Makro Supermarket,
  2. one in the center of town at CDF store,
  3. and another on the west side of town at Angkor Supermarket

From there you will either walk or catch a $2 or $3 tuk-tuk ride to your residence or hotel.

The Cambodia Post has begun a small public shuttle service between the city and the new SAI airport, for $9 per person for a single one-way trip. These minibuses are smaller than the airport shuttle. Tickets can be purchased:

  • at the Siem Reap Post Office; or,
  • email: ct.airport.ct@gmail.com; or,
  • WhatsApp and Telegram: (+855) 92 985 007 – (+855) 69 985 007
  • Or you can book your Cambodia Post shuttle service here. They also have the most up-to-date shuttle times.

The Post minibus stops between their office in the city and the airport.

Rental Cars

To date there are no options to rent a car at SAI Siem Reap Angkor International Airport.

Tuk-Tuks and Motorbike Taxis

At the old airport, you could pre-arrange, or even walk out and hire, a tuk-tuk to take a quaint ride through the countryside into the city to your destination.

At the new SAI airport you really won’t find any tuk-tuks, and it’s not really convenient to call a PassApp or Grab. Although both of those options are available to be used. And due to the distance, you’re much better off hopping on the public transportation if you are looking for a cost effective ride. You might take one of these options back to the airport, but if you have multiple people plus luggage you’ll really want an enclosed vehicle… it’s a long drive.

View of a terminal inside of SAI Siem Reap Angkor International Airport.

Transport Options to Siem Reap Angkor International Airport

Getting back to the airport will basically be the reverse of the above. You can book a private car or taxi directly with your hotel, take a tuk-tuk to an airport shuttle pickup stop, or book with the Cambodia Post minivan.

You can call a Grab or PassApp to the airport, although they aren’t much cheaper than the private car or taxi.

We have heard of $15 tuk-tuks out to SAI Siem Reap Angkor International Airport from the city of Siem Reap, so it does happen. But just keep in mind that it’s nearly 50km and you’ll be in traffic. If you have more than one person in your group, plus luggage, you may consider taking the bus or hiring a private car or taxi.

Where to Stay When Arriving in Siem Reap If You’re Planning to Visit the Temples

Come stay at our home! We started our guest house, Crows Nest Apartments & AirBNB in 2018, and have served hundreds of travelers with short term stays.

We have 12 individual apartments in the building with separate entrances. Each unit has a main bedroom area, a separate kitchen, and bathroom. There is a lovely garden and patio, and the entire property is gated and locked at night. It’s located about 10 minutes walking distance from pub street, in a quiet village just west of the river.

Find Crow’s Nest on AirBNB here.

crows nest apartments airbnb in siem reap cambodia
Come stay at our home! Crows Nest Apartments & AirBNB in Siem Reap, Cambodia

Tips for Getting Around Siem Reap

Generally speaking, you can flag down a tuk-tuk and navigate the city for just a few dollars each ride. There are PassApp and Grab (app) options as well, but we prefer to hire the independent drivers when we can.

Many guest houses offer use of bicycles.

Crow’s Nest is within walking distance to many shops, the gym, and lots of small restaurants.

Plan Ahead to Enjoy Your Trip to Siem Reap

Siem Reap is an amazing city, and we encourage you to explore! There are so many fun gems to discover, such as rescued elephants now on 600 hectares of jungle landscape, mountain waterfalls, restaurants, and walking paths along the river.

Getting to Siem Reap from the airport is relatively easy – you’ve got this! With so many options, and more to come in the future (they’re talking about more mass transportation some day), you’ll easily find your way.

If you ever have any questions, just reach out and we’ll see how we can help!