A new Vietnamese airline is set to launch its first flight in October, making it Vietnam’s fifth airline.
Bamboo Airways, owned by Vietnamese property developer FLC Group, announced that the airline will have its first flight on October 10, and tickets will go on sale starting from September 2, VN Express reported.
FLC Group also announced that it will offer various discounts on services, such as golfing and accommodation, at its resorts to the first passengers on the flight.
The new airline plans to operate international flights to tourist spots in Vietnam, as well as domestic flights. It claims it will purchase 44 Boeing and Airbus aircrafts worth US$8.6 billion.
There are currently four operational airlines in Vietnam, namely Vietnam Airlines, Vietjet Air, Jetstar Pacific and Vietnam Air Services Company. Two carriers, Air Mekong and Indochina Airlines, closed after operating for a short period due to fierce competition and high operating costs.
The main businesses of FLC, which is based in Hanoi, are housing, resorts and golfing.
The new venture will be closely watched given the highly competitive airline market. There has also been a warning by Boeing that the aviation industry is facing a global pilot shortage.
Boeing has reportedly predicted that 640,000 new pilots will be needed to sustain the industry over the next two decades, with almost 40% of those required in the Asia Pacific region.