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Way too many Bus gates, only Thai, and no Bus Class buses.....awful

Way too many Bus gates, only Thai, and no Bus Class buses.....awful

Old Apr 20, 19, 10:43 am
  #46  
 
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Maybe the impact isn’t so great on short flights, like Singapore, but for intercontinentals it is truly awful. For example, yesterday: TG465 BKK-MEL, departed from C1 as a bus flight.
Boarding was on schedule, as per my preferred habit, I like to board last. So even after the gate was empty ( with 30 or 40 people waiting downstairs on the bus), I continued to sit there while the ground staff looked for stragglers on the concourse. Waited and waited and waited. Eventually they said they would offload them and that I should get on the bus now; so I did. Got some nasty glares from other passengers, as they probably thought I was the late coming villain. Anyway, we waited another 10 minutes and finally 2 shame-faced passengers turned up and we departed on the (half way to Pattaya) bus trip to the plane.
At least 10 of these bus passengers were in J, including a family with an infant. It was stinking hot, standing room only, and full of usual tarmac fumes.
So welcome to a nine hour premium class flight on Thai, an airline apparently so contemptuous of premium class passengers that they’re too stingy to provide a separate bus ( or some alternative transport for latecomers). In the alternative, perhaps they’re too stupid to understand the entirely negative feelings this kind of experience engenders.
Whatever the reason, these arrangements are ludicrously inadequate.
On arrival, opened my email to find one from Thai, hoping that I’d enjoyed the flight and reminding me to vote in Skytrax ( although , as per usual, no “tell us what you thought” survey.)
In the proverbial ‘race to the bottom’ ,Thai is leading the competition by so far it’s not funny.
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Old Apr 20, 19, 3:33 pm
  #47  
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Originally Posted by paolo64 View Post
Maybe the impact isn’t so great on short flights, like Singapore, but for intercontinentals it is truly awful. For example, yesterday: TG465 BKK-MEL, departed from C1 as a bus flight.
Boarding was on schedule, as per my preferred habit, I like to board last. So even after the gate was empty ( with 30 or 40 people waiting downstairs on the bus), I continued to sit there while the ground staff looked for stragglers on the concourse. Waited and waited and waited. Eventually they said they would offload them and that I should get on the bus now; so I did. Got some nasty glares from other passengers, as they probably thought I was the late coming villain. Anyway, we waited another 10 minutes and finally 2 shame-faced passengers turned up and we departed on the (half way to Pattaya) bus trip to the plane.
At least 10 of these bus passengers were in J, including a family with an infant. It was stinking hot, standing room only, and full of usual tarmac fumes.
So welcome to a nine hour premium class flight on Thai, an airline apparently so contemptuous of premium class passengers that they’re too stingy to provide a separate bus ( or some alternative transport for latecomers). In the alternative, perhaps they’re too stupid to understand the entirely negative feelings this kind of experience engenders.
Whatever the reason, these arrangements are ludicrously inadequate.
On arrival, opened my email to find one from Thai, hoping that I’d enjoyed the flight and reminding me to vote in Skytrax ( although , as per usual, no “tell us what you thought” survey.)
In the proverbial ‘race to the bottom’ ,Thai is leading the competition by so far it’s not funny.
I'm completely with you on boarding last, doubly so when using bus gates because few have electric power, which means crappy a/c. Many people on FT are obsessed with boarding early so they can get bin space. The thing is, I rarely need to wait more than 2 minutes at baggage claim, and this is a small price to pay for sparing myself of 30 extra minutes in a hot airplane.
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Old Apr 20, 19, 5:42 pm
  #48  
 
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Originally Posted by moondog View Post
I'm completely with you on boarding last, doubly so when using bus gates because few have electric power, which means crappy a/c. Many people on FT are obsessed with boarding early so they can get bin space. The thing is, I rarely need to wait more than 2 minutes at baggage claim, and this is a small price to pay for sparing myself of 30 extra minutes in a hot airplane.
Unless you have individually surveyed a statistically significant number of FT members, I call bumpkin on your assertation ‘most FT members are obsessed with boarding early’ - some may be, others not.

