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Melbourne flyer joins the community

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DBH

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Aug 31, 2007
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I have lurked and smirked my way around your site for years and have always been enlightened, especially when I have searched and found ways of flying Qantas, BA or Jetstar that more palatable without status.

HOWEVER, I do bat for the other side (so to speak) and for my initial post, and to display a little balance to the posts, I share with you my trip to Paris this week, and general comments why I choose the Star Alliance network.

Yes, against all odds, I am one of those, a Thai airways devotee, a Star Alliance disciple, and a keen yet critical observer of flying in comfort, relaxing in quiet refined lounges, and navigating the airports of the world in a dignified, fast and stress free manner.

Melbourne check in is how all airports around the world should be, but unfortunately they are all getting busier and consequently bigger.

From the car to the check in counter is 20 metres, and from that point onwards TG weaves it's own very special form of magic. Luggage is never a problem, as Gold card passengers are permitted two bags, and no one questions it anyway. The preferred seat is always available and the whole procedure is handled professionally.

Thai Airways then whisked you through Immigration and Security to the sanctuary of the NEW Air New Zealand lounge. This is a delightful escape, even when full, the nooks and crannies afford you a feeling of seclusion and privacy. The food and wine are a credit to our Kiwi friends and the welcome as against the interoaation is a blessed relief.

I fly regularly to BKK, and prefer the midnight departure which allows me to hit the ground running for a full days work as soon as I arrive. On that flight , most of the front paxs decline dinner, preferring a night cap, so often before 1.00am the front section is darkened and we are all tucked in for the night. Morning is heralded with slow drawing of the window shades and just sufficent time is allowed for breakfast before the decline into the City of Angels. This time I am travelling in daylight on the 4pm departure, so it's a leisurely dinner with some Australian wine, and time for me to catch up on some movies i have been promising myself I would go and see.

A golf cart whines it's way through the throngs of visitors and passengers to the Bangkok lounge that has the showers and wonderful day suites to snooze in. Fluffy towels in hand and a quick word to the masseur to warm her hands and the transit procedure starts. There is only a 2 hour window in BKK so you have to be organised, but the shower refreshes you and the massage pumps the blood vessels along to ward off the DVT's.

I had pre ordered lobster for lunch even though TG thought it was supper because it was in fact 2.00am, but this is the way I prefer it. Paris was a 6.00am arrival, so after eating, I watched the news, read a little, before changing and doing the three laps and the stretching exercises down the back. I slept like a baby, as did all the cabin, and there was always a warm snack orrefreshment available at the bar should you get up.

The reasoning behind my choice of carrier and years of loyality to my hotel brand now become evident. Sheraton doesn't bat an eyelid when the car pulls up at 7.30am, it's the usual rush to the car, hellos, welcome back and a polite notification that your favourite room/floor is ready.

Thai Airways were slow to update their aircraft, and there were some uncomfortable moments, but now with new 777, 744 and 346 all decked out with the latest beds and electronics and with 5 Bangkok lounges to choose from, it has become the superior way (at the moment) to travel.

TG spoil their Gold card members, practically guaranteeing them seats even on fully booked planes, upgrade between classes for a nominal $750, and very frequent op-ups whenever possible. Every renewal they give us a return upgrade voucher, and every year they issue full benifit 50% award tickets to help us use up our points. In Bangkok our cars are met kerbside and we are escorted through the quadmire.

It's horses for courses, of course and the pendulum will turn soon with the arrivals of the 380's into the SQ stable, but here again they are *A, but for now, it's TG's time in the sun and whilst I have to do this route, I will bask in the sun as well.

I enjoy your board, it is very informative and look foward to being part of it, I trust I have also been informative without sounding too full on. :D cheers for the moment regards.
 

Keith009

Established Member
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Mar 6, 2005
Messages
4,598
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Welcome to AFF, DBH! :D

I'm glad that you've had a much better experience with Thai than I have, but as they say - horses for courses. :)
 

littl_flier

Active Member
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May 1, 2007
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Welcome to AFF DBH. :D Thanks for your mini trip-report.

Happy flying.

Cheers,
littl_flier
 
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econgdon

Junior Member
Joined
Aug 17, 2007
Messages
47
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I also find Thai good, however I have to fight to get my United points credited when my ff flyer number is not typed in on check in, which I also have to often fight to get done at that point. Seeing you know Bangkok can someone help me.. I am arriving Jetstar with than 3 hours connection with Turkish to Istanbul. Seeing Jetstar are a one point airline, and seeing my Turkish booking is an online eticket. Do I have to exit immigration and check in with Turkish and then re-enter, thus having to pay departure tax and also painfully having to get my passport stamped etc?
 

Keith009

Established Member
Joined
Mar 6, 2005
Messages
4,598
Points
540
econgdon said:
Do I have to exit immigration and check in with Turkish and then re-enter, thus having to pay departure tax and also painfully having to get my passport stamped etc?
Yes you will have to exit immigration, check in with Turkish and then re-enter if you've got luggage to check in. Otherwise, simply proceed to the transfer desk.

Thai departure taxes have been incorporated into your air ticket since the start of this year, so you'd have already paid your THB700 when you bought your ex-BKK Turkish ticket. Unless of course, you issued it late last year before they started incorporating the taxes into the ticket.
 
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