Bangkok Airways to Begin Mandalay Service
By Kyaw Hsu Mon 9 September 2013
RANGOON — Bangkok Airways will become the fourth Thai airline to fly from Bangkok to Mandalay this month, launching the new route from the Thai capital to Burma’s second-biggest city on Sept. 15.
The privately owned Thai carrier will service the route with Airbus A319 aircraft four times weekly—on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday—according to reports by Thai media. It will also start flying regularly from Bangkok to Naypyidaw on Sept. 30, local travel agents say.
Bangkok Airways has been flying to Rangoon, Burma’s biggest city and commercial capital, since 2004.
A promotional deal will be available until Nov. 30 for the Mandalay flight, with round-trip fare starting at 3,790 baht (about US$125), including airport tax and fuel surcharges, local travel agents say.
“The Mandalay route will cost US$240 normally,” a ticketing agent at Columbus Travels & Tours in Rangoon said, adding that the Rangoon-Bangkok fare for Bangkok Airways was about $290.
Other carriers including Thai Smile, Thai Airways International (TG) and Thai AirAsia—a joint venture between Malaysia’s AirAsia and Thailand’s Asia Aviation—already fly from Bangkok to Mandalay.
“Now with Bangkok Airways, customers can choose which one has the best service and is safest, and they can also consider price,” Zin Min Swe, a Mandalay-based developer who frequently flies between the two cities, told The Irrawaddy.
Burma’s Myanmar Airways International (MAI) began servicing flights from Mandalay to Bangkok in late March but stopped flying the route due to competition from other Thai airways.