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BKK International to Domestic Transfer

BKK International to Domestic Transfer

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Old Aug 29, 15, 2:46 am
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BKK International to Domestic Transfer

Recently, my wife and I tried to do a transfer from JetStar (International) flight to ThaiSmile (Domestic-CNX) flight at Bangkok (BKK) airport with only carry-on bags. (We had no checked bags) We had problems, and I want to check if others have experienced similar problems, or did I just misunderstand the process. Thanks in advance for replies.

Our flight was late, but we managed to arrive at the ThaiSmile ticket counter, which is just before the domestic transfer Immigration area, 40 minutes prior to our ThaiSmile CNX departure. (I believe the cutoff for checking-in is 30 minutes.) I said we only had carry-on bags. The attendant at the ticket counter called someone, and after much discussion told us we had to clear regular immigration, proceed to the Check-in counter, and then clear Domestic security. She said that JetStar & ThaiSmile do not have agreement to use the International to Domestic Transfer. Needless to say, we missed our flight and had to rebook.

The official Suvarnabhumi airport website has a section that talks about "international-to-domestic-no-boarding-pass" connections, and there is no mention of special agreements, and I couldn't find anything on ThaiSmile's site. What am I missing here? Tried emailing ThaiSmile and their parent company Thai Airlines, but didn't get any response. *sigh*
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Old Aug 29, 15, 3:51 am
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You did not check in online on Thai Smile beforehand?
With the boarding passes in hand you would have have an easier time.

She said that JetStar & ThaiSmile do not have agreement to use the International to Domestic Transfer. Needless to say, we missed our flight and had to rebook.
There is a special process at BKK at place, that Intl-to-Dom connecting passengers do not have to pass immigration and customs check at BKK. These passengers receive a special sticker.
Immigration and Customs are cleared at the final destination (CNX). Passengers on the domestic flight are seperated after landing and are escorted to different baggage claim areas.

However, the airlines involved in that transfer scheme have to have a valid agreement in place. I fear that Jetstar is missing such an agreement.

Moreover, even if such an agreement is in place, passengers have to clear security. There are special security lines for these passengers.
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Old Aug 29, 15, 6:21 am
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Red face

Thanks for responding! Wish we could have done the online check-in beforehand, but circumstances did not allow.

I think the special process you are referring to is for clearing Immigration and customs at the end of a domestic leg. Ie. flying into BKK, and connecting to Phuket, Chiang Mai or some other Thai city, and then clearing Immigration and customs there (not in BKK).

I was trying to follow a different procedure for going through the special customs and Immigration at the BKK airport (Transfer/transfer procedures.) There are separate customs and immigrations areas (in BKK) made specifically for connecting passengers. ...at concourse building C.

I can understand how an agreement would be necessary between airlines, in order to handle checked-baggage; however, we had no checked bags, and were following the official Bangkok Airport (BKK) website. http://suvarnabhumiairport.com/en/10...-boarding-pass (Again, thanks for your info! I'm replying to clarify so others reading this don't get confused between the two different procedures.)
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Old Aug 29, 15, 6:15 pm
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Originally Posted by warakorn View Post
There is a special process at BKK at place, that Intl-to-Dom connecting passengers do not have to pass immigration and customs check at BKK. These passengers receive a special sticker.
Immigration and Customs are cleared at the final destination (CNX). Passengers on the domestic flight are seperated after landing and are escorted to different baggage claim areas.
No. This is completely in err.

All pax arriving into BKK, who are not connecting to another international flight, go through immigration in BKK. The only thing Int->Dom pax will do at the final destination, and then only if they are going to one of the 'international' airports in Thailand, is customs. This subset of airports include: CNX, CEI, HDY, HKT, KBV and USM. All other transfers to domestic destinations require pax to be proceed through immigration and customs in BKK.

I have no idea if OP was given proper information from the transfer desk about the validity of being able to use it (or not). It seems spurious to me.
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Old Aug 29, 15, 6:55 pm
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As a benefit to future readers and indexing, we'll re-direct this to the Thailand regional forum.
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Old Aug 29, 15, 8:15 pm
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I can understand how an agreement would be necessary between airlines, in order to handle checked-baggage; however, we had no checked bags, and were following the official Bangkok Airport (BKK) website. http://suvarnabhumiairport.com/en/10...-boarding-pass (Again, thanks for your info! I'm replying to clarify so others reading this don't get confused between the two different procedures.)

