A new start-up airline has applied for a licence to fly i Vietnam and announced large orders of planes earlier this year. Bamboo Airways signed deals for 24 Airbus A321neo in March and for 20 Boeing B787 in June. They have already received preliminary approvals from the Vietnamese government and plan to launch domestic service in Vietnam with leased planes as early as October 2018! I’m alsways excited about new airlines serving a market, and more competition in a still relatively difficult to reach market like Vietnam is a good thing! Find out what o expect!
Vietnam is currently served by the flag carrier Vietnam Airlines, a full-service airline with service to international long-haul destinations, regional and domestic airports, and VietJet Air, a low-cost carrier serving domestic and regional routes and most famous for their racy ads with bikini-clad flight attendants. Despite these two airlines, flights to Vietnam are rare or expensive, making it much more difficult to reach than for example Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur or Manila!
Enter: Bamboo Airways! They are owned by a local conglomerate, FlC Group, with investments in the tourist industry in Vietnam with hotels and infrastructure in several key vacation destinations in Vietnam. They are planning a niche approach, bringing tourists from Asia, Europe and North America to their hub in Hanoi, Vietnam, with connections to Vietnamese resort destinations like Na Thrang or Phu Quoc.
Bamboo Airways is planning a hybrid approach, with 5-star service, yet features of low-cost carriers (to I hear seat assignment and luggage fees) and prices somewhere between Vietnam Airlines and VietJet. They are hinting that guests of Bamboo Airways and the associated FLC Group Resorts will receive significant discounts or package deals!
With a large volume of travelers from China in organized groups and independent travelers from South Korea, Japan or Europe exploring new destinations, it’s interesting to see this approach tailored to Vietnam’s local market and it might just succeed. I, for one, keep my fingers crossed for Bamboo Airways and wish them a successful launch and safe flying.
I will keep you posted and will share my own experience here on the blog, as soon as I get a chance to try Bamboo Airways.
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