This morning I was able to hitch a lift on a Solar Air flight from Don Mueang to U-Tapao. The occasion was for a press conference to announce the start of flights from Bangkok to Pattaya. They will also be flying from Pattaya to Siem Riep and Pattaya to Chumphon with boat transfer to Koh Tao and Samui.
We flew on a 19-seater Dornier 228 plane. There were only the four of us for this flight. The plane was so small that we had both a window seat and an aisle seat. We also had a good view into the cockpit. The flight was only 25 minutes.
When the flights start next month they will be on Sundays, Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. The flight to Pattaya is 9:30am to 10am and the return trip to Bangkok is 1:30pm to 1:55pm. The price of the ticket is 1,200 Baht which doesn’t include taxes. However there is a free transfer between U-Tapao and Pattaya and back again.
The flight alone is 25 minutes and the transfer to Pattaya about 30 minutes. On top of this you need to add check-in times. As it only takes about two hours by road from Bangkok to Pattaya you need to consider whether flying is worth it. But I do know that during long weekends in Pattaya the traffic is horrendous and so flying would be better.
- Elton John and Sting in Bangkok in December 2012
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