Japan Airlines (JAL) will fly five charter flights to Budapest from July 28, airport operator Budapest Airport Zrt announced on Wednesday.
JAL will fly the charters from Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka, using Boeing 747-400 aircraft. The flights are expected to bring 1,500 Japanese tourists to Budapest.
JAL, like Hungarian airline Malév, is expected to become a member of the oneworld alliance of airlines at the beginning of 2007. Malév was invited to join the alliance at the start of 2006. JAL was invited in summer. The two airline's membership in the alliance mean Budapest Airport has an excellent chance to become a hub for flights between Asia and Central and Eastern Europe, according to Budapest Airport CEO Stewart Wingate.
In 2005, 133,614 Japanese citizens arrived at Budapest's Ferihegy Airport, accounting for 1.65% of total passengers.