08 December 2009
AIRASIA is to create a breakthrough daily service between Phuket and Udonthani, in Isarn, from December 21.
The ''now everyone can fly'' budget line is the first to offer a direct flight to the heart of the provinces that are home to many hospitality workers on Phuket.
It was a no-brainer, really. AirAsia's research confirmed that the route is likely to be in demand and become a quick money-spinner.
Most of the bar girls who work in Patong are reputed to be from Isarn, so the new service is bound to attract a ready-and-waiting list of passengers wishing to visit families.
And at the low cost of 1498 baht one-way, (that's today's dynamic price online) the buses are going to have serious competition.
Many expats who have settled with Thai wives live in Isarn, and so there should be a ready market for people keen to holiday by the beach but reluctant to take the bus on the long journet via Bangkok.
From December 21, Flight FD3984 will leave Phuket at 3.15pm every day and arrive in Udon at 4.55pm. Return Flight FD3985 leave at 5.25pm and arrive on Phuket at 7.05pm.
AirAsia is keeping good its promise to make Phuket a regional hub, constantly opening up new routes that will please everyone except the higher-priced rival airlines.
By Chutima Sidasathian