Changi Airport Group (CAG) is tapping on expanding its connectivity and strengthening airline partnerships as key to riding on Asia’s aviation growth potential, as it lays the foundation for even longer term infrastructure developments within its growth strategy. And, CAG’s strong participation at this year’s World Routes forum in Chicago, USA signifies efforts by one of the region’s most connected air hubs to continue to expand Singapore Changi Airport’s network – through building a robust portfolio of airlines, maintaining strong collaborations and backing their growth aspirations.
Set at the backdrop of Asia’s burgeoning economies, CAG’s major infrastructure developments, that include Changi Airport’s fourth terminal, a new iconic lifestyle destination and the mega Changi East development – will continue to ensure that Changi Airport is well-placed to cater to more passenger and aircraft movements in the decades ahead.
Changi Airport’s top five country markets are Indonesia, Malaysia, Australia, Thailand and China. In terms of passenger traffic, its top five cities are Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong, Bangkok and Manila.
Changi Airport welcomed four new airlines this year, including Lucky Air (January); Uzbekistan Airways (April); Spring Airlines (April); and VietJet Air (May). The latest addition – MIAT Mongolian Airlines will be joining Changi Airport’s family of airlines from September 24, 2014. Changi Airport has established new links to Tashkent in Uzbekistan and the Chinese cities of Guiyang, Lanzhou and Xi’an with the Mongolian capital of Ulaanbaataar joining this week with the MIAT Mongolian Airlines launch.
The new operations of Lucky Air and Spring Airlines further strengthen Changi’s connectivity into China. In the past three years it has enhanced its network with the addition of eleven new city links in China alone: Guiyang, Jinan, Lanzhou, Lijiang, Ningbo, Nanchang, Nanning, Taiyuan, Tianjin, Wuhan and Wuxi. Singapore is connected to 31 Chinese cities, making Changi Airport the most connected airport in Southeast Asia to China.
In its strategy to support its airport partners, CAG also announced a wide-ranging Growth and Assistance Incentive (GAIN) programme in June 2014, with a financial commitment of S$100 million, poised to collectively strengthen the Singapore air hub. Over the year, CAG will be progressively rolling out strategic measures to lower airlines’ costs, boost passenger traffic and improve operational efficiency, as we highlighted earlier this month (see ‘Airlines to GAIN at Changi from Long-Haul and Transfer Traffic Boost’).
Changi is also growing Asia’s fly-cruise segment and demand for cruise holidays. In May 2014, CAG, Singapore Tourism Board (STB) and luxury cruise-liner Princess Cruises announced a tripartite collaboration to leverage on Singapore’s strategic advantage to effectively tap fly-cruise traffic from across the globe and serve as a cruise hub for Asia. In tandem, CAG has also been actively collaborating with airlines and travel agents on marketing campaigns to promote fly-cruise packages in markets such as China and India.