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Finnair opens Shanghai Route

Travel News Asia 1 September 2003

On Tuesday, September 2nd, Finnair begins flying to Shanghai, the only airline to operate such a service from Northern Europe. Finnair is the first among a host of companies seeking to serve the growing market area of Shanghai. Finnair is also the first oneworld airline to start flight traffic to the city.

"Helsinki is situated on the biggest and fastest flight route between Europe and the Far East. For this reason, Helsinki enjoys the fastest through-service links from Asia to Europe and back. Finnair is exploiting this geographical advantage," says Finnair's Petteri Kostermaa, VP Route Strategies and Traffic Planning.

Finnair will fly to Shanghai three times a week, on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. Like its other Far Eastern services, the flights will depart from Helsinki late in the afternoon, ensuring good through connections to the Shanghai flight for flights arriving from European cities such as Stockholm, Oslo, Gothenburg and Copenhagen.

The return flight will also offer good onward links to Finnair's European network. Around two thirds of the customers on the Shanghai route are expected to be Asian, of whom most will continue on from Helsinki to Europe on Finnair flights.

In Asia, Finnair flies to Tokyo, Osaka, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Bangkok and Singapore. With five flights per week to Beijing and three to Hong Kong, the opening of Shanghai route makes a total of 11 flights per week to the Chinese economic area. There are plans for the airline to change the Beijing route into a daily service in spring 2004, and the airline also confirmed that the number of Shanghai flights will also be increased if demand and operating rights so allow.

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