U-tapao international airport in eastern Thailand is expected to accommodate a highly increased number of tourists from China and elsewhere.
U-tapao airport director Worapol Tongpreecha said on Monday the navy-run airport is currently capable of accommodating some 800,000 passengers a year, given a new terminal scheduled to open next month.
That compared to only about 170,000 passengers who flew in and out of Thailand via U-tapao international airport throughout last year.
Not only regular flights but chartered flights from Chinese mainland and China's Hong Kong can use the renovated, expanded airport, according to the airport director.
U-tapao is only about 40 kilometers south of Pattaya, a major seaside tourist destination to which incoming passengers can be shuttled by bus or car from the airport.
It currently accommodates an average of 15 flights daily though it has the improved capacity to serve as many as 300 flights daily, he said.
U-tapao airport, earlier used as a military air base, was primarily designed to alleviate the congested uses of major international airports in Bangkok's outskirts, namely Suvarnabhumi airport and Don Muang airport, particularly during high tourist season.