Tan Son Nhat airport in HCM City will have parking
space for ten more airplanes, and Hanoi’s Noi Bai terminal will also be
Nguyen Nguyen Hung, General Director of the Southern Airports Corporation, told
VnExpress that current parking space for planes at Tan Son Nhat Airport is just
enough to serve 20 million passengers a year, or 54,800 passengers a day.
During the Tet holidays, Tan Son Nhat airport has handled up to 376 flights with
58,000 passengers a day. “The airport is getting overloaded, so why the Civil
Aviation Administration (CAAV) is planning to increase the number of aircraft
parking spaces,” Hung said.
Tan Son Nhat’s present 42 parking spaces will be expanded to 52. “With more than
50 spaces, we will be able to meet current demand. Finding enough places to park
aircraft is a common problem at many international airports,” Hung said.
Noi Bai airport now has 24 parking spaces. It receives nearly 90 flights a day.
Some days, the airport becomes so overloaded aircraft must queue up to take off
or land. There also, aviation authorities are considering a plan to arrange more
The Southern Airports Corporation said air carriers are expected to help solve
the crowding problem at Tan Son Nhat by setting up rational flight networks and
arranging a flight frequency that puts less pressure on the airport. Meanwhile,
Tan Son Nhat plans to ease the traffic jam by setting higher fees to park during
Air carriers aren’t pleased. “It is very difficult to change our flight
frequency. Our flights are geared to demand, i.e we arrange flights when and
where people want to fly,” the representative of an airline said.
However, to meet the explosion in demand for service, it is now urgent to
upgrade airport infrastructure, re-arrange aircraft parking spaces and solve
overloading at terminals.
In 2009, airports in Vietnam handled over 26 million passengers and 445,800 tons
of cargo, or four times more than in 2000. In the first seven months of 2010,
the number of passengers traveling by air was up 33 percent year over year.
Air Mekong will officially enter the market in October with a fleet of four
aircraft. Jetstar Pacific expects to put an Airbus 320 into service in October,
and eventually its fleet will have 16 aircraft instead of the current five.
Vietnam Airlines will receive 40 new aircraft by 2015.
Lai Xuan Thanh, a deputy director at CAAV, told VnExpress that his agency is
working with carriers on a five and ten year strategy of industry development,
so as to re-arrange aircraft parking spaces. “Land cannot grow. We need to sit
together with airlines to review business operations in order to arrange parking
spaces,” Thanh said.
Forty-five airlines are developing service on 55 international air routes to and
from Vietnam. In addition, Vietnam Airlines and Jetstar Pacific are developing
40 domestic air routes.