The least efficient airport to city transit in Asia

You won’t believe which city has the most sluggish of all inefficient airport to city transfers in all of Asia. Source: Shutterstock.

THE GOOD NEWS is you have just scored yourself a transit in a never-before-been city on your flight to halfway around the world. Bonus!

The bad news is you only have a couple of hours to spare and you are not sure if you can make it out of the airport to check out the city and make it back in time.

Herein lies the problem: If you are lucky, the airport to city transit is quick and efficient. If you are not, then you may face the possibility of missing your connecting flight and nobody has time for that.

Luckily for you, Klook has released the Asian Airport Transportation Time survey revealing Asia’s fastest and slowest airport-to-city journeys.

The travel services booking platform studied 20 airports, based on the most popular Asian destinations on Klook in 2018, timing each route in-person on a Friday evening during rush hour.

Klook evaluated the fastest method of transit in each destination — be it taxi, private car transfer, train, bus, or train — as well as distance, time, and roadblocks along the way.

So, Asian city has the most and least efficient airport to city transit?

The walkway to Angkor Wat, a popular Unesco World Heritage-listed destination in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Source: Shutterstock.

Surprise, surprise.

Siem Reap, the gateway to the ruins of Angkor Wat in Cambodia, is by far the fastest transit requiring just an easy 26 minutes of travel between Siem Reap-Angkor International Airport and the city.

But to be fair, Siem Reap’s airport is relatively close to the city – the route is only 8.7 kilometers long.

Coming in a close second is the capital city of Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia. Getting on the KLIA Ekspres will take you to the city in just 30 minutes.

For the uninitiated, the KLIA Ekspres is a non-stop high-speed train service that connects both the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) and Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (klia2) and the Kuala Lumpur city center via a 57-kilometer route.

KLIA Ekspres Kuala Lumpur Malaysia

The KLIA Ekspres traveling along the 57-kilometer route to the Kuala Lumpur city center in Malaysia. Source: Shutterstock.

Taipei and Hong Kong are also worth mentioning as the destinations’ respective airports provide the fastest transit experiences overall, averaging, at just one minute per kilometer traveled.

Kuala Lumpur and Hong Kong airports, in particular, expedite the transit process with high-tech services such as mobile tickets and QR code scanners.

Kuala Lumpur, Taipei, Hong Kong, as well as Bangkok also provide the best public transit systems, enabling travelers to reach each city in less than 48 minutes despite substantial distances of 28 to 57 kilometers.

With that having said, which cities ended up at the bottom of the pile?


Tourists watch as performers put on a show in Bali, Indonesia. Source: Shutterstock

The slowest transit experiences on the list are Ho Chi Minh City, Cebu, and Bali.

How slow? To put this in perspective, each takes at least an hour to reach city centers even though the distance traveled is less than 15 kilometers. This is in large part due to crazy traffic and the lack of public transit systems.

The slowest of the lot is Ho Chi Minh City’s airport transfer, which requires almost 10 minutes per kilometer traveled.

As for the most sluggish of all inefficient public transit systems, it is shockingly the capital of Tokyo in Japan, world-renowned for its public transit system.

It takes a whopping total of 100 minutes to travel the length of 75 kilometers to the city center from Narita International Airport via the subway or NEX, the airport’s express train.

Nobody likes to waste time being stuck in transit so take heed of the airport to city transit times and systems above the next time you are headed to those destinations.

To safer (and faster) travels and more adventures ahead!