Travel Gossip: Chinese Airlines Cancel 9,000 Flights to Thailand

By Billy Jiang, November 28, 2023

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In recent developments, Thailand's Civil Aviation Authority (CAAT) has reported that 10 Chinese airlines have canceled flights to six major airports in Thailand. 

The list includes Air China, China Eastern Airlines, Shanghai Airlines, Spring Airlines, China Southern Airlines, Shenzhen Airlines, Juneyao Airlines, Okay Airways, Hainan Airlines, and Capital Airlines.

In December alone, the total number of flights to Thailand has been reduced from an initial 10,939 to 5,858, marking a cancellation of 5,081 flights, constituting a 46% reduction. 

Looking ahead to January 2024, the number of flights has decreased from 10,984 to 7,420, representing a reduction of 3,564 flights, or 32%.

The total number of flights for these two months was initially planned to be 21,923, but currently, only 13,278 flights are confirmed to operate, reflecting a decrease of over 8,600 flights, or 39%. 

The primary reason cited is insufficient demand.

Local Thai media analysis points to several key reasons:

  • Insufficient Flights from China to Thailand: Direct flights from various locations in China to Thailand, as they were before the pandemic, have not fully resumed.

  • Decreased Purchasing Power of Tourists: The economic downturn has had a "scale-based" impact globally, affecting not only Sino-Thai tourism but also tourists from various countries heading to Thailand.

  • Continued Concerns about Travel Safety: Travel safety remains a significant factor influencing tourists' choices of destinations.

How do you perceive the cancellation of flights by Chinese airlines to Thailand? Do you have any travel plans to Thailand in the near future? Feel free to share your thoughts with us. Stay updated on the latest travel news by following our WeChat official account, thatsGBA.

[Cover image by Billy Jiang/That's]

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