SRT Electrified Train Company which operates Airport Rail Link
service today posted on its Twitter warning commuters of catching
Pokemon at the train stations, particularly at train platforms, for
their own safety.
BANGKOK, 12 August 2016 (NNT) - The Ministry of
Transport has instructed all units under its charge to increase
security for public transit systems. Six main airports, including
Suvarnabhumi, Don Mueang, Phuket, Chiang Mai, Mae Fa Luang and Hat Yai,
were instructed to vigorously enforce security measures and keep
abreast of news and evaluation of the situation.
Baggage will be randomly inspected and CCTV cameras
will be deployed 24 hours. The airports will also prepare more security
guards in case of emergency. Airport Rail Link imposes the highest
security measures following the ministry’s instruction. Passengers’
baggage is checked more carefully and suspicious individuals and
objects are thoroughly inspected. Police dogs are deployed to assist in
search operations. The ministry also called on the public to
immediately notify officers if they see suspicious individuals or
The Rail Link between Bangkok and Suvarnabhumi
International Airport was stopped for over two hours on Sunday (28th)
over a power supply issue from the electricity authorities.
NEWS UPDATE... 21st November , 2014
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his customer-centric 105 Bedroomed Hotel Residence is
appx. 10 Minutes Drive to Suvarnabhumi International Airport and is
convenient to Bangkok City Centre. Whether you're traveling on
business, a leisure getaway, or just in transit, this Bangkok Airport
Hotel Residence has the right hotel accommodations for you.. Bangkok Airport Hotel
NEWS UPDATE... 21st November , 2014
Plans on track for
three airport railway links
The Transport Ministry is to extend Airport Rail Link
services to Suvarnabhumi, Don Mueang and U-tapao airports, all of which
are also due to expand their facilities. A 22-kilometre line linking
Phaya Thai in central Bangkok with Don Mueang airport is expected to be
constructed first at a cost of 29 billion baht, Transport Minister
Prajin Juntong said yesterday.
Read More - Bangkok Post
NEWS UPDATE... 5th November , 2014
floating on Loy Krathong Day
BANGKOK, 5 November 2014 (NNT) ‚€“ M.R. Sukhumbhand
Paribatra, Bangkok Governor, has signed a Bangkok regulation which
prohibits sale and floating of krathong lanterns in Bangkok on Loy
Krathong Day, November 6, during 6 p.m. to 5 a.m. next morning in order
to prevent public hazard caused by the fired lantern. Those who do not
abide by the regulation will be imprisoned up to three months or fined
not exceeding 6,000 baht or both.
The regulation is enacted in line with the Disaster
Prevention and Mitigation Act B.E.2550. The lantern floating is one of
the most popular activities on Loy Krathong Day every year. However,
fire in the lantern can be dangerous to life and property of both
participants and communities around the event. Significantly, Bangkok
is the area where numerous important places are located such as the
Grand Palace, ancient remains, temples, and government offices. These
places are sensitive to such a danger.
Moreover, Bangkok has declared thirteen districts around
Suvarnabhumi and Don Mueang airports as safety zones for aviation.
Therefore, no floating lanterns should be lit up in these districts.
Six of them are Prawet, Nong Chok, Suan Luang, Min Buri, Khlong Sam Wa
and Lat Krabang, all of which are around Suvarnabhumi Airport. The rest
are the districts of Don Mueang, Bang Khen, Bang Sue, Lat Phrao, Dusit,
Phaya Thai and Chatuchak located around Don Mueang Airport.
BANGKOK, 4 November 2014: A cycle lane that loops around
Thailand‚€™s main gateway, Suvarnabhumi Airport, has been listed as one
of the five best airport bike paths in the world by CNN Travel.
CNN Travel writer Peter Walker listed the bike lane
that encircles Suvarnabhumi Airport in a 23-km loop along with those at
Kastrup Airport in Copenhagen, Denmark, Lanzarote Airport on the Canary
Islands, Spain, Vancouver International Airport in Canada, and
Manchester Airport in the UK.
Walker based his inclusion of Suvarnabhumi Airport‚€™s
bike track with a hyperlink to a news article published by the
Bangkok-based travel trade publication, TTR Weekly, titled
‚€˜Suvarnabhumi opens bike track‚€™ that described the facility as
‚€œfast becoming a Mecca for leisure cyclists‚€.
Suvarnabhumi Airport opened its exclusively-designed
bike path, which runs along the flood-prevention barrier circling the
airport in February 2014 to serve 300 to 500 cyclists who were already
biking around the airport. Open daily from 0600 to 1800 the
green-painted road surface is covered with a para-rubber coating to
prevent slips and handle all weather conditions.
Thailand‚€™s finance minister Prajin Juntong is
considering to open up the duty-free market to more operators
at five airports in the country stating that several operators,
including many major department stores, have expressed an interest in
running duty-free concessions at airports.
King Power is the country‚€™‚€™s largest duty-free
retailer operating at the sole concession at the airports overseen by
the Airports of Thailand. Juntong aims to allow more duty-free
retailers to operate at Suvarnabhumi, Don Mueang, Chiang Mai, Phuket
and Hat Yai airports, according to the Bangkok Post. The contracts
awarded by operator Airports of Thailand last 10 years and can be
renewed for another four years.
Juntong is set to take the matter to the National
Council for Peace and Order‚€™s economic division, for which he is a
chairman, and aims to set up a committee on the subject. The report
suggested that Airports of Thailand is open to Juntong‚€™s proposal and
would stand to benefit.
City Line service every 15 mins. Express Line no
service all day.
NEWS UPDATE... 14th August, 2014
Browse these Limo website for details on
current RATES, AVAILABILITY and make a SECURE RESERVATION for
one of their transfers today.
NEWS UPDATE... 13th August , 2014
Delays due To Airport
Rail Link Maintenance
Kamrop Leeyawanit, acting managing director of SRT
Electric Train Co, on Wednesday admitted there were delays to the
checking of all trains after the problem was exposed by former deputy
Bangkok governor Samart Ratchapolsitte on his Facebook page. Mr Samart
posted his message on Tuesday, urging prompt overhaul of the trains for
fear of possible accidents as the fleet has passed the due date for
checking. The fleet of nine trains serving Bangkok and Suvarnabhumi
airport is supposed to be overhauled one by one from April this year to
April next year. Major maintenance which takes from one to two months
includes checks on cars, engines and brakes after they are in service
up to 1.2 million kilometres for safety. ACM Kamrop said the checking
schedule had been moved to start from October next year due to the
mistake in the maintenance plan.
The firm is negotiating with Siemens and Knorre Brence
to carry out the checking, he said. The talks could be wrapped up soon
as ACM Kamrop expected the State Railway of Thailand (SRT) board will
approve the deal on Tuesday so that it can be signed next month.
For the latest news on travel, delays, etc - please go
to the forum section - CLICK
GOLD NEWS UPDATE... 4th April , 2014
service temporarily halted for major maintenance
BANGKOK, 3 April 2014 (NNT)> The Express Line of the
Airport Rail Link is to suspend its services temporarily from Phayathai
station to Suvanabhumi, to carry out major maintenance, from April 14th
onwards. The major maintenance period will continue until April 2015,
servicing one train at a time and requiring 1-2 months for each train,
said Airport Rail Link Co chief Executive, Peerakan Kaewwongwattana.
The express services are therefore being adjusted in line with this
situation. Passengers are invited to join the Airport Link at Makkasan
station for the express service running from Makkasan to Suvanabhumi.
The City Line, meanwhile, still provides its all-stops service from
Phayathai, its terminal station, as usual.
NEWS UPDATE... 8 August, 2013
skywalk now open
A skywalk linking the Airport Rail Link's Makkasan
station to the MRT underground's Phetchaburi station is now open.
Airport Rail Link Co chief executive Peerakan Kaewwongwattana said
Wednesday the 166-metre skywalk would make it easier for passengers,
particularly the disabled and those carrying bulky luggage, to transfer
The skywalk is on the second floor, where passengers are
instructed to use Exit 1 of the Makkasan station of Airport Rail Link.
Closed-circuit television cameras and lighting have been installed
along the skywalk. Security guards are also on duty. Prime Minister
Yingluck Shinawatra will preside over the official opening of the
skywalk on Saturday, Mr Peerakan said.
Passengers using Airport Rail Link from Suvarnbhumi airport can also
connect to the BTS Skytrain by getting off at Ratchaprarop station and
using a second skywalk to get on BTS's Phayathai station.
Queen's Garden Resort At The Great Residence, a Bangkok
Airport Hotel, conveniently located just five minutes from Suvarnabhumi
International Airport and twenty five minutes from Bangkok City Centre.
Flexible payment options and excellent last minute promo deals.
requested from SRT to improve Makasan station
The management of the Airport Rail Link asserts it is in
the process of asking the State Railway Authority for additional budget
for improving Makasan station and encouraging more people to use its
service. Phirakan Kaewwongwatthana, president of Airport Rail Link, on
Wednesday inspected services offered at Makasan airport link station in
Bangkok, and saw to proper functioning of the newly-installed fans at
the terminals. The fans had been installed to ease passengers'
discomfort from the intense summer heat.
Mr. Phirakan said he is asking the State Railway
Authority, the Airport Rail Link's parent organization, for budget to
improve the scenery around the Makasan station. He further revealed
that more lanes will be opened to facilitate auto traffic in and out of
the station, bringing the total lanes to 4.
Mr. Phirakan added his agency is discussing with the
Airports of Thailand to put up counters promoting the rail link at
Suvarnabhumi airport, to encourage foreign tourists to use the service.
An OTOP products exhibition will also be held at Makasan station at the
end of June, to give the station more public exposure. The number of
users of the Airport Rail Link has been rising steadily. At present,
about 50,000 people use it daily.
www.thainews.prd.go.th, 30th May, 2013
NEWS UPDATE... 3rd Jan., 2013
Airport Rail Link
Airport Rail Link has decided to stop charging the flat
20-baht discounted fare for its City Line after it failed to attract as
many passengers as expected, resulting in the service running at a loss
of almost two million baht a month, the Matichon website reported on
Chamroon Tangpaisarnkit, chairman of the SRT Electric
Train Co which runs the Airport Rail Link, on Thursday said the company
board had decided not to extend the 20-baht discounted rate ? which
began on Oct 1 and ended on Dec 31, for the system's City Line between
11am and 2pm ? because the number of passengers still fell short of the
The company wanted the promotional fare package to
attract about 7,000 passengers a day, but it only slightly increased
the number of city travelers to between 5,000 and 5,500 during the
entire period, or about the same figure as before the discounted fare
The company began charging normal fares for the City
Line, which runs from Phaya Thai station to Suvarnabhumi airport, on
Jan 1. The fares are from 15 to 45 baht, depending on the distance
travelled to the station.
Airport Rail Link would need to come up with new
promotional packages or approaches to draw in more passengers to use
the system, Mr Chamroon said. The separate express service to the
airport charges a higher fare per passenger -- one-way 90 baht and
return 150 baht.
Post, January 3rd, 2013
NEWS UPDATE... 25th Dec., 2012
ministry to fast-track rail projects
The government is revising plans for the existing rail
system and proposed high-speed rail projects in a bid to hurry
investment. According to Transport Minister Chatchart Sithiphan, the
ministry was told by Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra at yesterday's
meeting to complete the revision within a month.
The ministry's existing plans call for spending 77.8
billion baht on 10 mass-transit projects in Bangkok and the surrounding
area, excluding high-speed rail, in 2013. The figure was set to
increase to 138.9 bullion baht in 2014 and 146.1 billion in 2015,
dipping to 109.9 billion in 2016 and 60.4 billion in 2017.
The ministry has been told to hasten construction of the
10 planned mass transit projects covering 464 kilometres, especially
the first section of the 80.8-km electric Red Line running from Rangsit
in Pathum Thani to Bang Sue.
