Airway market in Vietnam has many airlines offering international flights. The main airports which are able to response for international flights in Vietnam nowadays are Noi Bai airport (HAN) in Hanoi and Tan Son Nhat (SGN) in Saigon. Besides, there are many other international airports such as Can Tho International Airport in Can Tho, Cat Bi International Airport in Haiphong, Phu Quoc International Airport in Kien Giang, etc. The number of direct international routes are very limited between Europe, Australia and North America with Vietnam. Passengers who want to travel to foreign countries mostly have to take a transit in airports of Hong Kong, Seoul, Tokyo, Bangkok and Singapore, etc.
Flights from Australia
There are flights operating everyday from Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne to Ho Chi Minh City linking with Taipei, Kuala Lumpur, Darwin or Bangkok. Travellers must take a transit in Kuala Lumpur before flying from Wellington or Auckland to Vietnam. Only 2 airlines having direct flights betweem Ho Chi Minh City and Sydney are Quantas and Vietnam Airlines with the 30% higher price than other routes. In addition, flight routes between Vietnam and Oceania are offered by Cathay Pacific, Thai Airways, China Southern and Singapore Airlines.
Flights from North America
If the flights departed from the United States specifically from New York, there are Korean Air, Cathay Pacific and American Airlines offering daily flights to Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City in connect with Seoul and Hong Kong in each. From the West Coast, in order to travel from Los Angeles or San Francisco to Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City, passengers can take a flights with the same routes.
If the destination is from Canada with departing cities such as Toronto or Vancouver, there are flights to Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City offered that includes a short transit in Hongkong. 2 to 5 hours are the average wait time for these flights. In addition, Korean Air and Japan Airlines also coorperate with Vietnam Airways to offer flights to some main cities in Canada but with terible transit time varying from 6 to 12 hours. However, this is a chance for travellers who would like to explore other countries in the duration of transit time with many appropriately short tours to visit Seoul and Tokyo at the airport.
Flights from Europe
Vietnam Airlines currently offers direct flights between Hanoi and Paris, Frankfurt and London. There are better price deals between Vietnam and Europe but including at least one transit in Hong Kong or Singapore. Travelers can seek these good deals on both online and offline travel agency.
Flights from Asia
Travelers can find it easy to transfer from Vietnam to other countries in Asia and in the opposite way. Hongkong, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore and Bangkok are destination that airlines offer plenty of flight deals. Besides, there are direct routes between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to well-known cities in Japan and Korea such as Osaka, Tokyo, Fukuaka, Seoul and Busan. From China, there are direct flights from Beijing, Shanghai, Guanghou and Kunming to Hanoi offerd by Vietnam Airllines. On the other hand, as for Ho Chi Minh City, there are only direct routes to Beijing and Guangzhou. In case of Taiwan, flights are operated everyday between Hanoi and Taipei or Kaohsiung by China Airlines, Eva Air and Vietnam Airlines.
Nowadays, there are only 7 domestic airway companies in Vietnam. Vietname Airlines – a state-owned airway corporation, is the company occupying the biggest portion of about 70% in the market. Ranked in the following positions are Jet Star Pacific and Air Mekong which are applying low-cost strategy. Besides, there are several small and new entrants like Vasco, Blue Sky Air and Vietjet Air growing slowly and focusing on niche market.
There is a increase in number of routes and frequency of domestic flights in Vietnam. Main cities with large and qualified airport such as Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Danang are places having the most frequent flights. Otherwise, there are several other destinations having direct flights like Dien Bien, Hai Phong, Dalat and Nha Trang but in fewer frequency.
In the recent, Vasco and Air Mekong has offered rarer routes to Southern islands like Con Dao and Phu Quoc with attractive travel deals.
Vietnam popular domestic routes
1. Ho Chi Minh City – Hanoi: over 10 round flights per day operated by Vietnam Airlines, Jetstar Pacific and Air Mekong. Price for one way ticket is about $100.
2. Ho Chi Minh City – Danang: daily flights operated by Vietnam Airlines and Jetstar Pacific. One way ticket is about $70.
