United Guam, Okinawa flights help Oz tourism

United Airlines is aiming to increase the flow of travellers between Micronesia, Japan and Australia after releasing plans to launch direct flights between Guam and Okinawa later this year.

Commencing from 28 September, the four times weekly service is aimed at attracting US military stationed in the Japanese city into Micronesia, who can then use United’s direct service between Guam and Cairns to visit down under, Continental Airlines sales and marketing manager in Guam and Micronesia Lourdes Sanchez explained.

Ms Sanchez added that other cities in Australia including Sydney and Melbourne would also benefit from the flow of military travellers “who love to travel out once they reach a destination”.

Utilising its Boeing 737 Next Generation aircraft, the new service will mark the carrier’s tenth non-stop service between Japan and Guam and is likely to assist bounce back the island’s arrivals from Japan which according to Guam Visitors Bureau Felix Reyes fell slightly after the Great East Japan Earthquake.

Mr Reyes explained to e-Travel Blackboard that Japanese and Korean are among largest travellers into Micronesia’s island, Guam, with Japan making up 800,000 of 1.2 million tourists.

“It was a very painful drop but we are recovering,” Mr Reyes said.

“But with the new flight and it being a major US military base, it will really help bring them and their families here to a place that is familiar but difference because we have US shops here and even have the largest 24 hour Kmart.”

United and Micronesia representatives were in Sydney earlier this week unveiling the region’s hidden features to agents and consultants at the annual Explore Micronesia showcase.

Agents told e-Travel Blackboard that the benefits of attending the yearly event was to learn and see how the industry continues to bloom and grow in the region.

Click here for photos from the event and to see what rare and exclusive prizes four lucky agents walked away with.
Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.J
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