Taxis are starting to become common on Phuket. Recently there have been a number of metered taxis added to the island's fleet of passenger vehicles. However, these taxis are few in number, and it's often difficult to get the drivers to switch on their meters (as opposed to charging inflated set prices). Tuk-tuks are registered, insured, and plentiful; drivers will be happy to take you to your destination for an absurd price. Be ready to bargain hard or simply walk away. Fares within any one town shouldn't be much more than B50 per trip, but drivers will often demand a flat B100. Keep in mind that you can catch a minivan from the airport to Phuket Town for B100, a distance of 30 km (19 miles).
Motorcycle taxis—you ride on the back, behind the driver—are cheaper than tuk-tuks and taxis, but much more dangerous.
The best and cheapest way of getting between beaches on the island is by songthaew. You catch songthaews in front of the market on Ranong Road or at the bus stops in the beach towns. These are marked on most maps, and locals can help you find them. Prices run from B30 to B50 per trip. They run every half hour from 7 am to 5 pm. If you miss that last songthaew, you may end up spending B400 on a tuk-tuk. You can sometimes arrange a cut-rate ride on the sly with a hotel taxi driver who's heading your way. If he drives alone, he makes no money. If he takes you for, say, half the normal hotel fare, he gets to keep that, which will probably pay for his dinner.
Some hotels and resorts provide shuttle service to other beaches—check before you shell out your own money for transportation.