Vietnam Airlines is looking to buy new planes for its regional routes as it plans to retire its fleet of ATR-72 jets. Although the airline has not decided what type of aircraft to replace the turboprops with, it hopes to introduce the new jets by 2023.
New jets by next year
At the Routes Asia 2022 event recently held in Da Nang, Vietnam, the national airline announced that it plans to add new regional aircraft to replace its ATR 72 jets by the year. next. According to Routesonline, Vietnam Airlines CEO Le Hong Ha said the upgrade will likely take place in late 2023 when Con Dao (VCS) and Dien Bien (DIN) airports are upgraded and upgraded to receive A320s. or similar aircraft.
Regarding the choice of aircraft to replace its retired ATR, the airline has not yet made a decision but is in discussion with aircraft manufacturers and lessors to find a suitable aircraft to serve short runway airports in Vietnam. . It is said that Airbus A220 and Embraer E190/195 jets are being considered to replace turboprops.
The Vietnam Airlines Group – Vietnam Airlines, Pacific Airlines and VASO – has big plans for the coming months, with more than 7.1 million seats on offer on domestic and international routes during the peak summer season. It is estimated that more than 36,000 flights will be made available to summer travelers between June 1 and August 15.
India is also one of the destinations on the carrier’s radar, being considered the largest untapped market to which Vietnam Airlines does not currently operate passenger flights. During the pandemic, it operated twice weekly cargo flights from Hanoi (HAN) to New Delhi (DEL) and weekly cargo flights from Ho Chi Minh City (SGN) to New Delhi.
But all that is about to change as the carrier is set to operate thrice-weekly passenger flights on HAN-DEL and bi-weekly flights on SGN-DEL from mid-June 2022. Kolkata and Mumbai have also been identified as potential destinations, and if the New Delhi service proves popular, the carrier may expand its offering to these two cities as well.
Vietnam Airlines’ fleet renewal and network expansion plans come even as the carrier struggles to recover properly from the pandemic. Before COVID, it was one of Asia’s fastest growing airlines, operating 61 routes to 33 destinations in 18 countries. Its international network has expanded across Asia, Europe and Australia, with codeshare agreements in 20 North American ports.
But it has also posted nine straight quarters of losses and its stock market listing is now under scrutiny. As revenues rebound, hitting a two-year high of $500 million in the first quarter, up 55% year-over-year, and the highest performance since the second quarter of 2020, they still remain in the red.
It remains to be seen how much the new planes and routes will help the carrier in its pursuit of profits.
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Source: Online routes