Fast-growing China Southern Airways has continued its aggressive push into Australia, this week launching direct flights between Guangzhou and Perth.
Already the world’s sixth largest airline, China Southern says it plans to increase weekly flights to Australia to 110 by 2015. The push is part of a larger strategy to develop Guangzhou as a major international travel hub and could see China Southern emerge as a strong competitor for lucrative routes between Australia and Europe and North America, further challenging Qantas’s marketshare
The Guangzhou-Perth services bring to 32 the airline’s weekly flights to Australia. The services are scheduled to arrive in Perth at 6:30 a.m. Wednesday, Friday and Sunday and will depart at 5:50 p.m. offering ongoing service to Beijing. The airline’s website currently offers round trip tickets from Perth to Guangzhou for promotional prices starting at $468 excluding taxes and fees.
Leading a delegation of company executives on the maiden flight to Perth on Wednesday, China Southern president Si Xiamin said Australia was a key part of the airline’s plans.
“China Southern is unswervingly pushing forward in the process of internationalisation,” he said.