Thai Airways International swung back to the black in 2023, posting an annual net profit on gains from its debt restructuring, as well as a continued increase in passenger travel revenue. 

The Star Alliance carrier reported a net profit of Bt28.1 billion ($782 million) in the year to 31 December 2023, a swing from the Bt272 million attributable net loss in 2022. 


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Thai saw a 53% jump in operating revenue to Bt161 billion, led by a 79% increase in passenger travel revenue, but offset by a 35% decline in the cargo segment. 

In 2023, Thai carried close to 13.8 million passengers, up 52% year on year. Traffic rose 65%, while capacity increased 41% compared with 2022. 

The Bangkok-based operator had resumed operations to the Mainland China after the easing of ‘zero-Covid’ measures, adding flights to Beijing, Shanghai and Chengdu. It also increased frequencies to cities such as Tokyo, Osaka, Melbourne and Singapore. 

Thai notes that the removal of visa requirements for Chinese travellers to Thailand has led to an increase in tourist arrivals to the country, in turn boosting the airline’s passenger traffic. 

Operating expenses for the year rose 24% to Bt121 billion in line with more activity. 

The carrier ended the year with 70 aircraft, which also includes the Airbus A320s it acquired after merging its regional unit Thai Smile into mainline operations. 

Thai placed an order for up to 80 Boeing widebody aircraft at this year’s Singapore air show, comprising a firm order for 45 Boeing 787-9 aircraft with 35 options, and with the ability to switch to the new 777X. The new aircraft will be delivered from 2027. 

Thai also secured leases with lessor AerCap for 17 aircraft, including A350s, A321neos and 787s.