A NEW Thai carrier, Really Cool Airlines, will begin operations in December but will only be flying on international, not domestic routes, Matichon newspaper said.
The new airline’s CEO Patee Sarasin said yesterday (Mar. 22) he decided to launch Really Cool Airlines after the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) pointed out the country should increase the number of airlines and flights serving popular destinations with what is available being insufficient to meet demand.
Moreover the number of tourists coming to Thailand is expected to reach a maximum 30 million this year, or about 80% of the 40 million arrivals in 2019 before Covid-19 pandemic swept the world.
Even so, Patee realises that there are challenges ahead with lingering, albeit decreased, impact of Covid-19, the Russian-Ukrainian war and collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank in the US and Credit Suisse in Europe.
“As I see it, the aviation industry will not be able to return to normal pre-Covid conditions for two to three years,” Patee said.
Nonetheless there is optimism long term with Patee saying there will definitely be a change next month with the goal being to start flying in December.
The focus is on international routes because 70% of the tourists in Thailand are foreigners and the new airline would like to help bring more holidaymakers to the country.
Even as preliminary flight route planning is taking place, Patee revealed that the routes being considered are to Japan, Europe and China.
With its slogan “We Fly the Future”, Really Cool Airlines will not be at the low-cost level but positioned between budget and premium carriers.
The aim is to incorporate overseas technological innovations to set it apart from other airlines and make it a carrier Thai people will be proud of, Patee added.
Bangkok Governor Chadchart Sittipunt who was present at a press conference unveiling the new airline said he is delighted that Thailand is getting a new airline which will contribute to the recovery of tourism and service industries in the country.
Mr. Patee Sarasin and Bangkok Governor Chadchart Sittipunt at the press conference announcing Really Cool Airlines yesterday. Photos: Matichon