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TRAVEL & TOURISM
 

New airline between Bangkok and Japan

Phra Promwachirayan Prasit Suddhibandhu (centre), presided over the aircraft anointing ceremony for Asia Atlantic Airlines’ Boeing 767-300ER aircraft. Asia Atlantic Airlines President Bobby Haque (second from left) and Baiyoke Group Chairman Panlert Baiyoke (second from right) were also present at the ceremony held at the auspicious time of 2:00 p.m. on August 7th at Suvarnabhumi Airport.

Asia Atlantic Airlines is a legacy carrier service in a joint venture between Japan‘s H.I.S. Group and Thailand’s Baiyoke Group. The airline will commence operations with flights from Suvarnabhumi International Airport to Tokyo (Narita) and Osaka (Kansai) utilising two Boeing 767-300ER aircraft. Asia Atlantic Airlines plans to expand its network to include China, South Korea, Guam and Hawaii as further aircraft are delivered.
“With our years of experience of leisure tours in Asia, we offer convenience not only for tour operators but also guests, who will enjoy the highest standards of safety and service comparable with legacy carriers,” said Bobby Haque, President of Asia Atlantic Airlines.
Asia Atlantic Airlines will begin operations with two Boeing 767-300ER aircraft to Tokyo and Osaka through Suvarnabhumi Airport, later expanding to offer routes throughout the region as further aircraft are delivered. (PR)


Medical tourism

Andrew J. Wood
Medical Tourism is a $US 40 billion market that’s expanding 25 percent a year, according to the guidebook Patients Beyond Borders.
U.S. patients can save 65-90 percent by seeking treatment in Thailand ranging from a coronary artery bypass to rhinoplasty and sex reassignment surgery. The average cost of a hip replacement in Thailand, which has emerged as a “thrift” destination for orthopaedic and cardiac surgery, is one-fourth of that in the U.S.
Thailand earned 31.12 billion baht ($US 995 million) last year, according to the Tourism Authority of Thailand.
Singapore and India are also major destinations for international patients.
Vishal Bali, group chief executive officer of Fortis Healthcare, a leading chain of hospitals in India, commenting on Thailand’s success said, “Medical tourism became a priority for Thailand who have taken the opportunity to support this trend at the highest levels, because they felt there was an economic upside in doing so.”


Air Bagan celebrates 66% increase in passengers

Air Bagan held an agent appreciation party at the Shangri La after posting a 66% increase in passengers since 2010.

Nopniwat Krailerg
Burmese airline Air Bagan held a customer appreciation party on August 15, 2013 at the Shangri La Hotel Chiang Mai to thank agents and to award the best sellers supporting the Chiang Mai – Yangon route that opened in 2010.
The event was joined by official dealers, Sao Thanda Noi Deputy Managing Director Air Bagan Limited and Suranat Taweesap Managing Director of PB Travel Agency Centre.
Sao Thanda Noi Deputy Managing Director Air Bagan Limited said that number of tourists from direct flights route Chiang Mai-Yangon had increased 66% after Burma opened the country, also noting that hotel rates had risen by 10% due to limited supply. However, more accommodation is under construction by investors in the country. The airline currently operates two flights a week between Chiang Mai and Yangon on Thursday and Sunday but they will add a Chiang Mai-Mandalay-Yangon oncee a week on Tuesdays.
Air Bagan is cooperating with Nok Air to offer a special package incuding flight tickets from Chiang Mai to Yangon by Air Bagan and return from Mawlamyine to Chiang Mai through Mae Sot with Nok Air, the route will start on September 1, 2013 with price of about 20,000 baht.


Consumer complaints to be received at stores around the country

Nopniwat Krailerg
The Consumer Protection Division has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with 4 major department stores and convenience stores to provide forms for consumers to use to submit complaints to the Office. The MoU was signed with Tesco Lotus and covers 1,300 branches, 150 branches of Big C Super Center, 150 branches of Jiffy Shop and Fashion Island Shopping Mall. Consumers can obtain a complaint form and envelope from the convenience stores and the department stores and return via mail without any charge.
Wiroon Pantawee, Chief of Chiang Mai Office of the Consumer Protection Board said that the board had received complaints from consumers about poor products of souvenir shop in some provinces and asked people to contact the Chiang Mai Office of the Consumer Protection Board Tel. 0-5311-2707-8, Fax. 0-5311-2707 or Office of the Consumer Protection Board Tel. 1166, www.ocpb.go.th to report problems.


 
HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]

New airline between Bangkok and Japan

Medical tourism

Air Bagan celebrates 66% increase in passengers

Consumer complaints to be received at stores around the country