KATHMANDU, Sept 26: Nepal Airlines Corporation (NAC) is operating first of its two chartered flights to Narita International Airport of Tokyo, Japan, on Wednesday evening.
According to an official of the national flag carrier, NAC’s Airbus A330-200 aircraft will leave Tribhuvan International Airport, Kathmandu, for Tokyo at 9:30 pm. The aircraft will return to Kathmandu at 9:30 am on Thursday.
The second chartered flight has been scheduled for October 2.
The two chartered flights have been taken as the national flag carrier’s preparation to fly to Narita International Airport in Tokyo. NAC had initially showed interest to operate scheduled flights to Tokyo Narita. However, it launched flights to Osaka instead after it couldn’t get approval for Tokyo flights. The national flag carrier currently is operating two flights a week to Osaka.
“At least 100 passengers have booked tickets for Narita flights as of Wednesday evening,” Tanka Nidhi Dahal, director at Commercial Department of NAC, told Republica.
NAC launched its first direct flight to Osaka on August 29. It has fixed airfare at Rs 36,900 for one way flight and Rs 72,814 for round trip. Though the national carrier had initially launched three flights a week on the sector, it is operating only two flights a week at present due to low passenger turnout.
“Occupancy is gradually increasing. Booking for the peak tourist season is good,” Sulekh Mishra, the joint spokesperson for the NAC told Republica. “Average booking for Osaka-Kathmandu flight for the coming months is 250,” he added.
However, booking figure for Kathmandu-Osaka is still dismal. “Passenger movement between Kathmandu and Osaka is comparatively lower. It may be because Nepalis usually do not travel out of the country during Dashain,” Dahal told Republica.
NAC is operating flights to Osaka on Tuesday and Saturdays. The national flag carrier operates Airbus A330-200 aircraft configured to carry 274 passengers for the flight.
NAC operates a fleet of two Airbus A330-200s and two A320-200s aircraft for international flights. It has been operating scheduled flights to nine international destinations – Doha, Dubai, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, New Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Bangkok and Osaka.