American Airlines returns to Shanghai after 10-month coronavirus hiatus

Nov 2, 2020

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American Airlines will return to Shanghai nearly 10 months after it suspended service to the Chinese city in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Oneworld alliance carrier will offer a weekly flight to Shanghai Pudong (PVG) from Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) with a stop at Seoul Incheon (ICN), American spokesperson Nichelle Tait confirmed to TPG. The airline plans to fly a Boeing 787-9 on the route beginning Nov. 8.

Tickets are on sale now for the flight. However, only through passengers from the U.S. can book tickets to Shanghai and not travelers beginning or ending their trips in Seoul.

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American’s return to China comes even as travel between the two countries remains off limits for most. Beijing limits international arrivals to only its citizens. Delta Air Lines and United Airlines have both resumed limited flights citing strong cargo demand between China and the U.S.

Delta returned to Shanghai at the end of June and United in early July. The former’s flights continue to stop in Seoul while the latter dropped the South Korean stopover in favor of a nonstop to San Francisco (SFO) in October.

In addition, all three carriers continue to fly a fraction of their pre-COVID schedules. American plans to fly about half of what it flew a year ago in November and December, according to Cirium schedules.

Related: A country-by-country guide to coronavirus recovery

American ended service to both Beijing and Shanghai at the end of January amid rising fears of the novel coronavirus. Plans to resume service in March were postponed as the severity of the outbreak — later pandemic — became clear.

Following the resumption of Shanghai flights, American plans to return to Beijing in March. The carrier will serve the Chinese capital’s new Daxing (PKX) airport that is a hub for its partner China Southern Airlines.

Related: American completes Beijing realignment with move to new Daxing airport

Featured image by JT Genter/The Points Guy.




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