The Red Line project was delayed after suggestions that
a section of it would be scrapped because it would overlap the future
extension of the Airport Rail Link from Phaya Thai station to Don
Mueang airport, as well as a planned international high-speed rail
In related news, bidding for high-speed rail projects is
expected to kick off faster than previously planned, moving from the
third or fourth quarter of 2013 to the second quarter, according to Mr
Chatchart The ministry is also required to settle route plans, sources
of funding and the environmental impact. Mr Chatchart said the
government would invest only in rail systems and civil works making up
80% of the project, with the rest coming through public-private
Theparat, Bangkok Post, December 25th, 2012
NEWS UPDATE... 20th Dec., 2012
Rail Link extends hours
BANGKOK, 21 December 2013: Airport Rail Link and MRT
will extend service hours from midnight to 0200 on New Year‚€™s Eve.
Airport Rail Link will extend service hours of the City Line ‚€“
Phayathai-Suvarnabhumi while the Express Line will operate normal hours
closing at midnight.
From 24 December to 2 January Airport Link will give to
passengers 21,000 pens and 7,000 bottles of white tea at Makkasan and
The SRT Electrified Train, the operator of the Airport
Rail Link, will promote its check-in facility at Makkasan Station from
0700 to 2100 to avoid congestion at the airport. The SRET provides free
parking at Makkasan station for up to 300 cars.
Transport Minister Chadchart Sittipunt says the State
Railway of Thailand will study whether it should cancel the contract on
the electrified trains supplied by Siemens to solve a monopoly that
will make it more difficult to buy rolling stock from other companies
in the future.
Mantanarat, TTR Weekly, December 20th, 2012
NEWS UPDATE... 10th Dec., 2012
Link discount fails to pull crowds
The Airport Rail Link's flat 20-baht fare for its City
Line has failed to attract as many passengers as expected, causing the
system to run at a loss of almost 2 million baht a month.
Chamroon Tangpaisarnkit, chairman of the SRT Electric
Train Co which runs the Airport Rail Link, said the 20-baht discount
rate _ which began on Sept 30 and is due to end on Dec 31 for the
system's City Line, running between 11am and 2pm _ has only slightly
increased the number of passengers using the City Line.
At some times during the operating hours in which the
discount has been offered, the City Line has attracted the same number
of passengers travelling as before the discounted fare rate was
introduced, or 5,000 passengers during the entire period, he said. The
system was running at a loss of about 1.8 million a month.
The company's board would meet on Dec 17 to discuss
whether to extend the promotional fare package for the City Line, which
runs from Phaya Thai station to Suvarnabhumi airport. "In past months,
we have introduced several promotional packages such as a reduced fare
for the Express Line from 90 baht to 45 baht to encourage employees and
officials working at Suvarnabhumi airport to use the non-stop rail
service during rush hour," Mr Chamroon said.
The pre-flat rate fares for the City Line were between
15 and 45 baht. "However, [even with the discounted rate] the number of
passengers still falls short of the target," he said. He backed the
government's idea to separate SRT Electric Train Co from the State
Railway of Thailand (SRT), saying his firm needed more flexibility in
the way it operated. The company is currently a subsidiary of the SRT.
Transport Minister Chadchat Sittipunt said he would call
a meeting with Airport Rail Link executives to discuss problems
regarding the flat 20-baht discounted fare. He wanted to know what
caused the system to run at a loss. The minister said he wanted the
20-baht discounted fare to continue, but further details of the
promotional package need to be studied.
Mahitthirook, Bangkok Post, 10th December, 2012
NEWS UPDATE... 28th Sept., 2012
Bt20 fare for Airport
Link routes to start Sunday
BANGKOK, Sept 28 - The Airport Rail Link also known as
Suvarnabhumi Airport Rail Link is to start collecting one fare at Bt20
for all routes on Sunday.
SRT Electrified Train (SRTET) Company's public relations
manager Aim-atcha Pongpanpanu said the flat-rate fare promotion is the
government's policy for Airport Rail Link's City Line, which is usually
priced at Bt15-45/journey.
Passengers who only travel one stop will however be
charged less at Bt15/journey. Those carrying a student smart pass
originally given a 20-per cent discount and those having a senior smart
pass with a 50-per cent discount will still be offered the one-fare
The promotional price will take effect only from
11am-2pm daily from Sunday through Dec 31 as a thank you for passengers
using the service and to encourage more customers to use Airport Link.
online news, September 28th, 2012
NEWS UPDATE... 21st Sept., 2012
Airport Link Square
BANGKOK, 21 September 2012: The
first mixed-use development near the Airport Rail link to Suvarnabhumi
Airport will feature a shopping mall and a high-end hotel to attract
tourists and business visitors. The mixed-use development project,
A-Link Square, to be built by Airport Link Square, will be ready by the
second quarter of next year at a development cost of around Bt900
The project is located on Ramkhamheang
Road, around 600 metres from the Airport Rail Link‚€™s Ramkhamheang
station. It is around 10 km from down town Bangkok in a busy suburb
noted for its entertainment, pubs, apartments and hotels.
The project will feature two zones ‚€“
a shopping mall and hotel, covering 40,000 sqm with around 113 shops
and a hotel branded Niras Bangkok that will have just 63 rooms.
According to the Airport Link Square,
the project will achieve a return on investment in six years based on
its location as the first big mixed-use real estate development near
the Airport Rail Link.Even so it is still 25 km from Suvarnabhumi
Airport, but just 12 minutes away on the train.
The owning company believes it can
attract tourists who are on their way to the airport to stop for
last-minute shopping at the mall. It is a long-shot as most tourists
once they board an airport train are committed to just one task ‚€“
boarding a plane to go home.
However a more practical target is
residents living on Sukhumvit 71, Ekamai, Thonglor, Khlong Tan,
Phatthanakan, Rama IX, Ramkhamhaeng and Petchaburi roads.
The company also claims it will
develop a second hotel property in Bangkok of around 2,000 rooms that
will cater to the events business,but gave no details of the site
location or time-frame.
Apimonton, Ttrweekly, September 21st, 2012
NEWS UPDATE... 12th Sept., 2012
Airport Rail Link to
be made State Enterprise
The status of Airport Rail Link
will be raised to that of a state enterprise to settle the illiquidity
problem and business loss.
Deputy Transport Minister Chatchart
Sithipan said that the State Enterprise Policy Committee's meeting,
chaired by Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Kittiratt
NaRanong, agreed to raise the status of Airport Rail Link to a state
enterprise, similar to State Railway of Thailand, by making the Finance
Ministry its major stakeholder. It will be monitored by the Transport
Airport Rail Link operates a rapid
transit line in Bangkok. The line provides an airport rail link from
Suvarnabhumi Airport, via Makkasan, to Phya Thai station in central
Nation, September 12, 2012
NEWS UPDATE... 19th August, 2012
Rail link connecting
Suvarnabhumi Airport with Bang Na BTS?
BANGKOK, Aug 19 ‚€“ The Bangkok Metropolitan
Administration (BMA) convened a meeting to plan public hearings for its
plan to develop mass transit linking Suvarnabhumi airport and the BTS
BMA Deputy Director-General Traffic and Transportation
Department Oravit Hemachudha presides over a meeting on the planned
Light Rail Transit (LRT) system between Suvarnabhumi and Bang Na with a
view of alleviating traffic congestion. To date, this particular
section is a missing link in the mass transit system between the
airport and inner city.
Mr Oravit said construction for the 18.3 km. elevated
stretch is projected to start in 2014, and continue for three years,
with a total budget of Bt25 billion.
The route will run through 12 stops from the airport to
BTS station in Bang Na, passing through busy spots, such as BITEC
convention centre and Central Bangna, via Sri Nakarin road and King
In addition to the Phase 1 connection with Bang Na BTS
station, the system is also designed to connect with the southernmost
side, which is a planned expansion section of Suvarnabhumi airport.
(MCOT online news)
online news, 19th August, 2012
UPDATE... 18th August, 2012
Plane Spotting Around
NEWS UPDATE... 16th July, 2012
Airport link to add
more check-in counters
BANGKOK, 15 July 2012 - Mr. Wasin Vannaprueks, the
Marketing Section Manager of SRT Electrified Train Co., Ltd, which
manages the Airport Rail Link, made public that this coming August 14,
he will meet with the Airline Operators Committee (AOC) to discuss the
planned opening of additional check-in counters at the Airport Rail
Link‚€™s Makkasan Station. Mr. Wasin stated that his company will
present suggestions to various airlines regarding check-in promotions,
improving the ambience at the station, and stores within the station.
Airlines that are interested in opening check-in
services at Makkasan station will be allowed to utilize check-in
counters, offices, and parking spaces for free for the first six
months, and employees will also be given rail passes for use to travel
to work. Whether these services will be offered cost-free for more than
six months will depend on negotiations between the company and
Mr. Wasin also noted that at present, only one airline
is providing check-in services at Makkasan station, which is Thai
The battle lines have already been drawn. On one side,
we have Finance Minister Kittiratt Na-Ranong and the government's
economic policy makers, while on the other are opposition politicians
and private economists.
Mr Kittiratt wants parliament to approve up to 2
trillion baht in new borrowing to support infrastructure investment
over the next few years. New roads, power plants, rail systems and the
like will all be crucial to support economic growth and strengthen the
country's competitiveness, particularly with the launch of the Asean
Economic Community in 2015.
For the most part, critics do not challenge the need to
invest in new basic infrastructure. Rather, the question is one of
value and timing _ the government is seeking to increase the country's
debt by a considerable amount, and the worry is that the actual
benefits, minus waste and corruption, will be less than hoped by
Considering the uncertainties in the global economy, the
concerns are not unwarranted. Thailand's public debt now stands at
4.614 trillion baht, or the equivalent of 42.4% of gross domestic
product. While debt remains well below the 60% limit set by the Finance
Ministry, incurring so much new debt will leave current and future
policy makers with less breathing room to cope with changes in the
economic environment and budget requirements.
Personally, I agree with Mr Kittiratt that the question
to invest or not to invest should be answered based on economics, not
politics. Alas, the country's experience from large public projects
shows that it is nearly impossible to divorce the two. Time and time
again, large programmes, whether it be a subway, expressway or an
airport, have been hit by delays and cost overruns as each change in
political leadership brings reviews, audits and red tape ultimately
aimed at ensuring that personal and party interests are properly
aligned with national interests.
We are witnessing this process occur today. Five months
after the government announced its emergency decree authorising 350
billion baht of debt for flood prevention and water management
projects, only a miniscule amount of funds has been actually disbursed.
I have little confidence that what work has been done will be
sufficient to ward off flooding if the country is hit by a similar wave
of storms as those last year.
The political dimension of public spending isn't
confined to the government and opposition. We have Thaksin Shinawatra
supporters and detractors, red shirts and yellow shirts, conservative
elite and more progressive liberals. The nuances and camps involved in
Thai politics have become more slippery than ever before. For good or
ill, Thaksin has been a lightning rod in each of these debates and has
been ever since the 2006 military coup that forced his premature
departure from the premiership.
Would it be too much for Thaksin to step above the
divisions and wield his considerable influence and power for the common
good? Could he not simply take to the airwaves and say he and his
sister, Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, will do what must be done
to eliminate corruption and increase public governance and transparency
Businessmen complain bitterly about bribes and tea money
that must be paid to simply do business with the state: sums that can
amount to as much as 50% of the total budget of a project and spent
simply to ensure that public officials and our elected politicians do
their job. I have no doubt whatsoever in my mind that the wheels of the
bureaucracy and the ruling Pheu Thai Party would turn much more quickly
if Thaksin committed his influence, both in public and behind the
scenes, to implementing these projects as quickly, cleanly and
efficiently as possible.
Alas, I also have just as little doubt that this is
simply a dream. One simply needs to look at our Bangkok subway, the
Airport Rail Link project or the Bangkok BRT bus system as
infrastructure programmes where the value received by taxpayers,
compared with the resources committed, seems debatable at best. Or
consider initiatives such as flood prevention programmes for Bangkok or
third-generation (3G) wireless licences, where the public need has been
clear but little has been done because of a lack of political will.
