Suvarnabhumi Airport Map

Suvarnabhumi Airport : Flight Status

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Emergency decree lifted

Caretaker government Tuesday officially lifted a state of emergency imposed at Bangkok's airports nearly two weeks ago amid a blockade by People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) supporters.


The anti-government protesters seized control of Suvarnabhumi and Don Muaeng airports in late November, but left last week after the Constitution Court dissolved the ruling People Power party and ordered Somchai Wongsawat to step down from premiership post.



Government spokesman Nattawut Saikua said the cabinet had agreed to lift the state of emergency because "the situation which caused the declaration has eased and returned to normal."



PAD supporters occupied Suvarnabhumi airport on November 25 and blockaded Don Muaeng domestic airport the next day.



The emergency decree was imposed after the anti-government protesters refused to leave the airports and the army refused to back police to use force to disperse the protesters.



The airports reopened last week after the court dissolved three parties, including People Power party.

Thai cabinet lifts state of emergency at two Bangkok airports

BANGKOK, Dec. 9 (Xinhua) -- Thailand's caretaker Cabinet Tuesday resolved to lift the state emergency over the Suvarnabhumi International Airport and Don Mueang domestic airport in Bangkok.


The Suvarnabhumi airport already resumed full operation on Monday as all international flights have reopened their routes to and from the airport, which is one of the busiest air hubs in Asia, according to the airport supervising body Airports of Thailand (AOT).


All service at the Suvarnabhumi and Don Mueang airports were suspended from the night of Nov. 25 as demonstrators organized by the People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) sieged and occupied it for eight days in a showdown against the coalition government led by premier Somchai Wongsawat and his People Power Party (PPP).


The Somchai government then declared a state of emergency at the two airports on Nov. 27, but police took no action to forcedly disperse the demonstrators, who vowed to stay rallying there until Somchai stepped down.


The PAD later handed the airports over to the AOT after the Constitution Court ruled on Dec. 2 to disband the three ruling parties in the coalition government, including PPP, causing the step-down of Somchai, whom the PAD depicted as a proxy of ousted premier Thaksin Shinawatra, the PAD's declared enemy since 2005.

Safety Not an Issue at Upcoming Bangkok Fair

The organizers of the 43rd Bangkok Gems and Jewelry Fair said they are working to protect the safety of visitors and provide information on the ongoing issues facing Thailand.

The organizers said they “guarantee that Challenger Hall, Impact, will still be very secured for exhibitors and visitors alike.” The fair is scheduled for The issue concerning the closure of Suvarnabhumi and Don Muang airports in Bangkok has been solved, trade fair organizers said. Airports of Thailand confirm that commercial flights will resume at the Suvarnabhumi International Airport. The authority said all the systems will be checked before the airport resumes full operations. While the three related agencies, Airports of Thailand, the Civil Aviation Department, and the Thai Customs Department, were told to be ready to start operations.


“We understand that the situation is now resolved long before the opening of the 43rd BGJF, and we will continue to monitor the situation very closely,” Somchai Phornchindarak CEO of BGJF.


He said the situation is stable and exhibitors can do their normal business visit as usual.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Thailand offers navy airbase as substitute airport

BANGKOK, Nov 27 (Reuters) - Thailand is offering its naval airbase on the eastern seaboard as an alternative for airlines after its two Bangkok airports were closed by anti-government protests, a top aviation official said on Thursday.


Aviation Department chief Chaisak Angkasuwan said he was ready to let airlines use U-Tapao, a small airport already used for some short domestic routes and international charter flights, 140 km (90 mile) southeast of Bangkok.


"If any airline wishes to land or take off from U-Tapao, send us a request and we will immediately grant it," he said.


"We are doing this to help passengers who wish to go home," he added.


A blockade by anti-government protesters at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi airport, a major Asian air hub, entered its third day on Thursday, causing the cancellation of all flights and stranding thousands of tourists in the Thai capital.


Members of the People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) also laid siege to the old Don Muang airport, shutting the domestic hub and effectively severing air links to the city of 8 million people.


U-Tapao, a front-line base for the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War, has one runway.


National carrier Thai Airways THAI.BK, which operates 140 flights a day to and from Suvarnabhumi international airport, said on Thursday it was considering using U-Tapao. (Reporting by Panarat Thepgumpanat; Writing by Nopporn Wong-Anan; Editing by Alan Raybould) (Bangkok newsroom, darren.schuettler@thomsonreuters.com; +66 2 637 5610))

Main Bangkok airport to be shut until at least Sat

BANGKOK, Nov 27 (Reuters) - Thailand's main Suvarnabhumi international airport will remain closed until at least 6 p.m. (1100 GMT) on Saturday because of a siege by anti-government protesters, Thai Airways THAI.BK said on Thursday.


The airline, passing on an announcement from Airports of Thailand AOT.BK, said the capital's old Don Muang airport would be closed until 6 p.m. on Friday.


The statement did not say why these times had been chosen.


The government declared a state of emergency at the two sites on Thursday, giving the army and police special powers to clear the People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) protesters, who overran the $4 billion Suvarnabhumi site on Tuesday.


However, when a state of emergency was declared at another PAD protest site in September, the army failed to heed the order and did nothing.


Suvarnabhumi is one of Asia's biggest airports, processing as many as 125,000 people a day, 70 percent of them tourists. The airport closure has left thousands of foreigners stranded and will make a huge dent in Thailand's lucrative tourist industry. (Reporting by Ed Cropley; Editing by Alan Raybould)

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Emergency Declared at Thai Airports

BANGKOK — Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat declared a state of emergency at Bangkok’s two commercial airports on Thursday and instructed the police and some military units to deal with protesters occupying the facilities.


The order, announced in a nationally televised address, came after a cabinet meeting in the northern city of Chiang Mai, a location apparently chosen to avoid confrontations with protesters, who in Bangkok are occupying the prime minister’s offices as well as the airports.


“It is necessary for me to announce an emergency decree in some areas,” Mr. Somchai said. “There is no intention to harm anyone.”


He assigned police, air force and naval units to “take care” of the situation. It was unclear whether this meant they are charged with clearing protestors out of the facilities.


Amid rumors of a military coup, a government spokesman instructed troops to “stay in their barracks.”


The closure of Bangkok’s second airport early Thursday severed the last remaining commercial air links to the Thai capital. Until Wednesday, airlines were operating domestic flights out of Don Muang airport, Bangkok’s oldest airfield.


Protesters have vowed to keep the airports shut until the government steps down.


Government supporters who have formed a type of auxiliary, known as the red shirts, said they were growing impatient with the protesters. Weera Musikapong, one of the leaders of the group said in a news conference that the “best way out” of the crisis was to follow the law. “But if the government does not act today or tomorrow the red shirt group and the people must come out and do something.”


Protesters have clashed with pro-government forces on several occasions in recent months, leaving at least two people dead and dozens injured.


Thailand’s tourism minister, Weerasak Kohsurat, said the government would soon begin flying thousands of stranded tourists out of the country using military bases near the Thai capital.


Tourists would be flown by Thai Airways to Singapore or Malaysia for connecting flights, The Associated Press reported.


Government officials also said Thursday they would allow commercial airlines to use one of the military airports, U-Tapao.


Used by the United States military during the Vietnam War, U-Tapao can handle only a fraction of the daily average of 100,000 passengers who flew in and out of Suvarnabhumi International Airport last year.


U-Tapao’s terminal has the capacity to hold 400 people and the parking lot has about 100 spaces. The airport is about 120 miles from Bangkok, a two-hour drive.


The seizure of Bangkok’s airports is radical even by the standards of Thailand’s tempestuous political past. Despite frequent military coups and changes of government in past decades, the day-to-day running of Thailand’s bureaucracy had been largely unaffected until now. The airports operated with little interruption during a military coup in 2006, and unlike many of its neighbors Thailand has maintained reliable service in key areas such as electricity and health care despite political turmoil.


But with the closure of the airports this week and occupation of the prime minister’s office since August, politics is now directly interfering with many facets of life in Thailand.


The country’s foreign minister, Sompong Amornwiwat, said the government is considering postponing a summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations scheduled for next month because of the political crisis, Reuters reported.


Cargo services at Suvarnabhumi airport, a major hub for Southeast Asia, have completely ceased, a major blow for Thai and foreign companies that use the country as an export base.


“The protesters have basically closed down the country,” said Ruth Banomyong, an associate professor at Thammasat Business School who is one of the region’s leading experts in logistics.


“Thailand was never considered as a very risky country,” he said. “I don’t think companies would have prepared for this.”


Thailand is well integrated into a regional network of just-in-time electronics manufacturing, where businesses keep down costs by maintaining a bare minimum of inventories. If the airports remain closed, assembly lines in Japan and China may run out of the semiconductors, disk drives and other components manufactured in Thailand.


