50% hotel discounts
Selected hotels are offering half price rooms from now until
September under the government’s “Blue Smile” program aimed at boosting
demand and lowering costs for local businesses.
Ministry advisor Keerawut Kitiyadisai.
About 200 hotels nationwide now participate in the Blue program. Thais
and foreigners can get rooms at 50 percent off list rates by simply
showing their identification card.
Commerce Ministry advisor Keerawut Kitiyadisai hosted a seminar June 26
at Naklua’s Zign Hotel to solicit hotels to join the Blue Smile program,
which focuses on increasing revenues and cutting expenses for companies
in Thailand’s manufacturing, retail, agricultural, and service sectors
during the current economic downturn.
One example is the hotel sector. Hotels participating in the program are
being asked to drop rates for guests from now until September. At the
same time, they will be required to purchase domestic products, such as
fruit, shrimp and beverages, where possible. In exchange, the Ministry
plans to work with other program companies to supply hotels with
commodities such as rice, eggs, vegetable, cooking oil and meat at
below-market value prices. The hotels will also be promoted in
government advertising campaigns, he added.
Any hotels interested in participating in the Blue project can contact
the Department of Internal Trade in Chonburi at 02-547-5424 or the Thai
Hotels Association at 02-281-9496 ext. 104.
Isaan road show aims to bring
more from Northeast to Pattaya
With so many of its residents working here, Thailand’s northeast
region is an obvious location to promote Pattaya tourism. So the Tourism
Authority of Thailand took about 50 businesses to Isaan to offer special
Thepasit, deputy director of the TAT’s Pattaya Office.
The Isaan Road show, organized by the TAT’s Pattaya Office, traveled to
Nakhon Ratchasima and Ubon Ratchathani July 15-16. There residents and
tour operators participated in travel marts where various packages and
hotel promotions were on offer.
Akarawit Thepasit, deputy director of the TAT’s Pattaya Office, said
that the northeast is one of the main domestic-tourism markets for
Pattaya. It’s hoped that with foreign tourism down, Pattaya can offset
its losses by encouraging more Isaan residents to visit the city.
SAS launches cheaper premium fares to Northern Europe
Book between July 15 and August 15
Travel between July 21 and December 15
Scandinavian Airlines in Thailand has launched new limited-period prices of
47,000 baht* for roundtrip Economy Extra and 67,000 baht* for Business Class
travel to 36 northern European cities. Bookings must be made and issued no later
than August 15. Travel dates are from July 21 until December 15, 2009.
The 36 destinations include major urban gateways in Scandinavia, Germany and
Belgium such as Berlin, Stuttgart, Dusseldorf, Hannover, Hamburg, Brussels,
Oslo, Copenhagen, Stockholm and Helsinki. The special price offer can also be
used for 26 smaller destinations across Denmark, Sweden and Norway.
On the ground, travelers receive fast check-ins, 30kg baggage allowance and
priority boarding. Onboard they have video and audio on demand and a power
outlet for their laptops. Passengers receive 150% EuroBonus points in Economy
Extra and 200% in Business Class. The flights are night flights, so passengers
don’t lose a day.
“Premium travelers in Thailand can now reach a wide range of northern European
cities affordably and in great comfort,” said Hakan Olsson, director and general
manager for SAS in Southeast Asia. “Our on-board Scandinavian service standards,
dining and audio-visual features ensure a pleasant roundtrip to some of the most
important cities in northern Europe.”
Travelers who prefer Business Class can stretch out on a near-horizontal
sleeping bed and enjoy a 26cm personal screen, superior meal services, a unique
in-flight buffet bar, and business lounge facilities at the airport.
Passengers who fly in Economy Extra class enjoy a separate cabin, audio and
video on demand, a wider seat, and enhanced dining options.
To fly in comfort to northern Europe at these special promotional prices,
bookings must be made before August 15, 2009. Book your ticket online at
www.flysas. com/th or contact your travel agency, or the SAS sales centre in
Bangkok, tel: 02 645 8200, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
* Tickets exclude taxes and fees (from 12,500 baht), and are subject to fare
rules; subject to change; capacity limited. Tickets can be changed and refunded
at a fee. Conditions apply. For further information, please contact Supakanda
Tongboonrawd, sales and marketing executive, Scandinavian Airlines, tel: 02 645
8221, email: supakanda. email@example.com
Avis launches Vietnam operations
Karen Yue, TTG Asia
Avis has launched operations in Hanoi, making it the first international
car rental brand in the Vietnamese capital.
