WEDNESDAY, April 17, 2024

Lao Airlines postpones Myanmar flights

Lao Airlines postpones Myanmar flights

National carrier Lao Airlines has rescheduled the opening of direct flights between Vientiane and Yangon in Myanmar to late next year after failing to open the route this month as announced earlier.

Deputy Director General of the airline's Commercial Department, Manivone Lattanavong, told Vientiane Times last week the new sector will now be available in October next year.

The airline needs more time to work out their marketing plan to ensure the route is profitable, Manivone said. “Time is limited this year, and we have yet to work out a proper marketing plan,” she explained.

Manivone said tour operators typically make their travel and booking plans one year ahead, so the airline needs to work out its marketing plan with tour operators before the planned opening next year.

A senior official with the airline told Vientiane Times previously they had a strong interest in the Yangon sector but were not just targeting passengers from Laos and Myanmar.

Rather, the airline is looking at the potential demand from China, the Republic of Korea and Japan, and anticipates higher passenger numbers now that Myanmar has opened up for investment.

The planned opening of direct flights to Myanmar is part of the carrier's expansion plans to meet the growing need for air transport in the region.

Lao Airlines announced recently it will reopen direct flights from Vientiane to Phnom Penh, Cambodia, on November 7 after cancelling services on this sector in 2008.

The flights will be offered three times a week, departing on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

On October 27, the airline plans to start daily flights between Vientiane and Incheon in the Republic of Korea after recently launching regular flights three times a week between the two cities. Previously, only charter flights were offered between the two cities.