Taiwan’s StarLux Airlines passes test ahead of operating license

Test involved return flights to Macau, Da Nang and Penang

StarLux Airlines has moved one step forward (photo courtesy of StarLux Airlines).

StarLux Airlines has moved one step forward (photo courtesy of StarLux Airlines).

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – StarLux Airlines Co., Ltd. has passed a 50-hour flight test, allowing the Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) to pass on a request for an air operator’s certificate (AOC) to the Ministry of Transportation next week, reports said Thursday (November 28).

Once the AOC is issued, StarLux will be allowed to start selling tickets to the public in time for its planned maiden flight on January 23, 2020, the Central News Agency reported.

StarLux is the brainchild of former EVA Air chief Chang Kuo-wei (張國煒), who was ousted from his family’s Evergreen Group after the death of his father, company founder Chang Yung-fa (張榮發), in 2016.

The test StarLux passed involved 50 hours and three return flights between Taiwan and Macau, Da Nang in Vietnam and Penang in Malaysia, the carrier’s three initial destinations, the CAA said Thursday.

StarLux said that as soon as it had received the AOC, it would allow travel agencies to start selling group tickets, while tickets for individual travelers on its website would follow slightly later.

The carrier also still had to apply for codes with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and with the International Air Transport Association (IATA), according to CAN. StarLux said it was planning to obtain the codes SJX and JX respectively.

The company signed contracts with Airbus to buy 17 A350 aircraft and to lease 10 A321Neo planes, while its number of staff members is approaching 1,000, CNA reported.