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Re: “Airport under fire after five-hour queues”, Front page, August 7.

Oh boy, standing in puddles of urine for many hours in row. Welcome to Thailand, you quality tourists!
Nice job on the part of the airport officials and controllers. Can’t seem to see that a bunch of flights are arriving at the same time? That is comforting.
I wonder if this is some sort of protest. AOT is a big money-spinner. Immigration (a branch of the police) always looking for ways to “self-fund” and tap bigger income streams. Is AoT being held to ransom here? “If you don’t want your airports smelling of Chinese pee, you need to pay us more to open more booths.”
Note how Immigration immediately blamed AoT for the problem.
Perhaps this immigration task can be contracted out to King Power?
Another success story for Thailand’s tourism sector. The incompetence in allowing this to happen is staggering, but no real surprise to those of us who have been here a while. 
Immigration need to seriously improve their communications with air traffic control. How on earth can you not know that a bunch of planes are coming in, and once they have, how can you not get some bloody staff at posts for four hours?
This is unacceptable.
And to add insult to injury, many Immigration staff are not familiar with the permanent residence book or the one-year business visas and how to process them.
At least they are dedicated to the pursuit of incompetence.
I think there is a call for portable toilets. Just push them up and down the queues and let the waiting passengers use them.
owl sees all
This problem has been ongoing for the past few years, also at Suvarnabhumi. Most of the time only half of the counters are manned. My worst experience so far was a one-hour queue at DMK. I hope I never need to use that airport again.
And all these thousands of stranded people are now walking, talking free advertisements for reasons NOT to visit Thailand. Once again the buck stops with the man at the top. If he spent less time controlling twerking dancers and more time controlling Immigration, the country might be a lot better off.
Again more pathetic excuses from Thai Immigration. “This problem happened because several aircraft landed at the same time.” First, that is impossible. Second, the same flights land at the airport all the time, so Immigration should have officers available. Always it is somebody else to blame.
The biggest problem Thailand has is passing the blame all the time – never our fault. Bloody pathetic.
How is TAT going to spin this when they want more “quality” tourists? Don Mueang is your only alternative once you have crossed a land border more than twice – not a great option. Immigration does not answer to anyone, but these people will not want to return to Thailand soon. Will be excited to hear the TAT response. 
Didn’t I read very recently about Bangkok being a world-class tourist destination? Bwahahahahaha.

The word “incompetence” comes to mind.
The risk of being named and shamed is a very good stimulant, promoting, among other positive attributes, efficiency.  
But, as we all know, around the world, the incompetent are protected in all sectors of public service. We have no say in the matter.
However, this was the case at Don Mueang, an accidental stuff-up due to multiple, unexpected circumstances, one might say. But it does highlight a total lack or preparedness. 
But try this one: Last year I was flying out of Munich, bound for Bangkok. The day happened to be a public holiday in Germany. So the check-in counters were understaffed. 
I asked if there more coming to clear the enormous backlog, the crowds and hopelessly growing numbers. 
One airport staff person said they couldn’t get anyone extra to come in because it was a holiday. This was no accidental stuff-up, as at Don Mueang – it was blatant negligence. 
The chaos was unforgettable. Groups of crowds were being redirected to alternative sectors, just to check in, then, once “airside”, find their way back to the sector with the correct departure gate. This resulted in several delays. 
I can’t even begin to imagine what stress this placed on air traffic control, where the margin for error is zero.
So, go easy on the “Thai-bashing”.
Thai Visa

If the Immigration Department is capable of providing a fast lane for Thai passport holders, it can be equally easy to do the same for all tourists, non-immigrants and permanent residents.
The above-mentioned need a sticker with a barcode provided by Thai consulates when seeking a visa, or local immigration for non-immigrants and permanent residents.
Clara Holzer

Published : August 07, 2017