On 20 December Vancouver Airport celebrated the launch of China Eastern Airlines’ new three times weekly service from Nanjing. Representatives from the airline, the Chinese consulate plus airport executives (including Anne Murray, VP of Marketing & Communications) and Richmond Mayor Malcolm Brodie took part in the ceremonial ribbon cutting.
- China Eastern Airlines has added a new non-stop route between China and Canada with the launch on 20 December of a three times weekly (Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays) service between Nanjing (NKG) and Vancouver (YVR). The 9,125-kilometre service will be flown by the SkyTeam carrier’s A330-200s and faces no direct competition. China Eastern has served Vancouver since 2004 when it began services from Shanghai Pudong, a route that it now flies 11 times weekly. Craig Richmond, Vancouver Airport’s President & CEO, said: “We want to thank our long-standing partner, China Eastern, for choosing Vancouver to introduce this new connection from Nanjing, a renowned Chinese historical epicentre and a key economic hub. This is another exciting first for Vancouver, offering passengers the only non-stop access to Nanjing in all of Canada.” China Eastern is the biggest Chinese carrier in the China-Canada market with 19% of seat capacity, beaten only by Air Canada (39%). However, seven Chinese carriers account for 61% of the market, with China Southern Airlines (13%) and Air China (12%) ranking third and fourth in the market at present. Compared with last January flights between the two countries are up 33% while seat capacity is up 51%.