Bamboo Airways to launch US transit flights

By Anh Tu   June 5, 2021 | 04:05 pm PT
Bamboo Airways to launch US transit flights
A Bamboo Airways aircraft taxis at the Tan Son Nhat Airport, HCMC July 13, 2019. Photo by Shutterstock/Phuong D. Nguyen.
Private budget carrier Bamboo Airways plans to open flight routes to the U.S. with transit in Taiwan or Japan starting Q3.

The airline has proposed to the U.S. Department of Transportation that is allowed to operate regular connecting flights – four to seven a week – carrying passengers and goods between Hanoi and HCMC to Los Angeles and San Francisco. The flights will have one transit point at Taiwan’s Taipei, or Japan’s Osaka or Nagoya.

The flights would use the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft.

The proposal marks a change in plans because the carrier had been hitherto mentioning plans to launch direct flights between Vietnam and the U.S. It had acquired last month slots to operate regular direct flights from HCMC to San Francisco and Los Angeles starting September 1.

The carrier is rushing to complete the final steps in the process of building its personnel apparatus, including pilot and flight crew training, for the direct flights, it had said.

Bamboo Airways chairman Trinh Van Quyet had said the airline is considering an initial public offering of shares in the U.S. this year to raise $200 million.

The IPO offering a 5-7 percent stake in the company is also expected to launch in Q3.

It plans to expand its fleet from 30 aircraft to 40 this year and launch flights to other new destinations like Australia, Germany, Japan, and the U.K. if the Covid-19 pandemic is brought under control.

It currently flies 60 domestic routes.

Last year, it carried over seven million passengers to account for a 20 percent market share, and hopes to increase it to 30 percent this year.

The carrier’s pre-tax profit last year rose by 30 percent year-on-year to VND390 billion ($17 million). Its total assets value at the end of 2020 was nearly VND13.4 trillion.

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