THAI to launch direct Oslo-Bangkok flights

PHUKET CITY: In a move that could provide some help to Phuket’s summer season tourism prospects, Thai Airways International (THAI) has announced the introduction of direct flights between Bangkok and Oslo, Norway.

The service, to be inaugurated on June 15, will make THAI the first southeast Asian carrier to serve passenger demand between Norway and Thailand.

THAI’s Bangkok-Oslo route will use A340-500 aircraft, with 60 business class seats, 42 “premium economy” seats and 113 economy class seats.

The direct flights will be operate five days per week (Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday) with an 11-hour flight time.

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All THAI domestic flights now operate out of Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport, making it easier for Phuket-bound tourists to catch connecting flights.

THAI has also implemented measures to prevent the spread of influenza A (H1N1), as a precaution for passengers using its facilities, its Senior Executive Vice President Narongsak Sangapong said in a press release.

The carrier’s Crisis Management Operations Center will serve as a coordinating unit to implement safety measures internally and with government agencies.

The measures are built upon the same principles that THAI implemented during the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) pandemic, he said.

Norwegian tourist arrivals to Thailand are typically double during the high season.

In 2007, the last year for which figures are available from the Tourism Authority of Thailand, 7,163 Norwegians visited Thailand in June compared to 14,052 in January.

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