A Guide To Private Boat Tours On Koh Phi Phi.
A question we get asked a lot, is simply how can i take a boat out to see the islands, without joining a tour package. And i will try and clear up a few points in this post. There are numerous boat captains located on the main island which is Phi Phi Don. You are able to occasionally find these captains hanging around by their boats during the day whilst they are waiting for customers, although during the peak months it is unlikely you will find a captain that has not already been booked, the months from October through till March are much busier seeing almost an 400% increase in demand during this time so booking in advance is highly recommended. People are also worried about missing out on the spots that would be seen on a group tour because they just do not have enough knowledge of the places they are able to visit, almost every captain will take you on a similar route to cover the most popular spots. You will normally be leaving from Tonsai then heading around Koh Phi Phi Leh on the eastern side and making your way back along the western side, up to Bamboo Island and then back along to eastern side of Koh Phi Phi Don. Although if you choose to do your research beforehand and know which places you would like to visit and when, with a private captain this can all be arranged for you! (Some people even prefer to just sit back and ask the captain take then to his favorite places). The biggest perk on taking the private boat vs the group tour is that you are able to miss out on places you are not so interested in, and stay longer in the places you enjoy more, making the trip fully customisable to your needs and tastes most captains also speak English along with Thai making communication easy enough! Private boats can also be chartered as early as 6AM which means you can time your tours to avoid the crowds brought in by tour groups from the mainland.
How much will this cost me? The cost of chartering a Private Longtail boat often surprises people and can work out as one of the cheaper options if done correctly, the cost is based on the amount of time you want to spend on board, and also how many passengers will be joining the tour. The boats vary in size with the smallest fitting around 8 passengers and the biggest able to hold up to 20 people. If you have a larger group then surprisingly chartering your own boat will normally work out even cheaper than joining a group tour! The base price starts at 2,700THB (80USD) for 2 passengers travelling on a half day charter, this cost will cover the hire of snorkelling gear, bottled water and the service of the captain plus gasoline throughout the charter, all boats leaving Koh Phi Phi are required by law to have adequate life jackets on board for all passengers which are checked frequently.
What if i want to charter a private speedboat? When chartering a private speedboat you will have even more flexibility than a Longtail Boat (Although at a higher cost). The Speedboats are able to get you around the islands in the quickest possible time meaning you can jump from one beach to the next in a matter of minutes! This is probably the favorite and definitely most stylish way to get around Koh Phi Phi. To book a private speedboat a reservation is always needed as these cannot be found on the streets in a similar fashion to Longtails, the cost of hiring a speedboat will start at 7,000THB (200USD) and again the prices vary on times and passenger numbers. Speedboat operators aim to provide a higher level of service by having a tour guide on board as well as the captain also if booked online in advance you will avoid any fees should you choose to visit a national park.
I have heard about bad weather on Phi Phi and my boat might be canceled? While this is certainly a possibility it is an extremely unlikely scenario especially if you are taking a tour during the high/peak season you have nothing to worry about, there is almost 0% chance that you will be struck with a spell of bad weather. When it comes into the low season months there is a slim chance that the sea will be too rough for some captains to head out although this will happen for only a handful of days each year so it’s very unlikely to affect you and should not alter any travel plans, the weather forecast in Koh Phi Phi is non-existent while travellers and visitors to the island swear by their online weather updates, without any physical weather station on the island to provide a forecast, its a little more difficult to predict the weather, it’s suggested not to make any plans based on the results showing on any online forecast.. Longtail captains and speedboat operators are very accommodating when it comes to a trip having to be cancelled, normally the spell of bad weather won’t last long and all will return to normal after 24 hours.
How can i guarantee i will be with a good captain who won’t mess me around? Unfortunately this is one we are hearing more and more often, and the bottom line seems to be that people are paying the captains to little and still expecting the best service. This simply doesn’t happen, always bear in mind that cheapest does not always mean the best and an underpaid captain will not have your best interests as a priority. When booking a tour here you can rest assured that all our captains are paid a fair rate in exchange for their knowledge of the area, friendliness, willingness to provide the best service possible and English speaking to allow easier communication between guests.
To check out exact pricing and availability for your group just hit this link: Phi Phi Private Boat Prices