China Airlines Co (
China Airlines used a B737-800 aircraft to launch its initial service of three weekly flights and has plans to offer daily flights in the future.
The carrier said it decided to launch the Taipei-Hanoi route because of the economic boom in Vietnam and close trade ties between the two countries.
In addition, increasing numbers of Vietnamese immigrants in the US -- called Viet khiau or overseas Vietnamese -- are returning to Vietnam for family visits by flying from the US to Taipei and then onto Ho Chi Minh City.
"Some 600,000 seats were sold on the Taiwan-Vietnam route last year. Half of the passengers were Viet Khiau who changed flights in Taipei," said Jack Tsai (
Following China Airlines' lead, EVA Airways Corp (
An average of 11,000 Taiwan-ese visit Vietnam every month for travel or business, up 10 percent from last year.