Mr. Ruth estimates that electronics manufacturers keep around three to five days of inventory.


“This idea of Bangkok and Suvarnabhumi being a cargo hub — they can drop it down the drain now,” he said.


Thailand last year exported about $40 billion in electronics and computer components. Leading electronics manufacturing including Fujitsu, Seagate, Philips, and LG have factories in the country.


The airport closures may also prove dangerous for those in need of urgent medical care.


Neighboring countries such as Cambodia, Myanmar and Laos rely on Thailand for health care because Bangkok has some of the best hospitals in the region. The closure of the airports has shut off the urgent provision of medicines and medical machinery from abroad.


“For agriculture and electronics it’s a commercial loss,” said Voratat Tantimongkolsuk, deputy director of operations at CTI, one of the largest freight forwarders in Thailand. “But this is also about people’s lives. We import a lot of medical equipment from other countries.”


Mr. Voratat is proposing to his clients that they send their shipments by truck to Kuala Lumpur International Airport, adding about three days to the shipment time. But this route may not be viable for the most sensitive products.


Last year Suvarnabhumi airport handled import and exports averaging a total of 2,900 tons a day.

Suvarnabhumi Airport closed for security reason



For security reasons, Suvarnabhumi Airport will be closed from 9pm (November 25, 2008) onwards after anti-government protesters blocked entrance of then airport.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Blasts at Bangkok airport, other sites wound seven: officials

BANGKOK (AFP) — A blast at Bangkok's international airport and grenade attacks elsewhere in the city wounded at least seven people on Wednesday, as lawlessness spread amid anti-government protests, officials said.


The explosion at Suvarnabhumi Airport happened a day after demonstrators stormed the airport, forcing it to close down and stranding thousands of passengers.


"At least two people were wounded by a bomb blast at Suvarnabhumi this morning," Petpong Kamchornkitkarn, an emergency medical services official, told AFP.


Two local television stations said a grenade was fired at protesters and that three people were wounded.


A near simultaneous grenade attack on anti-government protesters picketing Bangkok's old Don Mueang airport, where the prime minister has set up temporary offices, wounded two more people, Petpong said.


Another three people were wounded when two grenades were tossed into a crowd of pro-government supporters on a road to Don Mueang, the site of a clash between rival activists that left 11 hurt on Tuesday, police said.


Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat moved to premises at Don Mueang after demonstrators occupied the government's main offices in central Bangkok in August.


The People's Alliance for Democracy, a protest movement, has led a six-month street campaign against the democratically elected government.

Thailand's Suvarnabhumi Airport closed

The Airports of Thailand has decided to close the Suvarnabhumi airport after PAD protesters entered passenger terminals and scuffled with airport officials.


The closure, ordered around 9 pm, involved stopping out-bound flights. In-bound planes were still being allowed to land Tuesday night, but can be diverted to key provincial airports if situations deteriorated.


The order was issued by AOT chief Serirat Prasutanont. He made the decision out of safety concern after PAD protesters penetrated some passenger areas.


"The PAD members are now scattered around. I don't know who's who, or who's PAD and who's not," a senior AOT official told The Nation at around 10.30 pm.


How long the closure will last is not known.


The People's Alliance for Democracy threatened earlier Tuesday night to close down the Suvanabhumi Airport completely after several thousand PAD protesteers blocked an entrance earlier in the day and caused turmoil for numerous passengers.


As PAD protesters moved to surround Suvarnabhumi Airport in the afternoon when the plane carrying Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat was scheduled to land, the arrival of his plane from Peru was announced to have been delayed due to technical problems.


The estimated time of arrival has not been confirmed. Some sources said he could be arriving Wednesday evening.


"We have tried to pressure the government for more than 50 hours but nothing has happened, so we need to step up our campaign by closing the airport to tell the world problems Thailand is facing," said PAD leader Sondhi Limthongkul at Government House Tuesday night.


Before the closure order, the Airports of Thailand was Tuesday night mobilizing its officials to Suvarnabhumi to make sure no key operations will be disrupted. Travellers still can access the terminals through Bang Na -Trad highway, but the motory-way entrance has been crowded with protesters.


Many travellers have already suffered inconvenience. Arrival passengers were stranded Tuesday night and the AOT officials were trying to facilitate their transport out of the airport. AOT has also issued a statement pleading with the PAD.


AOT also has provided a hotline number for inquiries: 02-1321882 02-1321888


However, an AOT official said the lines soon became jammed.


It was a big political gamble by the PAD, which has seen its support declining lately because of controversial, provocative moves. Its die-hard following, however, has been galvanised by deaths and injuries of PAD members since October 7, when police fired tear gas at protesters marching to Parliament.


Somchai's plane failed to take off from Lima, Peru where he attended the APEC summit after the hydraulic lock of the plane's wheels failed to unlock.


The technical repair was first expected to make Somchai's flight eight hours behind the schedule, making Somchai's arrival time to be around 7 pm.



It was later reported that the repair work would be finished sooner so Somchai would arrive at 5pm.


Somchai was scheduled to arrive in Bangkok at around noon on Wednesday. He is now expected to arrive at 7pm instead.


The Public Relations Department said its reporter, Saksit Pradabsilp, reported from Peru that a hydraulic lock of the plane's wheel would not unlock, thus, preventing the plane from taking off.


While PAD Tuesday split in groups and stage a rally to block a Cabinet meeting, Deputy Prime Minister Chaovarat Chanweerakul, as caretaker prime minister, still man?aged to have a meeting with Interior Minister Kowit Watana and PM's Office Minister Supon Fongngam at the Public Relations Department headquarters at 9.30 am.


Police and military representatives also attend?ed the meeting.


Chaovarat said after the meeting that the police had assured they could handle the situation. They would be patient and would not use violence.


Moreover, they would ask PAD to vacate the government's temporary office at Don Mueang Airport but would not "seize/ take back" the office, otherwise, bloodshed could erupt.


Chaovarat said he would leave it to Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat to talk to the PAD leaders himself.


They were looking for a new place to hold the Cabinet meeting when the PAD blocked the Supreme Command headquarters, he said.


Meanwhile, a source who joined the meeting and asked not to be named, said police had told Chaovarat they would be able to control the situation as PAD protesters mainly demonstrated at Government House and Don Mueang Airport. Being left to rally as they wanted, demonstrators are likely to be exhausted on Wednesday with half of them likely to leave the rally.


Security agencies would then wait until only a few protesters were left before taking action, the source said.


Somchai's delayed arrival could be the reason for the cancellation of the scheduled Cabinet meeting, the source said.


Culture Minister Worawat Uaapinyakul said PAD should care more about the country and stop besieging government agencies' offices as it would hurt the country. PAD's attempt was just power struggle, he said.


"The (PAD's) behaviours are like bandits'. They are unacceptable. Why don't they respect democracy or listen to people's voice? Investors are with?drawing nowadays as they don't know what is happening in Thailand," Worawat said.


The government has been forced not to use its power, Worawat said. However, it would continue working according to the democratic system. However, it would have to discuss where its office would be.


He said the Cabinet would be able to use many other places as its office. However, the military should protect its dignity by not allowing PAD to siege government offices.


Worawat said he would propose to Somchai to set up an office in Chiangmai as the people there would welcome the government.


A government source, who asked not to be named, said the Secretariat of the Prime Minister had not prepared any office to replace the Don Mueang Airport as it needed to discuss the issue with the premier first.


The source said it was time the prime minister exercised the law against the PAD. Otherwise, PAD would lay siege to any government offices.

Departing flights canceled as protesters swarm Bangkok airport

Protesters delay flights at Suvarnabhumi International Airport

If you are flying out of Bangkok, beware that anti-government demonstrators swarmed Suvarnabhumi International Airport and halted departing flights today at Thailand’s primary airport, the Associated Press reports.

“For the safety of passengers, we have to stop flights out of the airport temporarily until the situation returns to normal,” airport manager Serirat Prasutanon said in a statement to the AP. He noted that incoming flights were still operating.

Demonstrators, identified as the People’s Alliance for Democracy, are seeking the resignation of Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat and his cabinet.

Passengers stranded at Suvarnabhumi International Airport

“Political tensions that have been simmering since 2006, when a similar protest campaign against then-Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra — accused of corruption and abuse of power — led to him being deposed by a military coup,” the AP report said.

It was unknown exactly how many flights had been canceled, according to the airport manager. Thai Airways said 18 flights had been canceled and stranded hundreds of passengers.

–Mary Forgione, Los Angeles Times staff writer

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Taxis at Suvarnabhumi Airport a tourist turn-off


By Veena Thupkrajae

One could blame the global economic recession or point the finger at the political mess for the decline in tourism, but actually one needs look no further than the arrival hall at Suvarnabhumi Airport to see what really turns off most tourists.


Yes, I'm talking about airport taxis.


