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The non-metered services with stands inside the airport is who the conflict is with he says.

That is what I was told of one of the drivers in one of the first taxi in Ubon, back in 2011, that the car rentals /taxi inside have monopole on taxi service from the airport.

Metered taxi are not allowed to pick up passenger from the arrival

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The airport has metered taxis now. http://guideubon.com/news/view.php?t=44&s_id=17&d_id=16 Sent from my iPhone using ThaiVisa app

Any further and we will have to get a Lao visa to do our 90 day reports.

Heard in BKK they are now using BMW ‘pursuit cars’! Gawd knows what training the drivers get!!!! Sounds like a recipe for disaster, to me! Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Here in Ubon, in the lane behind my house, a Double Tree hotel has opened up. At long last I thought, an upmarket hotel chain (Hilton) has come to Ubon.

http://doubletree3.hilton.com/en/hotels/thailand/doubletree-by-hilton-hotel-sukhumvit-bangkok-BKKSSDI/index.html?WT.mc_id=zMWWAAA0EA1WW2PSH3Search4DGGeneric7GW842004&WT.srch=1&utm_source=AdWords&utm_medium=ppc&utm_campaign=paidsearch

This hotel is called the Zara Double Tree Hotel. Photos attached. When the sign first went up it was Doble Tree, now Double Tree.

I wonder if Hilton, like Starbucks recently in Bangkok, will decide to do anything. I hope not. I guess the owners of Zara Ubon were so impresed with Double Tree hotels overseas, or maybe in Bangkok and Phuket, they decided to name their new hotel almost the same. A compliment.

In my small area of Ubon, there are now 3 small modern hotels; Rapeephan, Pen Ta Hug and Zara Double Tree. And across the road another new 8 storey hotel going up, but as yet, no name. Maybe the Zara Marriot Ubon!

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Kan Air is opening a Chiang Mai to Ubon flight. They currently have a 3,000b flight between CM & Khon Kaen only on Saturdays. I assume Ubon will be something similar. I'm not sure when it opens. Nok Air also added a flight to Bangkok.

http://www.kanairlines.com

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Edited by ubonrthai
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Better than nothing (Ubon to CM potentially only one day a week), but means for most trips we (family of four) would need to come via Bangkok on one of the legs, which will still make driving temptingly cheap.

I'll celebrate if it moves to a twice-a-week service!

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A new hotel is almost complete. Wonder how it will be. http://hopinnhotel.com/en/our-hotel/#Ubonratchathani

This hotel is very near my house. I was informed some time ago by the locals that it was being built by the Erawan Hotel from Bangkok. I didn't believe them.

Now from your information Ubonrthai they were completey right. These hotels are the budget hotels belonging to the Erawan group.

A hotel priced at between 550-700 baht and having all what they say will be wonderful for Ubon.

