U.S. Embassy message on Bangkok airport situation

banThe US Embassy in Bangkok has posted this message on its website. However, many Americans have been complaining about the unhelpful nature of the embassy staff. More importantly are some contact numbers that may be helpful.

American citizens travelling or living in Thailand should be aware that the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) has entered and forced the closure of Suvarnabhumi and Don Muang airports in Bangkok. All incoming and outgoing flights have been cancelled. We do not know when flights will resume. While we have conveyed our deep concern with these closures to the Thai authorities and remain hopeful that the airports will reopen in the near future, ultimately it is a situation that can only be resolved by those involved.

The Thai Foreign Ministry has arranged for credited compensation for stranded foreign travelers. This compensation consists of 2000 Thai baht credit per day for hotels and meals at those hotels. It is our understanding that this credit is available at any hotel in Bangkok (guest houses and serviced apartments are not included). Americans who have been unable to depart because their flight was cancelled due to the closure of the airports should show a copy of their passport and air ticket to the hotel front desk for the 2000 baht per day credit to be deducted from their bill.

We have been informed that airlines are working on arranging flights out of alternative airports in Thailand; however, we do not have confirmed details at this time. The Ministry of Tourism has stated that they are trying to implement this plan within 48 hours.

These airport closures have, unfortunately, left a large number of Americans in Thailand unable to leave the country as planned. It is unclear when normal flight operations will resume. Americans in Thailand, or those with plans to travel to or transit Thailand, should monitor local media and contact airlines for the latest departure/arrival information. We understand the inconvenience this places on American travelers to Thailand and we continue to monitor the situation very closely.

In addition, the following numbers may be helpful for those who find themselves stranded by airport closures:

Ministry of Tourism Aid Center: 1414, 02-356-0720, 02-356-0729

ATTA (Association of Thai Travel Agents): 02-134-4263

Thai tourist police emergency line: 1155

Suvarnabhumi International Airport hotline: 02-132-1882, 02-132-1888

Suvarnabhumi International Airport flight inquiries: 02-132-0000, 02-132-9328-9

Don Muang Airport: 02-535-1669

Don Muang Flight inquiries: 02-535-1616

Tourism Authority of Thailand: 02-652-8313-4

We wish to remind American citizens that even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and possibly escalate into violence. American citizens are therefore urged to avoid areas of demonstrations, and to exercise caution within the vicinity of any demonstrations.

The Embassy is located at 95 Wireless Road in Bangkok. The Embassy website can be visited at http://bangkok.usembassy.gov/embassy/wwc/recent.htm. The American Citizen Services Unit of the U.S. Embassy can be reached by phone at 66-2-205-4049 and by e-mail at ACSBKK@State.gov. The after-hours emergency telephone number is 66-2-205-4000.

About Devesh Agarwal

A electronics and automotive product management, marketing and branding expert, he was awarded a silver medal at the Lockheed Martin innovation competition 2010. He is ranked 6th on Mashable's list of aviation pros on Twitter and in addition to Bangalore Aviation, he has contributed to leading publications like Aviation Week, Conde Nast Traveller India, The Economic Times, and The Mint (a Wall Street Journal content partner). He remains a frequent flier and shares the good, the bad, and the ugly about the Indian aviation industry without fear or favour.

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