China Southern Airlines to open new flight route from London to Cairns

Andrew Munro 5 September 2017 NEWS

Heathrow, London

London, Guangzhou and Cairns are getting better connected.

Starting on 13 December 2017, China Southern Airlines will be flying a new route between London's Heathrow Airport and Cairns, routed through Guangzhou. The new route serves as an additional connection to Australia for Londoners, but also as a new daily service between China and England.

Flights will depart Heathrow for Guangzhou twice daily, and connections to Cairns will be departing Guangzhou three times a week, on Mondays, Wednesdys and Fridays.

The Guangzhou-Cairns segment has been under construction for a while and was announced several months ago, but the declaration of a new route between London and Cairns, also commencing in December, is a significant expansion to the original plans.

It's good news for Australian travellers, opening up another way to reach London. Fares between London and Cairns start at a very reasonable £578 return (about AU$940 at the time of writing), so it might well take off as one of the more consistently great-value ways to fly between Australia and the UK, and a solid contributor to the world's all-around dropping airfares.

For China Southern Airlines, this is also a natural extension of its mission to become a great tourist airline for overseas visitors in Australia. It already offers flights to Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide, and Cairns is a solid addition to its destination portfolio.

"Opening up Far North Queensland to British travellers not only gives them the opportunity to explore the vast country further but also makes getting from the North to the South of Australia even more accessible" explains Nick Newman, commercial manager of China Southern Airlines, UK & Ireland.

"We already operate flights to the core four destinations along the East Coast, so by adding Cairns to our portfolio, we can give passengers scope to discover the entire East side without having to track back across covered ground."

Meanwhile, visitors to China from both England and Australia will be able to take advantage of Guangzhou's position as an internal travel hub.

China Southern Airlines is a member of the SKyTeam global airline alliance and has China's largest passenger aircraft fleet, including both A380 and B787 Dreamliners. Coupled with an ever-expanding range of routes, it might be well placed to offer more routes between Australia and Europe in the future.

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