Any business considering expansion or capital investment
would ask the same questions. What is the potential benefit in terms of
profits, productivity and market share? Will this help improve
efficiency and productivity? Does this help the company relative to its
competitors? How will my customers gain?
I do not think that public investment is all that
different. And considering the business acumen and experience touted by
both Ms Yingluck, Mr Kittiratt and, of course, Thaksin, it is
reasonable to ask that they apply as much, if not more, scrutiny in the
use of public money as they would if it was their own.
Chantanusornsiri is a senior business reporter at the Bangkok Post.
12th July, 2012
NEWS UPDATE... 9th April, 2012
Airport link security
threatens to halt service following pay dispute
BANGKOK, 9 April 2012 (NNT) - A Transport Ministry
official said the State Railway Of Thailand Electrical Train (SRTET)
failed to pay security guards employed at Airport Link stations a new
daily minimum wage of 300 baht. Their previous minimum wage was 210
baht per day.
Asia Security Management (ACM), a subsidiary of the
consortium hired to provide security for Suvannabhumi airport, is still
awaiting payment of wages from the SRTET.
The official said the consortium obtained the security
contract which lasted from December 2011-March 2012, during which
delayed payments from the SRTET led to financial rows between the two
On April 1, ACM was awarded another contract term by
the railway company, and has since requested a wage increase in line
with the current government‚€™s 300-baht daily minimum wage scheme;
however, The SRTET refused to comply with the request, given no
government agencies, including the STRT, have received instructions to
do so from the government. Asia Security Management has now threatened
to halt their services following the disputes.
The official elaborated that the SRTET is planning a
meeting with ACM executives to ask the company to continue providing
their security services until the SRTET has been formally ordered to
comply with the wage policy change.
Ngamsaithong, National News Bureau Thailand, 9th April, 2012
NEWS UPDATE... 14th February, 2012
More trains destined
for Airport Link, new route also planned
The Transport Ministry will buy more trains for the
Airport Rail Link and build a new line from Suvarnabhumi airport to
Pattaya. Pakorn Tangjetsakao, acting president of SRT Electric Train Co
under the jurisdiction of the ministry, said the company needs five
more trains worth 3 billion baht to add to the eight trains it has
The new trains will allow existing ones to go in for
maintenance and cut passenger waiting times from 12-20 minutes to 7-10
minutes. Deputy Transport Minister Chatt Kuldiloke said at least two
trains worth about 1.2 billion baht would be ordered this year.
The ministry will also deploy vans and small buses to
transport travellers to and from several locations around Bangkok to
the Airport Rail Link at its Makkasan terminal in coming months.
Soythip Traisuthi, chairwoman of the State Railway of Thailand, said
the state enterprise would spend 255 million baht hiring a consultant
to study a new route for the Airport Rail Link, from the airport to
Chon Buri and Pattaya. She expected the study to be concluded in 12
In another development, the cabinet yesterday approved a
request from the Transport Ministry for the Mass Rapid Transit
Authority to borrow 72.25 billion baht from the Finance Ministry for
the Blue Line and Green Line electric railway network extensions.
Deputy government spokesman Pakdiharn Himathongkham said
54.41 billion baht will fund the Blue Line extension from Hua Lamphong
to Bang Kae and from Bang Sue to Tha Phra. Meanwhile, 17.84 billion
baht will support the extension of the Green Line from Bearing to Samut
Mahitthirook, Bangkok Post, 14th February
NEWS UPDATE... 1st January 2012
Happy 2012 From
NEWS UPDATE... 9th November, 2011
Water Levels In Key
Waterways Near Suvarnabhumi Airport
Water levels in key waterways near Suvarnabhumi Airport
are increasing slowly, while preventive measures and monitoring of the
situation are underway. The level in Lat Krabang Canal north of the
airport has increased by 2 centimetres, and a branch of it in the south
by 4cm. The level at the nearby Lat Krabang watergate has increased by
3cm, and at Prawet Burirom watergate by 3cm, senior airport official
Suk Phuengtham said.
Airport director Somchai Sawasdiphol said the situation
was under control, as the flood water surrounding the compound was
between 40cm and 67cm, while the flood barriers were 3.5 metres high.
The military has repeated its pledge to defend the Bang Chan and Lat
Krabang industrial estates from encroaching floods. Defence Minister
General Yuthasak Sasiprapha said there was time left for the military
to do their best. "These are two estates that have so far survived the
floods. If we fail again here, we have failed right across the board,"
Engineering Institute of Thailand chief Thanes
Weerasiri said Bang Chan was not protected by a surrounding flood
barrier as Bang Chan Canal runs through it. "The best way to deal with
flooding is to let the water flow as fast and in as much quantity as we
can," he said.
Each factory is protected by individual floodwalls of
two metres high on average. Requests for water pumps have been made to
the city administration. "I cannot give a 100-per-cent guarantee that
the Bang Chan estate will escape the flood waters," Thanes added.
A section of the Western Outer Ring Road is being
cleared of flood water so as to link to Route 340 and provide an
alternative to Rama II Road for journeys to the South. Transport
Ministry permanent secretary Suphoj Samlom said cutting a flood channel
through Rama II Road would be useless and deprive drivers of a viable
route to the South.
Nation, 9th November, 2011
NEWS UPDATE... 4th November, 2011
Suvarnabhumi Airport safe
Suvarnabhumi International Airport is expected to stay
dry during the worst floods in five decades that are now creeping
towards the capital's centre, the airport's management said Friday.
"I am confident that we can keep Suvarnabhumi dry," said
Somchai Sawasdeepon, acting general manager of Suvarnabhumi Airport, 20
kilometres east of the city centre, which has served as the main
international airport for Bangkok since 2006.
The capital‚€™s old airport, Don Mueang, 15 kilometres
north of the centre, and now used only for some domestic flights, has
been closed for weeks with its runway currently under a metre of water.
Bangkok‚€™s north and north-east suburbs have been inundated by runoff
from Thailand‚€™s central plains which were flooded by the swollen Chao
Phraya River last month.
The water is seeping through Bangkok en route to the
Gulf of Thailand, with government authorities trying desperately to
keep the inundation out of the centre of the capital by diverting the
flow to the east and west of the metropolis. "Our water management
system at Suvarnabhumi is separate from Bangkok‚€™s, so we can control
it," Somchai said.
The airport is protected by 3.5-metre dyke surrounding
the complex, which also includes a system of drainage canals and
reservoirs with a storage capacity of 4 million cubic metres. The
reservoirs‚€™ current level is 1 million cubic metres, Somchai said.
The airport is connected to Bangkok by elevated roads and a train track.
Somchai said that passenger traffic at Suvarnabhumi
Airport had increased 10 per cent in October, boosted mainly by a 14.5
per cent jump in domestic traffic as Bangkokians fled the city.
International passengers were up 3.5 per cent, but started to fall off
in late October.
"After October 24, arrivals from some Asian markets such
as China, Japan and India started to decline," Somchai said. Thailand
has set a target of 19 million tourist arrivals this year, but is now
unlikely to achieve this as a result of the floods, which have claimed
437 lives over the past three months and caused billions of dollars in
During the first nine months, some 14.4 million foreign
tourists visited Thailand, up 27 per cent year-on-year, according to
the Kasikorn Research Centre, a private think tank.
Deutsche Presse Agentur, 4th November, 2011
NEWS UPDATE... 28th October, 2011
THAI opens check-in services
at Makkasan Station
Thai Airways International provides additional check-in
counters at the Airport Rail Link, Makkasan Station to facilitate
passengers travelling to Suvarnabhumi Airport during flooding
Danuj Bunnag, THAI's Managing Director, Ground Services
Business Unit, said "Passengers may find it difficult to travel to
Suvarnabhumi Airport due to floods in some areas of Bangkok. To help
facilitate THAI's passengers travelling on both domestic and
international routes, THAI set up additional check-in counters at the
Airport Rail Link, Makkasan Station."
THAI's passenger travelling to Suvarnabhumi Airport by
Airport Rail Link may check-in their luggage and personal belongings at
THAI's check-in counters, located on the third floor of the station,
starting today from 7am until 9pm everyday.
The Airport Rail Link check-in service is open for all
THAI's flights departing Suvarnabhumi Airport between 10am-1.20am.
Passengers must check-in by themselves 3 hours prior to flight
departure and receive their boarding pass and luggage tags. This is
with the exception of passengers travelling to the US, on the route
Bangkok - Los Angeles, who must check-in at Suvarnabhumi Airport only.
Nation, 28th October, 2011
NEWS UPDATE... 22nd September, 2011
Improvement plan for Airport
The Transport Ministry plans to buy five more trains in
2014 to increase the frequency and efficiency of the Airport RaIlRail
Link service, the rail route that links Bangkok's central area to
According to the long-term railway
development plan, the ministry will buy five more trains to increase
frequency of rail services to eight minutes from the current 15 minutes
Deputy Minister Kittisakdi
Hathasongkroh said yesterday that |the ministry would also increase the
efficiency of the Airport Rail Link service. The improvement plan is
divided into three stages. First, the Airport Rail Link will increase
frequency of trains, rearrange traffic system, facilities and prepare
commercial spaces. The next stage will include procurement of new
trains for the City Line. Finally, it will procure five more new trains
in 2014. At this stage, the Makkasan Station's surrounding area will be
developed as a complex and the Airport Link route will be extended from
Suvarnabhumi Airport to Dong Mueang Airport.
Kittisakdi said the ministry would
start providing additional trains on November 1 to increase its
frequency as planned in the first stage, expecting that this could
carry more passengers to achieve 140,000 per month. Yesterday, Airport
Rail Link also launched a new campaign of its services named "Mr
Airport Link" to provide solutions when any problem arises.
Currently, SRT Electrified Train Co is
reviewing conditions or terms of reference of the bidding for its
rental spaces at eight stations in accordance with the Transport
Ministry's policy. In the initial stage, it will increase to more than
1,300 square metres of rental space for duty-free shops on |the third
floor of the Makkasan Station. The rental spaces will be divided into
general shops and duty-free shops.
The company will also discuss |with
the Customs Department |about providing space for renting to bonded
warehouses for duty-free shops.
Watcharapong Thongrung., The Nation, 22nd September, 2011
NEWS UPDATE... 15th September, 2011,
Lower fares on way for
The Transport Ministry will encourage commuters to use
the loss-making Airport Rail Link between Suvarnabhumi airport and
inner Bangkok by deploying more taxis at its inner Bangkok terminal. It
will also increase the frequency of commuter trains on the link, and
Wan Yubamrung, secretary to Deputy Transport Minister
Kittisakdi Hathasongkorh, said an insufficient number of taxis at the
Makkasan terminal during rush hours was limiting the popularity of the
Airport Rail Link. The limited taxi services were the result of some
influential parties demanding money from taxi drivers who wanted to
pick up passengers at the Makkasan terminal.
Mr Wan, who has been appointed Airport Link Ambassador
and assigned by Mr Kittisakdi to promote the Airport Rail Link, vowed
to end the illicit business at the Makkasan terminal in a week. Mr Wan
said he would request 20 Bangkok taxi cooperatives to send their
drivers to the Makkasan terminal during peak hours.
Mr Wan also promised to improve road access to the
Makkasan terminal. He said a traffic island installed by the Bangkok
Metropolitan Administration was blocking access from Ratchadaphisek
Road. Railway authorities will ask City Hall to remove it.
Small shuttle bus services would be provided to carry
commuters between the Makkasan terminal and the subway station on
nearby Phetchaburi Road, pending construction of an elevated walkway
between both stations.
A source said the Transport Ministry may shorten
commuter train wait time on the Airport Rail Link from 15 to 10
minutes, and cut fares from 15-45 baht to a 20-baht flat rate to make
the service more attractive.
Transport Minister Sukampol Suwannathat has vowed to
push for construction of the so-called "Makkasan Complex" in a bid to
boost passenger numbers on the Airport Rail Link.
