KATHMANDU, July 30: Nepal Airlines Corporation (NAC) has lessened airfare for Kathmandu-Osaka-Kathmandu flights as part of its promotional activity, from Monday.
"The new fare for one-way trip is Rs 37,000 and Rs 73,000 for round trip inclusive of all taxes, until further notice," said Navaraj Koirala, joint spokesperson at the NAC.
The NAC had previously fixed the one-way flight fare at Rs 45,000 and Rs 75,000-90,000 for round trip.
“We have introduced the promotional fare focusing the upcoming Dashain festivals and the months of September and October that are considered a high season for tourism," Koirala said.
The airlines stated that the airfare was introduced with an aim of promoting its inaugural flights to Osaka.
The state-owned carrier is organizing promotional activities in both Nepal and Japan. "A team of the NAC is in Japan to promote the flights. We have also started full-phase marketing campaigns via different platforms in Nepal," he told Republica.
The state-owned carrier is launching its scheduled flight to Osaka from August 29. Earlier, the NAC had announced to start Osaka flights from July 5. However, it postponed the maiden flight, citing poor bookings. The NAC had reopened its booking from July 25.
"The response is positive and the booking of flights is starting to pick up," Koirala said, adding: "There is also a possibility of chartered flights in the near future."
The NAC will operate Osaka flights three times a week -- on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. It takes six to six and half hours to reach Osaka from Kathmandu, whereas the flight duration from Osaka to Kathmandu is seven hours. The flight will take off from Kathmandu at 2:30am and land at Osaka at 11:55am (local time). The national carrier will use Airbus A330-200 aircraft for Osaka flights.
The NAC is resuming direct flights to Osaka of Japan after a hiatus of 12 years. Japan Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB) permitted the NAC to resume its flight to Osaka after Nepal and Japan signed Exchange of Notes on revising the Air Service Agreement earlier this year.
The resumption of direct flights is expected to benefit Nepalis residing in Japan and also Japanese tourists visiting Nepal. The operation of direct flights to Osaka is expected to provide some relief to the loss-making national flag carrier.
The NAC has been operating scheduled flights to New Delhi, Doha, Dubai, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Mumbai, and Bangalore with two Airbus A320-200s and two Airbus A330-200.