AirAsia to Resume Direct Flights to Sihanoukville, Boosting Cambodia’s Tourism

PHNOM PENH: AirAsia announced plans to resume direct flights from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to Sihanoukville, Cambodia starting July 3rd. This move aims to capitalize on the growing tourist influx to Cambodia's coastal region.

“Sihanoukville awaits. Discover Cambodia's coastal gem, featuring pristine beaches and a gateway to paradise islands,” said in a statement, highlighting the destination's appeal. The airline previously operated this route but had to suspend it due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

H.E. Sin Chansereyvutha, Under-Secretary of State and Spokesperson for the State Secretariat for Civil Aviation (SSCA), welcomed the airline's decision, stating: “We welcome the resumption of AirAsia. The economic situation seems to be improving, which is the reason the airline decided to resume its flight service.” This resumption is seen as a positive sign for Cambodia's aviation sector.

The new service will offer three flights per week, on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays. This comes after AirAsia Cambodia, a joint venture between AirAsia and Sivilai Asia, launched frequent domestic flights connecting Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, and Sihanoukville in May.

Currently, Sihanoukville International Airport is served by two airlines: AirAsia Cambodia and Cambodia Angkor Air. According to SSCA, Cambodia has seen a significant rise in air travel, with over 2.5 million passengers arriving in the first five months of 2024, a 22% increase compared to the same period last year.

Cambodia's air connectivity continues to expand, with 31 domestic and international airlines operating flights from ASEAN countries, China (including Hong Kong and Taiwan), Korea, Qatar, and the United Arab .

This announcement by AirAsia follows Cambodia Angkor Air's recent launch of direct flights from Phnom Penh to New Delhi, India. The new service, which began just this week, operates four times a week initially.

Cambodia Angkor Air anticipates increasing the frequency to seven flights weekly “by the end of the year,” according to the Ministry of Tourism. The inaugural flight of this route was celebrated at Phnom Penh International Airport with government officials from both Cambodia and India, along with aviation and tourism industry leaders, in attendance.

 

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