Did you follow this process?

http://suvarnabhumiairport.com/en/10...-boarding-pass

It seems like it should work?

They show Thai Smile in the photo of the Connecting Counter.

To use the mid-field intl - dom connection (Immigration) you must clear Customs in one of the approved final domestic destination ( of which CNX is an option). You cannot clear Customs in BKK mid-field.

Maybe there was some confusion regarding your request, or mis-communications, specifically confusion about checked bags (they thought you had checked bags, mistakenly)? Or maybe it was too late for the mid-field Connecting Counter to check you in?



There is a special process at BKK at place, that Intl-to-Dom connecting passengers do not have to pass immigration and customs check at BKK. These passengers receive a special sticker.
Immigration and Customs are cleared at the final destination (CNX). Passengers on the domestic flight are seperated after landing and are escorted to different baggage claim areas.


I think this process is for dom-int'l, a la CIQ?

Last edited by transpac; Aug 29, 15 at 8:21 pm
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Old Aug 30, 15, 12:40 am
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Did you follow this process?

http://suvarnabhumiairport.com/en/10...-boarding-pass

Yes, we were attempting to, but were told we could not use it, by Thai Smile, as there is no agreement between Thai Smile and JetStar. We were at that Thai Smile ticket counter in the pic (above link). I was really clear to them that we had no checked bags because I knew that could be a problem.

On Thai Smile web site they say the domestic check-in gate will close 30 minutes prior to departure. We got to the counter 40 minutes prior. (I was very aware of the time.)

I'm really curious, has anyone used the transfer procedure (indicated in the link above) coming into BKK a non-THAI airways, or partner airline?

If I made a mistake, I'm more than happy to eat the additional cost of re-booking to the later flight. (It would be my fault.) However, if I followed their rules correctly (Thai Smile and BKK airport) then I'm definitely seeking a refund and apology.

My latest Email to Thai airway asking for some kind of a response, (I wasn't hearing anything from Thai Smile) was relayed back to Thai Smile asking them to respond to me. I'll keep the thread updated when/if things develop.

Thanks so much for the responses.
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Old Aug 30, 15, 3:08 am
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Yes, that process is CIQ.
I used it from UTH to BKK and on to QR fligth to DOH.
PG printed my QR boarding pass at UTH and I cleared passport control at UTH.
After landing BKK I followed the CIQ signs and went to the (lousy) Thai Orchid lounge at D gates.
This was even on separate PNR, thanks to agreement between Bangkok Airways and many other airlines.
Thus UTH should be added to the list of CIQ airports.

I might be possible you could not follow this procedure arriving BKK because of lack of agreement with low cost airline, although I do not understand why that should be a problem except for baggage requiring to be tagged to final destination, but since you did not have any registered bags...

I am flying WE UTH-BKK next week and onto QR to DOH, but do not intend trying to use this procedure on my way out, I have better plans than waiting in the ROP lounge, and the CX lounge is closed on Monday evenings, I will rather visit the excellent Novotel 18h buffet at 1050THB net. Even J food can't compete and having to wait until 10pm...no thanks. I do hope QR will have Pol Roger Rose champagne though - and Krug at the A380 bar....

Out of curiosity I will ask if Thai Smile does allow CIQ on the way out.

Last edited by tartempion; Aug 30, 15 at 3:14 am
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Old Aug 30, 15, 4:27 am
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For PG...XXX-BKK-NNN

Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Krabi, Phuket, Samui, Trat and Udon Thani


https://bangkokair.com/eng/pages/view/check-in-through


There was some PR for UTH and giving FD the same service via DMK. Not sure if that is seamless or available?

But these Domestic-BKK-Int'l (C-Customs, I-Inspection/Immigration, Q-Quarantine) procedures aren't the same as what the OP was having problems with, as far as I can tell?

Posts/threads in the TG forum here indicate both success and failure re: Thai Smile and CIQ procedures via BKK.
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Old Sep 16, 15, 6:53 am
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Update

I've been in contact with THAISmile Airlines, and they are providing us with a credit for future flights. I am impressed that they went the extra mile to provide this, and we will fly them again. Actually, other than our transfer problem, the actual flight, service and pricing were quite good. Plus, we liked that we could arrive and fly out of BKK and not have to transfer to Don Muang for the domestic leg.

