Gatwick airport looks to be losing another long-haul route next month, as Air China has decided to suspend its Gatwick to Beijing service over the winter period from October 27, according to airlineroute.net.
A spokesperson for Gatwick responded to the news, saying: “We are disappointing that Air China has decided not to operate services between London Gatwick and Beijing this winter.
“Over the summer, the airline increased the size of aircraft used on its other UK route, which has caused it to temporarily withdraw services from Gatwick for one season. However passenger numbers on the Gatwick route have been consistently strong since its launch and we look forward to welcoming Air China back next summer.”
It would appear that despite strong loads a lack of demand means the service is not viable year round from two UK airports.
Gatwick believes that the carrier will return for the summer season, commencing in spring 2014, when it normally operates four weekly flights.
The carrier continues to operate a daily direct service to Beijing from London Heathrow.
Korean Airlines suspended its Gatwick-Seoul route late last year (see news, November 2012) and Hong Kong Airlines ill-fated all-business class service was cancelled previous to that (see news, August 2012).
Fellow Asian carrier Vietnam Airlines added a fifth summer service from Gatwick in April (see news April 23).