Bring this topic up the next time you're having a conversation and see if it ever comes to an end.


Somebody in your group will have either been bombarded by an illegal front-man or woman for a taxi mafia; experienced a driver who refuses to use the metre or been dumped when the driver finds a passenger headed for Pattaya or another destination for which they can get a handsome fare.


Even getting a taxi from an official stand does not ensure good service.


"I get harassed all the way home by the taxi-driver, who is invariably angry that I am not going to a destination that is far away from the airport. The driver keeps complaining about having to wait a long time for one passenger," a female traveller wrote recently on the mthai.com discussion board.


So do we need to turn to the Airports of Thailand (AOT) for a solution?


Probably not, because AOT's official Bt50 (S$2.10) surcharge for each taxi was never enough for the time they had to spend waiting for passengers.


In March 2006, when around 1,000 taxi-drivers gathered and blockaded the airport to protest against competition from "ghost taxis", AOT management promised to crack down on illegal vehicles.


Somchai Sawasphol, then AOT director, told legal cabbies that they would not have to wait too long for passengers once AOT got rid of all the illegal operators.


That promise was made in March 2006, and yet nothing has been done.


This "small" problem annoys anyone and seriously turns off first-time visitors.


Yet the government and the airport authorities are doing little to help.


The authorities seem to be all deaf or blind or have serious short-term memory problems, as they have been reminded of this problem over and over again. The latest reminder was on Channel 3's "Three-Dimension News", which aired a scoop on the airport taxi mafia.


Sadly, transportation at Suvarnabhumi is deteriorating speedily just two years after the airport's inauguration in 2006.


What's worse is that the airport's sheer size is a blessing for the illegal, paai dam or "black-plate" taxis, who can lie in wait for their victims anywhere in the terminal without getting caught.


According a local media estimation, there are more than 10 groups of illegal operators, and if one of them employs 10 "front" staff, there are 100 of these taxi-hunters wandering around the airport. My instincts say there are bound to be more.


What I can't understand is why the legal limousine-operators just stand there and "politely" witness illegal taxi/limousine-operators stalking passengers, especially foreigners.


Of course, I agree that the THAI limousine fare is a rip-off and gives illegal operators a chance to offer better, cheaper deals. However, paying a little bit more would at least guarantee one's safety, especially if one is female and travelling late.


Foreigners may consider a Bt2,000-ride (S$84) to Pattaya cheap and convenient, but they need to keep an eye out for tricks employed by the driver to make more. One of the tricks is to charge extra for the toll fee or to take male passengers to a massage parlour in exchange for commission.


Now, AOT can either consider this a "national" problem or a "personal" problem, but it can't avoid the responsibility.


Every time someone mentions the problem, we hear: "Powerful people are behind this, and nobody can solve the problem."


Unfortunately, there are no specific laws to punish these illegal operators and they have "insider" knowledge of how to get away with it, or so say the airport guards.


The police station in the area believes that cracking down on illegal vehicles around Suvarnabhumi is not its responsibility.


So what can one do to stop this embarrassing impression visitors get of Thailand?


Maybe the AOT director and top management should pretend playing tourist and take a tour around the arrival hall? Maybe then they will see for themselves what the problem really is.


What is the point of having the tallest control tower and being the world's third largest airport terminal when you can't manage it properly?


Visitors are not interested in the architecture or how impressive a building looks; they are more interested in how they are treated.


No wonder tourists are fleeing Thailand.


This article was first published in The Nation on Nov 1, 2008.

British Airways World Cargo opens sales office in Thailand

British Airways World Cargo has announced that it has appointed a new customer service team in Thailand.


The new team replaced Qantas Freight, which is the airline's previous general sales agent in Thailand, from 3 November and is based in new headquarters at WFS-PG Cargo Suvarnabhumi Airport.


The airline operates seven weekly flights to Thailand using Boeing 747-400 aircraft.


The creation of the new sales office follows a mutually amicable agreement with Qantas Freight, according to British Airways World Cargo.

BAWC appoints customer service team in Thailand

BRITISH Airways World Cargo (BAWC) has announced the appointment of a new customer service team in Thailand. From 3 November 2008, the new team will replace Qantas Freight, the carrier’s previous general sales agent in Thailand, and will be based in a new office at Suvarnabhumi Airport.


The creation of a new sales office is said to represent a significant boost to BAWC’s operations in Thailand, where the carrier aims to build on its previous performance.


Latha Narayan, area commercial manager, South-East Asia and Australasia, BAWC, said: “This appointment is a positive step forward for BAWC in Thailand and demonstrates our commitment to customers in the region. We’re looking forward to strengthening the support we can give to customers wishing to take advantage of our unrivalled network.”

BAWC opens sales office in Thailand

British Airways World Cargo (BAWC) has appointed a new service team in Thailand to replace Qantas Freight, the carrier's previous general sales agent (GSA) in Thailand.

The team is based in a new office at WFS-PG Cargo Suvarnabhumi Airport.


BAWC operates seven weekly B747-400 line flights to Thailand which route London - Bangkok - Sydney - Bangkok - London and feed into the carrier's global network.


Latha Narayan, area commercial manager, South-East Asia and Australasia BAWC said: "This appointment is a positive step forward for BA World Cargo in Thailand and demonstrates our commitment to customers in the region."

Friday, November 7, 2008

ตั้งกก.3ฝ่ายแก้ปัญหาเสียงสุวรรณภูมิ

จากมติชน วันที่ 10 กันยายน 2550

กระทรวงคมนาคมตั้งกรรมการ 3 ฝ่าย ร่วมหาทางออกปัญหามลภาวะทางเสียงสนามบินสุวรรณภูมิกระทบชาวบ้าน เตรียมหารือสัปดาห์หน้า ด้านแกนนำชาวบ้านผู้เดือดร้อนยันรัฐต้องจ่ายค่าชดเชยแก่ชาวบ้านกว่า 1,200 ครอบครัว
เมื่อวันที่ 10 กันยายน ตัวแทนกลุ่มผู้ได้รับความเดือดร้อนจากมลภาวะเรื่องเสียงจากการขึ้นลงของ เครื่องบินที่ท่าอากาศยานสุวรรณภูมิ ประมาณ 20 คน นำโดยนายวันชาติ มานะธรรมสมบัติ ได้เดินทางไปยังกระทรวงคมนาคม เพื่อรอฟังผลการประชุมระหว่างคณะกรรมการบริษัทท่าอากาศยานไทย จำกัด (มหาชน) หรือ ทอท. กับ พล.ร.อ.ธีระ ห้าวเจริญ รัฐมนตรีว่าการกระทรวงคมนาคม
ภาย หลังการประชุม พล.ร.อ.ธีระเปิดเผยว่า เบื้องต้นจะจัดตั้งคณะกรรมการร่วม 3 ฝ่าย หรือไตรภาคี ประกอบด้วยตัวแทนกระทรวงคมนาคมหรือ ทอท. ชาวบ้าน และสภาทนายความ สถาบันการศึกษา เช่น จุฬาลงกรณ์มหาวิทยาลัยและสถาบันเทคโนโลยีแห่งเอเชีย (เอไอที) ในฐานะคนกลาง ฝ่ายละไม่เกิน 7 คน มีปลัดกระทรวงคมนาคมเป็นประธาน เพื่อหารือกำหนดทางออกของปัญหา และพิจารณาว่า ข้อเรียกร้องของชาวบ้านข้อใดสามารถดำเนินการได้ ข้อใดที่ขัดต่อข้อกฎหมาย โดยจะเริ่มหารือในสัปดาห์หน้า ซึ่งตัวแทนชาวบ้านมีท่าทีพอใจและจะไม่มีการเคลื่อนไหวก่อกวนการบินในช่วงนี้
นาย วันชาติกล่าวว่า แกนนำชาวบ้าน 32 หมู่บ้านยอมรับแนวทางการตั้งคณะกรรมการไตรภาคี แต่คณะกรรมการต้องทำงานภายใต้มติคณะรัฐมนตรี วันที่ 21 พฤศจิกายน 2549 ที่จะจ่ายชดเชยชาวบ้านที่ได้รับผลกระทบ 1,254 หลังคาเรือน เชื่อว่าจะได้ข้อสรุปในวันที่ 17 กันยายนนี้

