AirAsia to resume all domestic operations

AirAsia to resume all domestic operations

Workers endure cuts as THAI rehabilitates

Thai AirAsia will resume operating to all 23 domestic destinations next month.
Thai AirAsia will resume operating to all 23 domestic destinations next month.

Thai AirAsia (TAA) has increased flight frequency and will resume operating to all 23 domestic destinations next month, chief executive Santisuk Klongchaiya said on Friday.

He said domestic flights were allowed to resume in May, but TAA waited about two months to resume its domestic operation.

Aside from the 23 domestic destinations next month, the airline will make connection flights available in 25 regions, including for the Chiang Mai-Hat Yai and Chiang Mai-Pattaya routes, Mr Santisuk said.

He noted that 68 daily return flights will be made available to stimulate air travel.

"We increased the frequency of popular routes such as the nine daily flights for Chiang Mai, seven daily flights for Khon Kaen, five for Phuket, in accordance with travel demands," Mr Santisuk said. "We are ready to support domestic tourism to best stimulate spending in various parts and provinces of the country."

Meanwhile, Chakkrit Parapuntakul, president of Thai Airways International (THAI), issued a statement on Thursday saying the company will need to make "sacrifices" on behalf of its employees to steer the carrier through its difficult time. The airline has lost its state enterprises status and is currently restructuring its various debts.

Mr Chakkrit's Thursday statement thanked THAI staff members for their willingness to slash their salaries to maintain the carrier's liquidity for as long as possible.

He said the company is preparing documents to be presented to the Central Bankruptcy Court, which is scheduled to hear the debt-ridden carrier's rehabilitation plan on Aug 17.

Even though THAI has been covered by an automatic stay order since it filed for rehabilitation under the kingdom's bankruptcy law, it is still struggling with liquidity problems as there are still fixed costs to handle such as staff salaries and operational costs, Mr Chakkrit said.

The company needs help from all of its staff who can voluntarily accept salary cuts to maintain THAI's liquidity for as long as possible.

"We don't know yet when we can resume flights after the court orders the company to undergo rehabilitation. The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic must also be taken into account," Mr Chakkrit wrote in the statement.

"I hope that every staff member understands the company's circumstances. It still needs help from all of you. This will also show the creditors and the public the sacrifices made by the staff to save the company and steer it through difficult times," he said.

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