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Domestic flights

Domestic flights

Old Oct 11, 2022, 11:30 pm
  #1  
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Domestic flights

Researching a possible trip. Would be in Jan and Feb. Idea would be to spend 12 nights in Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Phuket.

Would be a first time visit to Thailand.

See a lot of Thai Smile flights which presumably is some sub-brand of Thai Airways?

Do Star Alliance Gold members get any benefits on these flights, a checked bag or any kind miles earned for United MP?

Otherwise are the other airlines reliable? For instance, one of the flights I would do is CNX-HKT and I see that Air Asia and Thai Vietjet Air have nonstops but Thai Smile all connect through BKK.
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Old Oct 12, 2022, 12:46 am
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Thai Smile is indeed a wholly owned subsidiary of TG, but only ROP members enjoy any benefits when flying WE. I.e. your Star Alliance Gold counts for nothing, sadly.
If you buy Smile Plus class fares, you get lounge access, extra baggage allowance etc though.

I have no personal experience with the LCCs, but for especially ThaiVietJet, my friends who have tried complain a lot about reliability.
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Old Oct 12, 2022, 1:13 am
  #3  
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Thanks, yeah I figured the low fares of those LCCs seemed too good to be true.
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Old Oct 12, 2022, 1:44 am
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LCC is still a reasonable option if you have direct connections (instead of 2 flights on Thai smile) and you fly cattle and do not want to collect miles and can afford some delay....
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Old Oct 12, 2022, 6:09 am
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I've used Nok Air and Thai Air Asia quite a bit as they are only options for where I need to go. Operationally I've had no problems, perhaps a weather delay once on Nok but they were the blackest thunder clouds I'd ever seen and torrential rain, and it was a small Q400 turbo prop aircraft!

The only issue I have had, and this has happened on both Nok and Thai Air Asia, is I get errors when paying by credit card online but it still seems to still go through. I used ThaiVietJet once for a BKK-CNX-BKK trip at Christmas 2019, it was fine, didn't seem to have any issues.
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Old Oct 12, 2022, 8:56 am
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I am sure that more often than not, the LCCs work. But when it comes to IRROPS, that is when you will praise yourself lucky by having the protection of an established carrier.

Each to their own, but I just do not do LCCs. Only twice have I had to succumb to it (that was PG - can argue if LCC or not), and once was heading back from Trad for what counts as my second date with my now fianc (worth it, as we are now seven years and counting ) and second was when going to USM where there is no other choice..
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Old Oct 12, 2022, 2:59 pm
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I have not had problems with Thai LCC, and as you point out, AirAsia flies CNX-HKT nonstop and Thai Smile does not. Thai Smile is usually more expensive, but seats are nicer and there is a free snack offered. Also 20kg baggage and seat selection is included in the price. 😊
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Old Oct 13, 2022, 1:06 am
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Originally Posted by SKT-DK
I am sure that more often than not, the LCCs work. But when it comes to IRROPS, that is when you will praise yourself lucky by having the protection of an established carrier.

Each to their own, but I just do not do LCCs. Only twice have I had to succumb to it (that was PG - can argue if LCC or not), and once was heading back from Trad for what counts as my second date with my now fianc (worth it, as we are now seven years and counting ) and second was when going to USM where there is no other choice..
PG is in my opinion not a LCC....they advertise themselves as boutique airline. They also offer lounge access for all passengers what will never be a part of the business model of a LCC
Have had several flights on PG to Koh Samui and Siam Reap and was always satisfied
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Old Oct 13, 2022, 3:02 am
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Originally Posted by BinSabai
PG is in my opinion not a LCC....they advertise themselves as boutique airline. They also offer lounge access for all passengers what will never be a part of the business model of a LCC
Have had several flights on PG to Koh Samui and Siam Reap and was always satisfied
You are right, maybe they fall somewhere in between. But to me, all-economy and no benefits are borderline LCC Their prices on their monopoly routes certainly are anything but ow though.

I shall be the first to say that maybe I am just not used to being nobody (in terms of status - I dont consider myself particularly important) when traveling
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Old Oct 15, 2022, 9:15 am
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I have flown on Air Asia, Nok and Viet Jet. Never had a problem with any of them.
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Old Oct 16, 2022, 5:14 pm
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I have travelled on PG 200-300 times, 95% domestic with no problems on any flight expect when landing at Lampang in a big storm, which was not due to the airline. Price is generally higher than other airlines flying the same routes, but I would choose PG every time over others mentioned in this thread. Thai Smile in my opinion also a good airline.
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Old Oct 19, 2022, 7:02 am
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I was flying from DMK this morning on Nok Air and noticed when checking in one of the screens above the counter was rotating through various displays and one was "If the domestic flight are delayed, what will the passenger receive as compensation". I took a couple of pics but they aren't great but the following is stated:

2-3 hours: Delayed more than 2 hours but not exceeding 3 hours:
Food, Beverages* Communications Facilities*, Full reimbursement of the air fare if the passenger does not wish to fly

3-5 hours: Delayed more than 3 hours but not exceeding 5 hours:
Food, Beverages* Communications Facilities*, Full reimbursement of the air fare / or change flight / or travel by other means of transport

5-6 hours: Delayed more than 5 hours but not exceeding 6 hours:
Receive the same as 3 hours but not exceeding 5 hours, Receive 600 Baht compensation right away (unless the airline can prove that the delay is caused by an extraordinary circumstance beyond control) (sic)

>6 hours: Delayed more than 6 hours, passengers will receive the same compensation as flight cancellation
Receive same as 3 hours but not exceeding 5 hours, Accommodation and airport transfer (i.e. taxi) in case of an overnight stay, Compensation 1,200 Baht right away except if the airline can prove that the airline has reported about the cancellation is caused by force majeure or prior to the departure date not less than 3 days or if the new flight will depart to the destination before or after the original date sooner or later than the original date no more than 3 hours.

*These compensations are available only for passengers who have not been notified in advance and have already arrived at the airport (and then there is a reference to Ministry of Transport on Protection of Passenger Rights using Thai air carrier services for domestic scheduled air services but I can't read the reference number on my photo)
I had assumed there was no protection but looks like there is something in place by the Ministry of Transport - whether the carriers follow it is another story!
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Old Oct 29, 2022, 7:38 pm
  #13  
 
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Originally Posted by SKT-DK
You are right, maybe they fall somewhere in between. But to me, all-economy and no benefits are borderline LCC Their prices on their monopoly routes certainly are anything but ow though.

I shall be the first to say that maybe I am just not used to being nobody (in terms of status - I dont consider myself particularly important) when traveling
The OP has no choice but to be a nobody when travelling domestically in Thailand as (a) Thai Smile won't recognise any *A status; (b) PG won't recognise any status at all - though you can accrue some meagre points to various other airlines as shown on its web site; and (c) the alternative is a LCC.

If the choice is flying direct with one of Thai's LCCs (and I've used various flavours of Air Asia for years without problems) or flying via BKK on Thai Smile out of some principle then I'd fly direct domestically on a LCC every time because it's going to be significantly cheaper and quicker. Lounge access can be bought (or comes with Dragon Pass etc.) at most domestic lounges and priority boarding can also usually be bought so the elite experience can often be recreated manually when travelling LCC.
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Old Oct 30, 2022, 11:05 am
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Originally Posted by ftrichard
The OP has no choice but to be a nobody when travelling domestically in Thailand as (a) Thai Smile won't recognise any *A status; (b) PG won't recognise any status at all - though you can accrue some meagre points to various other airlines as shown on its web site; and (c) the alternative is a LCC.

If the choice is flying direct with one of Thai's LCCs (and I've used various flavours of Air Asia for years without problems) or flying via BKK on Thai Smile out of some principle then I'd fly direct domestically on a LCC every time because it's going to be significantly cheaper and quicker. Lounge access can be bought (or comes with Dragon Pass etc.) at most domestic lounges and priority boarding can also usually be bought so the elite experience can often be recreated manually when travelling LCC.
Exactly. I fly AirAsia often and usually purchase an extra legroom seat (400 thb) which grants priority boarding. You can even purchase rapid baggage claim for an extra 50 thb these days.

Priority pass offers lounge access even when flying domestically.
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Old Oct 30, 2022, 11:10 pm
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Originally Posted by Diplomatico
Exactly. I fly AirAsia often and usually purchase an extra legroom seat (400 thb) which grants priority boarding. You can even purchase rapid baggage claim for an extra 50 thb these days.

Priority pass offers lounge access even when flying domestically.
I just took out a UK Barclaycard to get extra Avios now I've left HK and Cathay's no longer my OneWorld carrier. To my surprise, they enrolled me in DragonPass which gives lounge access at all these domestic Thai lounges for a fixed GBP18.50. DragonPass is the upstart rip-off of Priority Pass but still includes Plaza Premium lounges. And, to the point of this thread, Bangkok Airways's Blue Ribbon lounges and all those Coral ones. It's interesting because GBP18.50 per visit is cheaper than Bangkok Airways's own lounge price and even cheaper than Revolut Metal's GBP20 per visit. I will use this for domestic lounges in Thailand now at least until I've done the required four more return flights on PG to get free lounge access with them.
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