The project at Makkasan BTS station will follow the
Chamchuri Square model, a residential and commercial project on Rama IV
built above Sam Yan MRT station. Developing the station would help
boost its profile as the gateway to the Airport Link, he said.
upoj Saplom, the transport permanent secretary and
chairman of the State Railways of Thailand board, said a consultant
will conduct a feasibility study of the 517-rai Makkasan project. ACM
Sukampol also pledged to expand the Airport Rail Link system, which
connects inner Bangkok with Suvarnabhumi Airport, to Don Mueang Airport
and Rayong province
BTS and MRT connections to the Airport Rail Link system
must also be improved to attract more users, he said. ACM Sukampol said
his lobbying campaign will begin after government delivers its policy
statement before parliament next week. The minister yesterday inspected
the Airport Rail Link system and insisted a flat-rate ticket price of
20 baht for the MRT, BTS and Airport Rail Link will be introduced as
The State Railway of Thailand board yesterday denied a
rumour it will soon close down the Airport Rail Link system over
liquidity problems and a shortage of spare parts.
Supoj Saplom, the transport permanent secretary and
chairman of the SRT board, dismissed as untrue a rumour that has been
circulating that the liquidity problems and spare parts shortage would
force the Airport Rail Link system, which connects inner Bangkok with
Suvarnabhumi airport, to cease operations in a few months.
Mr Supoj said the number of passengers had been
increasing. The Airport Rail Link is also not suffering any liquidity
crunch because it shares its financial accounts with the SRT which
ensures that it has sufficient cash flows, Mr Supoj said. He also
denied that many Airport Rail Link employees were resigning. He said
the employees viewed their jobs as being secure.
According to Mr Supoj, the increase in passenger numbers
on the link recently has been a direct result of the company's decision
to slash the fare for the system's Express Line from 150 baht to 90
baht per trip. The number of passengers on the Express Line has
increased from 300 a day to around 2,000 a day. "For this reason, it is
impossible for us to cease our services. We are also in the middle of
constructing the link between the system and the BTS skytrain, as well
as the subway system at Phetchaburi station," he said.
Suchatvee Suwansawat, the dean of the Engineering
Faculty at King Mongkut's Institute of Technology Ladkrabang and a
director of the SRT Electric Train Co which runs the Airport Rail Link
system, backed up Mr Supoj's statement. He said the number of Airport
Rail Link passengers last month on both the express and ordinary
services topped 998,000.
Meanwhile, Somchai Sujjapongse, the director-general of
the General State Enterprise Policy Office (SEPO), said that the SEPO
has proposed to the economic team of the Pheu Thai Party-led coalition
that the Airport Rail Link should be expanded to run to Pattaya City
and Chon Buri. Such an expansion could help the system attract more
domestic and international tourists between Bangkok and the resort
city. The SEPO has also recommended that the Airport Rail Link should
be connected to the old Don Mueang international airport as well, Mr
NEWS UPDATE... 2nd August, 2011
Airport Rail Link Not Facing
Serious Management Issue
The State Railway of Thailand has come out to say the
Airport Rail Link is not facing serious management and financial
issues, and reassures that train services will run as usual.
The State Railway of Thailand Vice President Pakorn
Tungjedsakaow, the acting board of director of the Airport Rail Link or
ARL claims that the ARL is not facing serious management or financial
problems, and will not stop operating.
He said it's normal for a new company to face minor
problems, as it was just established in February this year. Pakorn said
all management processes are proceeding according to their business
plan, which projects to reach the break-even point within the next five
He added that ARL has requested a 2-billion baht budget
for its services, of which the State Railway and the Finance Ministry
has approved 140 million baht. Pakorn said the ARL will have to find
funds from other sources.
He went on to say the company is borrowing spare train
parts from its spare trains, while confirming that the service is safe
for all travelers. Meanwhile, he admitted that the number of commuters
using the ARL service is below the targeted level, as they hope to
receive 42,000 passengers per day for their City Line, and 2,200
passengers per day for their Express Line. However, the Express Line
has just 300 to 400 passengers per day. He added that the expansion of
the Phaya Thai Station has increased the number of passengers to 2,300
people per day.
NEWS UPDATE... 25th June, 2011
Thailand's domestic carrier Bangkok Airways closed its
check-in service at Bangkok's City Air Terminal, also known as Makkasan
Station. Airline public relations director Nantika Worawan said the
service is closed temporarily, as few passengers used the facility on
average per day.
Bangkok Airways initially expected some 400 passengers
would check in at the City Air Terminal, or about 20 per cent of
approximately 2,000 travellers using the carrier at Suvarnabhumi
Airport. The figure expected was later lowered to 20-50 passengers per
Ms Nantika said such low numbers were due to the fact
that it was more practical and convenient for travellers to take a taxi
directly to the airport. She said the carrier will re-open its counter
when the government attracts more riders to use the Makkasan Station
service, which may be positively affected by providing added
convenience in travelling, and building a department store within the
Meanwhile, Thai Airways International (THAI) continues
to offer its city check-in service, but the number of counters was
reduced from four to one, for only some 15 passengers use the facility
daily. The airline has not yet halted service as the State Railway of
Thailand (SRT) is not charging for use of the counter.
Thailand's Suvarnabhumi Airport Airport Link began full
operation in January when its check-in service was opened for the first
time. The 28-km rail link connects Suvarnabhumi Airport in adjacent
Samut Prakan province and the City Air Terminal in Bangkok‚€™s Makkasan
NEWS UPDATE... 18th April, 2011
BANGKOK POST SPECIAL REPORT: Passengers unhappy with
shoddy service are looking elsewhere
Overpriced Airport link is 'a debacle'
There have been complaints that the terminals at the
stations are badly signposted; there are no escalators; and there are
no trolleys for passengers with heavy bags to use. Other complaints
include the lack of a car park and no facilities linking the stations
to public transport.
Passengers also complained the train "looks old" and the
seats are uncomfortable. Many passengers are also upset by the way the
doors to the train shut with heavy force. Basic technical equipment has
also failed. Permanent secretary for transport Supoj Saplom admitted
the problems and lack of facilities stemmed from the operation's
The 28-kilometre Airport Rail Link between central
Bangkok and Suvarnabhumi airport has been plagued with these problems
after less than one year of trials and service. On March 27, the
express non-stop train service of the Airport Rail Link from Makkasan
station to Suvarnabhumi was halted due to a technical problem, although
commuter trains on the line had been operating as normal. Carbon
brushes _ an essential component in the brakes of the electric-powered
train that were supposed to last six months failed after only three
days of use.
Pakorn Tangjedsakao, acting managing director of SRT
Electric Train Co, which manages the rail link project, said express
train services were halted after the company ran out of the carbon
brushes, which are worth about 100,000 baht each. Mr Pakorn said it was
also found the express train's disk brakes developed cracks and the
brake pads were also wearing down faster than usual. The company has
contacted Siemens, the contractor, to fix the problems as quickly as
possible, Mr Pakorn said. He said the train must have a stock of spare
parts worth about 10% of the price of the locomotive. He said the
trains under the project are worth 4.65 billion baht so the stock of
spare parts must be worth about 460 million baht. But at the initial
stage of the project, there were problems related to the budget and no
contract was made to arrange for the stocks of spare parts, Mr Pakorn
said. He said the company's executives have asked the board members to
allocate a budget of about 270 million baht to buy spare parts.
The service started operating on a trial basis on June 1
last year providing free rides. The Airport Rail Link began full
commercial operations with promotional fares on Aug 23 last year. The
Airport Rail Link offers City Line, which runs from Phaya Thai to
Suvarnabhumi with a full range of stops. The 30-minute ride costs a
flat rate of 15 baht. The Express Line runs non-stop from Makkasan to
the airport, taking just 15 minutes and costs 100 baht. Trains run from
6am to midnight. After Jan 1, 2011, fares for the City Line varied from
15 baht to 45 baht, while the Express Line rose to 150 baht.
Permanent secretary for transport Supoj Saplom said the
increase in fares for the Express Line has led to a sharp drop in the
number of passengers to 700 a day, below the target of 2,200, although
the City Line still can attract between 36,000 to 40,000 a day. Mr
Supoj said the company earns about 35 million baht a month but its
expenditure is much higher at about 77 million baht a month. This means
the losses total 42 million baht a month.
Mr Supoj said the solution is to attract more passengers
to the Express Line, most of whom are travellers and tourists with
heavy bags, by installing more facilities. He admitted that the
inconvenience and the lack of facilities stem from the substandard
design. Urgent steps are being taken to make improvements, he said.
State Railway of Thailand governor Yutthana Thapcharoen said the SRT
has set aside a budget of 646 million baht to improve and build
facilities and signposts at all stations within this year.
About 250 million baht will be spent on improving the
Makkasan station. Of that amount, 80 million baht will be allocated to
build a 130m-skywalk to link the concourse on the Makkasan station to
the underground railway's Phetchaburi station. Deputy government
spokesman Supachai Jaisamut said the cabinet resolved on April 12 that
the Finance Ministry arrange a loan worth 1.86 billion baht for SRT
Electric Train Co to help the company run the Airport Rail Link project.
Kantapa Piriyapongsa, an office employee, complained the
trains do not arrive on time, resulting in passengers missing flights
at Suvarnabhumi. Rungroj Piyapanuwat, a teacher, said the doors to the
trains close violently and the seats in the trains are uncomfortable.
Nuttaya Jaisongkror, a student, said she had to travel a long way by
taxi to reach Thap Chang station and that there were no signposts at
the station. Sri-arun Jangtiyanont, an office worker, said there were
no escalators for passengers with heavy bags and the lifts are too far
Mahitthirook, Bangkok Post - 18th Aprl, 2011
NEWS UPDATE... 30th March, 2011
Express train service to
Suvarnabhumi Airport suspended
BANGKOK, March 30 - The Airport Link's express train
services to Suvarnabhumi Airport were suspended due to a lack of spare
parts, which are delivered from a company in Germany.
The "Express Line" train service to Suvarnabhumi
Airport, Bangkok's main airport, was suspended but is expected to
resume service on Monday as Siemens AG, the train manufacturer, has
sent new spare parts for the power-connecting carbon brush mechanism
which is due to. arrive Sunday, according to Pakorn Tangjetsakao,
acting president of the SRT Electric Train company.
Meanwhile, the "City Line" stopped operating yesterday
because its carbon brushes are worn out and there are no spare parts
left. Three other "City Line" trains are still operating on a reduced
schedule. It now runs every 20 minutes, a wider gap in frequency than
the normal schedule of every 15 minutes, so it inconvenienced about
40,000 passengers and the trains are crowded during rush hours.
However, Siemens AG informed the SRT Electric Train
Company that it will speed up the procurement of 32 carbon brushes and
will have them delivered on Wednesday, so all nine trains (both the
Express and City Lines) can resume services ahead of schedule as the
service. suspension causes losses of about Bt1.2 million (US $ 40,000)
In the long term, Siemens must solve the quick wearing
down of the carbon brushes, which is caused by the problem in the
tunnel design at Suvarnabhumi station.
NEWS UPDATE... 29th March, 2011
Airport Link temporarily
Nation, 29th March, 2011
NEWS UPDATE... 3rd January, 2011
Airport Rail Link to Begin Full
After running commercial services for
Bangkok commuters since August of last year, the Airport Rail Link is
scheduled to begin full operations TOMORROW.
The State Railway of Thailand, or SRT, has voiced
confidence that the Airport Rail Link project, which transports
travelers and commuters between central Bangkok and the Suvarnabhumi
Airport is ready for full operations beginning TOMORROW.
On its first day, a luggage check-in system at Makkasan
city air terminal delivering luggage directly to the airport will be
available for travelers. For those who seek to check in and transport
their luggage to the airport can do so 3 to 13 hours prior to their
During the first stage, however, the service is
available only for express line users, who are flying Thai
International and Bangkok Airways. About rail fares, express line users
will be charged 150 baht for non-stop service from Makkasan terminal to
the Airport and city line users will be charged between 15 and 45 baht
based on distance. The services will be available from 6 AM to midnight
Earlier, Transport Ministry Permanent Secretary Supoj
Sublhom ordered authorities to speed up construction and equipment
installation and have it finished as scheduled by TOMORROW. In a
related development, a skywalk connecting Makkasan terminal to the
Petchburi underground Station is under construction and is expected to
be finished Midyear.
