Chinese carrier Hainan Airlines will open a new route between Xi’an, China and Rome on December 9, 2015.
The maiden flight coded HU7971 will head to Rome early in the morning. The route connects the starting and end points of the ancient Silk Road.
Chen Feng, chairman of the board of directors of Hainan Airlines, said during the inaugural ceremony:
“With the ‘One Belt, One Road’ strategic initiative, the increase in demand for business and leisure travel between China and all European countries is serving to stimulate the market for Chinese carriers. The strategic initiative will help boost economic development and regional cooperation between countries along the Silk Road and benefit the people in Asia and Europe. As an airline with a strong sense and understanding of the significance of the historical ties, Hainan Airlines has been actively involved in the development of the initiative since the beginning and aims to become a major contributor.”
The new, twice-weekly service from Xi’an to Rome will initially operate on every Wednesday and Saturday. The service is scheduled to increase to three times weekly starting from March 27, 2016. The flight from Xi’an to Rome, coded HU7971, takes off at 1:00 am and arrives in Rome at 5:55 am the same day. The return flight, from Rome to Xi’an, coded HU7972, takes off at 12:35 pm and arrives in Xi’an at 6:00 am the following day (schedules are based on local time in each location).
The new air route will be flown by an Airbus A330 luxury wide-body aircraft with 36 seats in business class and 186 seats in economy.
Since 1993, Hainan Airlines has launched over 500 domestic and international air routes to nearly 90 cities across Asia, Europe and North America.