Between September and November, Air Belgium will launch three new destinations in China, Air Belgium’s CEO Niky Terzakis confirmed to newspapers Le Soir and L’Avenir. Only two months ago (7 June 2018), Air Belgium inaugurated flights between Charleroi and Hong Kong. The three new destinations will be: Taiyuan, Zhengzhou and Wuhan. “Requesting slots on Chinese destinations is a complex process, hence we don’t have additional information like e.g. frequencies,” an Air Belgium spokesman told Aviation24.be
Zhengzhou (the capital of Henan Province in the central part of the People’s Republic of China) and Wuhan (the capital of Hubei province) are both National Central Cities, in charge of leading, developing, and performing tasks in political, economic, and cultural aspects. Taiyuan is the capital and largest city of Shanxi province in North China. (source: wikipedia)
Terzakis is also dreaming about other Asian cities. “We are considering four to six new destinations including Tokyo, Japan and Cebu in the Philippines. In the coming months, we will see if we can connect to Seoul via the Hong Kong hub.”
Air Belgium intended to increase the frequency to Hong Kong to four flights per week, but Terzakis told Le Soir that there is too much capacity on the market compared to the demand. Air Belgium seems happy with the passenger load factor: 52 to 60 % in July and an expected load factor between 75 and 85 % in August.
Terzakis wondered aloud where the Walloon businessmen are, because eight out of ten business travellers come from Flanders. Next to the scheduled flights, Air Belgium is also operating ACMI flights for other airlines, like Air France. The Charleroi-based airline would love to operate towards North America on behalf of other airlines.
Google Maps: Air Belgium’s current and future destinations