On the eve of AirAsia’s departure from Suvarnabhumi to the refurbished Don Muang Airport, there have been a number of announcements regarding the plans for the main international airport going forward. The airport plans to improve the baggage claim process, with a goal of delivering all bags within 30 minutes of landing. Currently it can take well over 30 minutes for the first bag to appear. The airport also wants to tackle the somewhat intransigent problem of long immigration queues. Other improvements include wider availability of wi-fi Internet access, further tweaks to the air conditioning and rest room facilities.
AirAsia’s move back to Don Muang, as mentioned here previously, will reduce the load at Suvarnabhumi by around 10 Million passengers a year. That should put the load at Suvarnabhumi back down to what it was designed for, at least for a while. The airport still plans to undertake a expansion that will add another runway and possibly a mid-field terminal.
The airport operator also announced plans to hike passenger service charges next year. Charges for international passengers will go up by 100 Baht while domestic fees will increase 50 Baht. In the grand scheme of things, the extra US$2 to $3 which gets added ticket prices probably won’t be noticeable.