Delta Is First U.S. Airline to Resume Flights to China
Delta Air Lines has announced it will resume its flights to China after nearly five months of suspended service.
“We are excited to resume our services between the U.S. and China, as economic and social activities start to recover,” Wong Hong, Delta's President of Greater China and Singapore, said in a press release on Monday. “With a mission to connect the world, Delta is committed to getting our customers to their destinations safely and confidently, especially at this critical time. We are implementing unprecedented health and safety measures and practices, so customers are assured of ease and safety at all points of their journey.”
On June 25, Delta will resume service between Seattle and Shanghai-Pudong via Seoul-Incheon. The flight will operate twice per week on board an Airbus A350 aircraft. In July, the airline will resume once-weekly flights from Seattle and Detroit via Incheon. The flights are already available to book.
As Delta resumes its flights, it is with new health standards. All aircraft undergo electrostatic spraying before departure and cabin capacity is blocked at 60 percent in the main cabin to help promote social distancing.
United has not yet announced when its flights to China will resume but remains optimistic.
“We welcome efforts to allow for resumption of our service between the U.S. and China for the benefit of our customers,” a United spokesperson said in a statement to Travel + Leisure. “United aims to re-launch our service to China in the weeks ahead.”
In February, Delta, United, and American Airlines announced a temporary suspension on flights to China after the U.S. State Department issued a “Do Not Travel” advisory.
When the airlines tried to resume their services, they were effectively barred from doing so due to a loophole in China’s post-COVID reopening procedure, which led to the U.S. Department of Transportation banning flights from Chinese airlines. China eventually reversed its stance and allowed US airlines to resume flying.