From Louang Prabang: a chance to fly a new (to me) airline and aircraft: Lao Airlines and an ATR 72.
The airport was small and security was poor. A photocopied sign, strangely from CATSA (Canadian air security) advertised the usual liquid ban, but they xrayed all our bags when we entered the airport, with no idea which was carryon and which was to be checked in. They didn’t even mention the almost full 500ml water bottle in my carryon. If I believed the liquid ban was even remotely useful, I’d be worried about Lao security.
The ATR 72 is a weird plane. Boarding is by the rear left door. The area where the passenger door would noramlly be is a large cargo door. The galley and washrooms are in the rear as well, and the front of the cabin is just a wall with a door (that was never opened while I was in the cabin.) Also, the aircraft lacks an APU – there’s a beacon at the rear point of the tail, where the APU exhaust would normally be.
The flight to Chiang Mai was uneventful and short… they even fed us a snack :)
(We flew to Chiang Mai on March 26th.)