VietJet Air has announced that it would offer 40 seats with preferential airfares on every flight. Meanwhile, Air Mekong has promised that its passengers would enjoy hotel room rate discounts.
Tran The Dung, Deputy Head of the HCM City Tourism Promotion Team, said that with the cooperation with Vietjet Air, travel firms would have three big advantages.
They can book air tickets for the flights with good departure and arrival time (taking off prior to 7.30 am, landing after 9 pm). They can book tickets near the departure days (20 days in advance).
Besides, travel firms can book tickets at lower airfare, 3.278 million dong per passenger for a return ticket on the HCM City – Hanoi route. Meanwhile, Vietnam Airlines’ tickets are priced at 3.4-3.5 million dong. Especially, the air carrier has offered a more flexible policy allowing travel firms to change the names of passengers, in case the registered passengers cancel the tours.
Vietjet Air reserves 40 preferential seats on every flight, i.e. 80 passengers can enjoy preferential airfares a day. As such, domestic travelers in the next six months would be able to save 49 percent of tour fees via the cooperation between airlines and travel firms, according to the HCM City Tourism Association.
However, there is still a disadvantage that the number of air routes and the number of flights remain modest.
Some travel firms have suggested that airlines should apply a more flexible policy for travel firms. For example, airlines should not impose fine on travel firms, in case they book 20 tickets, but only 15 travelers turn up in the last minute. In this case, travel firms would allow a certain cancellation percentage, possibly 10 percent. Besides, the travelers who arrive late should be allowed to take other flights on the same routes, if they accept to pay the fine of hundreds of thousands of dong.
The joining of Vietjet Air, a private run airline, to the tourism promotion program has forced Vietnam Airlines to “make compromise”. Vietnam Airlines was the first airline which offered preferential air tickets with the discount rate of 40 percent for the flights from April 2012 to December 31, 2012. However, travel firms complained that Vietnam Airlines imposed overly strict rules for the cooperation between it and travel firms.
In the latest news, travel firms have informed that Vietnam Airlines has accepted the ticket booking for the flights on peak days. Previously, Vietnam Airlines did not accept airfare discounts for the flights from July 15 to August 15, the high summer season, on some air routes from/to Da Nang, Hue, Phu Quoc Island and Da Lat.
Besides, from August 15, Vietnam Airlines would continue slashing airfares for travel firms by 500,000 dong on every air route.
Meanwhile, Commercial Director of Air Mekong Truong Thanh Vu has said the airline is joining hands with some hotels and resorts to offer price discounts. For example, passengers would be able to enjoy the 10-40 percent of hotel room rates at some accommodations in Phu Quoc and Con Dao islands and Ha Long Bay.
Vu said that there would be no limitation on the number of seats on every flight or the number of hotel rooms. Passengers can book seats themselves and they only need to show the boarding card at the hotels’ receptions to be able to enjoy hotel room discounts.
He also said that Air Mekong is negotiating with some partners to provide preferences to passengers in some other tourist destinations, such as Hanoi, HCM City, or Quy Nhon Ngoc Ha