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Vietnam Airlines rushes directly flights to the US amid difficult time

Tarah Nguyen Tarah Nguyen

thuyhang.vietnamtimes@gmail.com

March 24, 2021 | 14:24

In the difficult context of the Covid-19 epidemic,national flag carrier Vietnam Airlines plans to resume the operation of direct flights from Vietnam to the United States in order to meet the increasing travel demand between the two countries.

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According to the national Vietnam Airline, the number of Vietnamese in the US has a huge demand of returning home, but Vietnam Airlines has exploited all the return flights permitted by the US authorities since August 2020.

Therefore, to serve the great needs of the Vietnamese community in the United States, Vietnam Airlines needs to continue return flights in the form of regular commercial flight permitted.

In the context of currently surplusing wide-body aircrafts, it is difficult and not feasible for the sale and leaseback process because the aviation market is "frozen", Vietnam Airlines believes that the opening of more US routes will help the airline increase adding revenue, minimizing financial losses when its resources are in excess due to the effects of the Covid-19 epidemic.

Vietnam Airlines will divide the plan for US flight routes into 2 phases. The first stage will be right after completing all legal procedures to apply for a regular flight permitted by the US authorities until the Vietnamese repatriation needs are fully served.

Vietnam Airlines opens flights in the form of regular commercial operations, serving the repatriation needs of Vietnamese in the United States, and the need to travel between the two countries of diplomats, civil servants, experts and businessmen, foreign nationals, students, relatives of foreigners.

Based on the ability to recover the aviation market between the two countries when the Covid-19 epidemic is under control, Vietnam Airlines will continue to exploit regular trade routes between Vietnam and the US from 2022.

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VNA plans to resume direct flights to the US this year. Photo: VNA

According to Le Hong Ha, general director of Vietnam Airlines, the relaunch of commercial flights will serve to meet the increasing demand among overseas Vietnamese based in the US to return to the fatherland in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic evolving in a complex manner.

Furthermore, travel demand among diplomats, experts, businesspeople, students studying abroad, and people visiting foreign relatives also remains high.

Given the repatriation needs of the Vietnamese community in the US, the need for increased trade exchanges between Vietnam and the US, as well as revenue interest and resource optimization, it is a suitable time to open direct flights to the US, Ha said in a report submitted to Vietnam Airlines’ executive board.

If the report is endorsed, the route between the Vietnamese metropolis of Ho Chi Minh City and San Francisco, also known as SGN-SFO, will be running from March following the completion of legal procedures with authorities in the US.

With a typical capacity of one flight per week, this will subsequently increase to three flights per week.

The route from Vietnam to the US will allow Vietnam Airlines to serve passengers who are looking to return to the US for work or living purposes, with all flights committed to ensuring the safety of passengers.

Moreover, flights from the US to Vietnam will see crew members and passengers requested to follow relevant COVID-19 prevention and control measures.

Since May 2020, Vietnam Airlines has conducted a total of 12 flights in an effort to repatriate Vietnamese expats residing in the US back home, particularly due to the complicated situation relating to the COVID-19 pandemic, reported VOV.

From August 2020, the airlines exploited full flights which were allowed by US authorities, although there remains a large number of overseas Vietnamese in the US who are still hopeful of returning to the homeland.

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Tarah Nguyen