The airline with the best average rating is Thai Airways with 8.2/10.
The average flight time is 1 hours and 14 minutes.More information
In this review, I am covering Thai VietJet Air, the joint venture company between Thai and Vietnamese conglomerate. They have been serving Thai domestic routes for years, but their frequent delay prevent me from flying them until now, when their flight time suit my last minute trip perfectly.
Bangkok is known for its heavy traffic, which can be worsen under the rains. My 20.20 Flight is normally manageable by Airport Rail Link. However, I do not recommend you to rely too much on this transportation system. It is very poorly managed by State Railways of Thailand. Malfunction and delay is quite common nowadays, and when this happen, it is severe.
My final office hour was met with heavy rainstorm and announcement of ARL irregular service. So, I decided to leave the office early, call an Airport Transfer Service and get on my way. This is a normal 45 minutes ride, but the rain and rush hour traffic can easily add extra 30 minutes if I wait any longer.
I arrive with quite an ample time to spare. The queue at check in counter seemed long but I can manage a quick service at express lane (for passengers without loaded luggage). Note that VZ do not allow online check in at any destination outside Vietnam. They also strictly exercise 7 kg carry-on luggage policy. All hand-carry items are to be weighted and labeled accordingly.
VZ used Bangkok Flight Service, a subsidiary of Bangkok Airways. Staffs are great and ask if I would like to sit in an emergency exit rows? But I will have to assist Flight Attendant during the irregular situation. Oh, yes, please. Khob Khun Krup
I intend to try VZ inflight catering. So I skip the food stop and proceed to the gate, which is still desert
The weather seemed a bit better, there are still some rain throughout Bangkok area but not as harsh as it was a few hours ago
Our aircraft is flying in under VZ 963 flight from Da Nang, Vietnam, and is about to land in any minutes
With her arrival at Domestic Section, all inbound passengers need to deplane using stairway attached to the Airbridge and board the bus under the rain. Ouch!
Exactly 30 minutes after the plane arrived, we are allowed to board. I do admire VZ's efficiency and their attempt to maximize aircraft time in the air. Flight attendants are nice and friendly, but there are also some kind of rush atmosphere when they assist passengers with luggage problem
VZ installed Geven's Piuma seat. The first five rows and two emergency exit rows are marketed as " Hot seat" and marked with red headrest. I personally do not find any benefit of sitting in row 2-5 as it looks extremely cramp, without any significant extra legroom comparing to the rest of the aircraft. My assigned 14th row seemed to give best comfort
Comfort and interior around my seat, 14F
Cabin crew approach 6 passengers in this row and explain rapidly (and admittedly quite incomprehensible) in Thai and English, advising us with Emergency Exit procedure
Content of the seat pocket, quite typical for Asian Carrier
The aircraft soon pushback and take off. Being a night flight, I did not capture much photos. Shortly after the seatbelt sign is off, Flight attendant start their buy on board service. There are some recommended selection in the menu
Being a short flight, Flight attendants comes with all food choices reheated and ready for sale. My selection is Pad Thai. Buying on board cost me 180 Baht with a bottle of water. An extra can of Coke No sugar is also offered as this month's promotion (as opposed to 130 Baht advanced internet purchase, but Coke will not be included)
From the look of it, the noodle is extremely staled. Taste is passable but I am happy to try them
The aircraft descend shortly after the meal service and landed 6 minutes before scheduled arrival time. Chiang Mai Airport is a medium size - hassle free for arriving passengers. We deplane, pass the carousel to the limousine service area within 5 minutes.
Small tips for those arriving Chiang Mai before 8.00pm. There are new Bus service from Airport to Chiang Mai Old Town (City Gate area), fully air conditioned and GPS equipped for just 20 baht. I am to make use of it for my return flight
I initially frustrated about flying Thai VietJet, having heard a lot of rumors about their severe delay, unable to check in online, long wait at check in counter, cramp seat, strict luggage policy,etc,etc. But the experience comes out pretty fine, especially with the extra legroom seat. Their catering is passable, punctuality is ok. Nothing to write home about, but not too bad either.