Flights between Manchester and China are set to resume on Monday after the Chinese authorities dropped its ban on flights from the UK.
Hainan Airlines has announced it will resume a weekly direct Beijing-Manchester service on 22 August, although the outbound flight from Manchester will initially operate via Dalian, where passengers will have to quarantine for seven days in line with current Chinese entry rules, before flying on.
UK and Chinese authorities agreed earlier this month that flights between the countries could resume, although only Chinese airlines are currently allowed to operate on these routes.
The resumption of the Hainan Airlines’ service to Manchester after two years marks the restart of the first UK-China route outside of London.
Chris Woodroofe, managing director of Manchester airport, said: “Prior to 2020, the Hainan service provided vital connectivity to one of the world’s most important economies and I am sure this news will be welcomed by the hundreds of thousands of people across the north who travel to and from China each year.
“It is extremely positive to see critical routes like this return to our departure boards and we look forward to working closely with Hainan Airlines to build on the previous success of this route.”
Hainan will operate A330 aircraft on the Manchester route featuring both economy and business class cabins.
“At the beginning of the resumption of flight, it will travel via Dalian first. After completing the seven days quarantine, passengers will be able to fly to other destinations within China according to their preferences,” explained Tao Zhu, Hainan Airlines’ CEO.
Other Chinese airlines including Air China, China Southern and China Eastern have all resumed flights from London Heathrow to China since the ban on UK flights was lifted.
Air China is flying from the UK hub to Beijing and Shanghai, China Southern is operating to Guangzhou and China Eastern is also running flights to Shanghai.