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BANGKOK – Really Cool Airlines, a newcomer in Thailand’s aviation industry, is set to start flying soon after it gets an air operator certificate from the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand in December, its chief executive Patee Sarasin said on Friday.

Mr Patee, 60, added that it had earlier obtained an air operating licence from the agency.

He said the Bangkok-based airline will be marketed as a full-service “lifestyle carrier”, aiming to offer a unique experience to passengers between luxury and budget carriers, under the slogan “We Fly the Future”.

Really Cool Airlines will operate with three leased Airbus A330 planes with a capacity of more than 300 passengers each.

With an investment of over one billion baht (S$38.6 million), it is aiming for inbound passengers who account for 70 per cent of Thailand’s air travellers, Mr Patee said.

It will cover regional routes in the initial stage to such destinations as Singapore, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Taiwan. In 2025, it will fly to Europe.

According to Mr Patee, Really Cool Airlines will focus mainly on international routes to avoid competition with well-established domestic carriers.

Its parent company, RC Airlines, was founded in March this year with a registered capital of 200 million baht. Mr Patee is the founder and director while the other directors are his friends from other industries.

Mr Patee is a former chief executive of Thai budget carrier Nok Air, from which he quit in 2017 to set up a travel platform company called Really Cool.

He still sees challenges for the airline industry, which was badly damaged by the Covid-19 pandemic and is still making a slow recovery to pre-pandemic levels.

He pointed to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine as well as the collapse of many commercial banks.

He added that his airline is adopting new technologies and innovative ideas to help reduce costs and increase passenger comfort and safety.

Thailand’s aviation industry shrank in value from 320 billion baht before the pandemic to 130 billion baht last year although there are signs of continued recovery this year.

There are seven major airlines that control the largest market share – national carrier Thai Airways International, Nok Air, Thai Smile, Thai AirAsia X, Thai Vietjet, Thai Lion Air and Thai Air Asia. THE NATION/ASIA NEWS NETWORK Thai airline Really Cool hopes to start flying in December to regional cities including Singapore

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