Why Bangkok Airways Is A Boutique Airline

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Bangkok Airways check in counters at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport

Bangkok Airways check in counters at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport

Bangkok Airways tagline Asia’s Boutique Airline has been appropriately brought to life with its heartwarming service as well as fine details that outshines some of the larger full service flag carriers. (Be sure to check out our video at the end of this article)

The airline has a fleet of 30 aircraft with eight A320s, 11 A319s, 8 ATR72-500s and three ATR72-600s.

Bangkok Airways ATR72-500 in Luang PrabangBangkok Airways ATR72-500 in Luang Prabang

Bangkok Airways ATR72-500 in Luang Prabang Airport

I took my first flight with Bangkok Airways end April 2016 on a trip between Bangkok, Thailand and Luang Prabang, Laos on the airline’s ATR 72-500 propeller aircraft. Bangkok Airways has been operating twice daily flights between Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport and Luang Prabang since 2002 using its 70 seater ATR 72-500/600 aircraft.

PG941 departs Bangkok at 9.40am and arrives in Luang Prabang at 11.40am. The return flight PG 942 departs Luang Prabang at 12.20pm and arrives in Bangkok at 2.20pm.  PG945, the second flight to Luang Prabang departs Bangkok at 3.05pm and arrives in Luang Prabang at 4.40pm. The return flight PG946 departs Luang Prabang at 5.20pm and arrives in Bangkok at 6.50pm.

 

Bangkok Airways Blue Ribbon Lounge at the International terminal of Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport

Bangkok Airways Blue Ribbon Lounge at the International terminal of Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport

One differentiating service that sets Bangkok Airways apart is the lounge access it extends to all passengers including those in Economy. All customers also get to enjoy free wifi, free magazines and internet access from the computer booths at the lounge. Snacks, Thai traditional desserts, tapas and drinks are also available.

 

Bangkok Airways Blue Ribbon Club Lounge at Suvarnabhumi Airport (International Terminal)

Cosy Bangkok Airways Blue Ribbon lounge in BKK international

Cosy Bangkok Airways Blue Ribbon lounge in BKK international

Business Class customers and higher tiered FlyerBonus Premier loyalty programme members get access to the Blue Ribbon Club lounge which is separate from the Economy Class lounge. The Blue Ribbon Club lounge offers more food variety including hot meal, comfortable seating areas, a relaxation room as well as shower facilities at the Bangkok Suvarnabhumi International Terminal. A personal meeting room offers passengers more private space.

The Blue Ribbon Club lounge here is located near Gates D opposite from the Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer lounge on the third floor of Concourse A.

Snacks, Beverages, Instant Noodles, Soup served at the Bangkok Airways Blue Ribbon Lounge.

Snacks, Beverages, Instant Noodles, Soup served at the Bangkok Airways Blue Ribbon Lounge.

The lounge offers a selection of dim sums, pastries as well as a menu of soups and noodles so you won’t go hungry. Beverages including coffee and tea, soft drinks and bottled water are also available. Thai delights will always be on the menu.

 

Bangkok Airways Blue Ribbon Lounge - Thai delights and pastries as well as dim sum

Thai delights and pastries as well as dim sum

Bangkok Airways current operates twice daily flights between Singapore and Ko Samui on its Airbus 319 aircraft. PG964 departs Singapore at 5.25pm and arrives in Ko Samui at 6.10pm. The second flight PG962 departs Singapore at 8.35pm and arrives in Ko Samui at 9.20pm.

PG963 departs Ko Samui at 1.40pm and arrives in Singapore at 4.25pm while PG961 departs Ko Samui at 4.35pm and arrives in Singapore at 7.20pm.

There isn’t lounge access for economy class passengers in Singapore, but Premier Class passengers are welcome to use the DNATA lounge at Changi Airport Terminal 1 where Bangkok Airways flies out from.

Premier Class is not available on all routes. It is available between Bangkok and Vientiane, Phnom Penh and Yangon as well as between Samui and Kuala Lumpur and Singapore.

 

Bangkok Airways Lounge in Luang Prabang Airport

Bangkok Airways Lounge in Luang Prabang

Bangkok Airways Lounge in Luang Prabang

The lounge at Luang Prabang International Airport is newly opened since 25 March this year. It offers snacks and drinks just like any of its normal boutique lounges. The lounge is small considering the aircraft used to service the route between Luang Prabang and Bangkok carries up to 70 passengers. Measuring 132 sqm, the lounge can accommodate up to 42 customers. It is located near exit three on the second floor of the International Departure terminal.

 

Refreshments, light bites and computer desktop stations at the Bangkok Airways lounge in Luang Prabang Airport.

Refreshments, light bites and computer desktop stations at the Bangkok Airways lounge in Luang Prabang Airport.

Luang Prabang International Airport is small and it does not have a lot of retail. Having a lounge to rest in and get some light bites and refreshments with fans to cool you down during the hot seasons in Luang Prabang could make your journey more pleasant.

 

Inflight Experience

Bangkok Airways inflight service

Bangkok Airways inflight service

The ATR72 aircraft is a single aisle aircraft with two seats on each side accommodating up to 70 passengers. Entry into the aircraft is from the door at the tail end of the aircraft.  While it takes a while to board the plane after a short walk to the aircraft from the airport terminal in Luang Prabang or a bus ride from the airport terminal to the aircraft in Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport, it also allows you to check out the rest of the aircraft on the tarmac if you are into aviation and plane spotting.

Rows 5 to 8 are directly next to the propeller engines so it can get a tad bit noisy. Sitting right in front at Row 1 means you get more leg room but the downside is you are probably going to be the last to get off the aircraft since the exit is where you boarded the plane from.

Inflight meals are served when flying between Luang Prabang and Bangkok

Inflight meals are served when flying between Luang Prabang and Bangkok

The flight between Luang Prabang and Bangkok takes around two hours and a meal is served. White and Red wine is also available on board. Hot coffee and tea are available after meals.

 

Bangkok Airways - A main course, salad and dessert comes with your meal

A main course, salad and dessert comes with your meal

The meal is quite filling, especially after having some snacks in the lounge. The overall experience with Bangkok Airways has been a good one.

fahthai, Bangkok Airways inflight magazine is published by Ink Publishing. It offers a good read to while away your time during your flight. The April issue has some rather interesting content and I particularly like the layout, illustration and photography. Craig Saur’s The Backyard Brewers about Bangkok’s indie beer brewers as well as Rachna Sachasinh’s Orange Alert about saving the wild tigers of Laos were two of my favourite pieces.

This video below will allow you to follow me on my passenger experience journey with Bangkok Airways.

 

 

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