เร่ง ทอท.ชดเชยเสียงสุวรรณภูมิ

( 20-09-2007 ) 10:09:51 แหล่งข่าว เดลินิวส์

นายชัยสวัสดิ์ กิตติพรไพบูลย์ ปลัดกระทรวงคมนาคม ฐานะประธานคณะกรรมการไตรภาคี เปิดเผยภายหลังการประชุมแก้ปัญหาเรื่องเสียงรอบสนามบินสุวรรณภูมิว่า ได้เร่งรัดให้บริษัท ท่าอากาศยานไทย จำกัด หรือทอท.จ่ายชดเชยให้กับชาวบ้านที่ได้รับผลกระทบเรื่องเสียงรอบสนามบิน สุวรรณภูมิโดยเร็ว ซึ่งหากพื้นที่ไหนที่ชาวบ้านตกลงรับราคาชดเชยของทอท.ให้จ่ายเงินทันที คาดว่าผู้ได้รับความเดือดร้อนแนวเส้นเสียงเอ็นอีเอฟเกิน 40 จะจ่ายเงินชดเชยให้เสร็จในเดือน ต.ค.นี้ แต่ถ้ารายไหนตกลงกันไม่ได้ต้องเข้ากระบวนการไกล่เกลี่ยข้อพิพาทต่อไป สำหรับกรณีที่ตัวแทนชาวบ้านต้องการยึดมติ ครม. วันที่ 21 พ.ย. 49 ที่ระบุว่าจะจ่ายชดเชยให้กับชาวบ้านที่ได้รับผลกระทบด้านเสียงก่อนปี 44 นั้น ให้ตัวแทนชาวบ้านและทอท.ไปจัดทำตัวเลขมาให้เสร็จภายใน 2 สัปดาห์ เพื่อนำข้อมูลมาเปรียบเทียบกับมติ ครม. วันที่ 29 พ.ค. 50 ว่ามีความแตกต่างตรงจุดไหนบ้าง หลังจากนั้นจะประชุมคณะกรรมการไตรภาคี เพื่อหาข้อยุติที่ชัดเจนอีกครั้ง “การประชุม นัดแรกยังไม่ได้ข้อสรุปที่ชัดเจน แต่ยืนยันว่าชาวบ้านที่อยู่แนวเส้นเสียงเกินเอ็นอีเอฟ 40 นั้น ทอท. พร้อมรับซื้อที่อยู่อาศัยและอาคารคืนอยู่แล้ว ส่วนชาวบ้านที่อยู่แนวเส้นเสียงเอ็นอีเอฟ 30-40 ที่เรียกร้องขอให้ทอท.จ่ายชดเชยให้เท่ากับเส้นเสียงเกิน 40 เอ็นอีเอฟนั้น จะพิจารณาเป็นรายกรณีถ้าพิสูจน์ได้ว่าประชาชนได้รับผลกระทบเรื่องเสียงจริง และคณะกรรมการฯยังยึดหลักมติ ครม. 29 พ.ค. 50 ที่ระบุจ่ายเงินให้กับชาวบ้านที่ตั้งถิ่นฐานก่อนปี 44 ซึ่งการจะแก้ไขต้องเข้า ครม. อีกครั้ง อย่างไรก็ตาม ที่ประชุมได้ให้ ทอท. รายงานความคืบหน้าการจ่ายค่าเสียหายให้กับคณะกรรมการฯได้รับทราบด้วย”.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The Novotel Suvarnabhumi is celebrating its second anniversary after opening its doors to coincide with the launch of Bangkok's newest int. airport

Novotel Suvarnabhumi was Accor Group's second major airport hotel in Asia following the opening of Novotel Citygate near Hong Kong International Airport. Since its grand opening in September 2006, the four-star Novotel Suvarnabhumi - in a prime location with amenities galore - hasn't disappointed.


In July, Novotel Suvarnabhumi was awarded the prestigious 'Best Airport Hotel' at the TravelWeekly (Asia)


Industry Awards 2008 in Singapore. The award recognizes the best in the Asian travel industry, acknowledging their contributions to tourism and hospitality.
When it opened, Novotel Suvarnabhumi joined an extensive network of more than 60 Accor airport hotels in 18 countries, including 20 under the Novotel brand. These include hotels in some of the world's busiest airports in cities such as Paris, London, Frankfurt, Chicago and Sydney.


The Novotel Suvarnabhumi features 612 rooms in two square-shaped, five-story buildings, which are joined by a massive glass atrium designed as the hotel lobby. Covering 2,800 square meters and five-stories tall, it's considered the largest hotel lobby in the world.


Leisure facilities include a 25-metre long swimming pool surrounded by tropical gardens, a fitness centre, extensive spa facilities, beauty salon, shopping arcade, Dolfi Kids Corner and babysitting services.


Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel also caters to Bangkok's growing meeting and event market with more than 2,400 square meters of conference space, including a stunning ballroom for as many as 1,000 people, and six additional meeting and function rooms. The hotel is also well positioned for delegates attending events at the nearby BITEC Convention and Exhibition Centre.


Thailand's exhibition industry saw a 10-15 percent growth rate in 2007, with Bangkok hosting more than 100 international and regional events. It is estimated the Thai capital will host 112 events in 2008, and Novotel Suvarnabhumi has targeted its share of the market.
The success of a meeting depends on how well prepared it is, and Novotel's years of experience in conference organization has led to the development of a comprehensive training program by Accor specialists.

Suvarnabhumi going for 'top 10' airports

Airports of Thailand (AoT) reported that it will promote Suvarnabhumi Airport as one of the world's top ten international airports in terms of outstanding service within the coming year.


Speaking on the occasion of the second anniversary of the airport's opening, AoT acting president Serirat Prasutanont said more than 80 million people had used the service in the past two years.


Of this, 41.9 million are passengers traveling during October 2006 to September 2007 and 38.5 million during October 2007 to August 2008.


It is expected the number of passengers this year will reach 41.14 million at the end of this month.


He said that air cargo services during the past two years totaled 2.42 million tonnes, with 1.2 million tonnes registered in the first year.


It projected air cargo through the end of this fiscal year would total 1.29 million tonnes.


One hundred eleven airlines currently serve Suvarnabhumi, 97 as passenger airlines and 14 carrying cargo.


During the third year of operations, Mr Serirat said AoT planned to improve design and utility of luggage wheels at the airport to meet international standards.


It would also increase the number of closed-circuit television (CCTV) monitors by 755 from the 1,074 now installed as part of a concerted effort to boost security measures both inside and outside passenger buildings.


"We have targeted making Suvarnabhumi Airport one of the world's top ten airports with outstanding services in 2009," he said. (TNA)

Policies detailed by Airports of Thailand

BANGKOK: Airports of Thailand, the public company which runs many of the country's airports, is aiming to develop more non-aeronautical revenue.


This is one of the policies being introduced by AOT's acting president Serirat Prasutanond, which he revealed in an address at the combined Incentive Travel & Conventions, Meetings Asia and Corporate Travel World Conferences in Bangkok.


He said the first two years for Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok had been a time for problem solving and improving amenities, particularly the pressing concern about lack of toilets. An extra 104 toilets had been completed, bringing the total to 1569.


Light and temperatures within the passenger terminal had also been improved, as well as transportation issues. A One-Stop Service had been introduced to deal with complaints.


"We are also negotiating with the Immigration Service for more officers at the airport to process foreign visitors," said Prasutanond, citing user satisfaction, safety and a rearrangement of the service area at the international arrivals hall so passengers would have "no disturbance from gangsters".


He said AOT would also appreciate low-cost airlines moving to Don Mueang Airport (Bangkok's former international airport).


Prasutanond said the second stage of the Suvarnabhumi Airport development would cost US$2.3 million. It was "rather certain" the airport would reach full capacity of serving 45 million passengers a year by 2011, with its runways servicing up to 64 flights an hour in peak periods. The second-phase development would boost the airport's capacity to 60 million passengers a year and include a third runway, a midfield satellite terminal, a linking tunnel and passenger transport system, expansion of the passenger terminal, an extra car-park and a public utility system.


AOT planned to earn more from non-aeronautical activities, such as co-operating with the private sector to develop an airport business centre. Seven projects are planned to be implemented before 2025 - a 50,000sq.m. convention centre, an export trade exhibition centre, office buildings, community shopping malls, entertainment venues, a 3.5-star hotel and a hospital and health-care amenities.

"We have 18 months to choose a developer," said Prasutanond. Project priorities would depend on the developer.


There were six strategies to make Suvarnabhumi Airport a "cosy airport", including security, services, co-operation with airlines, government units and businesses, commercial activities and "service and attitude". AOT plans to use Don Mueang International Airport for charter flights, private jets, test flights and a maintenance centre.


Speaking of regional airports, Prasutanond said development plans for Chiang Mai International Airport would help cut pollution, and an export warehouse would be developed.


An international aviation training institute would be set up at Chiang Rai International Airport as well as a river and truck terminal and logistics centre.


A private jet terminal is "under study" for Phuket International Airport, where a sea port was being established, and an express way transportation centre would be set up at Hat Yai International Airport.


Asked by a journalist how it had been possible for protesters to close international airport twice in Thailand, Prasutnond said the airport union had negotiated with the chief of the protesters not to use the airports for protests as it was not good for tourism.


