What is it about seaplane services that are so attractive at the moment? The latest one to get going is Destination Air Shuttle, billed as Thailand’s only seaplane shuttle service.
News of its appearance comes just weeks after some bright sparks conducted tests in London with a Twin Otter fitted with floats. The aircraft landed successfully on one of London’s docks. The idea under study by a Greek seaplane operator is to link London to other UK cities using lakes, rivers and harbours.
Elsewhere, further to the north in Scotland, Loch Lomond Seaplanes has been given approval to link Glasgow to the Highlands & Islands to the north. Such journeys take hours by road.
Thailand’s seaplane service launches in February from Phuket International Airport. It will offer 12 flights per day with its Cessna Caravans serving the island resorts of Phi Phi Island, Krabi and Koh Lanta. It says a half day overland journey will be reduced to no more than 30 minutes.
Captain Nithit Kesangam, chief executive of Destination Air Shuttle says: “This is an outstanding service to hotels and tour operators in the Phuket area. This is a fantastic shot in the arm for hotels and tourists going to Phi Phi, Krabi, and Koh Lanta.”
SriLankan Airlines is another with a seaplane service. Its Cessna Caravans take leisure travellers around the island on a taxi service taking them quickly from Colombo airport to their hotels.
Check out Sydney Seaplanes in Australia as well – the seaplane tour feature whets the appetite for an intimate picnic getaway on a secluded beach. Commercially challenging as such ventures sound, I must admit to being tempted to try one as a consumer. Who says the romance of flying is dead?