HomeEconomyChina Boosts Domestic Flights to 34% Above Pre-Pandemic Levels, Fueling Airline Recovery

China Boosts Domestic Flights to 34% Above Pre-Pandemic Levels, Fueling Airline Recovery

China’s aviation regulator, the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), has announced plans to significantly increase domestic flights to 34% above pre-pandemic levels in an effort to further support the recovery of Chinese airlines. This move comes as China’s top airlines reported their first quarterly profits in over three years, sparking optimism within the industry that the country’s major state carriers are poised to overcome the challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The CAAC is set to unveil its winter and spring season flight plan, which will be in effect until March 30. The plan aims to offer 96,651 domestic flights per week, marking a remarkable 34% increase compared to the same period four years ago. This increase will include the introduction of 7,202 new weekly flights made possible by the opening of 516 new domestic routes.
The emphasis on expanding domestic flights will focus on improving connections between regional and hub airports, including major cities like Shanghai, Beijing, and Guangzhou. This move is expected to boost economic activity and provide a lifeline for the aviation industry as it seeks to rebound from the challenges posed by the pandemic.
International flights, while recovering at a slightly slower pace, are also making notable progress. Over the next five months, there will be 16,680 weekly international flights, with passenger flights projected to reach 71% of the total number observed four years ago. Remarkably, flights to and from 22 countries, including popular destinations like Britain and Italy, have either met or surpassed pre-pandemic levels, demonstrating a growing confidence in international travel.
One significant development highlighted by the CAAC is the increase in weekly direct passenger flights between China and the United States during the winter and spring season. This number is expected to rise from 48 to 70 flights per week, indicating a positive trend in Sino-American air travel.
The decision to expand domestic and international flight operations is seen as a testament to China’s commitment to reviving its aviation sector, which was severely impacted by the global pandemic. As travel restrictions ease and passenger demand grows, the CAAC’s proactive approach will play a pivotal role in restoring the country’s aviation industry to its former glory.
Overall, the move to increase domestic flights by 34% above pre-pandemic levels is a clear signal of China’s determination to lead the way in the recovery of its aviation sector, offering hope and encouragement to both airlines and travelers alike.
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