April 9, 2015 5:00 am JST
Rise of budget carriers

Peach Aviation gets coveted Haneda Airport slots

TOKYO -- Peach Aviation will become the first Japanese budget carrier to operate international flights out of Haneda Airport when its Tokyo-Taipei service starts in August.

     Peach looks to fly out of Haneda to Taipei seven times a week between 5 a.m. and 6 a.m. It will use the Airbus A320, with seating for 180 passengers. Fares will likely be one-third to one-half the going rate among leading airlines.

     The transport ministry has been hesitant to allow low-cost carriers into Haneda, granting takeoff and landing slots to only a few, including HK Express. It hoped to keep most budget carriers, which are popular among tourists, at the nearby Narita Airport, and to cater mainly to businesspeople at Haneda.

     But only 26 of the 40 daily slots between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. are being used at Haneda. The ministry decided it should take advantage of the available slots, especially to increase the number of foreign visitors in Japan.

     The carrier is based mainly at Kansai International Airport in Osaka. Peach hopes to gain more recognition and customers in the Tokyo metropolitan region through its expansion into Haneda.

(Nikkei)

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