China Southern Airlines will launch a new route connecting Dubai with two regional hubs in northwest China.
Commencing on 29 September 2014, the Chinese carrier’s new route will fly from Lanzhou, the capital of Gansu province, to Urumqi, the capital of the far northwestern region of Xinjiang, and then onwards across Central Asia and the Middle East to Dubai.
Flights will operate four times a week, every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, using a Boeing 737-800 aircraft.
China Southern says the new route will cut the journey times between Lanzhou and Dubai in half, as passengers will no longer have travel via Beijing or Shanghai. And with a journey time of approximately five hours on the Urumqi-Dubai sector, this will also be the shortest route between China and the UAE.
Northwest China has strong cultural links to the Middle East, due to its history on the Silk Road and its large Muslim population.
The new route will complement China Southern’s existing services linking Dubai with Beijing, Guangzhou, Kunming and Shanghai.
And also later this month, the airline plans to launch another international service from northwest China, linking Lanzhou and Urumqi with Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia. This route will run twice a week (Tuesdays and Saturdays) using a B737-800.