After delays stretching back more than a year, Thai Airways has finally swung its Airbus A350 jetliner onto the Melbourne-Bangkok route.
The Star Alliance member has locked the A350 into the daily TG465/TG466 schedule, replacing an older Boeing 777-200, with the Bangkok-bound TG466 from Melbourne dovetailing into Thai's European services.
Another A350 is expected to take over Thai's second Melbourne-Bangkok service (TG461/TG462) from February 2018, although a Thai Airways spokesperson tells Australian Business Traveller that this hinges on future deliveries of the A350 remaining on schedule as the airline builds its A350 fleet up to a full complement of 12.
However, Thai says there are currently no plans to bring the A350 to Sydney.
The appearance of Thai Airways' new Airbus A350 on the Melbourne-Bangkok route has been an on-again off-again affair back as far as September 2016, when the Star Alliance member originally planned to bring the sleek jet down under.
However, a cascading series of delays in everything from seating to flight approval from Australia's Civil Aviation Safety Authority saw the date pushed back, and back, and back, while Thai rostered its A350 fleet onto European Bangkok routes including London, Frankfurt, Milan and Rome.
Thai's A350s feature 32 of the airline’s latest and well-appointed Royal Silk business class seats...
... with direct aisle access for each passenger.
Each seat converts into a fully-flat bed.
Read the AusBT reviews of Thai Airways' Boeing 747 Royal Silk business class and Thai Airways' Royal Silk business class lounge at Bangkok Airport Concourse D.