Air China To Launch London Gatwick Services From Shanghai

Gatwick Airport will soon welcome another Airbus A350. Air China is set to launch a new service to the London Airport originating in Shanghai. Starting in November, the new service will operate four times per week.

Air China, Airbus A350, London Gatwick
Air China’s A350s are set to arrive in London Gatwick four times a week from November. Photo: N509FZ via Wikimedia

Just over a week ago, Virgin Atlantic welcomed its first Airbus A350 to London Gatwick airport. While Cathay Pacific’s A350 already operates to the airport, there is soon set to be another A350 on the block, as Air China is set to launch A350 services to London’s Gatwick Airport from November onwards. The new flight will operate four times per week.

Another London flight

Air China already flies the Airbus A350 to London from Beijing airport. The carrier flies the route three times a day and had intended to fly the A350 to London twice per day. However, Business Traveller reported in April that the carrier had scrapped plans to add a second daily A350 flight to Heathrow.

Additionally, the Air China A350-900 flies to Milan from Beijing and Shanghai, and Frankfurt from Shanghai. However, Milan won’t be the only destination to receive Air China’s A350s from two Chinese cities. London will join the party as the carrier opened reservations between Shanghai and London, according to Routes Online.

Air China, Airbus A350, London Gatwick
The route will be Air China’s second A350 route to London. Photo: GCMaps

Shanghai to Gatwick

Air China competed against China Southern and Juneyao Airlines for permission to connect Shanghai and London according to Business Traveller. Air China will operate the flight four times a week, however, the time will vary depending on the day. Flights will commence on November 2nd.

  • On Saturdays, CA847 will depart from Shanghai (PVG) at 01:05. Following its flight, it is scheduled to touch down in London (LGW) at 05:55 local time.
  • On Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, the Airbus A350 will depart Shanghai at 01:30. It is then scheduled to arrive in Gatwick at 06:20 local time.

Meanwhile, for the return flight, while the time departing London Gatwick varies, the arrival times in Shanghai are all the same. CA848 is the flight number for the return flight to Shanghai. On Wednesdays and Saturdays, the flight is due to depart London Gatwick at 11:30 local time.

Air China, Airbus A350, London Gatwick
Air China already flies the Airbus A350 to London Heathrow. Photo: John Taggart via Wikimedia

Meanwhile, on Tuesdays and Thursdays, the flight is due to depart London Gatwick at 11:40. Despite the difference in departure times, all flights are scheduled to arrive in Shanghai at 06:50 the next day. As the flight arrives after the next day’s departure, two Airbus A350-900s will be required for the route’s rotation from Tuesday to Thursday.

Would you fly on Air China’s link from London Gatwick to Shanghai? Are you excited to see another Airbus A350 at London Gatwick? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!