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New BKK terminal “test drive” hailed a success

PHOTO: Facebook/Suvarnabhumi Airport

Airports of Thailand says a trial run of the new Satellite 1 (SAT-1) terminal at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport “has been a success”. The AoT is now planning a “soft launch” of the facility for September 28.

The airport used 180 “pretend passengers” during the trial, each with luggage, to test the terminal’s systems and facilities, including aircraft handling, baggage handling, passenger transfers, and cargo services. Thai Airways supported the trial by providing its cabin crew and aircraft during the process.

According to a report from the National News Bureau of Thailand, AoT is planning a soft opening period from September 28 to October 28. During this period, the terminal will be open to 3 airlines: Thai AirAsia X, Vietjet Air, and Emirates. By December 2023, the terminal is expected to be fully operational, reducing congestion at the airport’s main terminal.

The new terminal can handle 15 million passengers a year, increasing capacity at Suvarnabhumi by around 33%, and allowing the airport to handle a total of 60 million passengers annually.

SAT-1 is spread over 4 floors and a total area of 216,000 square metres. According to the report, two underground floors will house an automated people mover train system. The system will connect the new terminal with the existing one in a 3-minute trip. It can accommodate 210 passengers per train, or approximately 6,000 people per hour.

Once SAT-1 is fully operational, international passengers will no longer need shuttle buses to reach their departure gates.

SOURCE: National News Bureau of Thailand

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