Airline passengers look set to keep flying through Thailand thanks to the granting of a ‘fifth freedom’ right from the country’s department of civil aviation (DCA).
The right will permit non-Thai airlines to transport passengers onwards to a third country after landing at Suvarnabhumi Airport, the Bangkok Post reports.
It is hoped that the right will act as incentive for airlines to continue flying through Thailand as well as maintain Suvarnabhumi’s status as a hub airport.
Speaking to the newspaper, Kannikar Kemavuthanon, the DCA’s director-general, said: "Fifth freedom allows an airline to create additional revenue on a third-country sector.
"However, until now no international airlines had taken up the fifth-freedom offer due to the downturn in the industry."
In a further attempt to encourage airlines, the DCA and Airports of Thailand have come together to reduce the cost of landing and parking fees.
Suvarnabhumi Airport opened to all domestic and international commercial flights on September 28th 2006.
It acts as the hub for Thai Airways International, Bangkok Airways, Orient Thai Airways, PBair and Thai AirAsia.
Thailand is one of the world’s most popular holiday destinations, attracting 12 million foreign visitors every year, most of whom arrive on flights to Bangkok.