Japanese municipalities are coming to South Korea to ask for the continuation of route operation. Since Japan imposed export limits on South Korea, the ever-increasing boycott against traveling to Japan has led to reductions in the number of Korean tourists to Japan.
The Korean airliner industry said on Tuesday that public servants from three Japanese municipalities met up with high-level executives of Korean low-cost carrier Air Seoul and major Korean travel agencies later July. They came from Takamatsu in Kagawa, Yonago in Tottori, and Toyama, which are flight destinations of Air Seoul. The visiting Japanese officials reportedly asked Air Seoul to maintain fight routes and strengthen cooperation.
“We regularly interact with municipal officials in its route destinations, but amid the recent ever-worsening relationship between South Korea and Japan, had deeper discussion about mutual cooperation,” said an executive of Air Seoul. “The Japanese municipalities are severely concerned of a further reduction in the number of visitors.” Twelve out of Air Seoul’s 17 routes connecting Korea and Japanese destinations generate more than half the company’s total sales.
It was reported that other Japanese municipalities asked for cooperation from Jeju Air and Eastar Jet last month. Korean airliners have been suspending their operations on routes to Japanese airports as the number of visitors going to Japan has plunged. T’way Air announced to suspend its routes between Muan and Oita, between Daegu and Kumamoto, and between Busan and Saga. Eastar Jet plans to suspend its Busan routes with Sapporo and Osaka next month. Korea’s large-scale carriers Korean Airline and Asiana Airlines plan to change airplane types that are used on routes to Japan.