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Chinese Carriers Cleared to Increase U.S. Flights

Shanghai, China - July 08, 2016: An Air China Boeing 777-300ER aircraft approaches Shanghai Hongqiao airport for landing. (Photo: iStock)

The U.S. Department of Transportation is allowing Chinese airlines to increase their weekly American flights to 50 round trips, up from the current ceiling of 35.
Travelers hoping to visit China this summer may have more flight options available soon.


Reuters reports the U.S. Department of Transportation has cleared an increase of weekly round trips by Chinese carriers to 50 starting on March 31, 2024.


Move Opens Up China Travel Ahead of Summer Season

Currently, Chinese carriers are only allowed to have 35 round trip flights weekly between their home country and the United States. When the number of flights increases at the end of March, it will represent one-third of the pre-pandemic high of 150 weekly round trips per airline.


In a statement, the Transportation Department says the move “is a significant step forward in further normalization of the U.S.-China market in anticipation of the Summer 2024 traffic season.” Both airlines and the Chinese market are celebrating the jump in allowed flights.


The industry consortium Airlines for America tells Reuters they support “the U.S. government’s approach to slowly, gradually and reciprocally reopen the market with China,” but cautions that the measured approach should continue. China’s embassy in Washington called the move “positive progress” to increase travel opportunities after the COVID-19 pandemic.


During the pandemic years, flights were cut down to only 12 round trips for both U.S. and Chinese carriers per week. That low number continued until August 2023, when the DOT increased the allowed number of round trips to 18 weekly.


If travel between the U.S. and China were to open fully, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo previously said it could add $30 billion to the economy and create 50,000 jobs. The DOT says they are committed to gradually reopening travel between the two countries based on a mutually approved agreement.

SamirD March 2, 2024

Considering the animosity that the ccp shows towards the US and rest of the world, this is probably a bad idea...

jeffwingo February 28, 2024

The one time I flew to Asia on a Chinese airline was one of the worst flying experiences I have ever had. Granted, it was pretty inexpensive, but not worth it. The second worst was the return flight.