Source: Thai Asean
NEWS UPDATE... 19th December, 2010
Makkasan Station Check in
services on 4th January
Suvarnabhumi Rail Link will begin check-in services for
Thai Airways, Bangkok Airways & Lufthansa, at Makkasan Station on
4th January.....More News to Follow
Source: SRT via
NEWS UPDATE... 7th September, 2010
YouTube Video - Rail Link
between Suvarnabhumi Airport & Bangkok City
NEWS UPDATE... 23rd August, 2010
Airport Rail Link begins full
The Airport Link connecting downtown
Bangkok and Suvarnabhumi airport began its first day of commercial
services on Monday, with trains now running from 6am to midnight.
Transport Minister Sohpon Zarum said the Airport Link can carry up to
50,000 passengers a day, generating revenue of one million baht a day.
"I believe this rail link will help ease traffic, lower pollution and
make it easier for the public," Mr Sohpon said.
The Airport Link's City Line will run
every 15 minutes and the Express Line every 30 minutes. Both lines
operate from 6am to midnight. The trains have a maximum speed of 160
kilometres per hour. The City Line will make eight stops across the
capital, starting at Phaya Thai, before heading to the airport. The
trains take 30 minutes from Phaya Thai to Suvarnabhumi. Passengers
using the City Line pay a flat rate of 15 baht for a trip during the
promotion period. Fares will range from 15 baht to 45 baht, depending
on the distance travelled, after Jan 1, 2011.
The Express Line is a 15-minute
non-stop journey between Makkasan and Suvarnabhumi and the fare is 100
baht per trip. However, the fare will be raised to 150 baht after the
check-in system are fully set up at Makkasan station. The Airport
Link's luggage service is not fully set up yet. The State Railway of
Thailand expected it to be operational before the end of this year.
People with many bags may have some difficulties during the check-in
process. The service has been operating on a trial basis since June 1,
attracting about 17,000 people a day travelling for free. The
construction of the project began in June 2004, with the completion
date set for May 2009 for launch in August 2009.
Several factors caused the long delay,
including flood at the construction site, the State Railway of
Thailand's failure to deliver land to contractor and power supply
problems. For further information about Airport Rail Link service, call
the State Railway of Thailand hotline at 1690.
Source: Bangkok Post:Online News,
NEWS UPDATE... 23rd August, 2010
SRT: Airport Link ready for
The Airport Link connecting Bangkok
and Suvarnabhumi airport is 100 per cent ready for the first day of
commercial services, State Railway of Thailand governor Yuthana
Thapcharoen said on Sunday.
"The stations, the rails and the
overall train system are ready for service. The Airport Link will run
from 6am to midnight," Mr Yuthana said. The City Line will make eight
stops across the capital starting from Phayathai before heading to the
airport. Its fares start at 15 baht.
The Express Service is a non-stop
journey between Makkasan and Suvarnabhumi and the fare is 100 baht per
trip. However, the fare will be raised to 150 baht after the check-in
system are fully set up at Makkasan station. The Airport Link is
expected to cater for 15,000 to 50,000 passengers a day.
"Independent safety and system
certification engineers (ICE) have issued a certificate standard for
the trains, while security personnel and police are overseeing order
and security in each station," the SRT chief said.
Source: Bangkok Post:Online News
NEWS UPDATE... 22nd August, 2010
Airport Link begins commercial
BANGKOK, Aug 22 -- After long delays
in construction and several test runs, Suvarnabhumi airport's Airport
Link begins commercial services Monday with special discount fares
offered until the end of 2010, shortening travel times for inbound and
outbound air travellers as well as easing arrivals and departures
compared to existing airport transport.
From Monday onward, arriving and
departing passengers as well as relatives or friends seeing them off
from Suvarnabhumi International Airport, in Bangkok's adjacent province
of Samut Prakan, will save significant time in travelling as the
Airport Rail Link project, linking the airport and the Makkasan and
Phaya Thai areas in downtown Bangkok, commences operations.
To ensure smooth operations, State Railways of Thailand
(SRT) Governor, Yutthana Thapcharoen, inspected trains and other
facilities whose construction began in mid-2005, for he wanted to make
sure that nothing goes wrong.
The 28km rail link connects
Suvarnabhumi Airport in the eastern flank of the capital and the City
Air Terminal in Bangkok's Makkasan area, where passengers are able to
check in their baggage. With the speed capacity of 160km per hour, the
train will serve eight stations and can cater up to 50,000 passengers
City Line commuter trips, with set
fares at Bt30, take 30 minutes to reach the airport and will operate 24
hours from Phaya Thai station. Trains pass through six stations. The
Express Service operates 19 hours daily from 6am to 1am and provides a
non-stop journey between the City Terminal and the airport with the
promotional fare set at Bt100.
SRT plans to establish a subsidiary
firm to administer the Airport Link and will seek Cabinet approval
through the Transport Ministry by raising registered capital to Bt2
billion from Bt500 million. (MCOT online news)
22nd August 2010, MCOT online news
NEWS UPDATE... 18th August, 2010
Airport Link opens Monday
The airport rail link is scheduled to
open for full commercial operations on Monday, the State Railway of
Thailand says. SRT governor Yutthana Tapcharoen yesterday said the rail
operations would be divided into ordinary and express services.
The airport rail link is scheduled to
open for full commercial operations on Monday, the State Railway of
Thailand says. SRT governor Yutthana Tapcharoen yesterday said the rail
operations would be divided into ordinary and express services.
The ordinary service, known as the city line, would
charge a fare of 15 baht and would make eight stops along the Phaya
Thai-Suvarnabhumi airport route. The express line would run non-stop
from Makkasan to the airport and would charge 100 baht. He said both
services would run from 6am to midnight with a train leaving every 15
Baggage check-in at Makkasan station
was not available yet as the line was still being test-run, Mr Yutthana
said. He said the check-in service was expected to be available later
The Airport Rail Link is now
operating free of charge from 6am to 10am and from 4pm to 9pm.
18th August 2010, Bangkok Post, News
NEWS UPDATE... 17th August, 2010
Airport Link to open for
The Airport Link connecting Bangkok
and Suvarnabhumi airport will begin commercial services next Monday,
State Railway of Thailand governor Yuthana Thapcharoen said on Tuesday.
Mr Yuthana said the Airport Link's
Express Service and City Line systems will run every 15 minutes from
6am to midnight.
The City Line will make eight stops across the capital
starting from Phayathai before heading to the airport. Its fares start
at 15 baht.
The Express Service is a non-stop
journey between Makkasan and Suvarnabhumi and the fare is 100 baht per
trip. The baggage handling system at Makkasan station was still in a
testing period but should be operational before the end of this year.
People with many bags may have some difficulties during the check-in
process, the SRT chief said.
17th August 2010, Bangkok Post, Breaking News
NEWS UPDATE... 10th August, 2010
Thailand ready for rail talks
BANGKOK, August 10 - Thailand and China are expected to
open talks this month on plans to jointly invest in Thailand's new
standard-gauge rail link and high-speed train projects
A panel chaired by Korbsak Sabhavasu, secretary-general
to Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, yesterday set up two subcommittees
to work out a feasibility study for the projects.
The Thai government wants to invest jointly with China
in a high-speed rail line from Suvarnabhumi airport to Rayong on the
Eastern Seaboard through Pattaya and Laem Chabang, and a standard-gauge
link from China through Vietnam, Laos and Nong Khai in Thailand's
northeast to connect with Malaysia and Singapore. A new standard-gauge
rail line from Nong Khai to the southern border with Malaysia is
expected to cost 300 billion baht. The line would link at Nong Khai to
a line China plans to build through Vietnam and Laos.
Mr Korbsak said the high-speed rail project linking
Suvarnabhumi and Rayong was estimated to cost 30 billion baht. He
said the two subcommittees were required to complete their studies in
two weeks. Officials from the two countries are required to complete a
draft memorandum of understanding ahead of Mr Abhisit's visit to China
scheduled for early next month.
The new rail line would benefit travel through the
region as the train network is expected to be built from Kunming
through Vietnam, Laos, Thailand and Malaysia to connect with Singapore.
The tourism industry would benefit greatly from the new network, Mr
Korbsak said. He said the 1,000-kilometre line in Thailand would be
developed along the existing State Railway of Thailand track and would
take about three years to build.
Trains on the new line would run at 200 kilometres an
hour compared with the SRT average of 60km/h. The investment is in
addition to 170billion baht earmarked for upgrading the SRT's services
and the speed of its trains, Mr Korbsak said. The SRT project is aimed
at improving safety standards and increasing speeds on its one
metre-gauge lines to between 80km/h and 100km/h from the present
60km/h. Mr Korbsak said a feasibility study for the high-speed train
from Bangkok to Rayong would go ahead even if Thailand failed to sign a
deal with China. Gold.
10th August 2010 (Chatrudee Theparat, Bangkok Post, Business)
NEWS UPDATE... 9th August 2010
Airport Link a Potential
Tourism Gold Bonanza
The long-awaited opening of the Airport Rail Link on Aug
23 will substantially enhance the convenience of visiting Bangkok but a
number of critical missing links impede connectivity with the city's
Hotels in the vicinity of the Rail Link stations and
terminals at Phya Thai, Rajaprarop and Makkasan will gain a significant
competitive advantage, especially in the Rajadamri area, as well as
those along Phetchaburi, Asok and Rachadaphisek roads.
Providing easy access right under the Suvarnabhumi
terminal, the Rail Link is smooth and efficient. The cars are spacious
with plenty of room for luggage. Visitors will also enjoy panoramic
views of Bangkok, including greenery, housing estates, temples,
mosques, malls and office towers.
But at least three problems will impede what would
otherwise have been a seamless flow of passengers between the Rail
Link, the BTS SkyTrain and the MRT underground rail line as they
commute from the airport to various destinations, and vice versa:
- The BTS-Rail Link interchange at Phya Thai: There is
no escalator down from the BTS station to the level of the connecting
walkway to the Rail Link station. The existing escalator only goes up.
Those going down must use steps, a problem if one has luggage. There
are no luggage trolleys at the station either. Besides, a small part of
the walkway from the SkyTrain station to the Rail Link station is being
built but is projected to be completed by the launch date.
- The MRT-Rail Link connection at Makkasan: This should
have been possible from the Makkasan terminal to the Phetchaburi MRT
station, but it does not exist. An MRT executive said a walkway was
awaiting approval, and would take three months to build once approved.
Hence, those getting off at the Makkasan Rail Link terminal cannot
access the Phetchaburi MRT station.
- Lack of a single commuter ticket between the airport
Rail Link, the SkyTrain and the MRT is the biggest obstacle. Arriving
visitors heading for say, the Hua Lamphong rail terminal, will have to
first buy the Rail Link ticket, then a SkyTrain ticket and then an MRT
ticket separately at each interchange.
Surapong Laoha-Unya, chief operating officer of the BTS
SkyTrain, acknowledged that this has long been an issue, for both
technical and administrative reasons. Not only are the ticketing
technologies entirely different, but one company (BTS) is private while
the other is a quasi-public organisation, which means two entirely
different mindsets, procedures and systems.
Mr Surapong said a common ticket between the SkyTrain
and the MRT had been in the works for three to four years. Now that the
Rail Link is due to open, there is a new sense of urgency and a
solution is expected sometime next year.
After the Rail Link is officially opens, tickets will
cost only 15 baht per trip per person until the end of 2010. The system
is expected to lose money for years, although some of the cost may be
offset by advertising in rail cars and stations, especially at the
airport and Makkasan.
Once these issues are sorted out, however, the benefits
for Bangkok's tourism industry will be phenomenal. Mr Surapong said the
BTS, which opened in 1999, was well aware of the tourism advantage and
projects clear increases in ridership after the Rail Link opens.
