Express flights link Beijing to Shanghai

By Miao Xiaojuan (China Daily)
Updated: 2007-08-07 06:47

SHANGHAI: Passengers flying between Beijing and Shanghai will now find it more convenient.

Flights between the two cities will arrive and depart every 30 minutes.

However, passengers will have to pay a price for the convenience. Some tickets will have no discounts, the Shanghai Business Air Services Company told China Daily.

"Most airlines have withdrawn discounts, while others are offering a maximum 10 percent discount," Xu Feijun, the general manager of a Shanghai-based travel agency, said.

"Passengers on business trips usually don't mind the price. They care more about whether flights arrive and depart on time," Xu said.

The General Administration of Civil Aviation of China (CAAC) said: "Prices are decided by the airline companies."

The new air service known as the Beijing-Shanghai Express Flight was launched yesterday by CAAC, and five major domestic airlines, namely Air China, China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines, Hainan Airlines and Shanghai Airlines.

Passengers flying between the two cities will enjoy quicker check-in times, and security checks. They will be able use one ticket for any of the five airlines.

"We are integrating and making full use of existing resources. The facilities and management of traditional air services should be reformed and optimized," CAAC said on its website.

A total of 4,180,000 passengers took flights between the two cities last year, an average of 11,000 passengers a day, and there were 36 flights every day.

"The express service will especially benefit passengers on business trips, as the service procedure has been simplified, and passengers can change flights freely," an official surnamed Ni from China Eastern Airlines, said.

The two airports will gradually increase the number of automatic ticket vending machines.

CAAC is encouraging the use of electronic tickets.

The express service will hopefully be expanded to other major cities, such as Guangzhou and Shenzhen, after a one-year trial operation, CAAC said.

(China Daily 08/07/2007 page4)

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