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Starlux launches maiden flight to Chiang Mai, Thailand

01/18/2024 08:38 PM
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A Starlux jet is parked at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport. CNA file photo
A Starlux jet is parked at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport. CNA file photo

Taipei, Jan. 18 (CNA) Taiwan-based startup carrier Starlux Airlines on Thursday launched its first commercial flight between Taoyuan and Chiang Mai, the airline's second destination in Thailand, departing from Taoyuan International Airport at 12:48 p.m. and arriving in Chiang Mai at 3:58 p.m. (local time).

Flights between Taiwan and Thailand have returned to normal following their suspension during the COVID-19 pandemic, Sarima Chindamat, director of the Taipei Tourism Authority of Thailand, told local media, adding that she is happy to see more air routes being launched between the two countries.

Chindamat noted that the Thai government has approved a temporary visa-free entry scheme for tourists from Taiwan under which Taiwanese travelers can enter Thailand without a visa, for tourism for a period of up to 30 days, until May 10, 2024.

She encouraged Taiwanese tourists to take advantage of the scheme to to visit areas close to Bangkok, Thailand's capital, and the most visited city in the world in 2023, as well as other popular destinations in the country such as Chiang Mai.

CNA photo Jan. 18, 2024
CNA photo Jan. 18, 2024

Chiang Mai is the largest city in northern Thailand, known for its laid-back and relaxed lifestyle, Starlux said in a statement.

To mark the opening of the new route, passengers traveling on the inaugural flight to Chiang Mai were treated with milky Thai tea in the airport lounge and gifted a rattan coaster.

The airline said that it currently operates flights to 22 cities, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Hanoi, Penang, Manila, and several Japanese cities.

It will launch flights to Hakodate, its ninth destination in Japan, on Feb. 1, and also begin offering flights from the central Taiwanese city of Taichung to Macau on March 31, according to the statement.

(By Wu Jui-chi and Evelyn Kao)

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