U-Tapao Rayong Pattaya International Airport

Thailand - ท่าอากาศยานนานาชาติอู่ตะเภา-พัทยา-ระยอง

ท่าอากาศยานนานาชาติอู่ตะเภา-พัทยา-ระยอง 乌塔堡芭提雅拉勇国际机场 우타파오 파타야 라용 국제공항 ウタパオ・パタヤ・ラヨーン国際空港 Sân bay Quốc tế U-Tapao Pattaya Rayong Международный аэропорт У-Тапао Паттайя Районг यू-तापाओ पटाया रायोंग अंतरराष्ट्रीय हवाई अड्डा

U-Tapao Rayong Pattaya International Airport, also known as Pattaya Airport, stands as one of Thailand’s most advanced international airports, boasting modern facilities and easy passenger access. Officially recognized with the IATA code UTP, it holds certification from the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), ensuring adherence to international aviation standards.

Initially serving the Utapao Royal Third Navy, Pattaya Airport underwent substantial development to meet growing demand for flights in Thailand. The government’s decision to alleviate stress on Bangkok’s two international airports led to Utapao’s transformation into a thriving international destination. Experiencing remarkable growth, passenger numbers surged from 170,000 in 2015 to an impressive 1.2 million in 2017. Terminal 2, operational since early 2019, reinforced Utapao’s capacity, accommodating up to 3 million passengers annually.

Future Plans at U-Tapao Rayong-Pattaya International Airport

Contemplating future growth, discussions involving the Royal Thai Navy, civil aviation authorities, and the Thai government revolve around potential additional terminals and a second runway. The envisioned 3,500m runway aims to accommodate Airbus A380 flights, aligning with a broader plan to handle 15 million passengers within five years and reach 60 million within 20 years.

The ambitious Utapao Aviation City project, officially launched in January 2023 with a projected cost of US$9 billion, marks a significant milestone in Utapao’s journey. As a strategic component of the Eastern Economic Corridor, this project is poised to redefine the airport’s role as a pivotal hub, promising enhanced connectivity and modernized infrastructure.

An extensive study accompanying the expansion assures that adjustments to the airport’s layout won’t escalate noise levels. With upgraded runways, strategically positioned parking, and efficient transit connectivity, the project emphasizes operational efficiency and reduced boarding times.

Connectivity and Transportation at U-Tapao Rayong-Pattaya International Airport

Located in Ban Chang, Rayong, approximately 140 kilometers southeast of Bangkok, Utapao Airport emerges as a preferred choice for its proximity to Pattaya and efficient access to Bangkok. As a key tourist destination, Pattaya attracts international flights, positioning Utapao as a viable alternative to the congested Bangkok airports.

Utapao Airport features two terminals – Terminal 1 with an area of 3,000 sqm and Terminal 2, operational since 2017, boasting a spacious 20,000 sqm area. With the capacity to handle 3 million passengers annually, the airport caters to both international and local flights. Recognizing the increasing demand, Terminal 2 ensures passenger comfort and convenience.

Ground Transportation Options

Various ground transportation options facilitate seamless travel to and from Utapao Airport. Private taxis, rental cars, and hotel shuttles provide convenient alternatives. Recognizing the importance of passenger comfort, retail and restaurant operations in the terminal buildings are managed by Central DFS, enhancing the overall airport experience.

In conclusion, Utapao Rayong-Pattaya Airport’s strategic location, ambitious expansion plans, and commitment to modernization position it as a crucial player in Thailand’s aviation landscape, catering to increasing passenger demands and contributing to the economic development of the Eastern Economic Corridor.

Until recently, the airport was not well known or developed and only accommodated some charter , not scheduled, flights. In 2015 only 170,000 passengers used Utapao Airport. However in 2016 that leaped to 710,000 and in 2017, the figure was 1,200,000. Making it one of the fastest growing airports in the world. Terminal 2 opened in early 2019 and is now fully operational.

It had small number of both local and international flights but, mainly due to AirAsia expanding their flights and an increase in Chinese airlines that number is ever growing. Terminal 2 is the latest phase in the expansion and upgrading of Utapao Airport. This addition means it has the capacity to handle up to 3,000,000 passengers annually.

Currently the airport does not handle cargo traffic.

 

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