Air China returns to London Gatwick Airport with services to Beijing

Air China has resumed operations at London Gatwick Airport with services to Beijing.

The Chinese flag-carrier operates four flights per week to Beijing Capital International Airport that started April 1, and will increase to daily services from April 24. It will be the first since early 2020 that flights have run between Gatwick and China, and will support increasing demand for travel between the two countries.

China sent a record 151,690 students to the United Kingdom in 2021/22 – more than any other country, according to data from Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA). This is an increase of 41 percent since 2017-18 and accounts for 22.3 percent of international students in the UK. The flights should also provide an economic boost for the tourism industry in London and the Southeast, with Chinese visitors spending £1,828 per visit and £1.8 billion in 2019, according to Visit Britain. They will also further open up the cultural adventure opportunity to visit China and explore its diverse beauty.

Stephanie Wear, VP Aviation Development, Gatwick Airport said: ‘We are delighted to welcome Air China back to London Gatwick, providing a vital connection between two of the world’s most influential capital cities.

‘China is the world’s second-largest economy, so by offering direct flights between London and Beijing, Gatwick is providing an important service to people and businesses across the Southeast

‘It is also great news for tourism and hospitality across the region. Chinese visitors are traditionally high spenders so the return of regular flights will help support these sectors, which suffered so badly throughout the pandemic.’

Jingjie Li, General Manager, Air China London said: ‘We are delighted to resume our direct service from London Gatwick to Beijing. We are well prepared to serve passengers travelling between the UK and China, and via our hub at Beijing Capital Airport to beyond.’

The return of Air China means Gatwick will offer passengers a choice of nearly 50 long-haul destinations this summer, and as an Air China hub, Beijing Capital International Airport also provides onward connections throughout China and more widely across Asia, Australia and New Zealand.