Air Asia without a doubt. Nothing comes close to them they are number 1, number 2 and number 3.
I think many Australians overestimate the position of Jetstar in SE
I see Tiger as a stronger entity in Singapore than jetstar. Tiger also serves more destinations from SIngapore plus have a bigger fleet than jetstar. Also the ownership of Tiger makes them more important to Singapore than jetstar. Tiger serves its purpose for the Singaporean government.
However we cant compare neither Tiger or jetstar to Air Asia. Air Asia is the inventor and driver of the lowcost boom in the Asean. They have expanded and are now the only pan Asean lowcost carrier. They have more than a hundred aircrafts (compared with about 20 for Jetstar Asia and Tiger) and flies to 80 destinations (compared with 20-25 for Tiger and jetstar). No one comes even remotely close to the size and scope of Air Asia in SE
The ventures thats taken place outside of SE
Asia and the Asean market are interesting. both Air Asia and jetstar has set up shop in Japan. Air Asia is rumoured to start Air Asia Korea in 2013 either by a purchase of an existing player or through a new venture.
While Air Asia and the Singaporeans havent been able to agree upon the conditions for Air Asia to set up their own hub in Singapore (most outsiders and Air Asia says that Singapore government are protecting its own airlines, the Singaporeans say Air Asia have ridiculous demands) they still fly to 14 destinations from Singapore. All in the Asean. Thats only ten destinations or so behind Tiger and jetstar and these routes are flown with much lower costs.
Jetstar has tried to set up bases but not been able to play the political game well. Vietnam for instance failed rather spectacularly. and they struggle in the Asean. Quite a few routes have had to be cancelled. Instead they have shifted their focus to Singapore-China but this market is a hard one. the smaller Chinese airlines are slowly building their presence and makings secondary Chinese cities less of a goldmine. Same has happened to India where several routes have had to be cut by airlines.
I would add the lowest of the lowest cost airlines, Cebu Pacific to this thread.
They are utilising their planes around the clock and have an ultra lowcost set up. While they dont have the coverage that most other airlines have they are ultra lowcost and are planning long haul eastwards. They are a player even Air Asia cant outmuscle on price and even though they are dependent upon the overseas filippino community (its huge indeed) they are profitable and the day they decide to set up bases in other Asean countries I see them being a very dangerous competitor.
To be honest I see jetstar struggle in HongKong and Singapore longterm. I hope they stay on because the more lowcosts the better for people like me. But I dont see their Asian ventures as successful enough to be kept for another decade.
I do see Air Asia opening up a base at SIN
and when that happens I see jetstar taking down the sign. They cant compete with those costs and they know it very well.
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