From mid-August, a year-round service will link Bangkok with Saudi Arabia’s commercial hub on the Red Sea.
Just six months after the restoration of full diplomatic relations between Thailand and Saudi Arabia — a major change from the previous 32 years — Thai Airways has announced the debut of a commercial passenger service between Bangkok and Jeddah on August 19, with flights operated four times a week.
Westbound flight TG 503 will depart from Bangkok Suvarnabhumi every Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday at 6:45 p.m., arriving in Jeddah at 10:40 p.m. local time after an estimated seven hours and 55 minutes in the air. On Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, Flight TG 504 is scheduled to leave Jeddah’s King Abdulaziz International Airport at 12:40 a.m. and touch down in Bangkok at 1:10 p.m. the same afternoon. The eastbound service will take a little longer at eight and a half hours.
Thai Airways’ latest route to the Middle East will use Boeing 787-8s with 256 seats, including 22 in Royal Silk class arranged in a 2-2-2 configuration. During the flight, passengers will enjoy certified halal food prepared by THAI Catering, THAI signature Black Silk Blend drip coffee, and KanVela craft chocolate from Chiang Mai in Royal Silk class. As an added benefit, THAI is raising the baggage allowance to 40 kilograms for Royal Silk passengers and 35 kilograms for those in economy until the end of the year. Royal Orchid Plus members who travel to or from Jeddah can earn 1,000 miles per flight in Royal Silk class and 500 miles per flight in economy class.
The carrier hopes the new route will further enhance bilateral relations and promote economic development in both countries. While Jeddah serves as the primary gateway to Mecca and Medina, the year-round route will not just benefit Thai pilgrims performing Umrah or Hajj. Saudi Arabia only opened up to international tourism just before the pandemic, and Jeddah’s own historic center has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site since 2014. One-third of the original walled city is protected thanks to the prevalence of ancient coral-stone buildings with intricately carved wooden lattice windows.