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V Air to end operations on Oct. 1 (update)

2016/08/09 20:25:45

CNA file photo

Taipei, Aug. 9 (CNA) V Air, a subsidiary of Taiwanese carrier TransAsia Airways, said it will end all its flight services from Oct. 1 following the merger of the two airlines Tuesday.

The move is aimed at speeding up reconstruction of the TransAsia group, said TransAsia Chairman Lin Ming-sheng (林明昇).

"I also want to reiterate that we are putting safety first," Lin said. The airline suffered two fatal air crashes involving its ATR planes, one on July 23, 2014 and the other on Feb. 4, 2015, which took 91 lives.

While all V Air ticket sales for flights on or after Oct. 1 will cease, the airline said, it will continue operating all the scheduled flights until Sept. 30, unless an unscheduled disruption occurs.

For existing V Air bookings from Oct. 1 onwards, all passengers on Osaka, Okinawa, Chiang Mai and Fukuoka routes will be transferred to TransAsia flights on their original departure date or on the closest date available, it said.

Passengers can also cancel their flights and ask for a refund, V Air said.

No transfers are available on the Bangkok, Busan and Nagoya routes, whose passengers will be given a full fare refund, it said.

The airline apologized for the inconvenience, adding that further inquiries can be made via V Air's call center at 886-2-449-8677 or through their email form at http://support.flyvair.com/customer/portal/emails/new

V Air currently operates nine international routes, but it announced last week that it will end its flight services between Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport and Japanese destinations Tokyo Haneda and Ibaraki from Sept. 20.

The airline said that since its launch in December 2014, it has registered 580,000 passenger-trips, with load factors reaching more than 77 percent on its Chiang Mai and Bangkok routes.

V Air is one of the two local budget airlines, along with Tigerair Taiwan, which is also struggling financially.

Tigerair Taiwan, a joint venture with Tigerair Singapore and Taiwan's China Airlines, announced last month that it has shelved a plan to launch flights to Sapporo in Japan. The budget carrier had previously planned to launch the service on Sept. 13.

CAL Chairman Ho Nuan-hsuan (何煖軒) confirmed that the parent company has set up a task force to study the future of Tigerair Taiwan.

(By Lee Hsin-Yin)
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