With limited travel, plane cafes take off in Thailand

With millions throughout the world stuck at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, “plane cafes” in Thailand are allowing customers the chance to pretend they are in the sky — and the idea seems to have taken off.

Onboard a retired commercial airplane in the coastal city of Pattaya, coffee drinkers make themselves comfy on first-class-style seats and pose for photos by the overhead lockers.

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Boarding passes in hand, some “passengers” even opt for a tour of the cockpit.

“With this cafe, I can sit in first class and also mess around in the cockpit pretending to be the captain of the plane,” 26-year-old Thipsuda Faksaithong instructed the media.

In another cafe at the headquarters of national carrier Thai Airways in Bangkok, hungry diners appear even to have missed plane food as they gobble up spaghetti carbonara and Thai-style beef served on plastic trays by cabin crew.

Thailand was the first country outside China to detect a coronavirus case, but it has since registered a low toll, with about 3,400 infections and 58 deaths.

Travel restrictions have nevertheless eviscerated the tourism-reliant economy, while Thais have founded themselves stuck due to quarantine requirements in other countries.

The government is currently mulling travel bubbles with select countries that also have low tolls.

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Mridha Shihab Mahmud

Mridha Shihab Mahmud is a writer, content editor and photojournalist. He works as a staff reporter at News Hour. He is also involved in humanitarian works through a trust called Safety Assistance For Emergencies (SAFE). Mridha also works as film director. His passion is photography. He is the chief respondent person in Mymensingh Film & Photography Society. Besides professional attachment, he loves graphics designing, painting, digital art and social networking.
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