Avis Vietnam will offer corporate and leisure customers the full spectrum of car
rental, car leasing and chauffeur-drive services through its current fleet of 20
vehicles, consisting of various popular brands such as Toyota, Ford, Mercedes
Benz and Audi. The fleet size in Hanoi is expected to hit 50 to 60 cars by
Avis will provide professionally trained and experienced English-speaking local
drivers as part of the car hire.
Eric Brun, Avis’ general manager for Asia, said 60 percent of the business would
be generated from long-term car rental.
“There are many companies in Hanoi that have to provide transportation for their
expatriate employees and that need to lease cars for at least two years. We are
also working with various hotels on leasing cars for their airport-transfer
services. While nothing has been inked as yet, things are looking very positive
for this potential partnership,” Brun said.
Brun expected the company’s chauffeur-drive service to do well in Hanoi, where
road conditions and driving regulations make self-drive difficult.
Brun added the market for self-drive car rentals in Hanoi was growing among
locals who drive out to Halong Bay, a popular leisure destination two to three
hours from Hanoi.
Avis Vietnam will operate from its headquarters in Hanoi and plans to open
branches in Ho Chi Minh City (end-2009) and Danang (2010). It expects to grow
its total fleet size to over 300 by 2011.
British Airways plans capacity cuts, delays A380 deliveries
Jonathan Yap, TTG Asia
British Airways (BA) has announced capacity cuts for the summer and
winter periods and deferred Airbus A380 deliveries in response to further
declines in passenger traffic in June.
Overall passenger traffic fell by 3.8 percent in June compared to June 2008,
while premium traffic suffered a 14.9 percent decrease.
Traffic for the Asia-Pacific region was down 15.1 percent, reflecting the
reduction in the Narita (Tokyo) schedule to a daily service and suspension of
services to Dhaka (Bangladesh), Islamabad (Pakistan) and Kolkata (India).
A spokesman for BA said, “Market conditions continue to be very challenging with
trading at levels well below last year. However, we remain committed to our
markets in Asia Pacific, and on an underlying basis, both premium and
non-premium volumes and seat factors have now been stable for more than three
BA expects capacity for the summer period (April to October) to be down 3.5
percent and 5 percent lower for the winter period. The airline could not specify
which routes would face capacity cuts. “We are still working through all the
details. Most of the capacity is being taken out from reduced frequencies on
multi-frequency routes so that it is easier to re-accommodate customers,” the
BA has also deferred deliveries for its first six Airbus A380 aircraft by an
average of five months, but will still receive its first A380 in 2012. The
airline has yet to confirm the routes on which the A380 will operate.
The capacity announcements follow the decision by nearly 7,000 BA employees to
voluntarily accept pay reductions, saving the company up to 10 million pounds,
while the airline’s CEO Willie Walsh announced he would work unpaid for the
month of July.
Chaophya Park opens Tarathep House
Chaophya Park Hotel, Bangkok adds to its MICE facilities and will soft
open its brand new ‘mansion house’ styled venue, Tarathep House on July 18,
The new MICE facility is an elegant stand-alone house with an impressive facade
of columns and a white dome. With its own driveway and grand entrance, guests
will first glimpse a stunning new water feature at its entrance.
artist’s rendition of Chaophya Park Hotel’s new Tarathep House.
Located close to the main hotel entrance within the hotel’s famous gardens,
which include space for 900 cars, Tarathep House can accommodate upwards of 600
people for cocktails and up to 450 people for a sit down dinner.
Designed with a duplex mezzanine floor, the Tarathep House can be used for
exclusive private parties, exhibitions or the most unique product launches in
This exclusive venue comes complete with its own kitchens; top of the range
audio visual equipment; cocktail bars, changing rooms and washroom facilities.
Commenting on the opening of Tarathep House, Andrew Wood, general manager of the
Chaophya Park Hotel & Resorts said, “This brings the total meeting space to
almost 3,000 sq meters, comprising of 4 separate ballrooms and 13 breakout
rooms. The hotel is positioning itself as the premier meeting facility on
Rachadipisek Road, with a wide range of options for all meeting planners, event
organizers and wedding specialists.”
Wood added, “We designed Tarathep House specifically with exclusive exhibitions
and product launches in mind. For weddings we don’t believe there is another
venue quiet like Tarathep House. Wedding couples using Tarathep House will be
able to have wedding themes unlike anything a hotel ballroom has been able to do
in the past. With the private nature of a stand alone ‘mansion’ we give you
complete freedom, privacy and exclusivity. Our policy to only offer the Tarathep
House to one client at a time to ensure the event planner will ‘own’ the venue
throughout the period of the event or wedding. It will certainly stand out from
using just a regular hotel ballroom but at a very similar price.”
For further information or to view the Tarathep House please contact Tiroad,
tel. 0 2290 0125 ext. 7123, email firstname.lastname@example.org.