In response to another question, he said the airport train link had been delayed until May or June. "It is not being built by AOT, but we are trying to rush the program".
Meanwhile, Prasutnond said a Thailand frequent flyer card was being introduced, initially for Thai passport holders. It would eventually cover foreign frequent visitors.

Travellers injured

AIRLINE Twenty-one passengers and 11 crew members on a China Airlines flight were injured when the aircraft hit turbulence on a journey to Thailand yesterday.


Suvarnabhumi airport director and acting president of the Airports of Thailand Serirat Prasutanond said Bangkok-bound flight CI 641 from Taipei via Hong Kong arrived at Suvarnabhumi about 1.20pm. The plane ran into turbulence 20 minutes before landing, Mr Serirat said.


The passengers and crew on board received minor injuries and were treated at Vejthani hospital, Praram Nine hospital and Samitivej hospital's Srinakarin branch. Director-general of the Civil Aviation Department Chaisak Angsuwan said the Boeing 747 aircraft was hit by turbulence while over Vietnam.


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Taxi drivers strike

AIRPORT The Land Transport Department and Suvarnabhumi airport yesterday turned down taxi drivers' demands that they be exempt from using meters on routes from the airport to Bangkok's suburbs and outskirts. Some drivers at the airport went on strike last night, insisting on the right to negotiate fares.


But the department's Pongchai Kasemthaweesak said the law required taxi drivers to use meters, after complaints that drivers were overcharging passengers at Don Mueang airport. Suvarnabhumi airport deputy director Prateep Wijittho said airport authorities called in outside taxi drivers to work in place of those who went on strike.

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Siamese twins die

HEALTH Siamese twins Kannika and Nattarika died in hospital in Samut Prakan yesterday after being born by Caesarean section three days ago, doctors said. The baby girls were joined from the chest to the abdomen. Their mother Rakduang, 31, went into labour at Samut Prakan hospital on Tuesday morning.


The twins were delivered that afternoon. However, they were in poor physical condition and were put on life-support. They were pronounced dead about 6am yesterday. Their parents decided to donate their bodies for educational purposes as they could not afford a funeral.

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Concession row

TOLLWAYS The labour union of the Expressway Authority of Thailand (Exat) wants the state enterprise to withdraw a recent decision on tolls favouring expressway concessionaire Bangkok Expressway Co Ltd (Becl).


Union president Saravoot Sriphayak said he wanted Exat to ask cabinet to cancel its Sept 9 resolution that the state enterprise extend a 40% toll share for Becl for 10.8 more years after the company's concession expires in February 2020.


The Exat board agreed that the company deserved to take a share of motorway tolls for a longer period as Exat had failed to raise tolls as contracted with the company in 1998, 2003 and this year.


Mr Saravoot said Exat should wait for the Supreme Court to rule on the toll dispute with BECL. Compensation ordered by the court would probably be no more than one billion baht, while the extended toll share would cost Exat 18 billion baht, he said.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Nok Air suspends Phuket flights

PHUKET: In further bad news for the island’s immediate tourism prospects, the Gazette has confirmed that low-cost carrier Nok Air has suspended its remaining flights to Phuket, most likely for the rest of the low season.


In an email reply received by the Gazette this morning, Nok Air’s Chief Executive Officer wrote, “Yes, we have suspended flights to Phuket for this month. We will resume [flying to] Phuket in the very near future after we have arranged our new TPI [timetable planning] for the coming high season.”


The high season in Phuket nominally kicks off on November 1, with the Phuket Carnival in Patong.


With rival low-cost carrier One-Two-Go grounded until at least October, all regularly-scheduled flights between Bangkok and Phuket currently fly out of Suvarnabhumi Airport.


Both Nok Air and One-Tow-Go use domestic hub Don Meuang Airport as their base of operations.


Report by Gazette aviation columnist Alastair Carthew.

Award-winning Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel Attracting Prominent Guests

After opening two years ago with great fanfare, the Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel continues to be graced by the presence of high-ranking foreign dignitaries.


One of Bangkok's hottest hotels is attracting prominent foreign guests thanks to its reputation for quality and ideal location next to the international airport.

August saw visits by three prominent foreign travelers to the Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel, including Her Majesty the Queen of Sweden Silvia Renate Sommerlath, who was on a private visit to the Kingdom. The president of Laos, Lt. Gen. Choummaly Sayasone, also enjoyed a stay with his wife Keosaychay Sayasone.


The new prime minister of Nepal, Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda, arrived at the Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel for a private visit after being elected on Aug. 18. Prachanda was once the leader of a rebel group known in Nepal as the Maoists.


The visits by three dignitaries in August followed one by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon at Novotel Suvarnabhumi in May. He held a press conference organized by United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific in one of the hotel's many high-tech conferences.


Six function rooms span an area of 2,400 square meters and offer built-in audio-visual systems with centrally controlled computer-enhanced displays, monitors and projectors. The Grand Ballroom showcases cutting-edge CCTV technology that enables such features as teleconferences or videoconferences.


In 2007, Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel was chosen as one of the three "Best Airport Hotels in Asia Pacific for Meeting & Conference" by CEI Asia Pacific.


With only 300 meters separating Novotel Suvarnabhumi from the Bangkok airport, vacations begin the moment the visitor's flight touches down. All 612 rooms and suites showcase sophisticated living spaces decorated with contemporary Thai art, and evoke a sense of cultured refinement.


The sound-proofed, double-glazed windows seal out unwelcome noise from the outdoors, creating an ultimate sanctuary for total relaxation.


Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel opened on Sept. 28, 2006 to coincide with the inauguration of Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok. It was voted the "Best Airport Hotel" at the TravelWeekly (Asia) Industry Awards 2008 in Singapore in July.


The hotel offers two bars, four restaurants and "Vous Spa," a luxurious urban spa from France.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Security tightens at Bangkok, Chiang Mai airports

Security at Suvarnabhumi international airport in Bangkok and at Chiang Mai International Airport was stepped up on Friday afternoon after supporters of the anti-government People's Alliance for Democracy intruded into Hat Yai, Phuket and Krabi airports in the South.


The intrusion closed all three tourist-important airports, leaving passengers stranded.


All fights to and from both airports have reportedly been cancelled after thousands of PAD supporters blocked their entrances and entered the airport buildings to demand that the government stops using force against the protesters in Bangkok.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Security tightens at Bangkok, Chiang Mai airports

Security at Suvarnabhumi international airport in Bangkok and at Chiang Mai International Airport was stepped up on Friday afternoon after supporters of the anti-government People's Alliance for Democracy intruded into Hat Yai, Phuket and Krabi airports in the South.

The intrusion closed all three tourist-important airports, leaving passengers stranded.


All fights to and from both airports have reportedly been cancelled after thousands of PAD supporters blocked their entrances and entered the airport buildings to demand that the government stops using force against the protesters in Bangkok.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Suvarnabhumi plan approved

The long-awaited expansion of Suvarnabhumi Airport has been set in motion now that Airports of Thailand Plc (AoT) has agreed to proceed with the 78-billion-baht programme.


The majority state-owned and SET-listed airport operator's board last Friday endorsed the Phase 2 development and will soon seek final consent from the Transport Ministry and the cabinet.


The expansion, which was supposed to have begun shortly after the airport opened in September 2006, would increase the passenger handling capacity of Thailand's gateway airport by 33%, to 60 million in the next six years from 45 million currently.


Kulya Pakakrong, AoT's senior executive vice-president, said yesterday that the expansion would deal with the crowding problem at the airport which is now operating close to its capacity.


The expansion involves building a midfield terminal and a third runway.


AoT's decision comes at the time when the airline industry is facing a severe downturn with a marked slowdown in traffic and ballooning operating costs, all triggered by skyrocketing fuel prices.


But it responds to the airline industry's longstanding call for AoT to deal with the congestion that had inconvenienced airlines and passengers alike.


The industry has warned that Suvarnabhumi was losing out to rival airports in Southeast Asia, namely Singapore Changi Airport and Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), as the region's preferred air hubs due to its restricted capacity and high service fees.


Mrs Kulya insisted that the possible excess capacity at the airport resulting from the expansion was not an issue as AoT was still seeing traffic growth through Suvarnabhumi.


''Suvarnabhumi's traffic is on course with projections for 6.5% annual growth in the near term, 5.5% in the medium term and 4% long-term,'' she said.


But according to AoT figures, passenger traffic through Suvarnabhumi grew just 1.94% year-on-year in the first half of this year to 21.21 million.


AoT aims to call a tender for the airport expansion work next year and hopes to be able to start construction by the end of 2009.


About 33 billion baht of the estimated project cost would come from loans from the Japan Bank for International Co-operation (JBIC), which was a major lender for the phase-one project that cost 155 billion baht.


