Japan Airlines, Jetstar Airways and Mitsubishi Corporation launched a new joint venture, low cost carrier on 16 August 2011. Jetstar Japan is expected to launch services before the end of December 2012, initially operating the first three of a planned fleet of 24 new, 180-seat, Airbus A320s. The new LCC plans to operate from hubs at Tokyo (Narita) and Kansai International, near Osaka, and is considering additional bases, including Sapporo, Fukuoka, and Okinawa. It becomes the third Japanese LCC to be announced this year, after AirAsia Japan and Peach. Jetstar and JAL are seeking to capitalise on recent changes in the Japanese market brought about by the relaxation of a once highly restrictive regulatory environment. Jetstar introduced low cost air travel to Japan in 2006 and is one of eight foreign LCCs currently serving Japanese cities. Winning over Japanese travellers, who have traditionally travelled on full cost, full service carriers, often booking most aspects of their trips in advance through travel agents, may take some time, but the Japanese LCC niche is not one that any major player can afford to ignore: its likely slow growth being offset by huge growth potential. The airlines of the Jetstar Group, comprising Jetstar Airways (operating in Australia and New Zealand), Jetstar Asia in Singapore and Jetstar Pacific in Vietnam make up the largest LCC operation n the Asia Pacific region, currently serving 56 destinations in 17 countries and territories with a nearly all Airbus fleet comprising 59 A320s, nine A330s, six A321s and five Boeing 737-400s. The Boeing 737s, in service in Vietnam, are all leased and expected to be replaced by more A320s during 2012-2014.
Fri, Aug 26 2011 11:05 AM
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Filed under: A320, Airline Start-Ups, 737-400, Jetstar, LCC, Low Cost Carrier, A321, A330, Jetstar Asia, Jetstar Japan, Jetstar Pacific, Mitsubishi Corporation