Background On Friday 9 December 2011, Vietnam Airways began the first of many non-stop flights from the UK to Vietnam. The service now operates between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City and London Gatwick.
The new flight has been introduced in response to a growing demand for a direct connection between the two countries due to increased tourism and commerce. One the eve of the first flight, President and CEO of Vietnam Airways Dr Pham Ngoc Minh said: ‘We are delighted to be adding London to our expanding global operation, and to provide UK originating passengers with the only non-stop flight to Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, with convenient onward connections to our comprehensive network within Vietnam, Indochina and the sub-Mekong region. Our plans envisage increasing frequency on the routes to become a daily operation to both destinations by 2014.’
The Boeing 777-200ER aircraft has been deployed on the route, with Economy, Deluxe Economy and Business Class tickets available. All cabins have seat-back entertainment systems. Operating from Gatwick’s North Terminal, the new direct route should cut journey times by seven hours for passengers used to transferring in the Middle-East, Europe or South East Asia.
How much does it cost?
Return fares from London to Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City start from £618 including taxes.
How often are the flights?
Flights depart from Gatwick four times a week, with two weekly departures to Hanoi and two to Ho Chi Minh City. Flights leave Gatwick at 1200 reaching Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City the following day at 0630 and 0710 respectively.
Flights leave Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi at 2320 and 2340 arriving at Gatwick at 0620.