During a short 4D3N vacation, we flew 4 times in an airplane (that is one flight each day), made 8 land transfers and took 4 ferry rides.
We flew off on a Saturday afternoon, arriving in Don Mueang Airport in Bangkok in the late evening. The morning after, we had to catch a flight from Bangkok to Krabi Airport and take a land + ferry transfer to exotic Ko Lanta island. The next day, we had to take the same land + ferry transfer from Ko Lanta back to Krabi Airport and a flight back to Bangkok. We were then to fly back to Singapore the next day noon.
The schedule sounds hectic and scary, doesn’t it?
It was not. Rachel and I traveled with a 20 months old baby and we managed fine. I am sure any other young travellers can do the same! 🙂
My advice is to go for a longer vacation if you plan to hit Bangkok, Krabi and an exotic Thai island in one trip. A better schedule would be to fly from Singapore straight to Krabi and transfer to Koh Lanta, stay there for a couple of days; then fly to Bangkok and stay there for a few days before flying back to Singapore or vice versa (Singapore to Bangkok to Krabi to Koh Lanta to Singapore).
Booking the land transfer and ferry ride to Koh Lanta and other exotic Thai islands can be done directly on the AirAsia website when you book your plane tickets. There are no hidden charges. The local operators we encountered at Ko Lanta did not try to up-sell up any other tours or make us give any extra payment. What was provided was no frills, straight-forward transport from one point to another. One thing to take note when making the booking is to ensure there is allowance in transit from plane to land transfer and vice versa. You would also want to avoid too much idle time waiting in-between.
The Red Carpet Service was amazing. It made four flights in four days comfortable. In fact, my son, Asher enjoyed flying with AirAsia so much he keeps asking us to bring him to “坐飞机 (sit on an airplane)” after we came back. He can also recognise the AirAsia logo when he sees it at the airport or in advertisements.
Red Carpet Service comes with the following when you fly from Singapore Changi Airport:
|Dedicated counter check-in
(FREE check-in service)
|Row 13, Counter 1|
|Access to the Cathay Pacific/ Skyview lounge
(Maximum 2 hours)
|Fast departure immigration|
|Fast departure security clearance|
(Subject to aircraft parking bay distance)
|Priority check-in baggage and tagging|
|Priority arrival baggage handling
(Be the FIRST to collect your baggage upon arrival)
If you look at the list of privileges, you can get a higher standard of service and comfort compared to flying economy class with full-fare airlines.
We also opted for Hot Seats (S$11 extra per pax) – where you get to be the first to board and enjoy extra legroom with seats on row 1 , 12 & 14:
How much does all this cost?
(up to 1 hour before flight)
(up to 4 hours before flight)
Just S$55 if you pre-book for Red Carpet and S$11 for Hot Seat.
Best of all, if you are travelling with an infant under two years old like Rachel and I did, your child gets to enjoy all the Red Carpet and Hot Seat privileges too at no extra cost!
This was a real sweetener for Rachel and I. We felt really great to always be the first to board, first to get off the plane, first to get our luggage and get front row seat with lots of legroom. This was our secret to flying four flights in four days with a 20-month-old baby in tow, yet appearing relatively relaxed throughout.
We had a few meals during our flight too. AirAsia offers a selection of Asian fares:
Bangkok is a very popular travel destination for Singaporeans. Currently, AirAsia is the only airline that flies from Changi Airport to the smaller Don Mueang Airport. The other airlines fly to Suvarnabhumi Airport. The advantage of flying to Don Mueang is that it is much nearer to the the city. A taxi ride to the main city area takes just under half an hour compared to almost an hour from Suvarnabhumi Airport.
There are comparatively fewer travellers at Don Mueang Airport, making customs clearance and luggage collection super fast. Rachel and I were able to get off the plane, clear customs, get our luggage with Asher fussing around in less than 15 minutes.
Half an hour later, we were in Central World shopping mall enjoying dinner at a MK restaurant with our Thai friends who picked us up at the airport on the first night:
I will be sharing more on the two hotels we stayed during our trip – Amari Watergate in Bangkok and Crown Lanta in Koh Lanta. Stay tuned. 🙂