In order to further diversify the territory’s route network, Macau International Airport actively works with various airlines, optimising the advantages of local air freedom rights to facilitate new air services. On 27th October Cambodian airline Bassaka Air commenced its first international flight service between Macau and Phnom Penh with a twice weekly charter flight service. Bassaka Air will provide charter flight services in the initial stage and intends to launch twice weekly services from mid-November this year.
In addition, Asian Air launched a charter flight from Bangkok to Palau via Macau (26thSeptember 2014) operating weekly flights providing about 250 seats by Boeing 767-200. This arrangement established the precedent of using air freedom oncarriage rights of Macau to expand destinations and networks in the region.
In recent years, MIA has closely co-operated with airlines and related tourism entities to strengthen existing flights and encourage airlines to increase flight frequency to popular destinations. It has actively co-operated with travel agencies to develop charter flight services, taking advantage of the air freedom rights of Macau to transform potential routes into regular ones in its endeavours to further expand its air service to major cities in Asian countries, and thus provide travellers with extra destination options.
In addition, MIA recently participated in the World Routes Conference 2014 in Chicago, featuring the 20th World Routes Development Forum, from the 21st to 23rdSeptember 2014. The Forum brought together the largest range of civil aviation representatives from 100 countries ever; over 3,000 delegates from airlines, airports, tourism authorities, and suppliers attended the event.
In the Forum, one-on-one meetings were arranged with various airlines to explore business opportunities and introduce an overview of MIA. A number of airlines expressed interest in operating flight services to and from Macau: Air New Zealand spoke of launching a trial charter New Zealand-Macau operation, while Bangkok Airways expressed its intention of launching a Koh Samui-Macau flight service. Meetings were also held with Air India, Mega Maldives Airlines, Jetstar Group, and Okinawa Tourism Board, among others, to explore co-operation opportunities.