Mrs Kulya said AoT had already contracted a consulting company to conduct an environmental impact study for the expansion project. It will hold public hearings to explain plans to mitigate noise pollution resulting from the increased air traffic.


AOT shares closed yesterday on the Stock Exchange of Thailand at 38.50 baht, unchanged, in trade worth 5.5 million baht.

Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Joins the Fight Against Global Warming

Environmental realities have forced hotel chains to focus on ecological best practices, and Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport in the Thai capital has joined Accor's green effort.

As industries shift practices with the evolving threat of global warming, hotels such as the Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport are striving to conserve resources and reduce emissions of greenhouse gasses, the company says.


Novotel began its association in 2007 with Green Globe, the international environmental certification program for responsible travel and tourism. In doing so, Novotel has become the leading hotel chain in the mid-scale segment to involve its entire network in sustainable development.


With nearly 400 rooms and extensive business facilities, it is crucial that green measures be taken to prevent wasteful practices that adversely affect the environment, Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport says.


Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel opened in September 2006 to coincide with the launch of Suvarnabhumi International Airport in Bangkok, Thailand. In July it was named the 'Best Airport Hotel' at the TravelWeekly (Asia) Industry Awards 2008.


The Novotel Suvarnabhumi is a four-star hotel a 10-minute walk from Suvarnabhumi Airport.



Novotel has long been committed to promoting sustainable development through its active involvement in the Accor Group's Earth Guest program. The Earth Guest program is now embraced as an integral part of the hotel chain's brand.


Novotel seeks harmony with the environment through effective management of water, air, waste, and pollution. The France-based hotel chain's commitment is based on three main strands of activity: drawing up appropriate construction standards; involving its employees in sustainable development on a daily basis; and involving its customers.


Novotel Benoa Bali is the first Accor hotel in Asia to achieve Green Globe Certified, a Green Globe qualification that recognizes the hotel's commitment to successfully implement an integrated Environmental Management System.


By the year 2010 all Novotel hotels should are expected to have committed to the Green Globe environmental certification program, which currently involves 28 hotels in 12 countries on five continents including Thailand, India, China, and Singapore.


Novotel offers nearly 400 hotels and resorts located in the heart of major international cities, business districts and tourist destinations. In 2008, the Novotel network represented more than 66,000 rooms in 59 countries. By 2010 it will have an additional 20,000 rooms and be present in 70 countries.

Novotel Suvarnabhumi’s Hotel Business Thrives as Bangkok Tipped as ‘World’s Best City’

The Thai capital was recently listed for the first time as the “World’s Best City” by Travel & Leisure magazine, and Bangkok’s premiere airport hotel, Novotel Suvarnabhumi, is enjoying the benefits of a surge in visitors to the kingdom. Bangkok, Thailand (NetSweets) August 30, 2008 – Visitors continue to throng to the Thai capital for corporate meetings and good times and the award-winning Novotel Suvarnabhumi hotel is reaping the rewards, the company says.


The opening of the Suvarnnabhumi International Airport just three years ago was a sign of Thailand’s strong commitment to the tourism industry. Accor Group’s Novotel Suvarnabhumi was launched in September 2006 to cater to the millions of travelers traversing the new airport each year, and the hotel has been rewarded for its efforts.


Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport was awarded the prestigious "Best Airport Hotel” at the TravelWeekly (Asia) Industry Awards 2008 in July. The award recognizes the best in the Asian travel industry, acknowledging their contributions to tourism and hospitality.
The hotel couldn’t have had such success without the attractiveness of Thailand’s bustling capital to tourists from around the globe, however.


Bangkok was named last month by U.S.-based Travel & Leisure magazine as the “World’s Best City” following its 2008 World’s Best Awards readers’ survey. This further strengthens Bangkok’s image as a major tourist destination in the world.


Bangkok was named World’s Best City 2008 with a score of 87.61, ahead of Argentina’s Buenos Aires, last year’s runner up, and Cape Town, South Africa, which jumped from No. 10 in 2007.


“Bangkok deserves the top ranking in the world’s best city survey because it has everything to offer to different types of visitors, from its modern infrastructure and world-renowned hospitality and service, to our rich culture and to-die-for cuisine,” says Phornsiri Manoharn, the Governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand.


Also known as the City of Angels (Krung Thep), the marvels of the ancient city and Thai hospitality set Bangkok apart from other modern capitals. It is home to more than 10 million of the country's 65 million people.


The Novotel Suvarnabhumi is a four-star hotel a 10-minute walk from Suvarnabhumi Airport. It features five boardrooms, six meeting and function rooms, and a business centre for corporate visitors.


A grand ballroom for up to 1,000 people is at the ready, and the hotel boasts 612 comfortable and contemporary rooms.



For those seeking nightlife, the Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport also offers two bars and six individually themed restaurants, and has a 24-hour airport shuttle every 10 minutes.

For more information contact:

Wacharee Pornchaiwisuthiku
Email : Wacharee_p@novotelsuvarnabhumi.comThis e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it
Tel: 66 (0) 2131 1111
Fax
http://www.novotelsuvarnabhumi.com/

Security tightens at Bangkok, Chiang Mai airports

Security at Suvarnabhumi international airport in Bangkok and at Chiang Mai International Airport was stepped up on Friday afternoon after supporters of the anti-government People's Alliance for Democracy intruded into Hat Yai, Phuket and Krabi airports in the South.

The intrusion closed all three tourist-important airports, leaving passengers stranded.


All fights to and from both airports have reportedly been cancelled after thousands of PAD supporters blocked their entrances and entered the airport buildings to demand that the government stops using force against the protesters in Bangkok.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Thailand Tells Shamed Rocker to Get. Out.

BANGKOK (Aug. 20) - Thai police brushed aside Gary Glitter's claims of ear and heart problems on Wednesday, saying the shamed British glam rocker would be put on the first available plane to London whether he liked it or not.

Reuters
42 photos
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Gary Glitter doesn't want to go home. The shamed glam rocker, fresh out of Vietnamese prison on a child sex abuse conviction, claimed he was too sick to fly back to England from a Thai airport, but officials aren't buying it.

Glitter on the Loose

    Staff walk into Louis Tavern transit lounge in Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi airport August 20, 2008. Shamed rocker Gary Glitter was stuck at Bangkok airport on Wednesday after faking illness to avoid boarding a flight to Britain following his release from a Vietnamese prison for child sex abuse, Thai police said. The 64-year-old Briton, whose real name is Paul Gadd, flew to Bangkok after being booted out of the communist southeast Asian country on Tuesday, the day he completed his three-year sentence. Glitter is now stuck in limbo in a "no man's land" transit lounge called the Louis Tavern. Staff at the Tavern said he was refusing to check out and claiming he was unwell... REUTERS/Kham (THAILAND)

    Reuters

    British rocker Gary Glitter walks at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport August 20, 2008. Glitter was stuck at Bangkok airport on Wednesday after faking illness to avoid boarding a flight to Britain following his release from a Vietnamese prison for child sex abuse, Thai police said. The 64-year-old Briton, whose real name is Paul Gadd, flew to Bangkok after being booted out of the communist southeast Asian country on Tuesday, the day he completed his three-year sentence. REUTERS/Sukree Sukplang (THAILAND)

    Reuters

    British rocker Gary Glitter walks at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport August 20, 2008. Glitter was stuck at Bangkok airport on Wednesday after faking illness to avoid boarding a flight to Britain following his release from a Vietnamese prison for child sex abuse, Thai police said. The 64-year-old Briton, whose real name is Paul Gadd, flew to Bangkok after being booted out of the communist southeast Asian country on Tuesday, the day he completed his three-year sentence. REUTERS/Sukree Sukplang (THAILAND)

    Reuters

    British rocker Gary Glitter walks at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport August 20, 2008. Glitter was stuck at Bangkok airport on Wednesday after faking illness to avoid boarding a flight to Britain following his release from a Vietnamese prison for child sex abuse, Thai police said. The 64-year-old Briton, whose real name is Paul Gadd, flew to Bangkok after being booted out of the communist southeast Asian country on Tuesday, the day he completed his three-year sentence. REUTERS/Sukree Sukplang (THAILAND)

    Reuters

    British rocker Gary Glitter walks at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport August 20, 2008. Glitter was stuck at Bangkok airport on Wednesday after faking illness to avoid boarding a flight to Britain following his release from a Vietnamese prison for child sex abuse, Thai police said. The 64-year-old Briton, whose real name is Paul Gadd, flew to Bangkok after being booted out of the communist southeast Asian country on Tuesday, the day he completed his three-year sentence. REUTERS/Sukree Sukplang (THAILAND)

