Due to my job situation, I have to move out of Bangkok. So I needed to fly to Seoul, South Korea. Because Korea is one of the safest countries with COVID-19 at the moment, the government tries to control the inbound of the virus by requiring all persons entering the country to quarantine either at your home or a designated quarantine location.
Traveling to the Suvarnabhumi International Airport during COVID-19.
There is a government mandated curfew between 10 PM and 4 AM (until 5 AM in Bangkok). Although our flight was at 1:10 AM, our car service had to pick us up at 7:30 PM from our condo in central Bangkok. Although Bangkok hit the #1 spot on global traffic jam, we were able to avoid the traffic and get to the airport in 20 minutes.
We got to the empty airport. All doors were closed but for one door, where we were greeted by officers who checked our temperatures and gave us hand sanitizers. We found out that our check-in counter will not be ready for another 2 hours, so we had no other choice but to wait it out on the little chairs outside.
After we passed immigration, we were immediately greeted by airport staff who escorted us through the even emptier airport. I was actually surprised that the airport lounges were still open and operating.
All of the shops had shutters closed or doors locked. No inventory in sight. The shelves and the showcases were wiped out. The only open stores were the King Power stores with liquor, tobacco, and souvenirs. (I should have taken photos but I was caught off guard by the escorts that I completely forgot.)
The lounge was more normal than I imagined. There was the usual food and drink spread. There were about the same number of people that would have been at the lounge at that hour. Of course, I also got to sprawl over a couch to catch a nap that I really needed.
When we got on the plane, it was only 20% full. We were shocked that the airline is willing to fly the plane on such an empty cabin.
Catch my story on our arrival at the Incheon Airport on the next blog.
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