Jeju Air Co., South Korea's largest budget carrier, said Wednesday that it introduced a new plane to its fleet as part of its ongoing efforts to expand its market presence.
The company, which is owned by Aekyung Industrial Co. and uses Jeju Island as its main hub, said the new B737-800 will augment its fleet of 13 planes already in service.
It said another passenger jet will be introduced in March for a total of five planes to be incorporated this year and one to be sold off. The expansion will give Jeju a total of 17 B737-800s by year's end.
The company wants to push up sales to 530 billion won ($496.8 million) this year and close the gap with Asiana Airlines Inc. in terms of flights offered to Jeju Island from the rest the country.
At present, Jeju has a 16 percent market share on the lucrative route compared to 21 percent for Asiana, which is a much larger airline.
Besides expanding its market presence, the company is weighing the option of increasing routes to overseas destinations in 2014. It is also launching the new Jeju-Daegu route in early July.
The low cost carrier provided 3,187,000 seats last year, up 8.2 percent from the year before. The number of international seats offered jumped 39 percent on-year to 2,168,000 in 2013, with the company expecting further increases for the new year. (Yonhap)