The Bangkok Airport Rail Link (ARL) is the best way to get from Bangkok Airport to the city. The Suvarnabhumi Airport train costs 35-45 baht and takes just 22-26 minutes to get to downtown Bangkok. At the airport, the ARL station is on the basement level. There is a plan to extend the line to U-Tapao in Pattaya and Don Mueang Airport in the future.
The Bangkok Airport rail link runs from Suvarnabhumi Airport to Phaya Thai Terminal stopping at seven stations. The three downtown Bangkok stations are Makkasan, Ratchaprarop and Phaya Thai. Makkasan Station connects to MRT Phetchaburi Station. You can take an MRT train from here to Sukhumvit, Silom, Ratchada & Hualamphong (for Chinatown). Ratchaprarop Station is within walking distance of Pratunam. Phaya Thai connects with the BTS Station of the same name. From here you can take a BTS train to Siam, Sukhumvit, Silom, Saphan Taksin (for riverside hotels), Ari and Chatuchak. If you are arriving late at night there are plenty of hotels & hostels in the Ratchaprarop and Phaya Thai areas.
The airport rail link journey time is 22 minutes to Makkasan, 25 minutes to Ratchaprarop and 26 minutes to Phaya Thai. The quick journey time makes it the quickest and arguably the best way to get from Bangkok airport to the city. The first train from Suvarnabhumi leaves at 05.30. The last train leaves at 24.05. From Phaya Thai, the first train is 05.30. The last train leaves at 24.05. The service runs throughout the day every 10-15 minutes.
The Bangkok airport rail link trains have seating on either side with plenty of standing room and space for luggage. The train is busy at morning and evening rush hour. This is not a problem if boarding at Suvarnabhumi and Phaya Thai. However, if you are boarding at Ratchaprarop or Makkasan you may have to queue as the train is often full.
Airport Rail Link tickets come in the form of small round tokens. You can buy them at the ticket office or at the automatic ticket machines. The ticket machines are touch screen and have an English language option. Simply tap on your destination station and the fare is displayed. The machine accepts 1, 5, 10 baht coins and 20, 50 or 100 baht notes. Bangkok Airport Train Fares start from 15 baht up to 45 baht. Tap your token on the entry gate reader to reach the platforms and put your token in the exit gate slot to exit the station.
Suvarnabhumi Airport train fares to downtown destinations are – 35 baht to Makkasan, 40 baht to Ratchaprarop and 45 baht to Phaya Thai. There is also a stored value card though this is of little interest to tourists. It costs 230 baht to buy with 170 baht of credit. The deposit is 30 baht and 30 baht issuing fee.
The Bangkok Airport Rail Link (ARL) is the best way to get from Bangkok Airport to the city. The Suvarnabhumi Airport train is your best choice unless you have a lot of luggage or your hotel is nowhere near one of the stations.
The Airport Rail Link official website is here. You can check train times and fares.