LAS VEGAS -- Hainan Airlines today filed an application with the U.S. Department of Transportation to launch an historic new route connecting Las Vegas to Beijing, the first-ever nonstop flight between Las Vegas and Mainland China. The service will begin December 2, 2016 and will initially operate Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
Chinese tourists are one of the fastest-growing and largest-spending groups of international visitors to Las Vegas. With the reciprocal 10-year tourist visas and the introduction of hotels, programming and amenities geared toward Chinese visitors, Las Vegas has established itself as a major draw for Chinese traveling to the United States.
“With the expansion of tourist activity between China and Las Vegas, Hainan is proud to provide the very first nonstop service to this exciting market,” said Mr. Hou Wei, vice president of Hainan. “Hainan’s award-winning service and elite experience complement the dynamism and vibrancy of Las Vegas. This is a further reflection of our long-term commitment to our customers in China and the U.S.” added Mr. Hou.
The new route is part of Hainan’s large-scale expansion in North America. On the west coast, Hainan already operates nonstop service between Silicon Valley (SJC) and Beijing, Los Angeles (LAX) and Changsha, and from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport to Beijing and Shanghai. This complements the airline’s nonstop routes between Beijing and Chicago, Boston, Calgary and Toronto, and between Shanghai and Boston.
“Nonstop international service is increasingly important at McCarran International Airport, and China has long been among our most sought-after markets,” said Clark County Aviation Director Rosemary Vassiliadis, who oversees operations at the eighth-busiest airport in the United States. “We are grateful for our new partnership with Hainan Airlines, and look forward to welcoming its world-class service to our state-of-the-art airport here in Las Vegas.”
Hainan flight 7970 will depart Las Vegas McCarran International Airport at 12:30 p.m. and arrive Beijing’s Capital Airport at 5:30 p.m. the subsequent day, allowing for connections to other points in China. Flight 7969 will depart Beijing at 2:20pm and arrive Las Vegas at 10:30am the same day. Las Vegas times are one hour later during the summer season. Nonstop flight time is approximately 13 hours westbound and 12 hours eastbound.
“We are extremely proud to welcome Hainan Airlines to Las Vegas with their convenient, premium-service for Chinese visitors,” said Rossi Ralenkotter, president/CEO of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA.) “China is an area where we have seen steady growth in visitation and we will continue to focus on experiences and amenities that cater to our Chinese guests. With these first-ever flights from China to Las Vegas, we are anticipating more than $33.5 million in annual economic impact.”
The new nonstop service will be flown by Boeing 787 Dreamliners with 34 business class lie-flat seats and 177 economy class seats. Hainan is the airline with the most nonstop 787 Dreamliner routes between China and North America.
The announcement comes on the heels of another momentous milestone for Hainan Airlines. On June 30, Hainan announced a new collaboration with DreamWorks Animation to feature the “Kung Fu Panda” film franchise on Hainan’s award-winning fleet. Up to six specially designed “Kung Fu Panda”-themed liveries will showcase characters and scenes from the blockbuster film franchise on Hainan’s new 787-9 Dreamliners.
Hainan Airlines is Mainland China’s largest independent airline, and is the only Mainland Chinese airline with a perfect five-star rating from Skytrax, the international airline ratings agency, six years in a row. Members of Alaska Airlines’ Mileage Plan may earn or redeem points on Hainan Airlines flights. Members of Hainan’s own frequent flyer program, the Fortune Wings Club, may earn and redeem points for travel worldwide.
Business class passengers enjoy priority check-in and luxurious seats that convert to fully-flat beds. Gourmet Chinese and Western cuisine as well as award-winning wines, freshly brewed espresso and high-quality teas are available. Amenity kits feature Bulgari® cosmetics. A state of the art entertainment system offers over 100 movies, audio selections and games on demand.
Premium passengers can also reserve complimentary private chauffeured car service between home, the airport and their destination in both the U.S. and China.
Once D.O.T. approval is received, Hainan Airlines flights will be available through all travel agents and travel websites, as well as online at hainanairlines.com, or through its call center at 1-888-688-8813.
About Hainan Airlines
Hainan Airlines was founded in 1993 and has grown to be China’s largest independent airline, with a fleet of over 202 aircraft, including wide body Boeing 787 Dreamliner and Airbus A330 jetliners. The airline is a subsidiary of the HNA Group, a Fortune 500 company from China, which has interests in logistics, tourism, hotels, financial services, as well as air transportation.
Hainan began service to the United States in 2008 and has progressively grown internationally, transporting hundreds of thousands of passengers to and from China and North America. The airline has a wide domestic network in China, serving more than 700 routes linking 100 cities, as well as points in Europe, Southeast Asia, Australia and the Middle East. Hainan prioritizes elite-level service, earning numerous awards for safety, punctuality and a high-quality product.
About McCarran International Airport
McCarran International Airport is located in the shadows of the world-famous Las Vegas Strip and is the gateway for nearly half of the people who visit Southern Nevada each year. Including arrivals and departures, McCarran hosted more than 45 million passengers in 2015, making it the eighth-busiest airport in North America. With 30 airlines providing nonstop service to more than 140 destinations, McCarran makes it possible for the world to experience one of the most alluring travel destinations. McCarran International Airport is owned and operated by Clark County, Nevada, and does not benefit from local tax dollars.
About the LVCVA
The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA) is charged with marketing Southern Nevada as a tourism and convention destination worldwide, and also with operating the Las Vegas Convention Center and Cashman Center. With nearly 150,000 hotel rooms in Las Vegas alone and more 11 million square feet of meeting and exhibit space citywide, the LVCVA's mission centers on attracting ever increasing numbers of leisure and business visitors to the area. Download the virtual reality app, Vegas VR, to experience Las Vegas from your iPhone or Android by visiting http://www.vrtv.vegas/. For more information, go to www.lvcva.com or www.lasvegas.com