The United States and China have pledged to double the number of flights each country’s airlines can offer between the two countries.
The number will increase from four to eight, easing the standoff between China and the U.S. stemming from travel restrictions imposed during the coronavirus pandemic.
The U.S. Transportation Department announced the additional flights on August 18, 2020, that China’s aviation authority permitted expanded flights operated by United Airlines and Delta Air Lines.
In light of the changes, United announced it would shift from two to four flights per week between San Francisco and Shanghai via Seoul, starting September 4, 2020.
Delta can now increase its two weekly flights to four, according to the aviation authority but no announcement regarding an increase has been made by the airline.
Air China, China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines and Xiamen Airlines will now be allowed to make eight weekly roundtrip flights, an increase from four per week.
The Transportation Department noted that this was “a step in the right direction,” however, it said that it hopes that China will agree to fully restore the treaty rights of U.S. airlines to serve China.
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