He noted that visitors had benefited from thousands of
discounted BTS passes sold to the tourism sector between 2002 and July
2010, including 342,152 sold to hotels along the SkyTrain routes,
568,968 to tour operators and 93,025 to the Tourism Authority of
Thailand and the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau. In 2009,
sales to tour operators totalled 81,244 passes, hotels 45,415 and the
TAT and TCEB 18,000 passes.
Mr Surapong said the Rail Link would also help boost
sales of the SkyTrain's one-day pass which costs only 120 baht and can
be used for unlimited trips to tourist spots along BTS routes.
"Visitors with little time to spare don't like sitting
in traffic," he said. "The Rail Link will help all the mass-transit
systems boost sales, especially to the growing numbers of visitors from
new markets such as India."
Writer: Imtiaz Muqbil is executive
editor of Travel Impact Newswire, an e-mailed feature and analysis
service focusing on the Asia-Pacific travel industry.
BANGKOK, July 21 - Suvarnabhumi Airport's Rail Link
commercial services will begin August 23 with special discount fares
offered until the end of the year.
After presiding at ceremony during staff training for
the Airport Rail Link project linking Suvarnabhumi Airport and Makkasan
area in downtown Bangkok, Permanent Secretary for Transport Supot
Saplom said he believed that independent engineers will issue the
certificate permitting the project to open for service, as all flaws
have been fixed, and test-runs by State Railway of Thailand (SRT)
workers continue to be conducted.
The 28km rail link connects Suvarnabhumi Airport in
Samut Prakan province east of Bangkok and the City Air Terminal (CAT)
in Bangkok's Makkasan area, where passengers will be able to check in
their baggage. Services of both the Express Service and the City Line
will be operational on the same tracks at speeds of up to 160km per
hour. The Express Service is a 15-minute non-stop journey between the
City Terminal and the airport with a fare at Bt150 per trip. During the
opening period, the fare charged will be Bt100.
City Line commuter trips, with set fares at Bt15-Bt45,
take 30 minutes to reach the airport, departing from Phaya Thai,
Ratchaprarop, Makkasan, Asoke, Ramkhamhaeng, Hua Mak, Ban Thap Chang,
and Lat Krabang stations, and will end at the last stop of
Suvarnabhumi. The promotional fare will be Bt15 for all journeys during
this period. Meanwhile, Mr Supot said the baggage check-in system
developed by SRT and Airports of Thailand (AoT) for Makkasan Station
will be ready for full operation by the year end. The transport
official said there will be over 300 personnel working for the Airport
Concerning setting up a subsidiary firm to manage the
project, Mr Supot said he will propose it to the ministry so that the
company's registered capital can be increased from Bt500 million (US$15
million) to Bt2 billion (US$60 million). The matter will be then
proposed to the Cabinet for consideration.
21st July 2010 (MCOT online news)
NEWS UPDATE... 10th July, 2010
Suvarnabhumi Rail Link services
start in August
The Airport Link train connecting Bangkok and
Suvarnabhumi airport will commence commercial operations on August 23,
Transport Minister Sohpon Zarum said on Tuesday. Mr Zarum said the date
was confirmed after consultation with the State Railway of Thailand.
NEWS UPDATE... 28th June, 2010
2 More Airport Link stations to
be opened on 1 July
BANGKOK, 28th June 2010 ‚€“ The State Railway of
Thailand (SRT) will open two more stations on the Airport Link now
operating on test run, due to popularity of the service.
Starting on 1 July, the elevated train running
between Bangkok's inner city and Suvarnabhumi Airport will stop at
Ratchaprarop and Thub Chang stations in addition to the 5 stations
which have been opened for free trial run since 1 June. An estimated
number of 80,000 people have already tried out the service.
During the test run, the train is operated on
weekdays, from 07.00-10.00 hrs and 16.00-19.00 hrs, departing from the
terminal every 20 minutes. The trip takes approximately 30 minutes from
the downtown Phya Thai terminal to Suvarnabhumi Airport, with 4 stops
at Ratchaprarop, Ramkhamhaeng, Hua Mak, and Thub Chang stations along
the line. The Airport Link is expected to be put on commercial service
in August 2010. People interested in a free ride can contact service
counters at the train stations indicated before taking the journey.
BANGKOK, 28th June 2010 (NNT)
NEWS UPDATE... 14th June, 2010
AMAZING RACE TO SUVARNABHUMI
BANGKOK, 14 June 2010 (Bangkok Post) ‚€“ The Airport
Rail Link to Suvarnabhumi has finally arrived after almost four years
of waiting. But while it may be the talk of the town, there are still
teething troubles and complaints about service and problems at the
Makkasan terminal. For those who have yet to travel on the new train,
the Bangkok Post sent two reporters on a race to the airport - one by
high-speed train, the other by taxi, which many say is faster and
cheaper. Both started from the same point at Siam Paragon last Tuesday
Our Airport Link commuter took 46 minutes and spent
just 67 baht - 37 baht for a taxi plus 30 baht for a motorbike taxi -
as the train is currently free, but it will cost 150 baht once fully
operational. Her competitor paid 270 baht, including 70 baht in
expressway tolls, for her 25-minute cab ride.
Whatever the result of our amazing race, the
taxi/train debate will continue for some time.
14th, 2010 by Bangkok Post (Business)
NEWS UPDATE... 1st June, 2010
Bankokians flock to test
airport link service
BANGKOK, 1 June 2010 (NNT) ‚€“ Many Thai people,
mostly Bangkokians have flocked to test the airport link service from
Phya Thai district to Suvarnabhumi airport on the first day of its
trial operation on Tuesday. Permanent Secretary for Transport, Supoj
Saplom, said the airport link service would provide convenience for
people travelling from the heart of the capital city to Suvarnabhumi
International Airport as well as lessen road traffic.
Mr Supoj noted that the trains would be released
every 20 minutes while their operation would be separated into two
shifts, namely morning shift from 7.00 to 10.00 hrs and afternoon shift
from 16.00 to 19.00 hrs every day. He said the test run would last for
about two months.
The airport link service is now running from Phya
Thai to Suvarnabhumi; however. Another two stations at Hua Mak and
Ramkhamhaeng will be available very soon, the permanent secretary
promised. Regarding the fares, passengers using city-line trains (stop
at eight stations) will be charged 15-45 THB while those using express
ones (non-stop directly from Phya Thai to Suvarnabhumi) will be charged
150 THB a trip.
1st, 2010 by National News Bureau Thailand
NEWS UPDATE... 31st May, 2010
Airport Link Starts Test Run
The train linking the Suvarnabhumi Airport to the
Phayathai area will open for test runs from tomorrow onwards. The
general public will be allowed to use the train for free from tomorrow
to August 2010.
31st, 2010 by Thai-Asian News Network
NEWS UPDATE... 29th April, 2010
Soft launch of Airport Rail
Link suspended due to political turmoil
BANGKOK, April 29 (TNA) ‚€“ Thailand's Ministry of
Transport has postponed its April 30 soft opening of the Airport Rail
Link for safety reasons but commercial service will operate in July as
scheduled, said Minister Sophon Zarum.
The suspension followed the Centre for the Resolution
of the Emergency Situation (CRES) concern over the safety of commuters
who would use the test-run Airport Rail Link service planned to take
place on April 30.
r Sophon, however, assurances that the postponement
will not affect its commercial service in July. When the political
situation eases, the State Railway of Thailand (SRT) will test rail and
safety systems in preparation to the official opening. However, the SRT
offers a test ride for government officials or employees of private
companies upon request in a group of 100 or 200 persons.
Mr Sophon said that Airport Rail Link‚€™s route from
Phaya Thai station to Suvarnbhumi Airport station currently is in
sensitive areas which need special monitoring after attacks occurred in
the past week, including at explosions at BTS Skytrain‚€™s Sala Daeng
station. Consequently the ministry will postpone the soft launch and no
date has been set at the moment, the minister explained. The
28-kilometre Airport Rail Link project connecting Suvarnabhumi Airport
with the city centre, began the special test run to the public on
December5. The SRT expects to serve up to 50,000 commuters daily. (TNA)
NEWS UPDATE... 31st March, 2010
Transport Ministry Inspects
Airport Link's Progress
The Transport Ministry has inspected the progress of
the Airport Link which connects Suvarnabhumi Airport to Bangkok's
downtown, and has found various problems. However, they believe the
train link will be completed and in operation by July this year.
The chairman of the committee to evaluate the
progress of the Airport Link, Thianchot Jongpheephian, disclosed that
independent consulting engineers are in the process of inspecting the
safety of the Airport Link, and have found several flaws that need to
be fixed immediately.
He quoted the engineers as saying that the backup
electrical system does not work automatically when the major electrical
system malfunctions. What's more, the radio communication between
trains and control units does not operate properly, and fire exits also
need to be addressed. He said fiber cables should be installed at the
mouth of tunnels and more fire exits must be added.
The chairman said related officials must report on
the progress to the committee every week, and the upcoming meeting on
the issue is scheduled for April 7th. He anticipates that the
Airport Link will begin operation in either July or August this year.
Transport Minister Sophon Saram said the mass transit system is likely
to begin commercial operation by July. He added that the State Railway
of Thailand will test the project in late April by operating the train
four times a day for three months, to ensure safety. He said the
Airport Link is 90 per cent completed, as planned by the Transport
31st, 2010 by Thai-Asian News Network
NEWS UPDATE... 19th March, 2010
State Railway: Airport rail
link soft launch in April
BANGKOK, March 19 (TNA) ‚€“ The State Railway of
Thailand (SRT) will soft launch its Airport Rail Link in April, but
commercial service will not be offered until July, Transport Minister
Sophon Zarum said Friday.
Mr Sophon on Friday examined the current status of
the airport rail link project by boarding a train at Makkasan. The
safety system is on target at 90 per cent readiness, according to the
ministry plan. The Airport Rail Link will run eight trips to and from
Suvarnabhumi Airport in April, he said.
Independent safety and system certification engineers
will check the system during the test run and will certificate standard
for the trains three months later. The ministry is expected to open the
commercial service at the end of July after safety certification. The
ministry is considering that the Airport Rail Link (ARL) will first run
from Phayathai Station to Suvarnabhumi Station although the connection
with the BTS Skytrain (Bangkok's elevated train system) at Phayathai
Station is not yet finished.
SRT is not prepared to open Makkasan Station as a
terminal during the initial test period because the spacious station
requires many additional security staff, Mr Sophon said. A security
company has been sought to work at all stations and if the process
cannot be finished in time, temporary security guards will be hired.
The airport link doesn‚€™t need a spacious station as a terminal as it
will increase the financial burden for the SRT, said the minister. (TNA)
19th, 2010 by TNA
NEWS UPDATE... 4th March, 2010
Airport link launch delayed
The State Railway of Thailand is delaying the opening
of its Airport Rail Link after it found the developer Siemens would be
unable to finish the railway on time. SRT governor Yutthana Thapcharoen
yesterday said his agency had planned to start commercial services
between inner Bangkok and Suvarnabhumi airport next month, but Siemens
was not ready to hand over the system. The opening would be put off for
at least a few more months.
Mr Yutthana said Siemens had not installed all 70
surveillance cameras required along the railway. Radio communications
do not cover the link's tunnel at the airport and the power supply for
the railway was not yet stable. The installation of the cameras should
be finished next week, and Siemens would then turn its attention to the
radio communications and put in place a back-up power supply. "The
power supply is a big problem," Mr Yuthana said. "It must pass tests.
Trains will stop if the service starts and encounters a blackout."
He said there were also other smaller problems. He
had ordered staff to report any problems so he could alert the SRT
board, which would then find ways to solve them. Mr Yuthana said it
would take three more months to test the 28km, 26 billion baht system
after Siemens handed it over to the SRT. The agency will seek
compensation from the German company for the delays, Mr Yutthana said.
4th, 2010 by bangkokpost.com
Pure Gold NEWS UPDATE... 12 January,
Airport Link faces more delay
It is very unlikely that Airport Link can start
commercial operations this April as earlier announced. The service now
faces delays, possibly until August. State Railway of Thailand
governor, Yuthana Thapchareon, talked to the Thai press after visiting
the project, last week, noting there are still three main areas that
have not been completed.
