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AirAsia prepares to fly to Japan starting July

Budget carrier AirAsia Philippines is launching its first flights to Japan on July 1 this year.

The carrier, a unit of Malaysia’s AirAsia Berhad, said in a statement over the weekend that it would link its Manila hub to Osaka, paving the way for direct flights to Japan.

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“The launch of direct flights between the Philippines and Japan is a milestone occasion, and we’re excited to connect our capital, Manila, with Osaka,” said AirAsia Philippines President and CEO Dexter Comendador.

“We are also excited to welcome guests from Osaka and its neighboring regions to the Philippines. This international route will contribute to the government’s target of 8.2 million visitors this year,” he added.

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Similar to the launch of other new routes, the budget airline said it would offer promotional fares at P1,990 for a one way ticket.

For the whole of 2018, AirAsia Philippines carried 6.87 million passengers, a gain of 30 percent.

Capacity for the year also rose 34 percent as it increased its fleet of Airbus A320s to 22 planes in 2018 versus 17 aircraft the previous year.

AirAsia Philippines was established in 2012 with a fleet of two A320s operating out of Clark International Airport.

Since then, it has opened new hubs, including Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport and Mactan Cebu International Airport.

At present, it flies to 13 international destinations from Manila in the Philippines, including Kuala Lumpur, Kota Kinabalu, Bangkok, Bali, Seoul, Taipei, Kaohsiung, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Hong Kong, Macau and Ho Chi Minh City.

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