Yesterday, HK Express (Hong Kong Express) announced its plans to launch a fifth freedom route from Nagoya in Japan to Guam. While this is not the first time for HK Express to enter the Guam market (it operated a flight from Hong Kong to Guam between December 2016 and June 2017), it is the first time for a low-cost carrier to connect Nagoya and Guam.
HK Express Nagoya-Guam Route Details
The first flight on the route is expected to be operated on October 29, 2017, and from then on, the airline plans to operate the flight three times weekly – every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday.
The outbound flight, UO56, is scheduled to take 3 hours and 50 minutes, departing Nagoya at 1:00PM and arriving in Guam at 5:50PM. The inbound, UO57, is set to depart Guam at 7:10PM and arrive in Nagoya at 10:10PM, taking exactly 4 hours.
HK Express released the flights for sale yesterday, and is currently offering promotional fares of 3,980 yen one-way (about 36 USD). With taxes, it comes up to 8,320 yen (about 75 USD) for the outbound and 5,160 yen (about 47USD) for the inbound.
A Welcome Competition on the Nagoya-Guam Route
While HK Express will not be the first airline to operate the Nagoya-Guam route, it will be a welcome addition to the double daily flight provided by United Airlines.
Personally, I also find it interesting that yet another low-cost airline – after AirAsia X’s existing and Scoot’s upcoming routes from Kansai to Honolulu – is trying its luck on a holiday destination route out of Japan.
These routes have traditionally been dominated by passengers on package tours. Given that booking accommodation separately in these kinds of destinations can get fairly expensive, it will be interesting how this new route performs and how it compares “unbundled,” in terms of price, with similar package tours.