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  1. #1
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    Samui Residents to Bid for New Airport in Monopoly Challenge

    Samui Residents to Bid for New Airport in Monopoly Challenge - Phuket Wan


    Photo by phuketwan.com/file

    Samui Residents to Bid for New Airport in Monopoly Challenge


    By Chutima Sidasathian
    Sunday, October 2, 2011

    PHUKET: Samui residents have banded together to buy 2000 rai for a new airport to challenge a monopoly held by Bangkok Airways.

    The plan for a second ''Samui airport'' was a measure of the discontent with the way that the existing airport was being run, the Phuket-based chairman of the Senate Standing Committee on Tourism, Tunyaratt Achariyachai, told Phuketwan today.

    ''The residents are taking action because of lack of change,'' she said. ''The current arrangement suits Bangkok Airways, and nobody else.''

    The Samui residents plan to apply to the Transport Department in Bangkok for a licence for the airport, on a large holding of land close to the existing Don Sak ferry in mainland Nakorn Sri Thammarat.

    As with tuk-tuks and taxis on the ground on Phuket, the transport monopoly in Samui has alienated the rest of the tourism industry.

    Bangkok Airways not only imposes high landing fees on aircraft arriving on Samui, it also has turned down requests to lengthen the existing runway. As well, Bangkok Airways controls the taxis that take passengers from the airport all over the island.

    There are 12,000 rooms in resorts on Samui - but only 3000 arrivals a day. The short existing runway suits the Bangkok Airways aircraft.

    ''Bangkok Airways' fares for the high season to Samui are going to rise by 55 percent,'' Senator Thanyarat said. ''It is not difficult to see why residents in the industry are looking for alternatives.''

    An airport near the Don Sak pier would leave Samui-bound passengers with a 50-minute ferry trip to the island. Existing mainland airports near the city of Nakorn Sri Thammarat and Surat Thani are 40 minutes and one hour respectively by bus or minivan from the ferry pier.

    Promchote Traivate, the regional coordinator of the Ministry of Tourism and Sport and a former Phuketwan Phuket Person of the Year, said today that at one stage, an airport had been proposed for Samui's neighboring island of Phangan. But residents objected, he said.

    ''Phangan is mostly used for people making snorkelling trips from Samui and for the famous full moon parties once a month,'' he said. ''It would also mean passengers heading to Samui needed to make a 45-minute ferry trip.''

    Khun Chote believes that 12,000 rooms is about right for Samui, an island about one fifth the size of Phuket, if the balance with the region's natural attractions is to be maintained.

    Phuket's airport is about to be expanded but tourism industry leaders await Airports of Thailand's strategy to handle ever-increasing tourist numbers once the enlarged airport reached its capacity of 12.5 million arrivals and departures.

    Eight million are expected to use the airport this year, and if current increases are maintained, that could be 10 million in 2012. The expanded Phuket airport is scheduled to be ready by November 2014.
    "Slavery is the daughter of darkness; an ignorant people is the blind instrument of its own destruction; ambition and intrigue take advantage of the credulity and inexperience of men who have no political, economic or civil knowledge. They mistake pure illusion for reality, license for freedom, treason for patriotism, vengeance for justice."-Simón Bolívar

  2. #2
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    This has been an issue for years. Bangkok Airways has a bonafide cash cow and they will not relinquish control for any reason. In other civilians countries, this is extortion, charging outrageous fees because there is no competition. But power and money go hand in hand in Thailand.

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    I have not been back there since 2004. So far, I have kept to my vow that no more will I be held hostage to the fortunes of that disgraceful airline.

  4. #4
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    Why are they calling it a second Samui airport if it's not even going to be on Samui? There's already another airport in Surat Thani that can be utilized via the ferry- it sounds like the proposed airport will just be a bit closer to the Don Sak ferry pier than the existing one.
    There he goes. One of God's own prototypes. A high-powered mutant of some kind never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die.
    HST

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    ^Exactly. A typically crappy 'solution'.

  6. #6
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    crazy solution, put forward by a group who probably want to hold their passengers to ransom as much as bangkok airways does.

    this is not so much about about a better service or fairer deal for tourists and passengers, its more about a local business group wanting to get in on the act themselves.

    this is samui, thailand, where tourists, visitors and consumers are regularly reamed, creamed and steam cleaned for the sole benefit of the vested interests that run that spoiled island.

    it is a well oiled machine, devouring all who come within range of its greedy jaws whose appetite knows no bounds.

    few escape unscathed.

    it is phukets nasty little brother.
    Last edited by taxexile; 03-10-2011 at 02:27 PM.

  7. #7
    Mid
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    Quote Originally Posted by liveinlos
    This has been an issue for years.
    Indeed : from '08

    http://teakdoor.com/southern-thailan...ovt-build.html (Samui tourism operators urge Govt to build 2nd airport)

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mid View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by liveinlos
    This has been an issue for years.
    Indeed : from '08

    http://teakdoor.com/southern-thailan...ovt-build.html (Samui tourism operators urge Govt to build 2nd airport)
    Goes back even further than that..
    Quote..In 2003, the Thaksin Shinawatra administration instructed the Transport Ministry to study the possibility of building a second airport on Samui to support the burgeoning tourism industry, possibly with public funds.... State-run airport opposed for Samui |

    Mainly because Bangkok Airways wanted to charge him a small fortune to land his Thai Airways plane there,which pissed him right off

  9. #9
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    Indeed, I remember his tantrum well. It was perhaps the only time I found myself warming to the guy.

    The government should designate Samui a strategic zone under military control and extend the runway accordingly. Once completed the monopoly should be terminated and the airport open to all on level terms.

    But TiT so it won't happen.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by taxexile View Post

    this is London where tourists, visitors and consumers are regularly reamed, creamed and steam cleaned for the sole benefit of the vested interests that run that spoiled city.

    it is a well oiled machine, devouring all who come within range of its greedy jaws whose appetite knows no bounds.

    few escape unscathed.

    it is Paris' nasty little brother.
    Nothing like a change in perspective, eh Tax?

  11. #11
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    Just another way to spend the fund (from nowhere - maybe in the air).
    It was wrong since Surathani Airport was built way too far from the ferry (i'd never flying to Surat again if I wanna go to Samui - nightmare!).
    It seemed that the purpose(s) of Surat Airport were not for serving tourists who wanted to connect a ferry to Koh Samui since the first stage.
    Bangkok Airways saw that opportunity and invested on building the airport in Koh Samui and it has been very successful. Now everyone wants a little piece of cake from PG, and gets pissed that they cannot get it.
    Last edited by notanameleft; 04-10-2011 at 09:12 PM.
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