Monday, March 9, 2015

Peach plans Sendai hub by Summer 2017.

On March 9th, Peach Aviation [MM/APJ] announced that they would establish their fourth hub at Sendai [SDJ/RJSS] in the northeastern prefecture of Miyagi by Summer 2017. Aircraft along with maintenance crews would be based there, and the growing LCC would add both domestic and regional international destinations. It currently flies three daily round-trips to Osaka/Kansai [KIX/RJBB], their home base.

Airbus A320-214 JA804P at Sendai. Peach started serving Sendai in April 2013, becoming the first new airline to serve the airport after the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011 devastated the region. Local communities are being rebuilt but still far from finished, and Tohoku still remains one of Japan's poorest rural areas. (Photo: Aviation Wire)

"Making Sendai a hub has been our desire ever since starting up in 2012. We are delighted to be able to build a hub at Sendai, our fourth after Kansai, Naha, and Narita. We hope to contribute to the Tohoku (northeastern Japan) region by bringing in tourists not only from other parts of Japan but also from Asian cities. By bringing in low fares, we could increase the number of those who fly as well as the number of exchanges," said CEO Shinichi Inoue.

Japan's so far most successful LCC is on expansion mode. Their Okinawa/Naha [OKA/ROAH] hub, just launched in July last year (Peach launches Naha hub; but Naha – Ishigaki axed.), will see Seoul/Incheon [ICN/RKSI] (Peach announces Okinawa – Seoul.) being added from September while Bangkok/Don Mueang [DMK/VTBD] is in the works (Peach mulls Okinawa – Bangkok.). Incheon would be the fifth nonstop city after Kansai, Taipei/Taoyuan [TPE/RCTP], Fukuoka [FUK/RJFF], and Hong Kong [HKG/VHHH] (Peach commences Okinawa – Hong Kong.).

Meanwhile, Tokyo/Narita [NRT/RJAA] was designated their third hub (Peach confirms Narita hub; adds Fukuoka and Sapporo.) only last month, with Fukuoka and Sapporo/New Chitose [CTS/RJCC] to be added on March 29th. The Chiba airport thus becomes Japan's first to host a hub for all four LCCs, though Peach has so far opted against moving into Narita's new LCC Terminal, dubbed Terminal 3, which is slated to open on April 8th.

Source: Kahoku Shimpo, March 7th. (in Japanese)
Source: Peach Aviation, March 9th. (in Japanese)

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