Finnair’s CEO Mika Vehviläinen and Huang Xing, China’s Ambassador to Finland, hit the gong to open Finnair’s fourth route to China after Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong. Passengers waiting to board the first flight were also treated to dragon dancing.
- Finnair continued expanding its Asian network as the Finnish national carrier launched its third route to Mainland China on 9 May, after Beijing and Shanghai. From its Helsinki (HEL) hub, where the oneworld carrier specialises in Europe-Asia transfer traffic, the airline now serves the megacity of Chongqing (CKG) in Southwest China. Flights operate four times weekly with a mixture of A340-300 and A330-300 aircraft. Finnair’s CEO Mika Vehviläinen commented: “We were the first Western European airline to connect Europe with Beijing in 1988, and we see this as the natural next step in our history of building better connections between East and West. I want to thank the Chongqing authorities and the local airport for the excellent cooperation and support for opening this new route. We believe that Chongqing has the potential of developing into a hub for travel between Western China and Europe, both for business and leisure travellers.” For video coverage from the first flight, see YouTube.