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Budget airlines launches Beijing route

By Wang Wen  (Chinadaily.com.cn)

08:32, May 17, 2012

A foreign budget airlines has expanded its network in China, while China's fast-growing aviation industry continues to attract attention from around the world.

AirAsia Group, the oldest budget carrier in Asia with a 10-year history, announced on Wednesday that the route between Beijing and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, will begin starting June 22. Meanwhile, the carrier's current route between Tianjin and Kuala Lumpur will be canceled, because most of the passengers prefer to travel to Beijing.

About 70 percent of the passengers on the Tianjin route come from Beijing, said Kathleen Tan, AirAsia Group's head of commercial.

AirAsia, which entered the Chinese market in 2005, has already carried more than 12 million guests from seven destinations in China, including Tianjin, Chengdu and Shenzhen.

Since the huge Chinese market attracts many foreign carriers, Beijing has become a key market for budget airlines. Jetstar Group, the largest Asia-Pacific budget carrier by revenue, also launched a daily flight between Beijing and Melbourne with a stopover in Singapore. The route began on Nov 24.

AirAsia will offer flights four times a week from its hub in Kuala Lumpur to Beijing starting on Aug 6.

The flight time from Beijing to Kuala Lumpur is about six hours and will depart from Beijing at 2:05 am.

AirAsia will offer one-way economy fares to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur starting at 499 yuan ($78.89), including airport taxes and fees.

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