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The air was opened only over Vladivostok

Why the Far East is not very popular with foreign air carriers

6 April, the South Korean low-cost truck T'way performed its first flight from Vladivostok-Daegu airport to Korea from Vladivostok airport. The company plans to fly three times a week. Can you expect a mass interest in the Far East of other foreign airlines, found out EastRussia.

The air was opened only over Vladivostok
Now, 12 foreign airlines fly to the Far East, if you look at the timetables of international airports, including T'way Air, which has just begun work. In fact, only eight of them operate regular flights. Japan Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Asiana Airlines and Cathay Pacific cooperate with the Russian S7 through codeshare. There are also newcomers, Eastar Jet and China Express Airlines, which plan to operate flights on their own. And even though there are only five Russian companies in the region, the total number of flights for “foreigners” is significantly less than that of domestic ones.

The preponderance of Russian airlines in terms of the number of flights, explains Timur Yusupov, the public relations specialist for, is connected with the fact that foreign airlines can fly to Russia only from the country in which they are based. In they emphasize: the air carriers do not aspire to increase the flight program, because the loading on these routes is not so high.

The Far East is not deprived of the attention of foreign companies, says the representative of the service Janis Dzenis. “Not every regional airport can boast such a range of foreign airlines and international routes,” he says. True, at the moment, foreign carriers are not represented at all such directions as Japan, Thailand and Vietnam - despite the fact that all three directions have large passenger flows. But in the region there are companies working for different audiences: both low-cost airlines and premium Korean Air.

The general director of the Chief Air Transport Agency of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) Alexander Sosnovsky also says that the matter is rather not in the possibility and interest of foreign airlines, but in the absence of demand from the population. "Throughout the Far East, three times less than in Moscow. If now, relatively speaking, a flight from Yakutsk to Seoul carries out flights one or two a week, depending on the season, how much more? "- says the head of the agency. 

Therefore, he is sure, the general development of the region will contribute to the mass influx of foreign companies to the Far East: industry, mobility of people, and, of course, solvency. "There will be money - will fly and on the weekend," - says Alexander Sosnovsky. In this case, in his opinion, such areas as China, South Korea, Japan and Asian beach directions will develop. 

A good incentive for the development of foreign airlines in the Far East, according to Timur Yusupov, could be the holding of a major international event in the region, although in this case the planes will fly not for the sake of the Russian audience, but for foreign ones. Speaking about the potentially most popular foreign airlines, Skyscanner's development manager in Russia Dmitry Khavansky notes Thai Airways, which can offer flights to Bangkok, Phuket and Samui, Air Asia, which fly to Indonesia and the Philippines, and Vietnam Airlines - with the loyalty of Russians to Vietnam their planes would not be empty.

In fact, now foreign airlines fly only to Vladivostok. It is natural that the airport shows a record growth rate for the Far East in international passenger traffic: for example, in the first quarter of this year, the direction gave 33% growth, and the increase in passenger traffic on flights to Southeast Asia was 41%, in the South Korean direction - 38%, in the Japanese direction - 33%, in the Chinese direction - 23%, and the passenger traffic to Seoul and Harbin increased by one and a half times. 

The palm tree in terms of presence in the Far East belongs to South Korean companies. This is largely due to the fact that in May 2012, the aviation authorities of Russia and South Korea signed a memorandum of understanding in Moscow. “The parties have removed all restrictions within the framework of 3 and 4 freedoms of air for airlines of both states on air travel between Vladivostok and points in South Korea, including the number of designated carriers and the number of frequencies,” explains Irina Prisyazhnyuk, Public Relations Manager of Vladivostok Airport ... - Of course, during this time the passenger traffic in this direction has grown significantly.

Note that the cost of airport services for foreign companies is more expensive than for their competitors from Russia. If, for example, in the airport of Vladivostok, Russian airlines pay a fee of 460 rubles per tonne of maximum air mass for take-off landing, then foreign ones - $ 13,65 (even for the rate of 60 rubles per dollar it is more than 820 rubles per ton). In the same way, as a rule, any other airport fares for foreign companies are much higher. 

On the other hand, the cost of tickets for foreign airlines is much higher. For example, to get from Vladivostok to Phuket, you can buy tickets for the flight operated by S7 Airlines to Beijing, and then transfer to the Chinese Hainan Airlines, paying for about 20 thousand rubles. But for the flight with Korean Air with a transfer in Seoul will have to pay already about 32 thousand rubles. True, the Koreans have a significant time advantage - if with Korean Air to Phuket passengers get in 11 hours, then in the first flight, the transplant will take as much as 16 and a half hours.

An interesting feature is indicated by the Skyscanner development manager in Russia Dmitry Khavansky: Vladivostok-Hong Kong-Vladivostok flight for May holidays (4 May - 11 May) for S7 will cost 17 071 rubles, Aeroflot 17 086 rubles, and Cathay Pacific - 27 500 rubles. And these are the same flights - all are performed by S7. That is the difference in service, paying for the flight Cathay Pacific, you will not notice. S7, which, according to, closes the top three in the list of the best Russian airlines, also excelled in flights to Shanghai and Bangkok - this Russian company offers the most optimal for the price and time tickets: for example, a direct flight to Shanghai will cost 18 thousand rubles , while for other options (with transplants) will cost 23 thousand rubles.

"At the moment, Russian airline tickets for most of the routes from Vladivostok are cheaper than those of foreign competitors. However, it is quite possible that the arrival on the market of the world's leading carriers - for example, Qatar, Emirates or Thai Airways - with a flexible pricing policy could offer a higher level of service at the same or slightly higher price, "Dmitry Khavansky is sure. 

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