They are: communications system between stations
especially those that link the system to the police in case of security
or safety related incident; installation of CCTV and gate systems at
some stations. They will need to be certified by an Independent Safety
and System Certification Engineer before the Airport Link can be opened
After inspection, SRT did not approved the rail
system and electronic and mechanic system contracted by B Grimm
International. No reason for this decision was given. More importantly,
SRT has missed the deadline to set up a subsidiary company to manage
the Airport Link. It has also failed to hire more than 30% of a
required 400 staff who will be needed to run the service. They also
Accoding to the original contract, the rail link was
supposed to be operational in 2008, but disagreements between the SRT
and its union as well as delays in the handover of land for stations
were the main culprits.
11, 2010 by Rapeepat Mantanarat - www..ttrweekly.com
Gold NEWS UPDATE... 4th December 2009
PM: Airport Link opening before
Transport Minister Sohpon Zarum had confirmed the
28-kilometre Airport Rail Link connecting Suvarnabhumi airport with
Phaya Thai and Makkasan in downtown Bangkok will be in service before
April, Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said on Friday. The State of
Railway of Thailand, which runs the project, is in the process of
checking technical systems to ensure its readiness, he said. "The
transport minister has confirmed that the Airport Link will be opened
before April," said Mr Abhisit.
On Friday afternoon the prime minister presided over
the opening of a series of test runs of the new airport train service
at Makkasan station and took a ride to Suvarnabhumi airport. The
opening ceremony was attended by about 1,000 people including cabinet
members and foreign diplomats. A large number of people turned up to
get tickets on the test runs, which will continue out until Dec 7. Mr
Abhisit also said the government will try to hurry up the
implementation of the high-speed train project.
There are four high-speed train routes planned:
Bangkok - Chiang Mai (745 km), Bangkok - Nong Khai (615 km), Bangkok -
Chanthaburi (330 km), and Bangkok - Padang Besar (985 km). The prime
minister said priority would be given to the Bangkok - Chanthaburi
route. He had given instructions that a feasibility study of the first
part of the route, between Bangkok and Rayong. should be completed in
45 days. The Council of Economic Ministers on Nov 11 also approved in
principle the SRT's plan to spend 100 bilion baht for improvement of
rail tracks throughout the country, to purchase more locomotives and
employ and train more staff.
4/12/2009 at 03:27 PM - By BangkokPost.com
NEWS UPDATE... 15th November 2009
Suvarnabhumi Airport Link to
start week-long official test run Dec 5
BANGKOK, Nov 15 (TNA) --- The
long-delayed Airport Rail Link project, providing direct rail service
to and from Suvarnabhumi Airport, will officially start its test run
December 5 as scheduled earlier, coinciding with the birthday
celebrations of His Majesty the King, State Railway of Thailand (SRT)
governor Yuthana Tupcharoen said Sunday.
During the test run, free service
will be provided to the public from 9 am to 12 noon and 1 pm to 4 pm
daily all week and train drivers will be technical staff of Siemens,
manufacturer and installer of the rail system, as SRT has not yet
received test run operation training from Siemens, said Mr. Yuthana.
The SRT board met Friday, chaired
by Ministry of Transport deputy permanent secretary Thawalrat Onsira,
agreeing in principle to hire Deutsche Bahn International (DBI) of
Germany to administer the rail service between Suvarnabhumi
International Airport and terminal stations in Bangkok. DBI has been
asked to adjust its management system to match SRT demands.
Changing an earlier agreement, SRT
has been directed to renegotiate the DBI contract to maintain
cleanliness at stations, the maintenance centre and the overall rail
route, as the work could be done by SRT, and also calling for lower
fees on the part of DBI.
A subsidiary firm to be initially
called Airport Link Co., Ltd. will be established with registered
capital of Bt500 million.
The 28-km rail link connects Suvarnabhumi
International Airport in adjacent Samut Prakan province and the City
Air Terminal in Bangkok's Makkasan area.
Transport for airport express
riders and local commuters will run on the same track with the same
equipment, but with a staggered schedule. Premium-fare express services
will run on the hour between Suvarnabhumi Airport and City Air
Terminal, while the City Line service will stop at six local stations
along the route.
NEWS UPDATE... 8th October 2009
German Firm Picked To Run
Airport Rail link
An overseas company will operate the express rail
link to Suvarnabhumi Airport for the first few years of its operation,
the State Railway of Thailand says. The SRT union has opposed a plan to
set up a subsidiary to operate the service, so an overseas contractor
would be hired instead, SRT governor Yuthana Thapcharoen said yesterday.
DB International GmbH, which is
installing the operating system for the railway link and training
staff, would be hired to run the service as well, he said. The link is
scheduled to open in April. Mr Yuthana said the SRT would need over 500
million baht from the government as a start-up fund to run the Airport
Rail Link. The sum will cover management costs, insurance for trains
and passengers, and the cost of running the railway stations. The
governor was among passengers who went on an unofficial trial run of
the rail link yesterday. The SRT handed out free tickets to the public.
Further trial runs will be held on Oct 14, 21 and 28 and Nov 4. Daily
trial runs will be held from Dec 5 to April. Mr Yuthana said passengers
on the test run from Makkasan station to the airport gave the service a
Bangkokpost, 8th October, 2009
NEWS UPDATE... 7th October 2009
Airport Rail Link Test Run
BANGKOK, Oct 7 (TNA) -- The State Railway of Thailand
(SRT) began its trial run of the airport link railway Wednesday,
connecting Makkasan railway station in Bangkok and Suvarnabhumi
International Airport in Samut Prakan province. A large number of the
prospective passengers showed interest in traveling on the test run of
the 28.6 kilometre route Wednesday, according to the authorities, but
full-scale commercial operation is not expected until April next year.
SRT governor Yuthana Thapcharoen said that the test
run on Wednesday went smoothly. He expressed confidence that it would
be well used by commuters when it starts full operation. Most
passengers said the airport link railway was convenient, similar to the
BTS Sky Train, but the airport link (Express Line) is faster taking
only 15 minutes from Makkasan to Suvarnabhumi Airport. They said they
will definitely use the airport link service when they travel to the
enews.mcot.net, 7th October, 2009
NEWS UPDATE... 6th October 2009
Bangkok To Welcome The
Suvarnabhumi Rail link
International media representatives were given a
sneak peak at the Suvarnabhumi Airport rail link during the TCEB
"Maximize" familiarization last week. The much delayed Airport rail
link was originally scheduled to launch in August this year, but it is
now on track to officially open in December. During Friday's trial
service, guests admired the futuristic design of Makkason (Bangkok)
Airport link station before making the easy 15-minute journey to
Premium-fare express services will run on the hour
between Suvarnabhumi Airport and City Air Terminal, while the City Line
service will stop at six local stations along the route. According to
the State Railway of Thailand, the Express service will operate four
cars, while the City Line will run three cars. Once the rail link is
officially launched fares for an express trip will be approximately
Bt150 per person, while fares for the City Line commuter trips, will
range from Bt30-50 per passenger.
etravelblackboard.com, 6th October, 2009
NEWS UPDATE... 24th September 2009
Govt. to speed up Suvarnabhumi
Airport Rail Link
The government should get the
airport rail link operating as soon as possible as it will help boost
the tourism sector, Thongyoo Supphawitthayakorn, a member of the
Association of Thai Travel Agents (ATTA), said on Thursday.
"A mass transit rail system linking Suvarnabhumi
airport and Makkasan train station in inner Bangkok will benefit
tourism related business operators, as they can reduce their client
service costs," Mr Thongyoo said. He confirmed the number of foreign
visitors had dropped about 30 per cent due, and blamed the ongoing
political conflict and the anti-government demonstrations. "It is not
possible that the number of foreign arrivals in 2009 will reach the 14
million target of the Tourism Authority of Thailand. The figure this
year is more likely to be 11 million at the most," he said.
The political turmoil had driven foreign tourists to
visit neighboring countries such as Vietnam, Cambodia and China.
Post, 24th September, 2009
NEWS UPDATE... 24th September 2009
Travel Agents: Open Airport Link
The airport link railway is ready to operate and the
government will launch it as quickly as possible, Deputy Prime Minister
Korbsak Sabhavasu said on Thursday. The deputy prime minister, who is
in charged of economic affairs, was speaking after a test run of the
28.6 kilometre route linking Makkasan train station in Bangkok and
Suvarnabhumi airport in Samut Prakan province.
About 1,100 representatives of the Association of
Thai Travel Agents (ATTA) were present. "From the test run, I can say
that the airport link system is ready to operate," Mr Korbsak said.
However, more staff needed to be
trained before operations could begin. "The State Railway of Thailand
(SRT) has not been able to set up a subsidiary for this, and it could
take at least nine months, or until mid-2010, for all the staff to be
trained," he said. Mr Korbsak said he will invite SRT executives and
all related agencies to a meeting to speed up the process.
ATTA member Thongyoo Supphawitthayakorn said the
government should get the airport rail link operating as soon as
possible as it would boost the tourism sector. "This mass transit rail
system will benefit tourism related business operators, as they can
reduce their client service costs," Mr Thongyoo said.
He confirmed the number of foreign visitors had
dropped about 30 per cent due, and blamed the ongoing political
conflict and the anti-government demonstrations. "It is not possible
that the number of foreign arrivals in 2009 will reach the 14 million
target of the Tourism Authority of Thailand . The figure this year is
more likely to be 11 million at the most," he said. The political
turmoil had driven foreign tourists to visit neighboring countries such
as Vietnam, Cambodia and China. The Rail Link will make another test
run on Oct 1, in preparation for the planned official commencement of
operations on Dec 5.
Post, 24th September, 2009
GOLD NEWS UPDATE... 16th September 2009
Airport Rail Link dispute goes
off the rails
Transport Minister Sohpon Zarum's claims he has
solved the industrial dispute surrounding the embattled airport rail
link have left the SRT and the powerful rail union baffled. Mr Sophon
said he had held "informal negotiations" with a leading State Railway
of Thailand unionist over the Suvarnabhumi airport rail project. He
said the talks had led to an agreement that the union would allow the
Airport Rail Link project to be set up as part of a new SRT subsidiary.
However, SRT governor Yutthana Thapcharoen yesterday
said he was not aware of any talks between the minister and the union.
SRT union leader Sawit Kaewwan also denied the workers had reached an
agreement with the ministry. But Mr Sophon insisted the issue had been
settled. "I have reached an agreement with the union representative,
whom I did not want to identify by name," Mr Sohpon said. "The talk led
to an understanding and the union agreed to soften its position."
he union previously wanted the debt-ridden railway
agency to set up a business unit to handle the new project to make sure
it would remain under the SRT's direct control. But under the SRT's
restructuring plan, the agency is to set up a subsidiary responsible
for commercial and freight services.
Bangkok Post, AMORNRAT MAHITTHIROOK, 16th September, 2009
NEWS UPDATE... 15th September 2009
Airport Rail Link open for test
run on Oct 1
The Airport Rail Link will operate the test run on
October 1, in preparation for official operation commencement on Dec 5
as planned.Yuthana Thapcharoen, governor of the State Railway of
Thailand, said on Monday that the public is invited to join the test
run, with the tickets available at the Makkasan office or SRT public
The train that connects Suvarnabhumi Airport and the
city terminal in Makkasan will open for the public once a week. After
it is open for commercial operations, the train will charge maximum
Bt150 for the express line and Bt15-Bt40 for the city line.
Souce: By The
Nation, 15th September, 2009
NEWS UPDATE... 5th September 2009
Airport Rail Link open Soon
BANGKOK, Sept 5 (TNA) -- The long-delayed Airport
Rail Link project, providing direct rail service to and from
Suvarnabhumi Airport, will start providing free service to the public
from this December 5 which coincides with the birthday celebrations of
His Majesty the King, said State Railway of Thailand (SRT) Governor
People interested in free rides on December 5 may
apply for tickets beginning October 1 at either the Airport Rail Link
office or at SRT headquarters, Mr. Yuthana said. Test runs of the
system have been conducted since February by Siemens, the manufacturer
and installer of the rail system, and no problems have been found.
