DHL Express is adding more airfreight capacity within Asia with a newly converted B737-800 freighter, which will be operated by Thai airline partner K-Mile Asia.
The move comes as the express operator expects orders and sales to rise significantly during the upcoming peak season and amidst ‘increased activity in cross-border trade and e-commerce within the region due to improved logistics, enhanced connectedness as well as reduced trade barriers.’
The new aircraft will offer weekly payload of close to 140 tonnes as it will now travel six times a week from Hanoi to Hong Kong and Bangkok before making the return trip to Hanoi. The express operator previously had five scheduled flights a week, and DHL Express says this is a 30 percent increase in capacity compared to its previous B737-400SF freighter flights.
“To tackle this surge in demand, we have been actively finding opportunities to enhance our fleet, including the conversion of suitable passenger aircraft,” said Sean Wall, executive vice president, network operations & aviation at DHL Express Asia Pacific
“Utilizing the B737-800 will also help us reduce carbon emissions by 15 percent as compared to the B737 Classic aircraft, which is one of the deciding factors as we accelerate toward our climate-neutral logistics target,” he added.
The new B737-800 aircraft connecting Bangkok, Hong Kong and Hanoi joins three other aircraft in the fleet that concurrently and collectively serve Hong Kong, Phnom Penh, Singapore and Jakarta.
DHL Express last year committed to bolster its Asia Pacific network with the investment of close to EUR60 million by introducing new aircraft and direct routes.