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Lufthansa Cargo begins scheduled service to Hanoi

Vietnam becoming attractive location for air cargo industry

A Boeing 777 freighter, operated by AeroLogoic for Lufthansa Cargo, sits in front of the air cargo terminal at Hanoi International Airport.

Lufthansa Cargo has doubled freighter capacity to Vietnam with the addition of twice weekly service to Hanoi, underscoring the increased demand for air cargo service in Vietnam as multinational companies diversify sourcing away from China.

The cargo subsidiary of Deutsche Lufthansa Group said Thursday the flights will be operated by AeroLogic, a joint venture with DHL Express, using Boeing 777 cargo jets. The initial flight to Vietnam’s capital left Lufthansa’s hub in Frankfurt, Germany, on Nov. 2 and made a stop in Mumbai, India. Lufthansa is the only airline to connect Hanoi and Frankfurt.

Lufthansa Cargo already operates all-cargo aircraft twice per week to Ho Chi Minh City, the country’s largest city and manufacturing center. 

Lufthansa said the new route is a response to growing export volumes, especially electronics, automotive parts and apparel, from Vietnam to Europe. The large aircraft have a maximum payload of 103 tons and can carry 27 containers on the main deck and 10 standard pallets in the lower hold.

AeroLogic operates five 777 freighters on behalf of Lufthansa Cargo, which essentially charters the aircraft from DHL, markets the capacity and receives the revenues. 

The addition of Hanoi to Lufthansa Cargo’s network is part of a push to offer more frequencies and destinations in Asia, including Seoul, South Korea, and Hong Kong.

Vietnam is a rapidly growing market for air cargo.

Foreign carriers dominate the air cargo market in Vietnam. A local startup backed by a wealthy retail conglomerate recently scrapped plans to become the first domestic all-cargo carrier after shipping demand softened during the summer and it faced challenges obtaining an operating license from Vietnamese authorities. Vietnam Airlines and Vietravel Airlines have indicated they plan to start all-cargo operations in the near future. 

Click here for more FreightWaves/American Shipper stories by Eric Kulisch.

Eric Kulisch

Eric is the Supply Chain and Air Cargo Editor at FreightWaves. An award-winning business journalist with extensive experience covering the logistics sector, Eric spent nearly two years as the Washington, D.C., correspondent for Automotive News, where he focused on regulatory and policy issues surrounding autonomous vehicles, mobility, fuel economy and safety. He has won two regional Gold Medals and a Silver Medal from the American Society of Business Publication Editors for government and trade coverage, and news analysis. He was voted best for feature writing and commentary in the Trade/Newsletter category by the D.C. Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. He won Environmental Journalist of the Year from the Seahorse Freight Association in 2014 and was the group's 2013 Supply Chain Journalist of the Year. In December 2022, Eric was voted runner up for Air Cargo Journalist by the Seahorse Freight Association. As associate editor at American Shipper Magazine for more than a decade, he wrote about trade, freight transportation and supply chains. He has appeared on Marketplace, ABC News and National Public Radio to talk about logistics issues in the news. Eric is based in Vancouver, Washington. He can be reached for comments and tips at [email protected]