Songkran Festival is the traditional New Year celebration in Thailand, and is observed on April 13 each year.
There are a number of traditional celebrations and activities involved, but it is best known for the huge water festival. The streets of Thailand, particularly in Bangkok, are closed to traffic, and young and old have enormous water fights to ring in the new year.
Special cabin crew uniforms
This year, Thailand’s national airline, Thai Airways, is also observing the Songkran festival from April 13 through April 30:
Thai flight attendants will dress in national Thai costume from the reign of King Rama V of Thailand and THAI ground staff will welcome passengers with Rod Nam Dam Hua and Song Nam Phra activities whereby passengers will be asked for their blessing and have an opportunity to pour scented water over Buddha statue.
Check-in counters at Suvarnabhumi Airport will be decorated with Northern Lanna flags (Tung) while Thai scented water and fragrant white clay powder will be used in decorating the Royal First and Royal Silk lounges based on the Songkran theme.
What I didn’t know is that Thai Airways has also been encouraging their staff to wear traditional Thai dress to work every Tuesday this year, rather than their standard uniform in order to keep Thai traditions alive. This is a nice touch.
There will also be special Songkran-themed desserts available in Thai’s business class and first class lounges at Bangkok airport for the Songkran holiday period, as well as onboard certain flights on April 13, which Thai describes as follows:
Lounges: Rice soaked in cool water (Khao Chae), Mango Sticky Rice, and Mung Bean Paste (Luk Chup) are offered in the Royal First Class Lounge while pinched gold egg yolks (Thong yip), Mung Bean Paste (Luk Chup), Sticky Rice with Thai Custard, Steamed Cassava Cake, and Thai Jelly are available in the Royal Silk Class lounge.
Domestic flights: Crispy Jelly, a traditional Thai dessert, will be served on all flights to and from Bangkok for all meal services (except for flight TG207 from Bangkok to Phuket, flight TG208 from Phuket to Bangkok, and flight TG226 from Phuket to Bangkok). THAI has packed the crispy jelly in a Pa-Kao-Ma pouch, which is a Thai tradition to present to elders during Songkran Festival.
International Flight: Special desserts will be served on all flights that depart from Bangkok (except flights departing to the Middle East and South Asia), during lunch and dinner meal services. Passengers in Royal First Class and Royal Silk Class will be offered Mango Spell Tart, while Economy Class passengers will be served Mango Paradise Jelly.
If you’re traveling on Thai Airways this month this should be a fun and memorable experience to be a part of.
I must admit if I was unaware of the special uniform I would be very confused being greeted onboard by someone in this unusual traditional dress, as they are certainly different to the usual uniform. However, I assume cabin crew will explain the special uniforms to passengers, so they can join the celebrations.
I love when airlines incorporate their own culture into their products, so it’s wonderful to see Thai Airways going to this much effort to celebrate and promote their traditions. And those desserts certainly look delicious.
Just don’t start any water fights onboard or at the airport!
Are you traveling on Thai Airways this month?