Delta, United to double China flights under new US-Sino accord
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Both carriers can fly up to four round-trips per week between the two countries under the new agreement, according to U.S. authorities. Chinese airlines are also able to fly a combined total of eight weekly flights among them.
Delta plans to to double its services to Shanghai Pudong (PVG) from both Detroit (DTW) and Seattle-Tacoma (SEA) to twice weekly, spokesperson Morgan Durrant told TPG. Flights will continue to stop at Seoul Incheon (ICN) to switch crews with the additional frequencies beginning on Aug. 24.
United will double service between San Francisco (SFO) and Shanghai to four-times a week, the Star Alliance carrier said. The flights also stop in Seoul with the added frequencies starting on Sept. 4.
Air China, China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines and Xiamen Airlines are the only Chinese carriers flying to the U.S. in August, according to Cirium schedules. China has not indicated how it will divvy up the four additional weekly flights among its airlines.
Travel to China remains restricted. Foreigners are not allowed to enter the country except for a limited number of nationals from select nearby Asian countries, including South Korea.
U.S. airlines have reported carrying a significant amount of cargo on long-haul flights, including those to China. Executives at United have said that freight demand is driving much of its international flying more than passenger demand.
Even with the additional frequencies, air service between China and the U.S. remains far below the up to 52 daily flights airlines flew before the coronavirus pandemic. Carriers slashed schedules in January and February in an early effort to stop the spread of COVID-19, and the Chinese government has severely restricted international flights since March.
Featured image by GREG BAKER/AFP via Getty Images.
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