Airlines and Aviation
Has Tokyo replaced Taipei as the number one travel destination for Hong Kong travelers? That's what the results of an on line marketing promotion by budget air carrier HK Express seems to be saying.
HK Express recently asked its fans on Facebook where they wanted the budget airline to fly, and Tokyo, Japan, came out on top. Is it any surprise?
Tokyo is clean, it's close, it has scrumptious cuisine, and – thanks to the falling yen – it is now a cheaper than ever travel destination!
Which is not to say that it is cheap. But the hotels and restaurants and nightclubs in Tokyo are certainly more affordable than at any other time in recent memory.
Say Goodbye Hong Kong, Hello Kitty!
“Tokyo is an amazing metropolis that truly offers something for everyone,” says Andrew Cowen, Deputy Chief Executive Officer Designate of HK Express.
“HK Express is proud to be able to offer affordable flights for the people of Hong Kong to this most incredible of destinations. Hong Kongers can now fly to Tokyo for less than the cost of an average rice cooker!”
It gets better. Not only will HK Express offer cheaper tickets to Tokyo than such legacy carriers as ANA, Cathay Pacific Airways, Japan Airlines, and United Airlines, the airline has also secured landing rights at Tokyo's Haneda Airport, which is far closer to downtown Tokyo than Narita.
I've made two trips to Tokyo over the last year, and the trip between Narita and downtown Tokyo is no joke. Not only does it take forever, it is also very expensive. And the trains don't even operate very often – at least not by Hong Kong standards.
I had to wait nearly 45 minutes!
Digital and Marketing Initiatives
“We will continue to implement marketing and digital initiatives aimed at customer engagement as we push forward to our launch,” Andrew says.
“Hong Kong people are telling us that they want cheap flights to great destinations, and we are hearing them loud and clear.”
The airline will take off in late October 2013. Other destinations will include Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia, and Kunming, China. The airline plans to launch other travel destination in mainland China, Japan, Korea, and Southeast Asia as new aircraft are acquired.
The low cost carrier will initially operate a fleet five new Airbus A320 aircraft, which will seat 174 passenger. It hopes to expand the fleet to 30 jetliners within five years.