United Airlines (Chicago) has applied to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) for authority to begin seasonal nonstop service between the airline’s San Francisco hub and Xi’an, China. If approved, this will be the first trans-Pacific service to Xi’an operated by any airline, and United will be the first U.S. airline to serve the city.
United intends to use the world’s most advanced passenger airplane, the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, to operate the three-times-weekly service between May 8 and October 27, 2016 (westbound).
The proposed flights, subject to government approval, will depart San Francisco International Airport at 1:25 p.m. on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays and arrive in Xi’an at 5:30 p.m. the following days (all times local).
The return flights will depart Xi’an’s Xianyang International Airport at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays and arrive at San Francisco International Airport at 7:35 a.m. the same days. Flying times will be approximately 13 hours, 5 minutes westbound and 12 hours, 5 minutes eastbound.
Xi’an is the capital of Shaanxi Province in central China, at the eastern end of the Silk Road. With a population of more than 8 million, it is one of China’s oldest cities and an important cultural, economic and educational center. The plains surrounding Xi’an are home to the famed Bingmayong (Terracotta Warriors), thousands of life-size, hand-molded figures buried with China’s first emperor, Qin Shi Huang.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner N26909 (msn 34827) departs from the Los Angeles hub.