    Reuters

    CAPTION CLARIFICATION - REMOVING REFERENCE TO GLITTER WALKING TO AIRLINE GATE..British rocker Gary Glitter walks at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport August 20, 2008. Glitter was stuck at Bangkok airport on Wednesday after faking illness to avoid boarding a flight to Britain following his release from a Vietnamese prison for child sex abuse, Thai police said. The 64-year-old Briton, whose real name is Paul Gadd, flew to Bangkok after being booted out of the communist southeast Asian country on Tuesday, the day he completed his three-year sentence. REUTERS/Sukree Sukplang (THAILAND)

    Reuters

    British rocker Gary Glitter walks at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport August 20, 2008. Glitter was stuck at Bangkok airport on Wednesday after faking illness to avoid boarding a flight to Britain following his release from a Vietnamese prison for child sex abuse, Thai police said. The 64-year-old Briton, whose real name is Paul Gadd, flew to Bangkok after being booted out of the communist southeast Asian country on Tuesday, the day he completed his three-year sentence. REUTERS/Sukree Sukplang (THAILAND)

    Reuters

    British rocker Gary Glitter walks at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport August 20, 2008. Glitter was stuck at Bangkok airport on Wednesday after faking illness to avoid boarding a flight to Britain following his release from a Vietnamese prison for child sex abuse, Thai police said. The 64-year-old Briton, whose real name is Paul Gadd, flew to Bangkok after being booted out of the communist southeast Asian country on Tuesday, the day he completed his three-year sentence. REUTERS/Sukree Sukplang (THAILAND)

    Reuters

    British rocker Gary Glitter walks towards an airline gate at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport August 20, 2008. Glitter was stuck at Bangkok airport on Wednesday after faking illness to avoid boarding a flight to Britain following his release from a Vietnamese prison for child sex abuse, Thai police said. The 64-year-old Briton, whose real name is Paul Gadd, flew to Bangkok after being booted out of the communist southeast Asian country on Tuesday, the day he completed his three-year sentence. REUTERS/Sukree Sukplang (THAILAND)

    Reuters

    British rocker Gary Glitter walks at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport August 20, 2008. Glitter was stuck at Bangkok airport on Wednesday after faking illness to avoid boarding a flight to Britain following his release from a Vietnamese prison for child sex abuse, Thai police said. The 64-year-old Briton, whose real name is Paul Gadd, flew to Bangkok after being booted out of the communist southeast Asian country on Tuesday, the day he completed his three-year sentence. REUTERS/Sukree Sukplang (THAILAND)

    Reuters


The 64-year-old Briton, whose real name is Paul Gadd, flew to Bangkok on Tuesday after being booted out of communist Vietnam at the end of nearly three years in jail for sexually abusing two girls.

Apparently fearful of the hostile reception he is likely to receive in Britain, where he has served time for child pornography offences, he avoided boarding the connecting flight to London by claiming he was too sick to fly.

After conducting medical checks and letting him wander, officially "persona non grata," for nearly 24 hours inside Bangkok airport, Thailand's immigration chiefs finally ran out of patience.
"We are barring entry to Paul Francis Gadd and will be deporting him to his home country, England, unconditionally and even if he does not wish to board the plane," they said in a statement.

"We are now waiting to return him to England as soon as possible."

Relocation of security screening points likely

A plan to relocate the security screening points at Suvarnabhumi airport to free up space for commercial development has come under fire for going against the principle of building an airport. Security screening spots in the passenger terminal of Suvarnabhumi airport will be moved away from the embarkation gates into an area in front of the immigration checkpoints in October to pave the way for commercial development, according to airport director Serirat Prasutanont.


Mr Serirat, also the acting president of the Airports of Thailand (AoT), said yesterday the planned change from Oct 1 would create plenty of room near the terminal gates for commercial development.


According to him, the relocation of the screening points would also boost security because passengers will then be screened before accessing the restricted zones of the terminal. They would no longer be required to queue up for security checks at the gates.


The change is also in line with a recommendation of the International Civil Aviation Organisation.


Mr Serirat said some major airports in places like Hong Kong, South Korea and Japan have already taken such steps and relocated the screening points.



An aviation source, however, said that moving the checkpoints would contradict the general principle of building an airport, which is safety before commercial interests.


The AoT may be in it for the profits as larger commercial space, which will likely be set aside for duty-free shopping, would mean bigger revenue.


The structure and procedure changes will also give passengers more time to spend in duty-free shops, the concession for which the AoT has given to a private firm.


If there are more shoppers, the revenue earned from profit-sharing for AoT would also go up, said the source.


According to Mr Serirat, in the long run, the AoT hopes to earn more from non-aviation investments. Currently, 60% of the authority's income comes from aviation-related activities and the rest from the non-aviation sector.


The AoT sees the trend reversing in the future.


Also, an empty area covering 1,140 rai to the northeast of the airport compound will be developed into a so-called Airport Business Centre, worth over 10 billion baht, consisting of a convention centre, an export exhibition centre, office buildings, shopping malls, a hotel, a hospital, entertainment venues and health care facilities, if the AoT is allowed to have its way.


He said AoT would invite private investors to bid for the projects.


''The authority is considering the possibility of allowing a single group of investors to undertake all the projects or selecting different firms, depending on their expertise, to handle them,'' he said.


A 723-rai empty plot in the eastern part of the airport would be transformed into an aviation institute and a high-end industrial estate.


Mr Serirat said the AoT board should receive the details of Suvarnabhumi airport's second phase development plan from its consultancy late next month. After that, the board will seek approval from the cabinet for implementation.


The 70-billion-baht second phase development plan would kick off with the construction of a third runway, he said.


The project is expected to be completed by 2013, one year ahead of its scheduled completion.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Flight cuts taking toll on Thai traffic

Signs of a slowdown in air traffic through Thailand's six main airports clearly emerged last month as spiking fuel oil prices and low-season demand forced airlines to cut flights.


June's combined passenger throughput grew only 3.87% year-on-year, down from 8.89% in May. Total aircraft movements contracted 1.30% from 3.78% growth a month earlier.


Passenger flows through Suvarnabhumi, Don Mueang, Phuket, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai and Hat Yai airports was 4.21 million last month, versus 4.56 million in May and 5.04 million in April, according to figures from Airports of Thailand Plc (AoT).


Combined aircraft movements declined from 33,779 in April and 33,356 in May to 30,607 in June.


The figures underscore the perfect storm the global aviation industry is facing from surging oil prices, a slowing global economy, and overcapacity.


However, cumulative passenger totals through AoT airports in the first six months showed fairly good growth at 9.11% year-on-year to 30.35 million, with aircraft movements rising 3.78% to 204,349.


International passenger flows slowed from 2.89 million in May to 2.77 million in June. But the overall total for the first half was up a healthy 8.77% to 19.12 million.


Domestic passengers showed a dramatic slowdown, with growth of merely 1.79% in June (1.44 million), down from 9.71% in May (1.66 million).


But robust double-digit growth in February and March, when the impact of oil prices had yet to be felt, pushed up cumulative domestic numbers in the first half to 9.7% (11.23 million).


Total landings and takeoffs in the first six months increased only 3.78% to 204,349, with international flights rising 3.80% to 112,393 and domestic ones 3.76% to 91,956.


Suvarnabhumi showed a mixed monthly pattern in the first half but the overall January-June totals showed marginal growth in passengers but a contraction in aircraft movements.


Cumulative passenger numbers through the airport inched up 1.94% to 21.21 million, compared to 20.81 million in the same period last year. International passenger throughput increased 8.17% to 17.57 million, but the domestic total fell sharply by 20.25% to 3.64 million.


In the first half of this year, Suvarnabhumi handled 2.33% fewer flights thanin the same period last year with 130,488.


The numbers were sharply depressed by a 19.23% reduction in domestic movements with 30,418, while international numbers growing 4.30% to 100,070.

THAI Officially Opens Ground Operations Control Center (GOCC)

Bangkok, Thailand. Thai Airways International Public Company Limited today opened its Ground Operations Control Center [ GOCC ] at THAI’s Suvarnabhumi Airport Operations Centre. The Centre was officially opened by Flg. Off. Apinan Sumanaseni, THAI’s President.


GOCC is a seamless cooperation between THAI’s four Business Units; the Ground Customer Services, Catering, Ground Support Equipment Services and Cargo & Mail Commercial Departments.


GOCC is designed to perform HUB management and to function as the center of ground operations communications. A ‘paperless’ unit, GOCC employs modern IT equipment to support newly developed work processes that monitor and control all aspects of ground service activities.


GOCC aims for greater service and operational efficiency through 100 percent flight on-time performance, minimized ground time for better aircraft rotation, seamless transfer and handling of passengers and baggage as well as fast recovery from irregularities.

Flg. Off. Apinan Sumanaseni, THAI’s President presided over the ribbon cutting ceremony to officially open THAI’s Ground Operations Control Center (GOCC).


