May 17, 2016

    8 Asian budget airlines form alliance

    EIGHT Asian low-cost carriers, including subsidiaries of ANA and Singapore Airlines (SIA), have formed an alliance that will open their networks to their respective passengers.

    The Value Alliance in a statement yesterday said passengers will be able to book over 160 destinations via the websites of ANA's Vanilla Air, SIA's Scoot and Tiger Airways, Virgin Australia's Tiger Airways Australia, Thai carriers Nok Airlines PCL and NokScoot, Cebu Air's Cebu Pacific, and South Korea's Jeju Air.

    Asian budget carriers are looking to take advantage of an air-travel boom in the region, placing orders for several hundred aircraft from Airbus and Boeing.

    Boeing's 2015 global market outlook showed Asian low-cost carriers generated average annual growth of 24.5 per cent over the previous decade. By comparison, European peers grew 13.4 per cent.

    The US planemaker also forecast 100 million new passengers entering the Asian market annually for the foreseeable future, creating demand in the next 20 years for 10,370 single-aisle planes such as Boeing's 737 and Airbus' A320.

    The new alliance is not as extensive as full-service carrier partnerships such as Star Alliance, Oneworld and SkyTeam.

    Those alliances feature extensive codesharing agreements, access to a network of waiting lounges and the ability to redeem points on partner flights.

    Value Alliance also does not include Asia's biggest budget carriers such as Malaysia's AirAsia and AirAsia X, and affiliates including Indonesia's Lion Air, India's IndiGo and Jetstar and Jetstar-branded units from Australia's Qantas.