BANGKOK, 18 August 2021: Nok Air appears to be on track to continue its special flights from Phuket and other destinations in Thailand for the remainder of August using its temporary home base at the Navy-owned U-Tapao airport near Pattaya.
Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand approved the airline’s flight plan to U-Tapao until 18 August mainly to support Phuket Sandbox travellers who needed to fly from the southern island after completing their 14-day stay.
But it looks as if the airline will continue to offer services through to the end of August via the U-Tapao hub. The airline said yesterday flights would continue the U-Tapao – Chiang Mai – U-Tapao flights on the 19th, 26th, 29th and 31st of August.
The U-Tapao-Chiang Mai flight was introduced, 17 August. Last week the airline posted a route map showing flights from U-Tapao to tourist destinations, including services to Surat Thani, the nearest mainland airport serving Samui island. The airline flies empty from U-Tapao to Phuket and picks up passengers only on the return sector Phuket – U-Tapao.
Flights to the destinations on the route map are limited to three to four times weekly rather than daily. One-way fares range from THB3,000 to THB5950, depending on the route. Airfares are high as only 50% of the available seats can be sold.
Nok Air says reopening flights from its home base Don Mueang Airport in Bangkok, possibly as early as September, would depend on clearance from civil aviation authorities. That is unlikely as long as Bangkok and surrounding provinces remain in the deep red alert zone.