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Bangkok airport capacity to be tripled as tourism booms

Suvarnabhumi Airport already handles 20 million more travelers than intended

Tourists check in at Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok. An influx of travelers from overseas has created severe overcrowding at the airport. (Photo by Keiichiro Asahara)

BANGKOK -- Airports of Thailand has unveiled a 260 billion baht ($7.96 billion) plan that will roughly triple capacity at the country's largest airport over about a decade to meet rising demand.

Suvarnabhumi Airport, the country's main international gateway, opened in 2006 and has an annual capacity of 45 million passengers. But actual usage has hit 65 million as more tourists arrive from overseas, the operator says. A lack of boarding gates and long lines are among the problems that have resulted from the overcrowding.

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