Wednesday, July 9, 2008

AirAsia opens office in HCMC/Saigon Vietnam

The launch of AirAsia sales office in Ho Chi Minh City
Thai budget carrier AirAsia Monday opened a sales office in Ho Chi Minh City to meet the high customer demand since it commenced a HCMC-Bangkok service last April.

The airline opened its second office in Vietnam at 254 De Tham Street in District 1 and offered 500 zero-fare tickets for the HCMC-Bangkok route.

HCMC is a great market for international airlines to open direct routes, said AirAsia’s chief executive officer Tassapon Bijleveld.

Since AirAsia launched its HCMCBangkok route with four flights per week in April, the no-frills carrier has recorded an average occupancy rate of 90 percent.

The company’s CEO said the airline will soon introduce daily flights to meet the growing demand from locals and expats in Vietnam.

He also predicted that demand for the route would increase by 40-50 percent in around two years.

AirAsia was among the first of the low cost carriers to open direct flights to Vietnam’s biggest cities.

The carrier currently operates four direct routes: Hanoi-Bangkok, Hanoi-Kuala Lumpur, HCMC-Bangkok and HCMC-Kuala Lumpur.

Thailand attaches great importance to cooperation with Vietnam, especially in the area of tourism, said Consul General of Royal Thai in HCMC Pravit Chaimongkol.

He said in recent years the two nations had witnessed significant developments in cooperation within the industry, particularly through increased land, sea and air connectivity.

More than 160,000 Thai tourists traveled to Vietnam last year while 238,000 Vietnamese people visited Thailand, according to the consulate general.

Reported by Minh Quang

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