Chase Sapphire Reserve℠

Air France-KLM Plans to Launch a Budget Carrier to Serve Asia Routes

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

The Air France-KLM group announced plans to take some of its operations away from its namesake brand and introduce a new airline within the group — and at lower fares. The carrier announced that it’s planning to launch a medium- and long-haul budget airline that could serve Asia routes and potentially even the US.

The motivation for the new airline is clear — AF hopes to take back business from the Middle Eastern carriers that have lured travelers in with low costs and improved products. Air France plans to start servicing routes to Asia with the new brand in winter 2017, by taking over some of the least popular Air France routes and operating them with staff earning lower salaries. In addition to the initial Asia routes, Air France said that it could begin transatlantic routes.

In the announcement, the carrier emphasized that the new brand will not be a low-cost carrier, and instead, it will hold standards similar to that of Air France. As it stands, Air France-KLM plans to have a fleet of 10 long-haul aircraft in operation by 2020, including some A340s.

There’s no word yet on what the new brand will be called or when exactly we’ll see it go into full operation. Overall, this move from Air France-KLM shows how it’s adapting to the current state of the travel industry — adjusting in order to reclaim its stake in the Asian market and mend its stressed relationship with current employees.

H/T: Nasdaq

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Apply Now
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Named Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, July 2016
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards
Intro APR Regular APR Annual Fee Foreign Transaction Fee Credit Rating
N/A 16.24%-23.24% Variable Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95 0% Excellent Credit