1 AUGUST 2016
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Another Chinese carrier made history last Monday when Xiamen Airlines launched its first route to North America with service to Vancouver.
Xiamen’s B787-8 touched down after a 9,189km (5,710mi) flight from its home base. No other carrier operates the route.
Xiamen, a member of the SkyTeam group, becomes the fifth Chinese carrier to serve Vancouver, which officials claim is a record for any airport in Europe or North America.
Vancouver Airport Authority CEO Craig Richmond said: “It’s no surprise this very successful airline chose Vancouver as its first North American destination – our city has close ties with Fujian province, while our north-west location and world-class facility makes the city the best gateway to North America for any Asian airline.”
There will be 89 flights a week this summer between China and Canada operated by seven airlines – Air Canada and six Chinese carriers.
Air Canada accounts for 41% of the market in terms of seat capacity, followed by China Eastern Airlines with 20%, Air China (17%) and China Southern Airlines (9%). Xiamen Airlines’ new route gives it around 2.5% of the market.
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