Thai Airways to Switch Most Domestic Flights to Old Airport

Thai Airways will begin operating 30 daily domestic flights from Bangkok's old Don Muang airport starting March 25, an airline official said Thursday.

The national carrier will maintain six daily flights at the new international airport, Suvarnabhumi, between Bangkok and the northern city of Chiang Mai and two popular islands, Phuket and Krabi, said Thai Airways President Apinan Sumanaseni.

The announcement by Thailand's national carrier came a week after the government approved the reopening of Don Muang to ease congestion at Suvarnabhumi, which opened in September but needs repairs to taxiways and in the main terminal.

Apinan said all the flights being transferred to Don Muang will be domestic-bound routes that do not transfer to international flights.

Critics have objected to reopening Don Muang, saying it will be confusing to tourists and could cause logistical problems shuttling between the two because of Bangkok's legendary traffic jams.

Transport Minister Thira Hao-Charoen said last month that three budget airlines - Nok Air, One-Two-Go and PB Air - were also planning to operate domestic flights from Don Muang.

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