China’s Juneyao Opens Its Second Helsinki Route

This Monday saw the inauguration of Juneayo’s second route from China to Helsinki. The once-weekly flight to the Finnish capital is part of a continued codeshare collaboration with Finnair and is currently the only nonstop service from Zhengzhou to Europe.

Juneyao Airlines in flight above coast
Juneyao has inaugurated its nonstop Zhengzhou to Helsinki flight with one of its Dreamliners. Photo: Boeing

In the making for a long time

With the launch of Chinese carrier Juneyao’s second route to the Finnish capital, travelers can now fly nonstop between Helsinki and Zhengzhou in the Henan province. Beginning this past Monday, October 12th, Juneayo operates a once-weekly service with one of its 787-9 Dreamliners.

Finavia’s Vice President for Sales and Route Development Petri Vuori said in a statement

“The new connection strengthens Helsinki’s position as a significant hub for Asian flights and is an important development for the future. It also supports Finland’s export trade and security of supply. We have worked for this new route for a long period of time.”

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Schedule and cost

The flight will leave Zhengzhou Xinzheng International Airport (CGO) at 01:55 and arrive at Helsinki Vantaa Airport (HEL) at 06:10 local time. The return flight will depart at 20:30 and arrive back in Zhengzhou at 10:00 the next day. Flight times are estimated at 9 h 15 min for the CGO to HEL leg and 8 h 30 min for the way back.

A quick search reveals that roundtrip economy tickets cost just over $1,000 at the time of writing. It is unclear how many passengers were on the inaugural service earlier this week.

Juneyao and China Airlines
Juneyao normally operates only domestic routes but has deepened its codeshare endeavor with Finnair this year. Photo: Getty Images

Evolution of a partnership

This is the otherwise mainly domestic operator Juneyao’s second nonstop route from China to Helsinki. In July 2019, the airline launched a nonstop route from Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG). Since then, Finnair and Juneyao codeshare on each other’s Helsinki to Shanghai routes.

In April this year, an interesting timing that may have raised an eyebrow or two, Finnair and Juneyao extended their codeshare partnership to include many other destinations on each carrier’s respective network.

“Despite these immensely challenging times for our industry, we at Finnair remain steadfast in our belief and commitment to China as a key market,” Finnair’s Chief Commercial Officer Ole Orvér said at the time.

Boeing 777
China Southern operated a nonstop route between Zhengzhou and London for a little over six months. Photo: Simple Flying

At the moment the only CGO to Europe nonstop service

When international travel begins to open up again, passengers will now have nonstop access from Europe to Zhengzhou, the largest city and capital of the east-central Henan province. Currently, the route to Helsinki is the only nonstop service between CGO and Europe.

China Southern Airlines launched flights between Zhengzhou and London’s Heathrow in June 2019. The service was later included in a codeshare agreement with British Airways. However, due to the ongoing global health crisis, the route was suspended in February this year.

What do you think about Juneyao’s route launch? Let us know in the comments.