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Flying Bangkok Airways - Review

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Bangkok Airways likes to be called Asia's 'boutique airline', and what they hope this name will imply is an airline of high quality and personalised service. To some extent they do achieve this, the service is excellent, but if you imagine boutique to mean five star (first or business class seats etc) then you may be disappointed.

Bangkok Airways currently operates three different types of aircraft, the ATR 72, the Boeing 717-200 and the Airbus 320-232. The ATR 72 is a propeller rather than jet aircraft that has 70 seats. It is this aircraft that most often brings a few gasps and nervous chuckles from passengers while being transported from the departure lounge to the awaiting aircraft. Boarding takes place from the back of the aircraft and the last two seat numbers (at the back) are 19 A and B. The aircraft is small and relatively cramped, but the service is excellent and food can be very good. We have to say that this aircraft, at times, can offer a quite turbulent ride, so we strongly recommend you to try and choose one of the jets if this concerns you.

The two Bangkok Airways' jet aircraft, the Boeing and the Airbus, board passengers from the front of the plane and offer a much more comfortable and less turbulent ride.

At most airports it operates to, Bangkok Airways, has an executive style lounge which offers passengers complimentary reading material, some basic snacks, free internet access and complimentary non-alcoholic drinks.

Bangkok Airways is rapidly expanding within Thailand and also internationally having recently launched flights between Samui and Hong Kong. They have also recently launched a frequent flyer program which is well worth joining.

Whether you agree with Bangkok Airways' marketing push as a boutique airline or not, one thing that most agree on, is that it is not a cheap airline to fly. For example even their special launch fares between Hong Kong and Samui only save the traveller time, and a few hundred HK Dollars (if that) off flying into Bangkok on another airline and connecting.

The issue of price is something that Bangkok Airways has been working hard to challenge. For years it has been more expensive to fly from Bangkok to Samui return, than to fly between Bangkok and Singapore, or even Bangkok and Hong Kong return. Recently though, Bangkok Airways has addressed this issue by offering different timings of flights at different rates. But for some reason the airline, while it accepts American Express at its outlets does not accept it online, which means that online you will see one price but if you wish to purchase that ticket with an Amex card you will have to pay extra. With its envious monopoly over Samui, combined with its own image as a boutique airline it is hard to see them reducing fares too much.

See recent news regarding: Bangkok Airways See also: Airline Reviews

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