TransAsia Airways has unveiled plans to launch Taiwan’s first ever low-cost carrier.
The Taipei-based airline has already received approval for the new venture from Taiwan’s Civil Aeronautics Administration, and is now inviting its customers to come up with a name for the new carrier.
“TransAsia Airways [was] the first private airline in Taiwan. Sixty-two years later, TransAsia Airways once again become the first airline which received the permission from authority for setting up LCC in Taiwan. This is a recognition as well as responsibility,” said TransAsia’s chairman, Vincent Lin.
He added that the move was intended to compete against “all foreign LCCs… flying into Taiwan”. These include China’s Spring Airlines, which started operating the lucrative cross-Strait route between Shanghai and Taipei last month. Other LCCs operating flights to Taiwan include Scoot, AirAsia, Tigerair Jetstar and Peach.
The new LCC, which will be 100% owned by TransAsia, will operate a fleet of Airbus A320 and A321 aircraft, providing services within a range of five hours from Taipei. TransAsia said the new airline is expected to be launched “within a year”.
Ahead of the launch, TransAsia will hold a ‘Name the first Taiwanese LCC’ competition within Taiwan. The company is aiming to create a name for the new airline both in Chinese and English, with the winning entrant receiving unlimited free flights on the new airline for 10 years.
Founded in 1951, TransAsia Airways currently operates a fleet of 20 aircraft, mainly flying to destinations in China, Japan, South Korea and Thailand – all of which could potentially be served using the new low-cost unit. It is unclear how TransAsia will split its operations between its mainline and low-cost units.