DALLAS — Taiwan-based Starlux Airlines (JX) marks nearly three months of successful operations to Los Angeles (LAX) in the United States of America. As its wide-body fleet continues to grow, the US remains a key market for further expansion.
Until May 2023, the load factor on the Los Angeles flight was approximately 71% and as the airline gains momentum with the locals with continued brand awareness, the carrier expects load factors to grow by over 80%.
Airways correspondent Siddharth Ganesh discusses with Glenn Chai, CEO of STARLUX, the work of JX’s American expansion.
SG: Are you already considering a double daily to LAX in the near future to gain better market share?
GC: Yes, to provide our passengers with more options and flexibility, we will double the frequency once there are more aircraft delivered.
What is the transfer passenger percentage at TPE in relation to the Los Angeles flights?
Currently, transit passengers account for around 40% of total passengers on the Taipei-Los Angeles route. As we continue expanding our network in Asia as well as in the US, we believe there will be more and more transit passengers flying with us.
San Francisco is confirmed for December, Comment? Other destinations in the US/North America on the map?
Our second US destination, San Francisco, is set to be launched by the end of this year. The goal is to open at least one US destination every year in the future to cover the western, middle, and eastern parts of the states.
Is STARLUX keen on flying to India? (To get hold of the transfer market to US west coast)
STARLUX will focus on expanding its service to the North American market and growing its Asian markets in the upcoming years. Indian route is under evaluation as well but will be further discussed until a more complete and stable network is established in the future.
When do you receive the next set of pending A350s to complete the order?
There will be another A350 delivered in Q4 of 2023, and more to be delivered in the following years.
As STARLUX continues to grow brand awareness in the United States, its innovative approach of partnering up with local sports teams and bringing that right to the aircraft remains a key strength.
The CEO told us, “Our partnership with LA Dodgers is great. We are having some logos placed on the field for this season so that the fans of the team can get to know STARLUX Airlines. Moreover, we started to provide LA Dodgers amenities on LAX-TPE route including themed meal packaging, playing cards, eye masks, luggage tags, boarding passes and passport covers this June and so far, we got a lot of positive feedback.”
“In addition to the partnership with LA Dodgers, we are having a partnership with LA Clippers as well. On TPE-LAXroute, we provide LA Clippers amenities so that our passengers can enjoy the vibe of two LA iconic sports teams on their flights both ways.”
So, what’s next at STARLUX?
We will focus on expanding our service to the North American market and growing our Asian markets in 2023-2024 to keep cultivating our transfer market.
Japan is always one of the most favorable destinations for Taiwanese travelers. We now already have six Japanese destinations including Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka, Okinawa, Sapporo, and Sendai with the seventh destination: Kumamoto to be opened on September 1. These routes have submitted stellar records this year so far and its growth momentum is expected to continue.
More routes in Southeast Asia are also vital to building a STARLUX-Taipei transfer hub. The fleet as of today consists of twenty aircraft – Three Airbus A350-900, four Airbus A330-900, and thirteen Airbus A321neo.
Featured image: Starlux F-WWKM Airbus A330-900. Photo: Alberto Cucini/Airways