HCMC – The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) has proposed local airlines increase the number of their aircraft to the pre-pandemic level of 234 to meet the rising travel demand.
Under the proposal sent to the Ministry of Transport, CAAV said that the increase in planes is necessary to meet the needs before and after the Lunar New Year holiday and prepare for the strong recovery of international air passenger transport.
If approved, local airlines can hire planes at a reasonable price at this time and take the delivery of aircraft as previously signed without a fine.
Five local airlines had 234 planes in January 2020, when the Covid pandemic started spreading worldwide. The pandemic later forced them to cut the number of their planes. They are now operating a total of 225 planes, the local media reported.
The authority proposed allowing the local airlines to add planes in 2023 to unlock their capacity potential.
On average, a plane can transport 250,000 passengers annually, while 45.5 million passengers are expected to pass through local airports this year. As such, the domestic market alone will need 182 planes.
As for the international market, local airlines are forecast to transport 13.6 million passengers, equivalent to 57 planes.
The Vietnamese air carriers will restart regular air services to China from January 8 after the Chinese side decided to ease restrictions on regular flights. Besides, the local airlines are planning to increase their flight frequency to China, leading to a need to raise the country’s plane fleet.