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Competition grows as Chinese and U.S. carriers launch new routes

Chinese and U.S. carriers such as Air China, Hainan Airlines, China Southern, United and American launched new China-US routes with cheap airfares.

The two economic giants – United States and China – are showing signs of strengthening their relationship further with more air connectivity coming their way. This has made skies above the Pacific quite busier with each passing day. The airlines in the two countries are providing connectivity to more cities to fulfill the growing demands of ever increasing holiday and business travelers.

Four leading U.S. and Chinese carriers have recently announced they will be introducing new trans-Pacific routes. These airlines are making investments in improving services and purchasing more aircrafts.

China’s national carrier Air China in June this year introduced its flights to Washington from Beijing. This is the airline’s sixth U.S. gateway. The airline is already providing flights services to other U.S. destinations including Houston, San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York. The capacity on some of these routes is also being increased by the airline with the deployment of a new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft fleet.

Leading Chinese carrier Hainan Airlines announced it will be launching its new flights to Boston starting from June 20, 2014. This will be the airline’s third destination in the United States. The airline will be deploying its entire fleet of Boeing 787s to conduct flight operations in the North American market. Currently, Hainan Airlines is not a member of any global airline alliance such as oneworld or Star Alliance. The airline is however into partnerships with three leading U.S. carriers including American Airlines, JetBlue Airways and Alaska Airlines.

Liu Jichun, Hainan Airlines’ Director of International Business Development, said that with the purchase of Boeing 787s the airline will now aggressively develop the U.S. market with more competitive power at its command than before.

China Southern Airlines has indicated that it will be introducing its new flights services between Guangzhou and New York. The new service will become operational by the end of summer 2014. The airline will operate the flights on Guangzhou-New York route with the help of a Boeing 777-300ER aircraft which was acquired this year. China Southern Airlines is already operating flights on its Guangzhou-Los Angeles route by utilizing its flagship Airbus A380 aircraft. The airline is presently into codeshare arrangement with Delta Air Lines.

United Airlines launched its first flight between San Francisco and Chengdu in June this year. The airline with its largest China-US network is currently providing direct flights to Hong Kong, Taipei, Shanghai and Beijing as well from five U.S. destinations. The airline is presently having a codeshare agreement with Air China. Determined to boost its network and attract Chinese travelers in a big way, United Airlines has embarked on a new policy by offering special services such as Chinese-style cuisine and Mandarin-speaking flight attendants.

World’s largest carrier American Airlines also introduced its new flights between Dallas/Fort Worth and Shanghai in June this year. The airline is though a late entrant in the U.S.-China market. With its foray, American Airlines has indicated that it is planning to boost its presence in China further and is aiming at 67 percent revenue growth in the highly lucrative China-U.S. market this year.

With major Chinese and U.S. carriers launching new routes or expanding their services, the competition is going to become more intense now and the customers benefiting with more cheap airfares than previously.

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