Thai Airways to Move to New Airport

BANGKOK ~ Flag carrier Thai Airways is to move all its remaining domestic flights from Bangkok’s decades-old Don Mueang airport to its ultra-modern replacement.

Suvarnabhumi International Airport opened to much fanfare in September 2006, but reports of cracks in one of the runways forced some carriers to move their domestic flights back to the creaking Don Mueang just six months later.

“According to a meeting with Thai Airways, the airline is preparing to shift its domestic flights to Suvarnabhumi airport … this summer,” Somchai Chanrod, a director at the Transport Ministry, said.

Finnair to Cater to Asians

HELSINKI ~ Finnish airline Finnair will start flights to Norway’s number-one tourist destination, Bergen, in May to cater mainly to Asian tourists wanting to see the fjords, the carrier said.

“The main reason for the opening of a new summer route to Bergen is high tourism demand from Asia, particularly from Japan, directed at Norway’s renowned fjord area,” Petteri Kostermaa, Finnair’s vice president of route strategy and traffic planning, said in a statement.

He said American and European tourists had also shown interest in the route.

Singapore Airport Passengers Up in 2008

SINGAPORE ~ Singapore’s Changi Airport, a regional aviation hub, handled 37.7 million international passengers last year, up 2.7 percent from 2007 despite a travel slump, the airport operator said this week.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) however warned that 2009 would be challenging.

“Despite the difficult economic climate, Changi Airport performed commendably in 2008,” said CAAS director-general and chief executive Lim Kim Choon.

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