China Eastern Airlines first carrier at new Shennongjia airport
China Eastern Airlines became the first airline to offer scheduled flights at China’s newest airport at Shennongjia (HPG). On 8 May an A319 arrived on a flight from Shanghai Pudong (PVG) via Wuhan (WUH). Flights will initially operate thrice-weekly increasing to daily from 1 June. The new airport is currently the highest in China outside of the Tibet region, at an altitude of 2,580 metres, and is in a region famous for its wildlife and tourist appeal. Four days later, on 12 May the airline also began operating twice-weekly (Mondays and Thursdays) flights between Ningbo (NGB) and Kaohsiung (KHH) in Taiwan. The 810-kilometre route will be served by the airline’s A320s and will face competition from EVA Air’s thrice-weekly flights. This becomes China Eastern’s fourth scheduled service to Kaohsiung and brings to eight the number of weekly flights to the airport. From Ningbo, the airline now serves 19 destinations non-stop, including six outside of mainland China. Last year Ningbo Lishe International Airport handled 5.46 million passengers, ranking it as the 36th busiest airport in China.