SIEM REAP Domestic and regional airlines are scrambling to deliver more Siem Reap flights to tap the destination’s popularity with tourists.
Siem Reap is the base for visitors who want to explore the Angkor Historical Park.
According to Cambodia’s Air Transport Department director, Vann Chanty, said Korea’s Air Busan, a subsidiary of Asiana Airlines, plans daily flights between Busan, South Korea’s second-largest city and Siem Reap. The airline is filing for traffic rights.
Chinese carrier Juneyao Airlines has also filed, but for scheduled charter flights between Shanghai and Siem Reap.
“The private airline will be joined by Chinese flag carrier Air China, which will add direct flights from Beijing as early as November.”
Dragonair, a Hong Kong-based subsidiary of Cathay Pacific, announced, last month, it will start direct services between Hong Kong and Siem Reap, 29 October, offering seasonal services three times weekly.
Thai AirAsia will launch a daily flight from Bangkok, 1 October, on a route that has been served solely by privately owned Bangkok Airways.
Meanwhile, Singapore-based Silk Air plans to increase its Singapore-Siem Reap flights from 10 to 11 weekly.
A local charter airline, Wat Phnom Airlines, launched a service from Siem Reap to Taipei last month.
National carrier Cambodia Angkor Air announced, earlier this year, that it will offer five daily flights between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap.
Cambodia Association of Travel Agents president, Ang Kim Eang, said more carriers will lauunch flights to Siem Reap during the peak season.
“Hosting the UNESCO World Heritage Committee in Phnom Penh prompted more flights to the country,” he said. “The country’s chairmanship of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations last year, also played a role.”
During January to July this year, 1.5 million passengers landed in Siem Reap a 22.5% year-on-year increase. In July alone, 169,400 passengers were handled at the airport, an 18% increase, when compared with the same month last year.