After 10 years of operations since 2009, Can Tho International Airport has seen an international air route being put into service for the first time. The route links the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho and Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia.
The flight, AirAsia AK 575 from Kuala Lumpur, landed at the international airport today, April 8, making it the maiden international flight to and from Can Tho City, the largest city in the Mekong Delta region.
“The international air route is expected to boost the development of both cities’ economy and tourism in the coming days,” Laddawan Meesupwatana, director of products for AirAsia’s Indochina market, said, adding that the route also gives residents of the Mekong Delta region the chance to fly to southeastern countries on the carrier.
The Can Tho-Kuala Lumpur air route rolled out by AirAsia, Asia’s largest low-cost airline, is operated on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays. Round-trip flights on the new route with a flying time of two hours per leg depart from Kuala Lumpur at 7:55 a.m. (local time) and land in Can Tho City at 8:50 a.m.
Meanwhile, the return flights take off from Can Tho City at 9:20 a.m. (local time) and arrive in Kuala Lumpur at 12:15 p.m. (local time).
In addition to the launch of the Can Tho-Kuala Lumpur air service, the carrier will roll out an extra international air route linking the Mekong Delta city with Bangkok, due to begin in May, according to the carrier’s press release.
AirAsia currently operates 16 direct air routes connecting major cities in Vietnam with six destinations in Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines.
Local budget airline Vietjet on April 6 launched five routes from Can Tho International Airport to Haiphong City, Vinh City (Nghe An Province), Thanh Hoa City, Nha Trang City (Khanh Hoa Province) and Dalat City (Lam Dong Province).
Meanwhile, World Transportation Services JSC, or WorldTrans, has rolled out a Can Tho-Bangkok air service for the summer holidays in recent years, but flights on the route are chartered.
Repair of TSN airport runway expected to make Can Tho Airport busier
The Ministry of Transport is proposing the Government suspend the operation of one runway at Tan Son Nhat International Airport for urgent repair, according to the ministry. Doing so will allow Can Tho International Airport to accommodate larger numbers of passengers.
Speaking at a meeting between Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc and officials in the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho on April 5, Minister of Transport Nguyen Van The forecast that the Can Tho airport would get busier within one year.
The said that Tan Son Nhat International Airport has two runways, with one in serious need of repair due severe deterioration. During the repair process, multiple flights will take off at Can Tho and Nha Trang airports to ease the overload on the city’s airport.
The also said that apart from investment promotion activities to increase the number of passengers, the planned repair of Tan Son Nhat International Airport is expected to contribute to the rise in passenger numbers.
Can Tho Airport can handle up to three million passengers a year, The noted, adding that it has been operating at a mere 30% capacity. Hence, its capacity for meeting transit demand remains high.