Thai Airways, Thailand’s flag carrier, has announced its plans to operate its first in-house narrowbody aircraft. According to A Global Distribution System (GDS), the company shows that Thai Airways has filed in its schedule its first ever (full service) narrowbody aircraft, the A320SL on the first of July.
Thai Airways (TG/THA) will fly the former aircraft of Thai Smile (WE/THD) under its Air Operators Certificate to regional routes, especially India.
The Thai flag carrier schedules its first-ever routes on the A320 to India. These routes are to Delhi and Mumbai.
Bangkok – New Delhi
The first route touted is the Bangkok to New Delhi with the A320 as TG323 on the first leg to New Delhi and TG324 on the return leg back to Bangkok. TG323 departs Bangkok at 7:35 AM and will arrive at New Delhi at 10:35 AM, daily.
The return leg departs New Delhi at 11:40 AM and will come back at Suvarnabhumi Airport at 5:35 PM, also daily. This added flight, this means Thai Airways will fly to Delhi on a very frequent basis, with 22 flights per week between the two capital.
Apart from the A320 performing daily flights, the airline also deploys the 787-8 and the 777-300ER on selected days.
Bangkok – Mumbai
The Bangkok to Mumbai route will also be flown by the A320 as TG TG351 on its first leg to Mumbai, which departs Bangkok at 22:25 and will arrive at Mumbai the next day at 01:2, with flights performing on Sundays, Mondays, and Fridays.
The returning leg will be flown as TG352, which will depart Mumbai at 02:35 and will reach Bangkok at 08:35 the same day, on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.
This means that the Thai airline will have a cumulative flight frequency of 11 flights per week, in addition to the daily flights flown by the older 777-200ER.
A Single Class Service?
The deployment of the narrowbody A320 means that this will be the first time in many decades that Thai Airlines will offer only a one-class service.
The service will only be offered in economy class from rows 21 and onwards, until row 58. This is different from Thai Smile’s service line-up as the ‘latter airline’ offers the premium economy class.
This Single Class service signifies that the airline’s competitive edge will decline in contrast to other airlines flying on the routes, namely Vistara and Air India.
The introduction of the Single-Class service is the most un-THAI phenomenon ever encountered in many decades, as the airline is synonymous with premium travel.
It is reported that Thai Airways have already received its first two aircraft, the HS-TXQ (MSN 6297) and HS-TXR MSN6374).
THAI and Thai Smile
Thai Smile, owned fully (100%) by Thai Airways, was established in 2011. The establishment of the airline was to fly to regional routes, where THAI Airways flew without profitability, as the mother airline had at that time only a narrow body.
Thai Smile, was built to relieve the losses accumulated by the parent company, but failed to do so, and instead built up greater financial pressure. The merger of both THAI Airways and Thai Smile hopes to streamline operations for both companies.