A 2023 Guide to Thai Airlines for Tourists: Our Best Picks

A Thai airlines line at an airport hangar. Book your flight to the Land of Smiles with these Thai airlines!

It’s 2023, and travelers are in full swing! Who wouldn’t want to venture out into the world after a long period of travel lull?

If you’re searching for a destination, look no further than Thailand. There are many reasons millions of tourists visit the Land of Smiles every year. Its islands are a tropical lover’s dream, its culinary scene is among the world’s best, and its temples are cultural marvels.

April is one of the best times to travel to Thailand. Although the country’s weather is pleasant throughout the year, this month is a recommended one because it falls under the local summer season. The sun is out, so you can expect hot temperatures.

But before you start making reservations for your Thai getaway, you may want to iron out the details of your vacation first. One of those is your airline carrier of choice. Which Thai airlines are worth flying with?

We’ll share our list of recommended airlines in Thailand to give you options.

The Airline You Choose Matters

You shouldn’t choose an airline on a whim. It may not seem like a big deal, but your choice of airline can impact your travel experience greatly.

Buying plane tickets at good prices can be tricky. Expensive liners don’t always guarantee great flights. On the other hand, some cheap flights are bad purchases.

Not only do you want to get the best value for your money, but you want to feel comfortable on board too. After all, flying to the Land of Smiles is a long journey. If you’re coming from the United States, it’ll take around 18 to 22 hours to reach the country (depending on where you’re flying from). It won’t do if you’re cramped into an uncomfortable seat on a long journey halfway across the world!

Since you’re now aware of the importance of choosing airlines, let’s move on to our list of the best airlines to fly to Thailand.


Are you already in the country? If so, these Thai airlines are worth checking out:


Airplane flying over a city. AirAsia’s affordable rates make it one of the best airlines to fly to Thailand.

More often than not, travelers spend the bulk of their budget on airfare. With prices continually surging, it’s no surprise tourists want to save money on plane tickets.

For frugal travelers, flying business class to Thailand is out of the question. Fortunately, affordable options are available. AirAsia is among those choices.

This budget airline is one of Thailand’s most popular ones, holding frequent promos throughout the year. In January, it was named one of 2023’s top 20 safest budget airlines in the world. With that, it’s safe to say that it’s one of the safest airlines in Thailand.

AirAsia is a good option for light travelers because of its 7 kg hand-carry allowance and 15 kg luggage limit. Extras like in-flight meals and seat reservations come with additional costs. They have machines installed inside airports for easy self-check-ins, sparing you from the misery of long lines.

As of writing, AirAsia flies from Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket, Krabi, Hat Yai, and numerous other cities. Bangkok (DMK) - Chiang Mai (CNX) and Chiang Mai (CNX) - Krabi (KBV) are some of its reasonably priced popular routes.

Bangkok Airways

This next carrier happens to be a boutique airline, which refers to airlines distinguishing themselves from competitors through a personalized and unique approach.

Bangkok Airways may not be a big carrier, but its good reputation amongst local fliers makes it one of the best Thai domestic airlines in the scene. It has flights to most Thai cities and offers VIP-like service. As of press time, its famous route is Samui because this carrier owns its airport.

Tickets come with a 5 kg handy-carry and 20 kg checked baggage allowance, in-flight meals, and private airport lounge entries. Another perk: passengers can reserve their seats in advance during bookings without additional costs.

Thai Airways

Thai Airways is a four-star full-service airline and Thailand’s flagship carrier.

Plane parking at an airport. Thai Airways’s top-notch service makes it one of the best Thai airlines to fly in.

Here’s a bit of trivia: this airline services many government agencies and is the preferred carrier of numerous public officials. Because of that, their service tends to be great. It’s safe to say that it’s contributed to its reputation as one of the best Thai airlines in the aviation space.

Passengers get in-flight entertainment, food, beverages, and free checked baggage (with a 30 kg limit for economy seats). It boasts a 32-inch seat pitch, which is spacious legroom for a plane.

At present, Thai Airways only flies to four domestic destinations: Bangkok, Phuket, Chiang Mai, and Krabi. Why? Their subsidiary, Thai Smile, will always carry their domestic flights. Their economy class is slightly pricier than most carriers. However, here’s a money-saving tip: book your flight at least a month ahead to pay 10 to 20% less than normal prices.


Are you coming from a different side of the globe? Take these options into consideration when flying in and out of Thailand:

China Airlines

Let’s say you’re coming from a West Coast city like San Francisco. If you want a quicker flight, China Airlines may be a feasible choice.

A ticket comes with a 7 kg hand-carry limit. The check-in baggage allowance for international flights varies from class to class. Economy passengers can check in two pieces of luggage weighing 23 kg each. Premium Economy travelers can bring two pieces of checked baggage individually weighing 25 kg. Business class tourists get a 4 kg upgrade, with each baggage having a 32 kg limit.

A trip from the San Francisco International Airport to Suvarnabhumi Airport takes 18 ½ hours, while the flight back home lasts 16 ½ hours. This round trip only has one short stop total, so you don’t have to worry about long layovers.

Singapore Airlines

Airplane taking off from runway. Singapore Airlines is one of the most popular international airlines in Thailand.

Long-haul flights can get uncomfortable. Who wouldn’t be exhausted by sitting down for more than half a day?

First-class seats can remedy that dilemma. Are they expensive? Yes. But if budget is a non-issue for you, we highly recommend buying them.

Singapore Airlines’ first-class suites are every passenger’s dream. Each seat’s private area has a door, giving travelers some privacy. The suites have separate beds from the seats; passengers with double seats can convert them into double beds. The unlimited champagne doesn’t hurt either!

The downside: flights will need to make two transfer stops. If you’re coming from San Francisco, you’ll need to stop in Hong Kong and Singapore before you reach Bangkok. There is a silver lining to this, though: booking a first-class suite comes with access to The Private Room—Singapore Airlines’ lounge at Changi Airport.

Cathay Pacific

This last airline is well-known among international travelers. Cathay Pacific’s relentless dedication to customer service has contributed to its five-star rating, which they’ve maintained since 2006.

Cathay’s first-class seats can fit three passengers comfortably, thanks to its 36-inch width. They also come with cozy lie-flat beds, guaranteeing travelers a relaxing flight. Should you choose to buy such a seat, you’ll have multiple-course meals. You’ll also enjoy the chocolates, champagne, and caviar that come with your ticket. You’ll also receive complimentary pajamas, leaving you a unique in-flight souvenir.

Airlines don’t come in one-size-fits-all varieties. Some are geared toward budget-conscious tourists, while others have services for passengers who prefer to travel in a luxurious fashion. Thai airlines are no exception. We hope our list helps you with your selection.

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