Direct flights between Manchester Airport and China resume for the first time since the start of the pandemic two and a half years ago
- Flights from Manchester to China have resumed for the first time since the pandemic
- The Chinese government said the air corridor to Manchester would reopen
- It will be a weekly service with flights arriving at 10am and departing at 3pm
Direct flights between Manchester Airport and China will resume on Monday after a two-and-a-half-year hiatus due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The airport said Hainan Airlines will restore its Manchester-Beijing service, which will operate on Mondays each week with planes arriving in Manchester at 10 a.m. and departing at 3 p.m.
The route, which is also expected to open on a Tuesday from October, originally opened in 2016 but closed at the start of the pandemic due to strict lockdown measures in both countries.
The Chinese government agreed last week that Manchester-China was among the air corridors that could reopen.
Hainan Airlines is reinstating the Manchester-Beijing service, which will operate on Mondays every week, with planes arriving in Manchester at 10 a.m. and departing at 3 p.m.
The Chinese government agreed last week that Manchester-China was one of the air corridors that could be reopened
North West Airport is now the only place outside London with a direct connection to mainland China.
While most regions around the world have reopened for international travel, a handful of Asian countries are enforcing strict coronavirus restrictions.
Japan is only open to a limited number of tourists and requires vacationers to pass a PCR test prior to arrival.
Vaccinated travelers can visit Singapore, while Laos, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia require no testing or quarantine measures and are open to all.
Chris Woodroofe, director of Manchester Airport said: ‘Today’s announcement is clear proof of the vital economic role Manchester Airport plays, both in the north and in the UK as a whole, as we emerge from the pandemic.
“Before 2020, the Hainan service provided vital connectivity to one of the world’s major economies, and I’m sure this news will be welcomed by the hundreds of thousands of people in the north who travel to and from China every year.
“It’s extremely positive to see critical routes like this return to our departure boards and we look forward to working closely with Hainan Airlines to build on the past success of this route.”
If passengers in China test positive for Covid-19, they will be placed in a designated hospital ward.
They will remain there until they have tested negative a few times, according to the UK government’s website.
Chinese authorities across the country continue to impose strict controls on entering and leaving cities.
In March 2022, the country registered as many as 5,000 cases per day, which was higher than Wuhan’s original outbreak in 2019.
Due to the restrictions, more than four million businesses closed in 2021 and migrants slept on the streets after their working conditions ended overnight, the Spectator reported.
In April, 45 Chinese cities were in a sort of lockdown as the Omicron variant continued to rip through the country.
In Shanghai, China’s largest city and a financial powerhouse, 25 million residents had to isolate themselves in their homes for weeks, even as the number of infections began to decline.
WHO director Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus called the lockdown unsustainable “given the behavior of the virus”.