Budget airline Thai AirAsia is expected to receive a license to begin flights to Vietnam next month, officials said Wednesday May 11. “It’s just a matter of time,” said Ho Quoc Cuong of Vietnam’s Civil Aviation Administration. He added that the low-cost carrier plans to begin services between Hanoi and Bangkok on June 15.
The Thailand-based airline will offer seven flights a week between the two cities, but it’s unclear what rates will be charged. The Thai carrier is a subsidiary of Malaysian-based AirAsia, the region’s biggest budget carrier. AirAsia owns 49% of Thai AirAsia, while Thailand’s Shin Corp holds the remaining 51%.
Singapore-based Tiger Airways became the first budget carrier to begin service in the communist country on April 1.
It operates four flights a week between HCM City and Singapore and three flights a week between Hanoi and the island state. Flights on the HCM City route have been 90% to 95% full, while the Hanoi route has recorded 55% to 60% occupancy, said Ta Viet Tien, chief representative for Tiger Airways in Vietnam.
The airline offers airfares ranging from US$25 to US$150 one way, he said.