Chinese carrier Hainan Airlines looks set to offer a new non-stop service to Brussels from Shanghai Pudong later this year. The airline has been rapidly expanding its international network to destinations in Australasia and the US over the past 18 months, and now Europe appears to be in its frame.
Launching on October 25, the three-times-weekly service will fly on Monday, Wednesday and Friday using the airline’s B787-9 Dreamliner – which it also recently began operating on its Beijing-Manchester route. Flight HU7921 is an early morning service, departing Shanghai at 0125 and arriving in Brussels at 0730. The return HU7922 leg, meanwhile, departs Brussels just after midday at 1230 and arrives the following morning in Shanghai at 0530.
These new Brussels flights will also feature Hainan Airlines’ new B787-9 layout, which it rolled out on May 10 this year. The new format notably includes a 1-2-1 herringbone seat set-up in business class, with 30 lie-flat, 42-inch-pitch seats in total – a change from the previous 2-2-2 layout. Passengers in business also receive Bose headphones and Bulgari amenity kits.
Both premium economy (called Hainan Plus) and economy are laid out nine across (3-3-3) in the new layout, with the former featuring 36 seats with a 36-inch pitch, and the latter offering 226 seats with 32 inches of pitch.
The Shanghai route is the airline’s second service to Brussels, joining its existing route between Beijing and the Belgian capital.