Home Thailand Travel GuideThe 8 Best Domestic Airlines in Thailand

The 8 Best Domestic Airlines in Thailand

 

Millions of travelers fly to Thailand each year to visit the pristine beaches in the south and the delightful ancient temples in the north. Travelers often need to fly from the south to the north or vice versa at least once to uncover the exotic beauty of Thailand, so it’s worth finding out what the best domestic airlines are.

In this article, we will introduce you to the eight best Thai airlines ranging from boutique high-end ones to no-frills airlines and from family-friendly choices to the best budget airline options, to suit different travelers’ preferences and needs.

Important note: Bangkok has 2 airports!

1. Bangkok Airways — Asia’s Boutique Airline, Best Luxury Airline

You will feel that the airline puts you first with its VIP service. There is a big luggage allowance as well, with many nice little extras. Bangkok Airways is a small airline that really focuses on offering an unforgettable experience for you. It costs more than other airlines but you can get deals if you book ahead of time to certain locations. For example, you can fly from Bangkok to Chiang Mai or Krabi one-way for 1,350 TBH. The airline’s service covers Southeast Asia, India, China, and the Maldives.

  • Carry-on allowance: 5 kilograms
  • Luggage allowance: 30 kilograms (FlyerBonus)
  • Excess luggage fee (per kilogram): 80 THB
  • Meal included: yes
  • Seat reservation included: yes
  • Credit card fee: no
  • Departs from: Suvarnabhumi Airport

 

2. Thai Airways — World’s Best Economy Airline, Full-Service Airline

If you’re accustomed to business or first class, Thai Airways offers both and really takes care of you. Even if you’re flying economy, the staff are helpful, friendly, and go out of their way to make you feel special. The airline has amazing food on its flights too. The flights can be pricey but if you book in advance, you’ll pay about 20% less. Also, the Royal Orchid Plus program offers flight and hotel packages to popular destinations, such as Krabi and Phuket. You can stay in affiliated high-end hotels and get discounted prices on your accommodation and flight.

  • Carry-on allowance: 7 kilograms
  • Luggage allowance: 30 kilograms
  • Excess luggage fee (per kilogram): 55–125 THB
  • Meal included: yes
  • Seat reservation included: yes
  • Credit card fee: no
  • Departs from: Suvarnabhumi Airport

 

3. Thai Smile — Most Reliable Low-Cost Airline

Most importantly, if reliability matters to you, you’ll like Thai Smile because it has a good reputation for taking off on time. While it’s not a luxury airline, you’ll get a comfortable short distance flight experience.

  • Carry-on allowance: 7 kilograms
  • Luggage allowance: 20 kilograms
  • Excess luggage fee (per kilogram): 55–125 THB
  • Meal included: yes
  • Seat reservation included: yes
  • Credit card fee: no
  • Departs from: Suvarnabhumi Airport

 

4. AirAsia — Best Low-Cost Airline, Good for Those Traveling Light

AirAsia is one of the cheapest options when flying around Thailand but it’s also a great airline. If you’re traveling light with just a 7 kilogram carry-on, AirAsia is a good option. With AirAsia, the base price is cheap, especially when booking online. You can sometimes fly from Bangkok to Chiang Mai for as little as 20 USD. Add-ons may add up if you want an in-flight meal or a particular seat. The airline has varying prices for its seating if you don’t choose Premium Flex. The extras can add up but let’s talk about the service offered to you.

As well as such reasonable pricing, the airline is very helpful. It has machines you can use to check yourself in at the airports. There is always an attendant there to help you through the process. The machines mean you don’t have to wait around for very long. AirAsia almost always takes off on time unless there’s something out of its control.

  • Carry-on allowance: 7 kilograms
  • Luggage allowance: 15 kilograms is 300 THB
  • Excess luggage fee (per kilogram): 400 THB
  • Meal included: no
  • Seat reservation included: no
  • Credit card fee: 96.5 TBH
  • Departs from: Don Mueang International Airport

 

5. Nok Air — Best Airline for Traveling with Kids

  • Carry-on allowance: 7 kilograms
  • Luggage allowance: 15 kilograms
  • Excess luggage fee (per kilogram): 300 THB
  • Meal included: snack box
  • Seat reservation included: yes
  • Credit card fee: 90.95 TBH
  • Departs from: Don Mueang International Airport

 

6. Thai Lion Air — Best for Low Airfares with Perks

Thai Lion Air offers you prices much like those for flying with AirAsia but it gives you more. You can check up to 15 kilograms of luggage for free. If you catch one of its online promotions, you’ll pay very little. For example, a Bangkok to Chiang Mai flight can be on sale for 800 TBH.

  • Carry-on allowance: 7 kilograms
  • Luggage allowance: 10 kilograms
  • Excess luggage fee (per kilogram): 400 THB
  • Meal included: no
  • Seat reservation included: yes
  • Credit card fee: no
  • Departs from: Don Mueang International Airport

 

7. Thai Vietjet Air — Best New Airline, Budget Flight Out of Suvarnabhumi Airport

There’s not too much to say about Thai Vietjet Air as it’s still quite new, having opened in 2014. The airline doesn’t go to many destinations within Thailand. The one thing that could be highlighted is that it’s a budget airline flying out of the main airport. If you’re flying into or out of Suvarnabhumi Airport on the same day, this airline makes it easy for you.

  • Carry-on allowance: 7 kilograms
  • Excess luggage fee (per kg): 400 THB
  • Meal included: no
  • Credit card fee: no
  • Departs from: Suvarnabhumi Airport

8. Kan Air — Best and Only Option to Get to Mae Hong Son

Kan Air is a small airline based in Chiang Mai. It services the north and northeast of Thailand as well as Bangkok. However, if you want to get to Mae Hong Son and avoid the curvy roads you’d need to travel on by land, this is the best option. This flight route is in partnership with Bangkok Airways. Kan Air offers you free checked baggage on its flights.

  • Carry-on allowance: 7 kilograms
  • Excess luggage fee (per kilogram): 100 THB
  • Meal included: no
  • Online reservation: credit card only
  • Departs from: Chiang Mai International Airport

Is It Safe to Take Any Thai or Asian Airline?

AirlineRatings.com is an independent site for gauging the safety of airlines. There are up to seven stars available for safety. The company gave two stars to Nok Air, AirAsia (Thailand) and Bangkok Airways were given three stars, and Thai Airways received four stars. These airlines carry out compulsory safety audits, which continually improve the safety standards.

Insider Travel Tips about Flying in Thailand

Leave yourself plenty of time to get to the airport in Bangkok, whether it’s Suvarnabhumi Airport or Don Mueang International Airport. The traffic can be horrendous, and queues can be long at the check-in counters.

1. When you’re taking AirAsia, it’s well worth the extra money to pay for Premium Flex. You get 20 kilograms of free luggage, the best seats are available to you, and meals are included.

2. Take a taxi from one of the taxi stands when you leave the airport. There will likely be people ready to confront you but they’ll charge a high flat rate.

3. Take your own items of comfort on the airplane, such as a pillow or blanket. It might be hot in Thailand but the airplanes usually have air-conditioning on high.

4. On the first floor of Suvarnabhumi Airport, there’s a food court with excellent food.

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