http://hopinnhotel.com/en/

PRESS RELEASE
ERAWAN launches Budget Hotel “HOP INN” for Thailand and ASEAN
Bangkok After successfully building a quality hotel portfolio in Thailand with International brands from luxury to
economy segments, ERAWAN is now ready to introduce its own brand, HOP INN, to penetrate budget hotel segment
both domestically and internationally.
As Thailand’s leading hotel investor and developer, ERAWAN has been aggressively expanding over the past 8 years.
The group now owns 16 hotels with almost 4,000 rooms across key destinations, all operating under 5 top global
operators including Hyatt, Marriott, ACCOR, IHG and Starwood. Over the years, it has gained reputation as a leading
hotel developer who always moves ahead of the game. ERAWAN was the first group who identified opportunity in
economy hotel segment and developed a network of economy hotels in Thailand since 2006, about the same time as
the emergence of Low Cost Airline in the region. To date, ERAWAN owns 9 IBIS with almost 2,000 rooms, the largest
network of economy hotels in Thailand. Its 9 ibis have shown solid performance on the back of rising number of
travelers from Asia and Russia.
“The biggest risk in hotel industry is competition especially from “me-too” supplies. To be a leader, you not only need
to do the first move where the growth and future opportunities are but you also need to take up a challenge that not
everyone can do.” said Kasama Punyagupta, CEO of The Erawan Group.
From the success of IBIS portfolio, ERAWAN has identified another untapped market in Thailand to pursue, a budget
hotel for domestic business stay where demand has continuously been rising with ARR of only 500 – 700 baht.
ERAWAN has created its own brand “HOP INN” for a network of quality budget hotels.
“This is a totally different market from our existing hotels portfolio. We aim at domestic guests who travel for regular
business, such as salespersons, or for personal agenda. Our team studied this market for almost 2 years and traveled
throughout Thailand to understand the demand-supply situation as well as to look for opportunity. We have created
a product which we strongly believe will meet all basic needs of the guests while maintaining very competitive price.
Our aim is to lift up their quality of life while they are away from home. At the average ARR of 600 baht for clean and
comfortable room, the investment cost per room had to be within the range of 700,000 baht including land cost and
we already have proven facts that we can do it.” Kasama added.
Today ERAWAN announces the first 9 locations freehold land with initial focus on East-West Corridor including
Ubonratchathani, Mukdaharn, Nongkhai, Udonthani, Nakornratchasrima, Srakaew, Kanchanaburi, Maesot (Tak) and
Lampang. Construction already started for the first 5 locations. The first 9 HOP INN will open during 2nd & 3rd quarter
2014.
“We are now very confident that we can roll our budget hotel “HOP INN” across Thailand and ASEAN with a good
return to our shareholders. In the first phase, we target to open 30 HOP INN in Thailand and ASEAN countries within
2015.” Kasama concluded.
ERAWAN plans to invest over Baht 2 billion for the first roll out of HOP INN for a contribution of 15% total EBITDA by
2016.
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A new hotel is almost complete. Wonder how it will be. http://hopinnhotel.com/en/our-hotel/#Ubonratchathani

The Hop Inn Mukdahan is open. Received positive reviews. Looks clean and fresh. Rooms could be a little small.

I wonder what kind of breakfast they serve for 550 baht?

http://www.agoda.com/hop-inn-mukdahan/hotel/mukdahan-th.html

A non-existent kind of breakfast if you read the Agoda link you posted Michael!

It is common for the new budget city "mansion"/block hotels to have very limited breakfast provision - often just an on-the-go coffee machine. Hop-Inn's Mukdahan Agoda listing offers no hint of there being any catering offer whatsoever.

I am myself a breakfast eater, but I still welcome this relatively recent sector of the Thai hotel industry - budget modern, clean, basically furnished, reasonably-sized (usually 15 sqm plus), no frills City centre block hotels with 20 to 50 almost identical rooms. Prices normally 500 to 750 baht for a king size or twin bed room with a basic 'shower-over-toilet' (not literally in most!) bathroom and no or very limited breakfast facilities. If they have spent a bit more money on the block they usually (mis-)call it a boutique hotelsmile.png.I'd mostly rather make my own arrangements for a breakfast on-the-run when I'm travelling, rather than effectively having a 200 baht plus, disappointing buffet costed into the room rate. Many other people these days do not eat breakfast at all or not at an early time, so it seems to fit the modern way.

This new wave of mansion/block city centre offerings must be killing the "leesort" sector - or at least the ones that do not focus solely on short-timesmile.png. Prices tend to be sharper than at resorts and many resorts are full of shabby non-functioning facilities, also often without any breakfast worth putting in yer mouth.

I'm staying in Chanthaburi while I write this in one of the few (one of only 2 I think) such mansion/modern block hotels to have opened here. The choice of hotel accommodation in Chanthaburi is appalling IMO and it's often difficult to find rooms centrally at late notice. The contrast with Ubon and some other Isaan towns could not be starker. Demand seems to exceed supply here, particulary at weekends, so the rooms are charged at 25 to 50% more than the equivalent room would be charged in Ubon (or Bangkok for that matter).

Not quite sure why I started what turned out to be morel like a rant!

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