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Koh Samui air and sea access to resume
Sirima Eamtako, Bangkok, March 29, 2011

TOURISTS stranded on Koh Samui after bad weather forced the closure of the local airport and suspension of ferry services yesterday are expected to resume travel later this afternoon.


Bangkok Airways’ press office said that depending on weather conditions, the airline would resume flights in and out of Koh Samui from 3.00pm today and would deploy an additional six Airbus A319s from Bangkok to clear the passenger backlog.


The airline was forced to cancel 36 flights between Samui and Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket, Krabi, U-Tapao (Pattaya), Hong Kong and Singapore yesterday due to unusually heavy rain and strong winds.


Passengers originally booked on the cancelled flights can rebook new flights at no additional cost.


Some hotels on the island have extended a helping hand to guests whose travel plans have been disrupted, with The Passage Samui executive director Tossapol Satitwittayakul saying his resort was offering a 60 per cent discount on rooms.


Guests on packages were being taken care of by their respective tour operators, according to Amari Palm Reef, Koh Samui’s general manager, Christoph Leonhard.


Anantara Lawana Resort and Spa’s general manager Lars Kerfin said he expected the problem to be short-term and that travellers would return to Koh Samui – which is still in the high tourist season until April – once the rough weather subsides.


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