Flying Really Cool Airlines
How an Industry Veteran is Shaking Up the Skies Over Southeast Asia- Aka-How Thailand’s Really Cool Airlines Aims to Redefine Air Travel
Really Cool Airlines is looking to shake up Southeast Asia’s skies in a really big way. I recently sat down with CEO and founder Patee Sarasin to find out how this scrappy Thai upstart aims to offer a first-class experience at economical prices.
A New Kind of Carrier
Really Cool Airlines might just live up to its bold name. While Thailand already has its fair share of budget carriers, this new “lifestyle airline” is taking a different approach. “We want to give passengers an extraordinary full-service experience, but at a price comparable to low-cost airlines,” Patee told me.
By focusing on customer service, comfort, and using the latest aviation tech, Really Cool Airlines plans to find the sweet spot between luxury and budget carriers. The airline will launch using a fleet of new Airbus A330 and A350 widebody jets ideal for long hauls. The initial network will connect major Asian hubs like Singapore, Hong Kong, and Tokyo to Thailand before expanding into Europe in 2025.
Patee explained the reasoning behind avoiding domestic routes: “We want to fill a gap in the market rather than compete head-to-head with Thailand’s existing airlines.” That gap is serving long-haul international travelers seeking a premium experience without the premium price tag.
|New Thai airline||More travel options|
|Leadership of veteran CEO||Proven experience|
|Luxury + budget model||Affordable premium service|
|Optimized Airbus fleet||Efficiency, comfort|
|Focus on service and tech||Superior passenger experience|
The Man With the Plan
If anyone can pull this off, it might just be Patee Sarasin. He brings over 14 years of aviation experience as the former CEO of Thai carrier Nok Air. While leading Nok, Patee helped pioneer Thailand’s low-cost airline model.
Now he’s looking to shake things up again. “We want to shatter the norm of how airlines work and give passengers something truly extraordinary,” he told me.
To do that, Patee has assembled a team of industry veterans focused on innovation. “Reducing costs through technology while improving service levels is our priority,” he said.
Judging by his proven track record, I wouldn’t bet against Patee and his team as they aim for takeoff late next year.
Reviving Thailand’s Skies
Tourism is crucial for Thailand, with over 39 million yearly visitors in 2019. But COVID devastated travel, cutting arrivals to just 20 million in 2021. New airlines will play a key role in reviving tourism, and officials already welcome Really Cool Airlines’ launch plans.
“Increasing flights to top destinations will boost travel demand,” Patee explained. The widebody jets Really Cool Airlines is acquiring are ideal for serving secondary cities across Asia, Australia and Europe.
As Thailand’s tourism industry takes off again, Really Cool Airlines aims to provide the right aircraft and routes to meet surging demand.
Check out Really Cool Airlines Home Page
Destined for Cool Places
Really Cool Airlines’ launch destinations are still unconfirmed, but we can make some educated guesses. “Our flights will rely heavily on tapping into Thailand’s outbound tourism and visiting friends and relatives traffic flows,” said Patee.
That means major Asian metro areas like Singapore, Hong Kong, and Tokyo are probable early destinations. By 2025, Really Cool Airlines will deploy its Airbus A350s on direct flights to Europe.
With efficient widebodies and Thailand’s geographical position, just about anywhere is possible. But Patee remained coy: “We look forward to revealing our initial network soon.”
The Plane Truth
Really Cool Airlines’ fleet approach reflects its unique model. “We’ll launch using three Airbus A330s for flexibility, range, and excellent economics,” Patee revealed. These new generation A330s carry over 300 passengers with lowered operating costs.
In time, advanced Airbus A350s will join the fleet. Their ultra-long range opens even more destinations.
Both aircraft types offer superior comfort. “Working with Airbus, we’ve customized the cabin configurations for an extraordinary passenger experience in every class,” said Patee.
So how exactly does Really Cool Airlines plan on redefining air travel? While Patee didn’t reveal all the details, he highlighted some key points:
- Spacious, luxurious cabins move beyond typical airline seating
- Cutting-edge in-flight entertainment and connectivity
- Regionally inspired cuisine paired with premium wines and spirits
“By focusing on what passengers really want, we intend to provide an exceptional experience in the air,” he said. Everything from check-in to amenities and service aims to be smoother and more enjoyable.
In any industry, but especially aviation, safety comes first. Really Cool Airlines is prioritizing safety in its operations with a stringent pilot training program and comprehensive maintenance protocols.
Patee emphasized that Really Cool Airlines will meet or exceed global safety standards: “Using the latest aircraft and aviation technology, we are committed to ensuring every flight is safe and secure.”
Proper crew training, regular engineering audits, and implementing safety management systems give passengers peace of mind.
Costs and Competition
How does Really Cool Airlines plan on offering luxe frills at budget prices? “Our lower operating costs, larger aircraft, and higher density seating let us provide an upscale experience with minimal impact on fares,” Patee said.
By optimizing operations, Really Cool Airlines can compete head-to-head with other flag carriers on service and comfort while beating them on ticket prices. For budget-conscious travelers unwilling to compromise on quality, this new airline is an exciting option.
Outlook and Obstacles
Of course, launching any new airline has major challenges. Really Cool Airlines still needs government regulatory approvals, aviation authority certification, trained crews, and extensive route planning. Building brand recognition and attracting customers takes time too. And external factors like fuel costs remain unpredictable.
Yet Patee seems unfazed by the obstacles ahead. He expects Really Cool Airlines to begin operations within a year, ramping up quickly to compete in Thailand’s post-COVID aviation boom. The company’s financial backers have committed funding to fuel its growth.
“I’m thrilled at what the future holds,” said a confident Patee. “Really Cool Airlines is dedicated to providing extraordinary service as we expand across the globe.”
It’s hard not to get caught up in this vision. Patee definitely knows how to get an avgeek excited. If early enthusiasm is any indicator, Really Cool Airlines is set for a smooth takeoff.
- Really Cool Airlines is a new Thai carrier launching international flights in late 2023.
- Led by former Nok Air CEO Patee Sarasin, it aims to shake up air travel in Southeast Asia.
- The airline will offer luxury frills at budget airline prices.
- An optimized fleet of new Airbus jets will serve major Asian and European hubs.
- With a focus on service, comfort, and technology, Really Cool seeks to redefine the passenger experience.
Now let’s get to the pressing questions many readers probably have. Here’s a quick FAQ:
When will Really Cool Airlines start flying?
Patee aims to begin commercial flights in late 2023 once regulatory approvals are secured. Aircraft are already on order, and pilot recruitment is underway.
What routes will it operate?
Initial routes are still unannounced but will likely connect major Asian hubs to Bangkok. Longer term, the airline plans to serve Europe.
How much will tickets cost?
Fares will be comparable to low-cost carriers but with full-service amenities and comforts.
What aircraft will it fly?
Airbus A330s and A350s will make up the Really Cool Airlines fleet. These new widebody jets suit the airline’s long-haul ambitions.
What cabin classes will there be?
Details are still murky, but expect business, premium economy, and economy classes on board.
Hopefully, this inside look at Really Cool Airlines provides some insight into Thailand’s newest airline. As an aviation enthusiast, I’m excited to see how Patee’s vision takes flight. When those striking A350s emblazoned with Really Cool’s blue tail fins touch down in Bangkok, a new era for Thai air travel will begin.