However, independent engineers will inspect the safety system for the
next three months and if no problems are found, the system will be
ready for operation.
The SRT board has also hired Deutsche Bahn
International of Germany for Bt85 million to train Airport Rail Link
staff. The board exports to launch the system on December 5, Mr Yuttana
added. The 28-km rail link connects Suvarnabhumi International Airport
in adjacent Samut Prakan province and the City Air Terminal in
Bangkok's Makkasan area.
The Airport Rail Link is owned and will be operated
by SRT, through a subsidiary company, which will administer the overall
operations. According to a preliminary study, the fare for an express
trip will be Bt150 per person, while fares for the City Line commuter
trips, will vary from Bt30-50 per passenger.
Transport for airport express riders and local
commuters will run on the same track with the same equipment, but with
a staggered schedule. Premium-fare express services will run on the
hour between Suvarnabhumi Airport and City Air Terminal, while the City
Line service will stop at six local stations along the route. (TNA)
enews.mcot.net 5 September 2009
NEWS UPDATE... 29th July 2009
Sohpon: Airport Link may be
Transport Minister Sohpon Zarum said on Wednesday the
stalemate in talks between State Railway of Thailand executives and
union leaders may delay the planned opening on Dec 5 of the Airport
Rail Link project connecting the capital city and Suvarnabhumi airport.
The SRT plans to recruit new staff to operate the
airport link, but the labour union rejected the plan. The union said it
would offer better management and efficiency. Mr Sohpon said if the two
sides could not reach a settlement on this matter the start of the
Airport Rail Link operation on Dec 5 might be delayed. He called for
both sides to adhere to the interests of the SRT and the country.
The prime minister has told other countries that the
airport rail link would be opened in December, he said.
July,2009 - By , BangkokPost.com
NEWS UPDATE... 28th July 2009
Suvarnabhumi Airport link Stalls
The future of the State Railway of Thailand rests
with Deputy Prime Minister Sanan Kachornprasart after the final round
of negotiations with its powerful union failed to make any headway. The
main stumbling block between SRT executives and union leaders is the
management model for the Airport Rail Link project connecting the city
to Suvarnabhumi airport. The link, due to start on Dec 5, is seen as
the most promising aspect of the SRT's future.
The cabinet last month agreed to the restructuring of
the SRT but only if the plan was backed by the union. It would see the
SRT separated into two subsidiary firms handling asset management and
services. The airport link would be under the service firm. While
existing SRT staff would be responsible for passenger and freight
services under the proposed new structure, the SRT plans to recruit new
staff to operate the airport link.
The SRT board yesterday held firm on the plan, saying
it would offer better management and more efficiency. The labour union
rejected the plan, saying the airport link should be run as a business
unit within the SRT instead of under a new subsidiary. SRT governor
Yutthana Thapcharoen said no more talks would be held with the union as
it was pointless. The union has accused the SRT of having a hidden
agenda with future plans to privatise profit-making businesses. SRT
executives have denied the suggestion.
The SRT will present its position and the union's
argument to a committee chaired by Maj Gen Sanan for a decision.
Despite the conflict between the executives and the union, the SRT
governor was confident the launch of the new railways system would go
ahead. SRT union leader Sawit Kaewwan said the union wanted the Airport
Rail Link operators to come under the SRT because that would provide an
assurance that business units would not be privatised in the future. Mr
Sawit insisted the union's resistance to the SRT plan to set up
subsidiaries would not delay the launch of the system.
He did not say what the union would do if its
proposal was rejected by the Sanan panel. Its strike in late June in
opposition to the restructuring left 200,000 passengers stranded and
caused the SRT 16 million baht in losses. The Finance Ministry
yesterday warned the labour union that more strikes could badly hurt
the SRT. Passengers would become frustrated and switch to other
transport services, said Areepong Bhoocha-oom, the director-general of
the ministry's State Enterprise Policy Office (Sepo).
Mr Areepong said the railway system made up just 2%
of the country's available transport services. Therefore if SRT staff
went on prolonged strike, the service could lose out to other kinds of
services. Eventually, the SRT would lose more of its already small
number of customers, he said. The Sepo chief said the SRT restructuring
must go ahead. Under the restructuring plan, the government would
invest about 195 billion baht in the enterprise's business operations
from 2010 to 2014. It expects to give the state railway at least 40
billion baht a year.
The investment is in the national interest as
Thailand needs to improve its rail transport facilities, Mr Areepong
said. "I hope that SRT staff will agree with the investment plan. It's
because the SRT's performance over the past 10 years has clearly proved
to be ineffective," he said. The country could no longer afford to
delay the upgrading of the SRT, Mr Areepong said.
July,2009 - By AMORNRAT MAHITTHIROOK AND WICHIT CHANTANUSORNSIRI,
NEWS UPDATE... 15th July 2009
The Airport Rail Link is
expected to start running commercially next March. J
aiyavat Navaraj, area station manager for Thailand,
Sri Lanka and the Maldives at Austrian Airlines and chairman of the
Airline Operators Committee (AOC), said the State Railway of Thailand
(SRT) had confirmed to the AOC it would conduct a full trial of the
system from December. The test will take three months to complete. If
all goes smoothly, the Airport Rail Link will begin official operations
Some 160 representatives of the AOC, which consists
of 81 airlines and 21 non-airline agencies, yesterday participated in
an SRT test run held to demonstrate the rail-link system to members.
The elevated system will link Suvarnabhumi Airport with the City Air
Terminal in Bangkok's Makkasan area. A non-stop express train will cost
Bt150, while the City Line, which will stop at each station, will cost
Bt15 to Bt45, depending on distance travelled.
July,2009 - By WATCHARAPONG THONGRUNG,THE NATION
NEWS UPDATE... 14th July 2009
International airlines urged the government to
ensure that the long-delayed airport link project is up and running at
its latest promised date in order to complement efforts to make
Suvarnabhumi Airport an air hub. "The sooner the system is opened, the
better,'' said Jaiyavat Navaraj, chairman of the Airline Operators
Committee (AOC), which represents more than 80 international airlines
operating through Suvarnabhumi. The 26-billion-baht rapid transit
system that stretches 28 km from Bangkok's international airport to
Makkasan has suffered multiple delays.
Current opposition by the State Railway of
Thailand's union to setting up a subsidiary company to operate the line
has created doubts about whether it can start operations by the second
quarter of next year, the latest promised date. The system will provide
an efficient transport option between Suvarnabhumi and the city centre
for some 50,000 passengers and 15,000 airline staff and airport workers
who need to commute every day and endure the frustrations of long bus
waits and unscrupulous taxi drivers, said Mr Jaiyavat.
But Walter Gintschel, the operation specialist for
the airport link system, expressed confidence on Tuesday that the
system would be ready for a trial run in early December this year, a
process that takes about three months, before the line opens for public
service in April. System contractors B.Grimm, Siemens and Sino-Thai
Engineering and Construction are putting the final touches on the
system and the train is actually running back and forth to test the
line, the German train expert said.
Many of the nearly 180 international airline staff
who were given the chance to try the rail system from the airport to
Makkasan on Tuesday morning said they were pleased with the train's
performance and are looking forward to using it soon. The government
has tentatively fixed the airport rail link fare at 150 baht per person
per trip on the express line, which does not make stops between the
airport and Makkasan city terminal, a journey that takes 15 minutes.
The planned fare for the city line, which stops at
the six stations along the way with a total running time of 30 minutes,
is 45 baht for a single ride.
July,2009 - Bangkok Post, bangkokpost.com
NEWS UPDATE... 24th June 2009
Airport-Bangkok link faces
The opening of the high-speed rail link between
Suvarnabhumi Airport |and inner Bangkok, scheduled for December 5,
could be further delayed following this week's strike by railroad
workers. Hundreds of State Railway of Thailand employees returned to
work yesterday evening after paralysing much of the national rail
service for 36 hours. Deputy Prime Minister Sanan Kachornprasart said
the SRT labour union had agreed to end the strike following the
government's pledge that the union would participate in reorganising
the money-losing state agency.
The SRT is in the process of setting up two wholly
owned companies: one for train operations and the other for real-estate
management. The company in charge of train operations will be
responsible for running the 28.6-kilometre Airport Rail Link, which is
due to open in December. "I'm not sure if the rail link can still be
opened as scheduled, because the process to form the SRT company will
be halted until negotiations between the SRT union and the agency's top
management are concluded," Transport Minister Sophon Saram said
He said he hoped the talks would not be protracted
and could be concluded within two weeks, or else the SRT would face
greater financial damage. The country's international image would also
take a further hit if the multibillion-baht elevated rail service
between Suvarnabhumi Airport and the inner city did not start operation
as scheduled, he added. The high-speed rail service between the
international airport - located in the suburbs of Bangkok - and
Makkasan Station was originally due to open in August, but construction
delays led to a postponement.
Leaders of the SRT union, which went on a selective
wildcat strike on Monday morning, causing disruption to hundreds of
thousands of commuters, said they were concerned the SRT would further
privatise other routes of the national rail service. Yesterday, the
union entered into a memorandum of understanding with the government to
end the strike on condition there be further negotiations between the
two sides over the SRT's reorganisation. The SRT has been losing money
for years, with accumulated losses amounting to more than Bt70 billion.
Sanan said the SRT management would have to hold talks with the union,
as the latter still lacked a clear understanding of the reorganisation
plan aimed at boosting the agency's efficiency and reducing its chronic
Sawit Kaewwan, president of the SRT union, said rail
workers had needed to take the drastic action of the past two days in
order to achieve the union's objective, even though many commuters were
left stranded as a result. Deputy Finance Minister Pradit Pataraprasit
said the SRT needed to be reorganised quickly, because the government
had committed to investing Bt170 billion in more railroad projects over
the next few years.
June,2009 - The Nation, nationmedia.com
NEWS UPDATE... 3rd June 2009
Cabinent approves Business Plan
The Cabinet on Wednesday approved the business plan
for train services, including the December 5 launch of airport link
project between Suvarnabhumi Airport and the inner city areas at
Makkasan and Phyathai.
The trial period for the airport link service will
last three months and the full service is expected to start in March,
Transport deputy permanent secretary Thawanrat Onsira said. The
construction for the airport link service is about 98 per cent
completed and the remaining work is for testing the operation system.
June - nationmedia.com
Previous News...Rental Bangkok
The Minister of Transport, Sophon Zarum, and the
chairman of the State Railway of Thailand (SRT), Youtdana Tupcharoen,
were among those onboard for the first trip on 12 February. In the
course of this year, the light rail transit line will connect the city
centre and Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi airport. The multiple-unit express
train is based on the Desiro UK built by Siemens. In 2005, SRT placed
an order with Siemens Mobility and two Thai companies - B Grimm Group
and Sino Thai Engineering and Construction (Stecon) - to build the rail
The project involved the construction of a new
28km-long route and a station in the city centre. Siemens and B Grimm
were responsible for developing, supplying and installing the entire
electrical and mechanical parts of the project. This included track
construction, vehicles, signaling systems, the power supply, a
communication system, fare management, tunnel equipment, depot and
workshop equipment, check-in systems and baggage management. Most of
the line is elevated, with just under 1km underground. The Suvarnabhumi
Airport Express will run non-stop on the 25.7km route between the
airport and the capital.
The Suvarnabhumi Airport City Line, which runs on
the same tracks, is 28.5km long and extends further into the inner
city. It has six scheduled stops and ends at Phaya Thai Station, where
passengers can transfer to the Bangkok Skytrain. The first of a total
of five City Line trains have already completed successful test runs at
a maximum speed of 160km/h. These took place on January 18, 2009,
between Klong Ton Depot and Suvarnabhumi Airport Station, just one day
after the 69V traction substation and the 25kV overhead catenary line
had been energised successfully.
The system will be officially handed over to the
State Railway of Thailand when further system tests and system
integration tests have been carried out.