Kobe Airport to handle regular overseas flights from around 2030

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Kobe Airport

OSAKA — Kobe Airport will be allowed to start regular international flight services from around 2030, according to an agreement reached on Sunday.

The decision was reached by related members of the public and private sectors, at a meeting in Osaka on the three airports in the Kansai region: Kansai International Airport, Osaka International (Itami) Airport and Kobe Airport.

Kobe Airport will be able to operate international chartered flights from around 2025.

Also from 2025, Kansai International Airport will increase the upper limit on its hourly arrivals and departures by 30%. This will strengthen its capacity to accept tourists from overseas, whose number is expected to increase as a result of Expo 2025 Osaka, Kansai.

Kobe Airport has specialized in domestic flights since its launch in 2006, but the agreement reached Sunday gave the green light for regular international flights in the future. Its role as an alternative to Kansai International Airport will be clarified, and 2030 was tentatively set as the target year, based on trends in demand and the level of congestion at Kansai International Airport.

Up to 40 international arrivals and departures per day are expected for Kobe Airport.

International chartered flights will allow Kobe Airport to serve as an alternative to Kansai International Airport, where international flights are expected to concentrate during the expo. The number of domestic flights arriving at and departing from Kobe Airport daily will also be increased to 120, from the current 80.