Red Wings delays flights to Thailand

Red Wings delays flights to Thailand

Red Wings Airlines announced widespread flight delays. The schedule disruption will affect only one direction (Thailand) and will last three days, from February 21 to 23. About 12 hours later, six flights would take off, three of which were supposed to take Russians to Phuket, and three more were supposed to return tourists home. Red Wings posted information about the delays on its official website and on its social media pages, and also stated that all passengers were separately notified of the situation in advance.

However, judging by the messages of the tourists themselves in the chats of Telegram channels, they did not receive any calls or other notifications, and they track all disruptions in the schedule on the airport’s online scoreboard. In an official statement, the carrier also promised to provide food, beverages and hotel accommodations to affected passengers in accordance with the law.

All delays were caused by a malfunction of one of the aircraft, said Sergei Nikolaev, director of the Red Wings ground support department: “The delay was due to a technical malfunction of the Boeing 777, which has now been promptly corrected. The technical team, despite all the difficulties of servicing foreign equipment, was able to quickly solve the problem. The plane is completely ready to fly. Today's delay will entail adjustments to the schedule of other flights operated by this aircraft. Passengers will be informed about all changes through the call center, and information will also be on the airline’s website.”

The problem of the lack of direct flights between Russia and Thailand has already begun to be addressed at the state level. The Asian country's Prime Minister Settha Thaweesin said he hopes to soon resume the Moscow-Bangkok route, which the national airline Thai Airways has stopped flying since 2020 due to pandemic restrictions.

However, Russian carriers also have no shortage of airliners, says Roman Gusarov, editor-in-chief of the portal: “In general, we had a high summer tourist season, and we got through it without any serious disruptions. This suggests that there were enough planes and they were in good condition. But now, on the contrary, it’s low season, half of the park is just standing still, because passenger traffic is small.

To say that when there were many passengers, there were planes, but now they have disappeared somewhere, is probably wrong. Most likely, this is due to the fact that in winter airlines try to put aircraft on scheduled maintenance and prepare them for summer navigation. Perhaps because of this, some kind of local failure occurred, and it was not possible to quickly replace the aircraft. This failure is not typical for the entire aviation industry.

Of course, I cannot say what is happening with the airline’s fleet now. In principle, everything should be fine there, because the airline operates both foreign aircraft and is actively developing domestic aircraft, preparing for the next summer season to increase the number of aircraft it will operate. So I don't think the airline is experiencing any difficulties globally. This particular situation has nothing to do with any systemic problems either within the airline itself or in the airline industry as a whole.”

The number of Russian tourists in Thailand in the summer of 2023 increased by 1000%, according to Bloomberg estimates. The Association of Tour Operators of Russia said that almost 1.5 million Russians visited the Asian country last year.

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Ulyana Gorelova

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