I'll summarize the information they gave... Basically the transfer area is designed for Arriving International passengers who have booked tickets with THAI Airways, THAISmile (as they do fly one international route from Macau, or partner airlines which have a co-agreement) and are flying onward to domestic locations via THAISmile. If you meet these requirements, then you can avoid going through the regular immigration and domestic check-in. You still need to be processed through customs at the end of the domestic flight.

I'd still recommend verifying the procedure beforehand with your International Airline. i.e. the first leg prior to arrival at BKK. I think they might give you a transfer sticker to put on your chest/body so you don't go the wrong way accidentally after arrival at BKK.
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Old Sep 17, 15, 4:44 pm
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Originally Posted by EarthTrekker View Post
I've been in contact with THAISmile Airlines, and they are providing us with a credit for future flights.
Sorry i just saw this thread, but I think you did well there, as my understanding is that they were technically correct in directing you through main immigration, as CIQ is only valid for TG>WE (whereas JQ>TG on separate tickets would've been fine)

I've come in on various airlines and connected through the CIQ shortcut on separate tickets with Thai and Bangkok Air with no problem, but when I tried 2 weeks ago QR to HKT on Thai Smile, they said they would only print boarding passes if I was connecting from Thai. I presume it's because WE is low cost (my fare was something like 20 USD!); if I had been booked on the same flight with a TG code (more than 3x the fare), the adjacent TG desk would have happily issued the BP

To be fair to WE, that's the same policy that virtually all other LCCs have - you can't interline onto Southwest Easyjet or Ryanair, and they don't have airside transfer desks - you have to go to the main check in

Luckily in my case I had a screenshot of the online check in boarding pass on my phone, which CIQ security was able to scan and let me through anyway (I was then issued with a paper BP at the gate)
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Old Sep 17, 15, 6:40 pm
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Originally Posted by kt74 View Post
Sorry i just saw this thread, but I think you did well there, as my understanding is that they were technically correct in directing you through main immigration, as CIQ is only valid for TG>WE (whereas JQ>TG on separate tickets would've been fine)

I've come in on various airlines and connected through the CIQ shortcut on separate tickets with Thai and Bangkok Air with no problem, but when I tried 2 weeks ago QR to HKT on Thai Smile, they said they would only print boarding passes if I was connecting from Thai. I presume it's because WE is low cost (my fare was something like 20 USD!); if I had been booked on the same flight with a TG code (more than 3x the fare), the adjacent TG desk would have happily issued the BP

To be fair to WE, that's the same policy that virtually all other LCCs have - you can't interline onto Southwest Easyjet or Ryanair, and they don't have airside transfer desks - you have to go to the main check in

Luckily in my case I had a screenshot of the online check in boarding pass on my phone, which CIQ security was able to scan and let me through anyway (I was then issued with a paper BP at the gate)
I'm rather incredulous you got BKK-HKT for 700 THB.
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Old Sep 18, 15, 3:59 am
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Originally Posted by dsquared37 View Post
I'm rather incredulous you got BKK-HKT for 700 THB.
OK, I exaggerate, it was THB 1000. WE does periodic sales. Lots of availability weekday off-season. Flight was near empty. I could have taken Thai Lion for THB 500, but from DMK
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Old Sep 18, 15, 9:36 pm
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You still need to be processed through customs at the end of the domestic flight.
I'll just add that this procedure is only applicable for those domestic locations which have Customs.

Pretty sure that remains: Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Phuket, Hat Yai, Samui or Krabi.

So the this procedure would not be available to other domestic locations which WE serves like UBP, KKC, NAW, URT, UTH.


Did WE ever explain what the issue was, for the OP?
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Old Jun 21, 17, 5:50 pm
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Resurrecting an old thread to ask a similar question:

I will be transiting BKK arriving BKK on Sri Lankan Airlines and departing for CNX on Thai Smile. The Thai Smile ticket will be a separate ticket.

Will I be able to use the special transit procedures or must I go through the normal arrival procedures? I will (hopefully) have already checked into the Thai Smile flight and will have a record of that on my phone.

Thank you
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