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EmJayZee Dec 26th, 2016 10:29 AM

Wlights within Thailand, and to/from Cambodia
Hello --

We are planning our February trip, and wish to fly Chaing Mai to Siem Reap, and then Phnom Penh to Bangkok. We are woefully ignorant of Asian budget airlines, but have had our "bumps" with Ryan Air in the past, especially with hidden fees and high charges at the airport (eg, penalty for printing boarding card at airport).

CNX to REP: service by Thia Air Asia, Bangkok Air and Thai Smile. Thoughts?

This will be a connecting flight through Bangkok, and a forum thread from 2013 indicated that with AirAsia we will have to collect our checked bag in DMK and then recheck it for the DMK-REP leg. Is that still true, and is the same true of Bangkok Air or Thai Smile? We are willing to pay more NOT to have to collect and recheck bags (especially if some of the higher fare is negated by including a checked bag rather than charging for it). .

PNH to Bangkok: simpler because it is not a connecting flight. Service by Thai Air Asia, Bangkok and Thai. We do not have a strong airport preference as we will be staying in Bangkok for a week, rather than connecting.

Thoughts about the CNX to REP leg, and the merits of the airlines would be appreciated. We are not looking for the least expensive ticket, but will pay a bit more to avoid hassles.

Cheers, EJZ

EmJayZee Dec 26th, 2016 10:30 AM

My apologies: the title should, of course, be "Flights...."

rhkkmk Dec 26th, 2016 11:14 AM

with bkk air you won't probably have hidden fees or extra fees.

EmJayZee Dec 26th, 2016 01:04 PM

Thank you.

Does anyone know if, with connecting flights on AirAsia one must still collect and recheck bags for each leg?

Regards, EJZ

sartoric Dec 26th, 2016 06:49 PM

In April I caught a flight from KL to Mandalay on Air Asia connecting via DMK in Bangkok. I had no luggage checked, but there was a transit desk so I didn't need to go through immigration. I suspect if I had checked luggage it would have been transferred.

Kathie Dec 26th, 2016 07:17 PM

Traditionally, Air Asia has required that one go through immigration and customs, pick up the luggage and check in again for the next flight.

There was a rumor earlier this year that they were going to begin to transfer luggage from one Air Asia flight to another, but I have not yet seen confirmation of that.

sartoric Dec 26th, 2016 08:49 PM

Kathie, my experience earlier this year suggests they may be improving. There might well be an extra charge for transferring luggage to a connected flight, but I'm pretty sure they have the ability to do it. This is what budget airlines are all about - they offer the very basics and charge for add ons.
It will be convenient for EJZ.

crellston Dec 26th, 2016 10:01 PM

AIr Asia now have the capability to offer check through baggage via certain airports - KLIA and Don Mueang. See for details.

You will be fine for the routes you mention.

Having flown many times with both Air Asia and Ryanair, I would say Air Asia are way better than Ryanair. Yes they do charge for all "extras" but these are clearly detailed on their website.

EmJayZee Dec 27th, 2016 05:33 AM

Thank you, all, for taking time to reply. This is making a 1.5 hour connection loos feasible if we do not have to collect/recheck our bags.

We each have a standard US rollaboard + daypack with/computer & camera, etc, so I assume we will have to check the rollaboards as well as keep the weight of the daypacks less than 7kg. We will buy the 20kg checked bag fee when we purchase the tickets -- too much (I suspect our rollaboards will be about 8-10kg each) but there you have it.


LancasterLad Dec 27th, 2016 06:40 AM

Just thinking aloud. I've never needed to do connecting flights in SE Asia with a Low Cost Carrier. What happens if...

- The connecting flight is running to Schedule, but the first flight is say an hour behind Schedule. The first flight still lands in time for you to make the connecting flight, but only just.

- How do you know whether there will be/was enough time to transfer your Hold baggage?

Bit of a risk, or am I missing something?

EmJayZee Dec 27th, 2016 07:31 AM

Yes, we thought about that yesterday evening. Even if we make the second flight with a mad dash, will our bags make it?

So, to avoid that possibility the options may be:

1) do not use a low-cost carrier (are the odds of everything working better with Bangkok Air or a combination of Thai and Thai Smile? Could we avoid having hold baggage with either?)

2) Fly CNX to Bangkok, spend a day or two in Bangkok, and then proceed to REP. Shift the Cambodia segment out by a couple of days, trimming corresponding Bangkok days off the other end of the trip.

