The rail link project between central Bangkok and Suvarnabhumi airport has turned out to be a fiasco, with passengers paying up to 150 baht for what they say is a shoddy service.
There have been complaints that the terminals at the stations are
badly signposted; there are no escalators; and there are no trolleys for passengers with heavy bags to use. Other complaints include the lack of a car park and no facilities linking the stations to public transport.
Passengers also complained the
train looks old and the seats are uncomfortable. Many passengers are also upset by the way the doors to the train shut with heavy force.
Permanent secretary for transport Supoj Saplom admitted the problems and lack of facilities stemmed
from the operation's substandard design.
The Airport Rail Link offers City Line, which runs from Phaya Thai to Suvarnabhumi with a full range of stops. The 30-minute ride costs from 15 to 45 baht. The Express Line runs non-stop from Makkasan to
the airport, taking just 15 minutes and costs 100 baht, while the Express Line costs 150 baht.
Permanent secretary for transport Supoj Saplom said the recent increase in fares from 100 to 150 Baht for the Express Line has led to a sharp drop in
the number of passengers to 700 a day, below the target of 2,200, although the City Line still can attract between 36,000 to 40,000 a day.
State Railway of Thailand governor Yutthana Thapcharoen said the SRT has set aside a budget of 646 million
baht to improve and build facilities and signposts at all stations within this year.
Kantapa Piriyapongsa, an office employee, complained the trains do not arrive on time, resulting in passengers missing flights at Suvarnabhumi.