|Passengers check-in for a Vietnam Airlines flight at Phnom Penh International Airport, Cambodia, on January 1, 2022. — VNA/VNS Photo Vũ Hùng|
HÀ NỘI — The Civil Aviation Authority of Việt Nam (CAAV) has proposed resuming up to ten regular flights a week each to the UK, France, Germany and Russia.
In the first week of a pilot plan to reopen regular international flights from January 1, 2022, Vietnamese airlines conducted 16 flights carrying around 1,000 passengers to Việt Nam from the US, Japan, Thailand, Cambodia, and Taiwan (China).
The CAAV cited a Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ report saying that there are about 140,000 Vietnamese citizens overseas who want to return to Việt Nam for the Tết holiday.
Demand for arrivals into Việt Nam could surpass 30,000 a week, including Vietnamese citizens overseas and foreigners (diplomats, experts, investors, etc.)
The CAAV has discussed increasing the frequency of regular commercial flights to 14 a week per route with their counterparts in South Korea, Japan, Taiwan (China) and Singapore.
The Thai aviation authorities informed the CAAV of its epidemic prevention and control regulations; passengers entering Thailand via Bangkok, Samui or Phuket must isolate for 7-10 days.
CAAV said they were working with their Thai counterparts to raise the frequency of flights to a total of 20 a week between the two countries.
Demand for travel to and from Cambodia is not as high so the aviation authority will monitor the situation and keep discussions open regarding operating 10 flights a week each way.
China and Laos have so far not given their replies on Việt Nam’s proposal to resume regular international flights.
On January 11, the aviation authority had sent a document to the Australian aviation authorities notifying them that airlines of the two countries can now restart regular international passenger flights.
The majority of Vietnamese citizens who want to return from Europe can do so through the ‘gateways’ of France (Paris), Germany (Frankfurt), the UK (London) and Russia (Moscow). Given the high demand, resuming direct flights from these areas to Việt Nam is a necessity.
The CAAV proposed that the Ministry of Transport notify the aviation authorities of France, Germany, the UK and Russia that their airlines can restart international flights to and from Việt Nam with an initial frequency of 10 flights a week.
Vietnamese airlines' representatives said they were ready to open up flights to Australia and European countries within January and February.
The national carrier Vietnam Airlines said it was offering flights from Hà Nội to Sydney on January 15-16 with ticket prices of VNĐ19.3 million (US$850) and the Sydney-Hà Nội route on January 17-18 with ticket prices of VNĐ22.1 million.
The frequency of flights to Australia would be gradually increased in the coming weeks according to the needs of passengers and the approval of the authorities.
Bamboo Airways also plans to fly to Australia from February with a frequency of two round-trip flights per week, to Germany two round-trip flights, to the UK one round-trip flight a week.
Ticket prices and flight dates have not been announced yet.
With the upcoming routes to Australia and Europe, the airline recommends that passengers keep themselves up to date with the respective countries' regulations on immigration, COVID-19 vaccination or recovery status/certificates, and testing.
Airlines will continue to strive to ensure a safe, green corridor for passengers and airline staff, including vaccination for all employees, and deploying the IATA Travel Pass electronic health passport application. — VNS