Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Fuji Dream confirms Izumo and Kitakyushu.

Fuji Dream Airlines [JH/FDA] has officially announced the launch of two new routes from Nagoya/Komaki [NKM/RJNA] on March 29th, the beginning of the Summer 2015 timetable: Izumo [IZO/RJOC] and Kitakyushu [KKJ/RJFR]. As previously rumored (Fuji Dream plans Izumo, Kitakyushu, and Chubu Centrair.), the former would be served daily while frequency for the latter would be twice daily. Both routes will code-share with Japan Airlines [JL/JAL].

Embraer ERJ170-100STD (E170) JA01FJ Dream Red prepares for takeoff from Fukuoka. Looking worse for wear, FDA's first aircraft is finally receiving a new coat of paint this month. (Photo: Aviation Wire)

The new flights will be operated by either 76-seat Embraer ERJ170-100s (E170s) or 84-seat ERJ170-200s (E175s). It will coincide with the delivery of their ninth aircraft, which would be their sixth E175, in March. What color the newest airframe will wear remains unannounced.

Flight Schedule (2015/Mar/29 - Oct/24):
Komaki – Izumo NEW 1 daily with E170 or E175.
JH415 NKM 1420 – 1520 IZO E70/E75 Daily
JH416 IZO 1550 – 1650 NKM E70/E75 Daily

Komaki – Kitakyushu NEW 2 daily with E170 or E175.
JH401 NKM 0720 – 0840 KKJ E70/E75 Daily
JH407 NKM 1820 – 1940 KKJ E70/E75 Daily
JH402 KKJ 0910 – 1030 NKM E70/E75 Daily
JH408 KKJ 2010 – 2130 NKM E70/E75 Daily 

Both routes were previously served by JAL subsidiary J-Air [XM/JLJ] until 2005 and 2007, respectively. FDA's network at Nagoya's convenient airport near downtown includes Aomori [AOJ/RJSA], Fukuoka [FUK/RJFF], Hanamaki [HNA/RJSI], Kochi [KCZ/RJOK], Kumamoto [KMJ/RJFT], Niigata [KIJ/RJSN], Yamagata [GAJ/RJSC], and the new cities are their eighth and ninth non-stop destinations.

The niche regional carrier will receive its 10th aircraft in March 2016, however, they revealed that running a base at Nagoya/Chubu Centrair [NGO/RJGG] alongside Komaki is currently under consideration, as apron parking space at the older airport will be full after the arrival of the ninth aircraft. The Aichi Government and local business communities have also been trying to consolidate all Nagoya flights at Chubu Centrair, and further FDA expansion at Komaki would go against that. Adding back flights at its hometown of Shizuoka [FSZ/RJNS] has been talked about, but that does not seem to be high in priority.

However, FDA has largely been able to gain popularity due to them being the sole carrier at Nagoya's more convenient airport near downtown, essentially filling the void left by J-Air. Although the airline says any Chubu Centrair flight would code-share with JAL, All Nippon Airways [NH/ANA] is the dominant carrier there, and with LCCs Jetstar Japan [GK/JJP] expanding (Jetstar Japan starts three routes from Kumamoto.) and AirAsia Japan (Mk II) setting up a hub (AirAsia Japan is officially reborn; first flight June 2015.), the niche commuter carrier could drag itself into a new battleground.

Source: Fuji Dream Airlines, January 15th. (PDF; in Japanese)
Source: Fuji Dream Airlines, January 19th. (PDF; in Japanese)

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