Also present at the ceremony were (from left):

Mr. Sarinthorn Dhanabhuthi, THAI’s Managing Director, Ground Support Equipment Services Department; Mr. Vorapravat Suebsaeng, THAI’s Managing Director, Cargo & Mail Commercial Department; Mrs. Wanporn Wibooncharoenkitja, THAI’s Managing Director, Ground Customer Services Department; Flg. Off. Apinan Sumanaseni, THAI’s President; ACM. Narongsak Sangapong, THAI’s Executive Vice President, Corporate Secretariat Department; Mrs. Pismai Chandrubeksa, THAI’s Managing Director, Catering Services Department; and Mr. Chokchai Panyayong, THAI’s Vice President, Suvarnabhumi Project.

Novotel Suvarnabhumi bags another award voted the ‘Best Airport Hotel’

Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel was voted the ‘Best Airport Hotel’ in the recent TravelWeekly (Asia) Industry Awards 2008 organised by TravelWeekly. The awards ceremony, which was held on Thursday, 17 July at The Marriott Hotel in Singapore, recognized the best in the Asian travel industry, acknowledging their contributions to tourism and hospitality.



The TravelWeekly (Asia) Industry Awards selection process starts with nominations by a distinguished panel of judges who are experts and veterans in the industry. The awardees from each category are selected based on the total number of votes garnered from TravelWeekly readers and industry peers. This year, the winners were chosen from a total of 2.2 million votes registered for all categories.



Tristan Beau de Lomenie, General Manager of Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel personally received the award in Singapore said, “It is a great honour for our hotel to receive such a high profile award. Although we have been in operation for less than two years, I personally believe that our uniqueness in facilities and more importantly service quality has distinguished us as an outstanding airport hotel. This award is the encouragement for us to maintain our service excellence and strive to improve it even further”.


Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel was open on 28 September 2006 to coincide with the opening of Suvarnabhumi Airport, the new international airport in Bangkok, Thailand. Located 10 mins walk from Suvarnabhumi Airport, the hotel is easily accessible to business travelers, with a 24-hr airport shuttle every 10 min from Gate 4 Level 2 at the airport. The hotel features a pillar- less grand ballroom for up to 1,000 people, 6 meeting and function rooms and a business centre. Boasting 612 comfortable and contemporary rooms, the hotel also offers 2 bars, 4 restaurants and Vous Spa, a luxurious urban spa from France. Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport Hotel was previously chosen as one of the three ‘Best Airport Hotels in Asia Pacific for Meeting & Conference’ from CEI Asia Pacific in 2007.



Novotel – Designed for Natural Living Novotel offers nearly 400 hotels and resorts located in the heart of major international cities, business districts and tourist destinations. Everywhere, the brand upholds its fundamental values of modernity, good design, simplicity and efficiency so that today's travellers feel naturally at home.



Through a consistent top quality offer, Novotel contributes to the well-being of business and leisure travellers alike. Guests will always find spacious rooms with flexible features adapted to both work and relaxation, a balanced choice of food and beverages available around the clock, and friendly, attentive staff, plus children's play areas, fitness centres and places to relax.



Novotel has long been committed to promoting sustainable development through its active involvement in the Accor Group's Earth Guest program. Today, it reaffirms this position by pledging to achieve Green Globe environmental certification for its entire network by 2010.



In 2008, the Novotel network includes 382 hotels and resorts, representing a total of more than 66,000 rooms, in 59 countries. By 2010 it will have an additional 20,000 rooms and be present in 70 countries. Said Accor Asia Pacific Chairman and COO, Michael Issenberg, “I am very proud of the team.



Under Tristan’s capable leadership, they have worked very hard within a short time to enhance service standards and heighten customer satisfaction. The award epitomises the team’s commitment to service excellence. They have proven that they understand what ‘Esprit Accor’ is all about”.

Friday, July 18, 2008

How Long Can Thailand be "Amazing"?

Thailand has always been at the top of Southeast Asia's tourism game. The P.R. for the country as a tourist destination is head and shoulders above the rest. You've probably seen the pictures: silhouettes of sky-high temples, smiling local residents, quaint floating markets, comely service industry workers flashing their most photogenic wai. But is the image that Thailand has spent so long building for itself becoming cliché?


According to the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), the whole Amazing Thailand campaign is just getting started. Industry insiders at TTGAsia report that TAT is going to ride its campaign into the ground:


"TAT is considered to be repeating the same old story. It is Amazing Thailand again. It is Seven Amazing Wonders product again. It is even Visit Thailand Year (tagline) again."


Will that type of campaign continue to fly? What if some of the negative press that the Land of Smiles has been getting lately continues: rumors of another coup, ongoing complaints about Suvarnabhumi Airport (like having to walk half-a-mile to reach the W.C.), and security threats from southern militants?


Add to that the fact that regional player Vietnam is upping the ante by constructing a new airport and new rail system for Ho Chi Minh City.


Most visitors to Thailand still buy the "amazing" thing. But, one wonders if TAT will have to come up with a new branding scheme sometime soon.

Friday, July 11, 2008

PAD to travel to Suvarnabhumi Airport upon return of Foreign Affairs Minister

The People’s Alliance for Democracy rally last night at the Makkhawan bridge was especially lively with speeches concerning the usual topics of government issues while also urging the military and police to abstain from any violence in protecting the nation. PAD leaders also revealed that a collection of 20,000 for a petition to remove Civil Court judges who ruled for an injunction spurned by the Rajvinit School which ultimately caused the PAD to have to move away from the government house has been abandoned as many people have not supported the idea. The leaders also criticized the government on the recent registration of Phrea Vihear National Park, insinuating that the government caused Thailand to lose territory.

The PAD continued to state that its next target within its multi-pronged strategy would be to have demonstrators await returning Foreign Affairs Minister Noppadol Pattama at the Suvarnabhumi Airport on the 10th of this month.


Source : National News Bureau, Public Relations Department of Thailand

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Three male suspects arrested for robbery

Three male suspects, including a former bank security guard, have been arrested for Sunday's bank robbery at Suvarnabhumi airport. Supatcha Phuthukmok, 33, a former security guard at Bangkok Bank's Suvarnabhumi airport branch; Sirisak Yodcharoen, 35, a former public bus driver at the airport; and Somkhuan Sriwanna, 35, the alleged get-away driver, were apprehended separately yesterday afternoon.

The first two suspects were discovered during a search of the Khao Fah Laep and Khao Saming hills in Lop Buri's Chai Badan district by police from Lop Buri and Samut Prakan's Ratcha Thewa police station. Mr Somkhuan was arrested at his house in Samut Sakhon's Krathum Baen district.


Police seized 360,000 baht from Mr Sirisak and about 1.1 million baht from Mr Supatcha. Another 1.1 million baht was found hidden in a jar at the house of Mr Sirisak's wife in Chai Badan district.


Another team of police seized 500,000 baht from Mr Somkhuan's house. The suspect threw a bag containing another 60,000 baht into a bush near his house, according to police.


The suspects have been charged with colluding to rob the bank.


Pol Maj-Gen Witthaya Prayongphan, the Samut Prakan police chief, said witnesses saw the suspects checking out the area around the bank on Sunday morning, shortly before the hold up.


The robbery lasted 40 minutes and the thieves stole 3.3 million baht.


Police allege Mr Supatcha and Mr Sirisak were wearing black jackets bearing the word ''Police'' when they entered the bank on Sunday morning, just after Saichon Pawangkanan, a 28-year-old teller, arrived for work.


One of the robbers brandished a handgun and the other held a knife.


They forced bank staff to open the vault, but could not get at the cash as it was stored in a separate safe inside the vault and another worker held the key. The robbers decided to wait.


When 40-year-old Pimwaree Tansriwong arrived, the robbers forced her to open the safe before handcuffing her and taping her mouth.


They also handcuffed six other workers who arrived during the heist before fleeing with the money in a pick-up truck.

Thai-Indian consortium lead the race for modernising Kolkata airport

A Thai-Indian consortium has emerged the lowest bidder for the Rs2,000-crore Kolkata airport modernisation project.

Thai company ITD, which also shared in the construction of the Suvarnabhumi airport in Bangkok has along with its Indian partner ITD CEM quoted around Rs2,000 crore, according to sources in the ministry of civil aviation. The ministry completed the examination of bid two days ago. The highest bid was around Rs2,400 crore.


The ministry of civil aviation anticipated a three week period before the award of the contract is formally announced, as the bid will first be evaluated by a technical committee that will send its recommendations to the Airports Authority of India (AAI) board for approval. Financial as well as technical experts would be part of the committee.


Three consortiums and one company had submitted technical and financial bids on 16 June, including Pomerleu Inc (Canada)-CCCL, TAV Tepe Akfer Yatirim Insaatva Isleme AS (Turkey)-Punj Lloyd Ltd. Indian infrastructure major Larsen and Toubro was the lone ranger, participating in the bidding process on its own, and not as part of a consortium.


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