My own experiences of being bussed to/from the gate have included most of the examples posted here by others - ie good and bad. Big picture is that the (potential) experience of being bussed is not a deal breaker for me. YMMV.

Last edited by Thai-Kiwi; Apr 20, 19 at 5:51 pm
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Old Apr 20, 19, 6:21 pm
  #49  
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Originally Posted by Thai-Kiwi View Post


Unless you have individually surveyed a statistically significant number of FT members, I call bumpkin on your assertation ‘most FT members are obsessed with boarding early’ - some may be, others not.

My own experiences of being bussed to/from the gate have included most of the examples posted here by others - ie good and bad. Big picture is that the (potential) experience of being bussed is not a deal breaker for me. YMMV.
There are countless threads on the early boarding topic. I definitely feel that I'm in the minority by being among the last to get on the plane. My most frequent route is SHA-HKG (and vv). In spite of the fact that I have e-channel on both sides, my bag often gets to the belt before me. And, when it doesn't, we're only talking about 2 minutes.
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Old Apr 20, 19, 7:28 pm
  #50  
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Originally Posted by Thai-Kiwi View Post
Unless you have individually surveyed a statistically significant number of FT members, I call bumpkin on your assertation ‘most FT members are obsessed with boarding early’ - some may be, others not.
I think it would be accurate to say that many members of the general public seem unreasonably obsessed with early boarding. I would imagine that as more seasoned travelers, many FT'ers are less obsessed with lining up early boarding. If I'm not carrying on, I like to be the last person on the aircraft.
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Old Apr 20, 19, 8:13 pm
  #51  
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
I think it would be accurate to say that many members of the general public seem unreasonably obsessed with early boarding. I would imagine that as more seasoned travelers, many FT'ers are less obsessed with lining up early boarding. If I'm not carrying on, I like to be the last person on the aircraft.
Yes, there are countless threads on this topic here. My bag isn't big, but I always check it because boarding last is worth the 2 minute wait at baggage claim for me. Look at it this way: 1. two minute wait at baggage claim v 2. forty minutes on the tarmac in Bangkok. In the latter case, you can probably suck down a glass or two of cheap sparkling wine, but you would surely be happier in the terminal.
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Old Apr 22, 19, 5:34 am
  #52  
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Originally Posted by moondog View Post
Yes, there are countless threads on this topic here. My bag isn't big, but I always check it because boarding last is worth the 2 minute wait at baggage claim for me. Look at it this way: 1. two minute wait at baggage claim v 2. forty minutes on the tarmac in Bangkok. In the latter case, you can probably suck down a glass or two of cheap sparkling wine, but you would surely be happier in the terminal.
A "two minute wait at baggage claim"......at Suvarnabhumi? Let me know when you wake up from your dream......
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Old Apr 22, 19, 6:10 am
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Originally Posted by Thaikwai View Post
A "two minute wait at baggage claim"......at Suvarnabhumi? Let me know when you wake up from your dream......
I have had lots of 2 minute waits ( indeed, no wait sometimes) at BKK. Unfortunately usually following a 30+ minute immigration queue ( fortunately now eliminated since I’ve been deemed to be worthy of the senior lane).
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Old Apr 22, 19, 6:18 am
  #54  
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Originally Posted by paolo64 View Post


I have had lots of 2 minute waits ( indeed, no wait sometimes) at BKK. Unfortunately usually following a 30+ minute immigration queue ( fortunately now eliminated since I’ve been deemed to be worthy of the senior lane).
Yes. The immigration queue is a key point here.
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Old Apr 22, 19, 7:04 am
  #55  
 
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Originally Posted by Thaikwai View Post
A "two minute wait at baggage claim"......at Suvarnabhumi? Let me know when you wake up from your dream......
My experience is bags on carousel by the time I’ve cleared fast track ... I’ve never waited on bags more than 5 mins from arriving at the carousel in what must be over 100 trips ... faster at BKK than Changi, and that takes some doing.
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Old Apr 22, 19, 8:41 pm
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Originally Posted by EGW1 View Post
My experience is bags on carousel by the time I’ve cleared fast track ... I’ve never waited on bags more than 5 mins from arriving at the carousel in what must be over 100 trips ... faster at BKK than Changi, and that takes some doing.
Really? May I ask how your usual walking pace is?

