EVA Air has launched a new direct flight to Istanbul, marking the airline’s fifth destination in Europe.
The new long-haul service took off for the first time on 5 March 2016 and will now operate four times a week (every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday) direct from Taipei.
The route will be operated in a codeshare partnership with Turkish Airlines, and between them, the two carriers will offer a total of 11 weekly flights between Istanbul and Taipei. EVA and Turkish are both members of the Star Alliance.
EVA’s executive vice president, Glenn Chai, was one of almost 300 passengers onboard the inaugural flight.
“EVA is bringing our award-winning service into this market and we want this route to thrive,” said Chai. “Istanbul is unique to both Europe and Asia in its geographical advantages. From here, it’s easy for passengers to connect onward aboard flights to most of Europe’s major cities. And with our new service, travellers from Turkey and Europe have easy access to leading destinations throughout Asia and mainland China.”
EVA will serve the new route using its Boeing 777-300ER aircraft, which comes fitted with business, premium economy and economy class cabins. The business class seats feature fully-flat beds.
According to the new schedule, flight BR79 will depart Taipei’s Taoyuan International Airport at 0055 and arrive at Istanbul’s Ataturk International Airport at 0745. The return flight, BR80, will leave the Turkish city at 1145 and arrive back in Taiwan at 0415 the next morning.
Istanbul becomes the fifth destination in EVA’s European network, following Amsterdam, Paris, London and Vienna. But it is only the second European route served direct from Taiwan, after Paris, with the other three flights operating via Bangkok.