Kathie Dec 27th, 2016 07:32 AM

satoric and crellston, that is good news, indeed! It makes connection flights on Air Asia (at least through KL and Don Muang! Previously, people had to allow hours between flights.

LL, this is no different from any other airline, but new for Air Asia. Do you consider connecting flights in general too risky to book?

crellston Dec 27th, 2016 09:01 AM

With checked through baggage, the situation is no different to any full service airline. The baggage transfer process will be the same. I seriously doubt any airline these days will allow bags to fly on a plane without their owners!

We flew AA maybe 25 plus times in 2015 ( carry on only) , including several "connecting flights" one from Phuket to Siem Reap via Don Muang with about the same connection time.

We experienced only one delay, if I recall correctly, for an hour. Personally, I would have no hesitation in using AA for your connecting flights.

"Could you avoid having hold baggage with either" we managed it for our six months trip! Our carry on bags usually weighed in at 9-10 kg compared with the AA allowance of 7kg. No one seemed to care. We always made a point of printing boarding passes in advance partly because it saves money and partly to avoid having to have our bags weighed at the check in desk. We went straight to security and on to the gates.

An extract from the link I provided above which may provide some reassurance.
"Free flight move if first flight is delayed"

Basically, I would go with whichever carrier has the most convenient flights.

EmJayZee Dec 27th, 2016 09:44 AM

Thank you, everyone!

LancasterLad Dec 28th, 2016 12:41 AM

In general I haven't got a problem. Flying on a single ticket with eg.Emirates, Qatar or Etihad, miss your connection and they'll put you on the next one which is usally within 3 or 4 hours. With a LCC the next flight might not be until the next day or even longer.

But I'm more concerned about the hold baggage. These LCC aircraft fly several times each day, and while they might be able to get passengers between a late incoming flight onto a flight waiting to take-off quickly, I'm not 100% confident that finding and transferring a couple of suitcases will be quite as quick and efficient.

LancasterLad Dec 28th, 2016 12:44 AM

Oops, my last post was in response to...

@Kathie<<<LL, this is no different from any other airline, but new for Air Asia. Do you consider connecting flights in general too risky to book?>>>

LancasterLad Dec 28th, 2016 12:52 AM

@Crellston<<<The baggage transfer process will be the same. I seriously doubt any airline these days will allow bags to fly on a plane without their owners!>>>

But will they allow passengers to fly without their bags?

LancasterLad Dec 28th, 2016 12:58 AM

This sort of thiing...

crellston Dec 28th, 2016 02:19 AM

"But will they allow passengers to fly without their bags?" Of course! They always have, so why should it be any different. This happens regardless of whether a connecting flight is involved or not, so I don't really get the relevance. The difference between th treatment of connecting bags between full service and budget airlines is zero. The only possible difference isn't that thy may contract with different baggage handling companies.

Bag loading / transfer is a largely automated process these days for most modern airports and it really wouldn't be a great concern to me.

If the OP remains concerned, then the only solution is either to break the trip overnight in Bangkok or go carry-on only. I would clearly always choose the latter, a that is how we travel, but the op may need that extra baggage - only he or she knows what is best for them

LancasterLad Dec 28th, 2016 02:55 AM

Full Service Carriers on long haul build in some slack into their ETDs of connecting flights to allow for delayed incoming flights to meet those connections, and ensure that passengers AND their hold luggage make their connection.

A Low Cost Carrier aircraft makes several flights a day. Any delayed departure has a knock-on effect, not only for the rest of the flights that aicraft has to make that day but also for any passengers on that flight who might have a connecting flight. A flight might hang on a short while for passengers on a late incoming flight but not necessarily their hold luggage.

Of course, anyone with only carry on bags won't be affected. But that's not what the OP is asking about.

crellston Dec 28th, 2016 04:32 AM

I think you are being overly generous to full service carriers, the basic premise of any airlines business plan is to maximise the time paying passengers are in the air. Building in slack would be anathema to most airline CEOs.

however, I would agree that they do have more leeway, simply becausethey are long haul flights and have greater opportunity to make time up which short haul carriers, which is the case here, do not. The greater frequency of flight of budget, short haul carriers, IMO, provides as many opportunities as threats, in that if there are delays or canclleations, there is a great probability of getting on the next flight.

Anyway, I suspect we are not going to agree on this. Let's hope the OP comes back to let us know what decision they make and how it works out.

Finally I think the OP was asking about carry on bags only. At least that is what I got from "Could we avoid having hold baggage with either?"

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