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Betong tourism body urges TAT to provide fare subsidy for Nok Air flights


The Betong Tourism Business Association is seeking help from the Tourism Authority of Thailand to subsidise air fare so that Nok Air could resume its flights to and from Betong International Airport in Yala province.

Narin Ruangwongsa, vice president of the association, said he has held talks with a representative of Nok Air about resumption of its services to and from Betong airport.

Due to far fewer bookings than expected, Nok Air has cancelled flights to and from Betong airport just a day after the airport was officially opened for commercial flights on March 14, and after Nok Air’s inauguration flight had landed at the airport on that day.

Nok Air announced on Friday that it needs two or three months to promote travel to Betong among local and foreign tourists before it can start flying again.

During the talks, Narin said his association had committed to the Nok Air representative that the association would guarantee at least 60 seats per flight but Nok Air would have to offer round trips at Bt5,000 per seat.

Betong tourism body urges TAT to provide fare subsidy for Nok Air flights

But the representative replied that the airline would need Bt6,000 for the round-trip fare per passenger, Narin said.

Narin said his association has asked the TAT to subsidise the THB1,000 fare difference, but it is yet to receive a reply.

He said the TAT would have to hold a meeting on Friday before it can respond to the request for subsidy.

Narin said if the TAT can subsidise the air fare, Nok Air would resume its Betong-Don Mueang route starting May 2 and there would be flights on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Narin said the Department of Airports has pledged full support in terms of laws and regulations to allow Nok Air to resume its flights.

Betong tourism body urges TAT to provide fare subsidy for Nok Air flights Although Betong airport has no commercial flights landing and taking off, a lot of tourists continue to visit the airport, which has become a key landmark of Yala.

Officials said they came to take photos at the airport sign at the passenger terminal. They said they came to see the beauty of the bamboo-decorated terminal.

Betong tourism body urges TAT to provide fare subsidy for Nok Air flights Earlier, the Airports department had transferred the director of Betong airport, but it explained that the move was based on internal suitability and had nothing to do with the cancellation by Nok Air flights.

Published : March 24, 2022

By : THE NATION