KATHMANDU, Sept 8: BB Airways, a new international airline group, on Saturday announced commencement of its flights from September 13. It is starting operations with charter flights to Seam Reap of Cambodia.
The charter flight to Seam Reap will be followed by charter flight to Tokyo from October, said Bhaban Bhatta, chairman of BB Airways.
The airline is promoted by a group of Non-Resident Nepalis (NRNs) with a total investment of Rs 4 billion. The airlines also announced commencement of scheduled flights to Kula Lumpur and Hong Kong from October 11, 2012.
According to Bhatta, the company will be operating four flights a week to Kuala Lumpur and three flights a week to Hong Kong. The flights to Kula Lumpur will leave from Tribhuvan International Airport on Monday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. The scheduled flights to Hong Kong are on Monday, Friday and Saturday.
“Despite being a full-fledged carrier, we have laid strong focus on services,” said Bhatta. "Our airfares are also competitive," he stated, adding that the airline would compete with other budget carriers.
As per the fares unveiled by the company, return airfare for Kathmandu-Kula Lumpur will start from Rs 36,000. People flying from Kula Lumpur to Kathmandu will have to pay Malaysian ringgit 1,200 for the return airfare. Likewise, fare to Hong Kong starts from Rs 48,000 and Kathmandu- Hong Kong two-way ticket would cost HK $ 6,500 onwards.
The airline is commencing its flights with a Boeing 757-200. “We have already signed an agreement for another Boeing 757,” said Bhatta. With the arrival of the second aircraft, the airline aims to expand its services to destinations like Bangkok, Singapore, New Delhi and Doha. The future plans of BB Airways also include flights to Europe and Australia. That will start after it adds two Boeing 767s in its fleet.
The announcement was made through a press meet. (Photo: Bhashwor Ojha)
Hari Bhakta Shrestha, chief technical officer of the group, said the airline has followed stringent safety measures as required by Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) and European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). “We have recruited foreign crew for the first year of operation, but after that our focus will be on hiring Nepali nationals,” he added.
BB Airways had received Airlines Operating Certificate (AOC) on April 12, 2012. It presently has a permission to operate flights to Kula Lumpur, Hong Kong, New Delhi, Tokyo, Doha, Bangkok and Singapore.