In all my time flying into BKK (when I have had to check luggage), I have had to wait for what feels an eternity for it to appear despite F/J priority and coming through Fast Track immigration. For that reason I go above and beyond to travel with carry-on only.
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Old Apr 22, 19, 9:01 pm
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Originally Posted by SKT-DK View Post
Really? May I ask how your usual walking pace is?

In all my time flying into BKK (when I have had to check luggage), I have had to wait for what feels an eternity for it to appear despite F/J priority and coming through Fast Track immigration. For that reason I go above and beyond to travel with carry-on only.
Faster than average I’d say. Quite the opposite for me, it’s the main reason I don’t mind a carry on becoming checked. Flying anywhere in Europe, I’d always try to go with carry-on only, as without fail the wait is too long.
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Old Apr 23, 19, 9:34 am
  #58  
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Originally Posted by SKT-DK View Post
Really? May I ask how your usual walking pace is?

In all my time flying into BKK (when I have had to check luggage), I have had to wait for what feels an eternity for it to appear despite F/J priority and coming through Fast Track immigration. For that reason I go above and beyond to travel with carry-on only.
I agree 100% with SKT-DK......absolutely no way BKK baggage delivery can compare with Changi. I usually have the added benefit of a Thailand Elite buggy ride to Fast Track Immigration but I have never sat waiting in the Elite Arrivals Lounge, while they collect my bags, for less than 10-15 minutes. I also go above and beyond to avoid checking baggage with THAI airways. I can now get away with carry on for up to ten days.
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Old Apr 23, 19, 9:41 pm
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I live between Singapore and Bangkok, and I also have Thailand Elite, so I have a pretty accurate idea of how long baggage takes at each airport, and I feel reasonably ok to make the comparison. Maybe I’m really lucky, or others could be unlucky, but I’ve just never encountered the wait described at BKK, and I have many times at Changi (and on arrival re-screening, which slows everything down) and of course LHR is another story altogether! Either way, I’m happy with BKK, and for the price paid, generally I’m happy with TG. That said, most of my flights in the next month or so are SQ, which currently has pretty good business class returns BKK-SIN-BKK at circa 14,000 thb.

Last edited by EGW1; Apr 23, 19 at 9:49 pm
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Old Apr 25, 19, 2:47 am
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Cool Thai-Kiwi gets 'bussed'...

So, flew CEI-BKK today around noon on PG232. For what it is worth, the PG A319 has better seat pitch that the A320.

To my horror, I noticed we taxied to gate C1 which is one of the gates on the International concourses (Concourses A and B are Domestic, C-G are International - usually). Sure enough, no airbridge and instead we had the 'walk of shame' in the searing heat down the metal stairs into a bus that had the aircon set to Antarctic (or Arctic) levels of cold on full 'snap freeze' strength.

The bus then headed South (away from the Domestic Concourses), along the full extent of Concourse C, turned right (second pic at the tip of C), headed West parallel to Concourse D, before turning right again to head directly towards the middle of Concourse D (third pic), with final right turn to stop by gate D2, debussing to a domestic entry door and a cheery 'Welcome to Suvarnabhumi' !

Recalling this very thread (and the others), I had the presence of mind to remove my mittens (it was that cold), and take a few snaps with my phone to record this journey into the unknown. Of course, other intrepid travellers have been more sorely inconvenienced with significantly longer and more harrowing experiences.

I suppose the aircraft was scheduled for an international departure, and a few of our pax were also departing internationally (CIQ sticker and all).

On the 'affordability of getting a gate' question, I noted also that a China Southern B738 was parked at D4, Vietnam Air 320 parked at D3, and a THAI aircraft (i772?) at D1, and not pictured was a Malaysia Airlines 738 at C5. If MH can afford a gate in its present financial position, surely PG/TG can as well?
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