State-owned Transport Co will launch a daily Nan-Xayaburi-Luang Prabang bus service in July. The fare will be 680 baht, or 170,000 kip, for the 6-hour trip.
Daroon Saengchai, deputy permanent secretary for transport, said on Wednesday the central land transport committee of the Transport Ministry approved Transport Co's proposal to operate 2-4 buses on the Thai-Lao service that should commence in July.
It will be the 15th transnational bus route operated by the state enterprise. There will be one round trip per day and the fare each way will be 680 baht, or 170,000 kip, he said.
Negotiations for the Thai-Lao bus service on the route had started in 1999. The route connected tourist attractions in Thailand's Nan province and Xayaburi and Luang Prabang of Laos, Mr Daroon said.
Sanit Phromwong, director-general of the Land Transport Department, said only state-run Transport Co could provide transnational services on the Thai part of the route because authorities in both countries accepted only state-run services for the sake of security.
Similar bus services already reached Laos and Cambodia on other routes and Thai transport authorities were negotiating with Myanmar and Malaysia to expand bus services there, he said.
On the new route to Luang Prabang, Transport Co would use small 17-seater buses that were better suited to local roads, Mr Sanit said.