Airlines rethink Japan coverage
Wednesday 06 April 2011
Airlines with operations throughout the Far East are reviewing their flights as a result of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in northern Japan, a situation that has been compounded by the ongoing problems at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant.
Airlines have been seriously impacted by declining numbers of passengers traveling to Japan - both on business and for leisure - while the triple-layered disaster has caused staffing and supply concerns for air operators.
The result is likely to be widespread disruption for travelers in the region, although airlines have stated that they hope any inconvenience will be short-lived.
Japan Airlines has been among those companies most seriously affected and has announced that it will reduce capacity on many of its international routes by reducing the frequency of its flights and switching to smaller aircraft between April 6 and 27.
The airline had already been struggling to rebuild after recently emerging from bankruptcy proceedings and these new problems are likely to affect its longer-term profitability.
"JAL aims to swiftly react to various event risks that affect the industry," the company said in a statement. "In response to the recent natural disaster in Japan, the airline will adjust capacity to meet the resulting changes in demand while maintaining its international network."
Some 74 flights on 11 international routes are affected, including between Tokyo's Narita Airport and Honolulu, Beijing, Shanghai, Seoul and Hong Kong, as well as between Tokyo's Haneda Airport and Seoul.
Australian budget airline Jetstar, part of the Qantas group, is suspending its four weekly flights to Japan from April to August, while the parent airline is to use smaller Airbus 330 aircraft on its flights from Sydney to Narita.
British Airways has not cancelled flights to Tokyo, according to Willie Walsh, chief executive of the airline, but has added a stopover at South Korea's Incheon International Airport. That is in part due to problems with air crew accommodation near Narita Airport, although Walsh said the airline hopes "to re-establish direct links as soon as possible."
Germany's Lufthansa, Air France and sister airline KLM have also moved their crews to Seoul and are using catering services out of South Korea, even though the stopover adds around two hours to long-haul flights.
American Airlines has previously announced that it will suspend flights from New York's John F. Kennedy Airport to Narita and one of its Dallas/Fort Worth to Narita round-trips, effective April 6.
The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations
- 1 This restaurant has misunderstood the concept of 'cheese and biscuits'
- 2 Raif Badawi, the Saudi Arabian blogger sentenced to 1,000 lashes, may now face death penalty
- 3 Delhi bus rapist blames dead victim for attack because 'girls are responsible for rape'
- 4 PornHub turns masturbation into energy in bid to save the planet
- 5 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
Thailand tourism video Love En Route criticised for featuring Instagram stalker
Luggage: The journey from canvas rucksacks to carry-on capsules
Eurostar re-opens between London and Paris after person killed by train in Kent
The Atlas of Beauty: Photographer travels around the world to capture cultural diversity through stunning portraits of women
The 10 Best hiking boots
New theory could prove how life began and disprove God
This is what it's like to be dead, according to a guy who died for a bit
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Qualified Lifeguards are required to join a fa...
£19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Based in South Kensington, this prestigi...
£40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A reputable organisation within the leisure i...
£25000 - £33000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Partner is required to ...