Thai Vietjet Air, Thai Lion Air to operate in Taiwan

Taipei--Low-cost carriers Thai Vietjet Air and Thai Lion Air will start operating in Taiwan from July and August, respectively, according to the Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA).

Thai Vietjet Air will provide charter flights, 20 on the Bangkok-Taichung route and 20 on the Bangkok-Hualien route, between July 4 and the end of September, the CAA said.

Thai Lion Air will operate scheduled flights from Aug. 1, offering daily services between Taoyuan and Bangkok, it said.

The two airlines will join fellow budget carriers Tigerair Taiwan and NokScoot, as well as legacy carriers China Airlines, EVA Airways and Thai Airways, in offering flights between Taiwan and Thailand.

Flights between these two destinations have seen surging thanks to the Taiwanese government's introduction of its New Southbound Policy.

Under the policy aimed at advancing ties with Southeast as well as South Asian countries, Thai visitors have been able to enter Taiwan without visas since last August.

According to the Tourism Bureau, the number of Thai visitors to Taiwan in 2016 numbered 195,640, a roughly 60 percent year-on-year growth.

Thai Vietjet Air, established in 2014, is a subsidiary of Vietnam's VietJet Air, while Thai Lion Air, established in 2013, is a subsidiary of Indonesia's Lion Air.

The CAA said there are an increasing number of budget airlines entering Taiwan, adding that currently 21 such companies are operating on the island, offering 16 percent of the overall international routes.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel