July 24, 2017 by Wanwisa Ngamsangchaikit
CHIANG MAI, 24 July 2017: Jetstar Pacific, a prominent low-cost airline in Vietnam, will launch a service from Dong Hoi in Quang Binh, to Chiang Mai, Thailand, effective 11 August.
It will be the first airline to fly between the two cities and will probably target mainly Vietnamese tourists buying tour packages to explore North Thailand, although the airline claims it is working with Quang Binh authorities to attract tourists from Thailand.
The airline offers promotional air fares at only VND390,000 one-way ex Dong Hoi.
Promotional fares ex Chiang Mai were not stated probably because the priority is to fly Vietnamese to Thailand rather than Thais to Vietnam.
The service will operate with two weekly flights on Monday and Friday, using an Airbus A320, with 180 seats. The flight time will be one-hour and 40 minutes.
The airline had earlier said it would introduce the service in May and that has now been postponed until mid-August.
The airline is hoping to attract Thais to travel to Quang Binh, but the destination is relatively unknown in the market and well down the list of Vietnam’s must-visit places for residents in the northern Thai city.
The outbound travel market in Chiang Mai is still small and travellers are attracted mainly to Hong Kong, Malaysia and Singapore in the region. Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and most recently Danang are the key destinations in Vietnam that are likely to draw Chiang Mai residents.
Jetstar Pacific and Quang Binh are working hand-in-hand to stimulate tourism growth to the province, as well as to boost economic connections between Vietnam and Thailand.
Quang Binh is located in the northern part of central Vietnam. Its capital Dong Hoi is known for the remains of its star-shaped 19th-century citadel as well long beaches, including Nhat Le beach.
The city is the gateway to Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, known for its mountainous jungles, limestone caves including the massive Son Doong Cave, but these are not the typical holiday activities that appeal to Thai travellers.
Jetstar Pacific operates 36 domestic and international.
It is part of the Jetstar Group network that flies to more than 80 destinations in 17 countries with 4,000 weekly flights across Jetstar Airways (Australia and New Zealand), Jetstar Japan (Japan), Jetstar Asia (Singapore) and Jetstar Pacific.
Operating as a subsidiary of Vietnam Airlines its home-base is at Ho Chi Minch City’s airport. (Source: Jetstar Pacific)