ASTANA – Flights from Astana to Seoul will be available this summer, according to a March 4 report from the press service of the Ministry of Investment and Development of Kazakhstan (MID).
The announcement followed a meeting in Seoul between representatives of Air Astana, Asiana Airlines, Korean Air, Jin Air and the Incheon International Airport Corporation.
Currently, Kazakhstan’s flag air carrier, Air Astana, operates flights on the Almaty – Seoul – Almaty air route three times per week, and South Korea’s Asiana Airlines operates its flights on the Seoul – Almaty – Seoul air route twice a week.
However, Air Astana cooperates closely with the Asiana Airlines within the code-share agreement on joint selling seats on flights of both carriers in order to increase the transit of passengers from Japan, Taiwan and other countries in Southeast Asia.
At the end of the talks the two sides signed a Memorandum of Understanding that provides an increased number of flights between Kazakhstan and South Korea. The MID reported that the Kazakh side proposed to increase existing air carriage capacity between Kazakhstan and South Korea by 35 percent.
The move will likely contribute further to the expansion of mutual travel between the two countries following the agreement to introduce visa free regime for up to one month that went into effect last November.
Air Astana was named Airline Market Leader of 2015 at the 41st annual Air Transport World Awards in Washington, D.C.
Accepting the accolade on behalf of the airline’s 4,300 employees, Air Astana President Peter Foster noted the airline’s achievements these past 12 years have taken it on “a remarkable journey.”
“We are proud to be the youngest airline to win such prestigious recognition,” he said, addressing the 200-strong audience and thanking the people of Kazakhstan for their support.