Route analysis: DEL-BKK, TAO-OKA, CLO-MDE

This week: IndiGo expands service to Thailand’s capital city; Beijing Capital Airlines adds fourth route to Japan; and Viva Air Colombia to launch operations from Cali.

Nigel Mayes RAM18 resized.jpgNigel Mayes is the senior vice president, consulting and product development at ASM. Nigel has more than 15 years’ experience in route development and is responsible for product development at ASM.

ASM is the world’s leading route development consultancy and has supported the creation of new air services since 1993.

Delhi-Bangkok (DEL-BKK) 

Carrier

Indigo

Aircraft

Airbus A320

Frequency

Daily

Start date

Mar. 29, 2020

Distance

2,948 km

O&D traffic demand (12 months to June 2019)

677,041

Growth % YOY

10.00%

Average one-way fare $ (12 months to June 2019)

$112.94

IndiGo will begin flights between Delhi and Bangkok Suvarnabhumi from March 29, making Thailand’s capital city the 14th international destination in its network to be connected with Delhi. The airline intends to operate the route daily using Airbus A320. IndiGo already flies to one point in Thailand from Delhi, linking the city with the island of Phuket. In addition, it has daily flights to Bangkok from five cities in India – Kolkata, Bengaluru, Varanasi, Mumbai and Chennai.

According to OAG Schedules Analyser data, IndiGo will become the sixth carrier to link Delhi and Bangkok Suvarnabhumi and the third LCC. The 2,948 km (1,832 mile) route is served by Thai Airways International (3X-daily) and SpiceJet (2X-daily), with daily service by Vistara, Air India and GoAir. NokScoot Airlines also flies four times per week between Delhi and Bangkok Don Mueang (DMK).

Traffic between Delhi and Bangkok has steadily increased in recent years as more airlines have entered the market. Spicejet began operating the route in 2017, followed by Vistara in 2018 and GoAir in 2019. O&D figures from Sabre Market Intelligence show there were 451,994 two-way passengers in 2016, 564,919 in 2017 and 625,732 in 2018. Preliminary data for the first 11 months of 2019 show a figure of 610,611.

 Qingdao-Okinawa (TAO-OKA) 

Carrier

Beijing Capital Airlines

Aircraft

Airbus A320

Frequency

2X-weekly

Start date

Mar. 31, 2020

Distance

1,315 km

O&D traffic demand (12 months to June 2019)

1,203

Growth % YOY

-18.90%

Average one-way fare $ (12 months to June 2019)

$239.97

Chinese LCC Beijing Capital Airlines is expanding its service to Japan during the summer 2020 season, with the launch of flights between Qingdao and Okinawa. The route, which is unserved, will operate 2X-weekly from Mar. 31 on board Airbus A320.

OAG Schedules Analyser data shows Beijing Capital Airlines flies to three destinations in Japan, all of which are from Hangzhou. It connects the capital of China’s Zhejiang province with Osaka Kansai (4X-weekly), Shizuoka (3X-weekly) and Okinawa (2X-weekly). However, it has previously operated to points in Japan from Shenyang, Jinan, Xi’an, Shijiazhuang and Yancheng

Okinawa, which hosted Routes Asia 2017, is one of Japan’s 47 prefectures comprising 160 islands in the East China Sea. It has long been a holiday destination for the Japanese, while its subtropical climate and coral-fringed waters are attracting an increasing number of international tourists.

The destination will become the sixth in Japan to be served from Qingdao in addition to Tokyo Narita, Osaka Kansai, Nagoya Chubu Centrair, Fukuoka and Sapporo New Chitose. Sabre data shows O&D traffic between Qingdao and Okinawa is small – at 1,323 two-way passengers in 2018 – but Beijing Capital Airlines can expect its lower fares to stimulate demand as Qingdao is home to more than 9 million people.

 Cali-Medellin (CLO-MDE) 

Carrier

Viva Air Colombia

Aircraft

Airbus A320

Frequency

12X-weekly

Start date

Feb. 4, 2020

Distance

309 km

O&D traffic demand (12 months to June 2019)

410,671

Growth % YOY

10.20%

Average one-way fare $ (12 months to June 2019)

$61.00

Irelandia Aviation-owned Viva Air Colombia is expanding its domestic offer from February when it begins service from Cali’s Alfonso Bonilla Aragón International for the first time. The ultra-LCC is launching four routes from Colombia’s fourth largest airport to Medellin, San Andres Island, Cartagena and Barranquilla. Flights to Medellin and San Andres Island start on Feb. 4 and will operate 12X-weekly and 5X-weekly respectively. Cartagena starts a day later and will be 3X-weekly, while the Barranquilla route opens on April 1 and will be served daily. All four routes will be on board Airbus A320.

Viva Air Colombia will compete directly with Avianca on the Cali-Medellin Jose Maria Cordova sector. Avianca operates the route 41X-weekly using a mix of A319, A320 and ATR 72 aircraft. OAG Schedules Analyser figures show the flag carrier offers 9,584 weekly two-way seats. Viva Air Colombia will offer 4,320 seats. In addition, the government-owned SATENA connects Cali with Medellin Enrique Olaya Herrerra (EOH) five times per week using Embraer RJ145.