3. Hanoi – Danang: daily flights by Vietnam Airlines and Jetstar Pacific. One way ticket is about $70.
4. Hanoi – Phu Quoc: flights by Air Mekong. One way ticket is about $85.
5. Ho Chi Minh City – Phu Quoc: flights by Vietnam Airlines and Air Mekong. One way ticket is about $50.
How to reserve and book air ticket
There are 2 ways to book tickets for your flights which are booking online on the airlines’ websites or contact travel agency (www.vietnamairfare.com). It is able to check the time and price ticket by phone. Notably, there is not many differences of price for domestic flights among airline agencies. However, please notice about how long in advance you get your tickets.
Most air tickets are now taken in electronic form and sent to your email. Please ensure that all the information on tickets such as your personal information or flight date are correct.
• Domestic Airlines:
Nowadays, there are 7 domestic airlines in Vietnam which are Vietnam Airlines, Jetstar Pacific, Air Mekong, VASCO, Indochina Airlines, VietJetStar and Viet Star Airlines.
Founded in April 1993, Vietnam Airlines is now the biggest national airline operating most flight routes both within Vietnam and from Vietnam to other countries. Its branches are located in most cities in Vietnam which offer relatively good services. This airline brand is recognized by its painted blue and a yellow lotus on its tail.
As for international routes, Vietnam Airlines operates direct flights from Vietnam to most Asian capitals. For Europe, it offers direct flights to Paris, London and Frankfurt. In term of domestic market, Vietnam Airlines has main routes to well-known destinations in Vietnam such as Hanoi, Hue, Danang, Dalat, Nha Trang and Ho Chi Minh City.
Established in 2007, Jetstar Pacific is recognized by its logo of “Jetstar” and a bright orange star. It is owning several kinds of fleets including Boeing 737, Airbus A320, A321, 330-200. At the present, Jetstar is a national airline competing with Vietnam Airlines in terms of price and service which occupies 23% of market shares in Vietnam according to Vietnam Tourism Report in 2011. Because of focusing on low-cost strategy, Jetstar attracts many passengers. However, the situation of frequently delayed flights results in the loss of customers’ trust for Jetstar. In domestic market, Jetstar primarily provides flight routes to many tourist highlights of Vietnam such as Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Danang, Hue, Nha Trang and Vinh. In the past, it gained some awards for its user-friendly website:
* Vietnam’s most popular e-commerce website for 2008.
* Vietnam’s most popular e-commerce website for 2009.
* Vietnam’s most popular e-commerce website for 2010.
* Well-know brand award in 2008
Situated in Phu Quoc, Air Mekong is the lastest airline company offering competitive price for customers. It mainly focuses on the market of the South and Central Highland of Vietnam operating flights between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City with Phu Quoc and Con Dao island; and with Central Highland region. However, it has stopped its business in 2013.
VASCO (Vietnam Air Service Company)
VASCO is a young airline company in domestic market which only providing flight routes in the South of Vietnam. Founded in 2006, VASCO has gained its certain position with customers by frequent flights to well-known tourist destinations in the areas of Phu Quoc and Con Dao Island.
Operating the first flight in 2011, Vietjet Air is now a competitive firm in airway market of Vietnam. Currently, it only provices domestic flights between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. However, in the future, it will offer additional routes to other destinations in Vietnam and South East Asia.
Following the common strategy of “Cheaper prices, fly more” as many current airlines, Vietjet Air is getting a good position and reputation in the market especially with its campaign for the route Hanoi – Ho Chi Minh costing only VND 10,000 for one way ticket.
Here is the list of some main airports in Vietnam
Hanoi Airport (HAN)
Location: 40 minutes from Hanoi city center, 3.5 hours to Halong Bay, 4.5 hours to Sapa
Hai Phong Airport (HPH)
Location: 2.5 hours to/from Hanoi, 1.5 hours to Halong Bay
Danang Airport (DAD)
10 minutes to city center, 30 minutes to Hoi An, 2.5 hours to Hue
Hue Airport (HUI)
20 minutes to city center, 2.5 hours to Danang, 3 hours to Hoi An
Nha Trang Airport (CXR)
35 minutes to city center, 2.5 hours to Dalat
Dalat Airport (DLI)
45 minutes to city center, 3.5 hours to Nha Trang
Vinh Airport (VII)
15 minutes to city center
Ho Chi Minh City Airport (SGN)
20 minutes to city center
Con Dao Airport (VCS)
10 minutes to city center