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Asian budget airlines launch price war

Asian budget airlines launch price war
AFP
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First Published: Wed, Mar 04 2009. 03 01 PM IST
Updated: Wed, Mar 04 2009. 03 01 PM IST
Singapore: Asian low-cost airlines are offering dirt-cheap tickets to perk up travel during the summer holidays amid the global economic downturn.
Singapore-based Tiger Airways, which flies to destinations in Southeast Asia, Australia and China, announced Tuesday it would launch summer fares starting at about $16, including taxes.
The carrier, which is 49% owned by Singapore Airlines, said in a statement it would offer its “biggest ever network of seats” and was adding new destinations for its summer schedule from 29 March to 24 October.
“Tiger Airways is bucking the global aviation trend,” the airline said, referring to declining passenger numbers for full-service carriers worldwide.
Rosalynn Tay, managing director for Tiger Airways Singapore, said the airline would “demonstrate that we will continue to grow our business even in these difficult trading conditions.”
Jetstar Asia, another Singapore-based budget airline, said it had extended until 16 August a promotion to beat the cheapest price offered by rivals.
Under the promotion, should a traveller find another published online fare cheaper than the lowest available on www.jetstar.com, the airline will beat the price by 10% if the customer makes an instant reservation by phone.
“The current economy makes it a tough operating environment where competition will be intense and fares will be under pressure,” Jetstar Asia’s commercial head Leslie Ng said in a statement.
“People are going for cheaper fares as they become more cost conscious and want to get value for money deals.”
Malaysian budget airline AirAsia also has its “take me away” promotion.
Among its offers is a one-way flight from Singapore to Bangkok starting from $43, inclusive of taxes, for travel from 23 March to 11 September, according to its website.
Comparatively, a return flight to Bangkok on Singapore Airlines costs $337, inclusive of taxes.
AirAsia is also offering a number of tickets starting from 26 cents for travel within Malaysia.
Indonesia’s Lion Air is selling a one-way trip from Singapore to Bali for as low as $5.80 for travel from 1 June to 30 September, according to its website.
Thailand’s Nok Air is offering one-way fares for as low as 25 cents, excluding taxes and fees, for domestic flights for those travelling from 15 May to 30 September, its website showed.
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First Published: Wed, Mar 04 2009. 03 01 PM IST