Travellers from Vancouver to China will soon have another route option to consider with the addition of a new flight service to Hangzhou via Qingdao beginning this winter.
Beijing Capital Airlines (BCA) will operate a new three times weekly service from Vancouver International Airport (YVR) beginning on December 30, 2016. Flights will depart YVR at 4:30 pm every Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday, departing the next day at Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport (HGH) at 7:40 pm and Qingdao Liuting International Airport (TAO) at 11:25 pm. For the return trip, flights will leave HGH at 2:15 pm and TAO at 6:05 pm and arrive at YVR at 1:15 pm on the same day.
The new service will utilize an Airbus 330 aircraft with a capacity for 222 passengers. It will add to YVR’s record passenger growth and create 123 new jobs and $6.2 million in GDP for British Columbia. This is BCA’s first route servicing a destination in North America.
Both Hangzhou and Qingdao are major economic and tourism centres and have populations of approximately nine million people each.
“BCA obtained the IOSA accreditation this May and officially became an IATA member,” said Xu Jun, CEO of Beijing Capital Airlines, in a statement. “This proves that our continuous efforts in raising our operation safety standard have been recognized by international aviation organizations. We are thrilled to extend our network to North America via Vancouver.”
Last year, YVR saw a record 20.3 million passengers, representing a 4.9% increase over 2014’s cumulative figure of 19.4 million. It is estimated that the airport will see 21.3 million passengers in 2016, one million more than the previous year.
The airport has seen record-breaking growth since 2013 when it recorded 17.9 million passengers, and it has a stated goal of reaching 25 million passengers by 2020.
As part of its long-term strategy of becoming an even bigger hub, YVR has been highly successful in attracting a number of new airlines and expanding its global reach with new routes. At the start of the year, YVR lowered its airline landing and terminal fees by 15%, which are the lowest of any major airport in Canada and the United States.
March 15, 2015: Manila, Philippines and New York City, U.S.A. – Philippine Airlines adds four weekly flights to its route from Manila to NYC, with a stop in Vancouver.
March 29, 2015: Paris, France – Air France begins three times weekly non-stop flight service, with five times weekly schedules during the summer months.
May 1, 2015: Osaka, Japan – Air Canada Rouge begins five times weekly service to Kansai International Airport.
June 26, 2015: Kungming, China – China Eastern Airlines begins three times weekly flight service via Shanghai.
December 9, 2015: Mexico City, Mexico – Aeromexico to begin daily non-stop flight service.
January 1, 2016: Orlando International Airport – WestJet to begin twice weekly non-stop seasonal flight service.
January 20, 2016: Orlando-Sanford International Airport – National Airlines to begin two times weekly seasonal flight service.
February 15, 2016: Cancun, Mexico – Air Canada to begin weekly, non-stop seasonal service.
May 1, 2016: London Heathrow Airport – British Airways to use an AirBus A380 superjumbo jet for its existing daily non-stop London Heathrow Airport service. The A380 will only be used during the summer months.
May 6, 2016: London Gatwick Airport – WestJet to begin six times weekly non-stop flight service.
May 9, 2016: Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport – Air Canada to begin twice daily, non-stop service to San Jose.
June 1, 2016: Brisbane, Australia – Air Canada to begin daily non-stop flight service.
June 2, 2016: San Diego International Airport – Air Canada to begin daily, non-stop seasonal service.
June 4, 2016: Chicago O’Hare International Airport – Air Canada to begin daily, non-stop service.
June 10, 2016: Dublin Airport – Air Canada to begin seasonal non-stop flight service.
June 29, 2016: London, Ontario – WestJet to begin four times weekly non-stop seasonal flight service.
June 29, 2016: Halifax, Nova Scotia – WestJet to begin four times weekly non-stop seasonal flight service.
June 30, 2016: Hamilton, Ontario – WestJet to begin three times weekly non-stop seasonal flight service.
July 25, 2016: Xiamen, China – Xiamen Airlines to begin three times weekly non-stop flight service.
October 20, 2016: Delhi, India – Air Canada to begin three times weekly non-stop flight service.
December 30, 2016:Hangzhou, Chinavia Qingdao, China – Beijing Capital Airlines to begin three times weekly service.
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National Features Editor at Daily Hive, the evolution of Vancity Buzz. He covers local architecture, urban issues, politics, business, retail, economic development, transportation and infrastructure, and the travel industry. Kenneth is also a Co-Founder of New Year's Eve Vancouver. Connect with him at kenneth[at]dailyhive.com