(Yicai Global) Feb. 28 -- AirAsia, Asia's answer to RyanAir, is accelerating the resumption of China routes.
The largest low-cost carrier in Asia will run 40 routes and 340 flights per week to and from 16 Chinese cities by the fourth quarter, The Paper reported today, citing Chief Commercial Officer Karen Chan.
By April, the Malaysia-headquartered airline will operate 20 routes and 130 per week to and from 10 Chinese cities, she added. The cities include eastern hubs Shanghai, Hangzhou, and Nanjing.
The aviation company has been working on gaining regulatory approvals to resume flights as chief executive officers of several AirAsia subsidiaries have recently visited the Civil Aviation Administration of China, Chan said.
China is the largest market for AirAsia but also the one with most potential. As of 2019, the firm had 39 routes and more than 320 flights per week, operating in over 20 cities. Revenue coming from China made up a fifth of the firm's total. After the Covid-19 lull, AirAsia has sold more than 100,000 tickets for flights traveling to and from China since January, per Chan.
AirAsia entered China in 2004 to become the biggest foreign aviation company in the market. At present, the carrier has seven subsidiaries in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, including Thailand, the Philippines, and Cambodia.
Editor: Emmi Laine, Xiao Yi