APPLE Vacations & Conventions will operate six direct charter flights between Kuala Lumpur and Hokkaido this month, with the first service launched last Sunday from the Malaysian capital to the Japanese city and onwards to Taipei.
Malaysia Airlines’ A330-300 aircraft will be utilised on the Kuala Lumpur-Hokkaido leg, while China Airlines’ A330-300 aircraft will operate the service from Hokkaido to Taipei.
The final departure from Kuala Lumpur to Hokkaido will be on December 29, returning on January 3.
According to Desmond Lee, the travel firm’s managing director, Hokkaido had always been the company’s best-selling destination during the year-end school holidays.
Lee said: “The charter services offer convenience to travellers, as there are no direct flights between Kuala Lumpur and Hokkaido. It usually takes about 15 hours on a scheduled airline with transit in Osaka, Tokyo or Seoul. Our direct charter service to Hokkaido takes only eight hours.”
“We offer all inclusive packages of either six days/four nights or seven days/five nights, priced from RM6,000++ (US$1,964). That works out to be about 20 per cent cheaper than a similar all-inclusive package on a (scheduled) flight,” he added.
This is the third year that Apple Vacations & Conventions is operating charters to Hokkaido during the year-end school holidays. New to the table is the combination of Hokkaido and Taipei charter service on December 9.
Said Lee: “We were testing the Malaysian market to see if there is demand for twin city combinations. We saw a full charter on this flight and in future we will look at organising more charters, twinning Hokkaido with another city.”