Beijing Capital Airlines to fly Melbourne-Qingdao-Shenyang

By Chris C., July 12 2016
Beijing Capital Airlines to fly Melbourne-Qingdao-Shenyang

Beijing Capital Airlines will launch flights between Melbourne and the Chinese cities of Qingdao and Shenyang in September 2016.

While lesser-known than Beijing itself, Qingdao is renowned for its popular Tsingtao beer and is also home to Haier and Hisense which manufacture white goods and electronics, respectively.

Shenyang is too no small city with an urban population north of six million with a focus on heavy industry, software, automotive, electronics and banking.

Using an Airbus A330 aircraft, the HNA Group airline – part of the same company which also invests in Virgin Australia – will fly the route three times per week in each direction, using Qingdao as a stopping point between Melbourne and Shenyang.

Beijing Capital Airlines: Melbourne flight schedule

Departing Melbourne on Sundays, Wednesdays and Fridays from September 30, flight JD462 is wheels-up at 11:25am to reach Qingdao at 8:05pm. That’s where all passengers clear Chinese immigration and those flying onwards to Shenyang depart again at 10:05pm local time for a final arrival at 11:35pm.

On the return, JD461 takes to the skies on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, leaving Shenyang at 3:25pm for a 4:55pm arrival into Qingdao, continuing to Melbourne at 6:55pm and reaching the Victorian capital at 9:25am the following morning.

“We’ve seen consistent growth in the numbers of Chinese passengers arriving in Melbourne to visit Victoria and Beijing Capital Airlines will provide opportunity for more visitors from China,” said Melbourne Airport CEO Lyell Strambi.

“China has been a significant force in Melbourne’s international passenger growth, and our work with our Chinese airline customers is coming to fruition with more airlines offering services to Melbourne from China,” Strambi added in light of new flights to Xiamen, China.

Beijing Capital Airlines’ Airbus A330s offer travellers both business class and economy.

Also read: XiamenAir launches flights between Melbourne and Xiamen

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Chris C.

Chris is a a former contributor to Executive Traveller.

26 Dec 2014

Total posts 4

Arrivad at MEL international last Saturday am from BKK on way to Brisbane, what a shamozil people lined up after baggage claim trying to get through customs, snaking around baggage carosels, customs had only a handful on duty, and were just pushing us through very little checking going on. Suggest Melbourne airport invest in better arivals hall ASAP.

27 Aug 2013

Total posts 31

In light of your observation about only a handful of Customs staff on duty, wouldn't the better suggestion be for the government to provide adequate resourcing for passenger processing in peak periods?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

04 Mar 2014

Total posts 38

In my experience at MEL International arrivals, it is either an absolute shambles with crowds of people and massive queues or completely empty.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

19 Mar 2014

Total posts 567

So to clarify, this has nothing to do with the additional capacity VA applied for to China and/or Hong Kong in conjunction with HNA? This is completely independant?

24 Apr 2012

Total posts 2438

It's independent of that application, correct.

31 Mar 2016

Total posts 621

"This is completely independant?"

Completely independent and exactly as per the grand battle plan of HNA Group re which brand to serve which routes in the China-AU mkt:  Basically:


Effectively off-limits to all HNA brands in China due to PRC national aviation policy.  This is where VA, as a HNA brand outside China, is most  valuable to HNA Group for covering this mkt.  VA is not bounded by PRC aviation policy.  In fact per PRC-AU bilateral, it can easily secure rights to fly to pretty much anywhere in China(Possibly except PVG where QF is already there) fm AU thx to the tiny mkt footprint of QF in that nation.


Effectively off-limits to all HNA brands in Hong Kong(i.e. HK Air and HK Xpress) thx to CX 'strategically' exhausted all frequency quotas yrs ago held by the territory per current HK-AU bilateral.  Again, this is where VA is most valuable to HNA Group for covering this mkt....plenty of quotas held by the AU side still un-utilized by QF/JQ and will be easily obtainable by VA.  The only tricky part is getting ideal slots @ slot-restricted HKG.

All Tier2 or lower Chinese cities(i.e. everywhere outside PEK /PVG /CAN) - SYD /MEL /BNE /PER = 

SHE-QAO-MEL now being launched by Beijing Capital Air is a great example.  This is where any HNA brands in China can easily obtain route authority fm the PRC gov't...often with tasty  incentives/subsidies offered by local Chinese airports hell-bent on expanding their int'l route profolios.  Unlike the PEK /PVG /CAN - AU mkt, HNA brands in China are culturally(e.g. inflight F&B, local customs, language/99.9% pax only speak Chinese, etc.) better-suited than VA to serve this mkt.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

19 Mar 2014

Total posts 567

For a business to not be profitable and still be appealing to investors, then they have to be offering something. None of VA's partners are sitting back awaiting a dividend cheque. The only person making direct cash out of them is Branson himself in the brand royalty!

07 Feb 2016

Total posts 21

This is a clear result of China's controversial 'one route one airline' policy. Airlines are just scurrying to add any route possible so as to block other carriers in the future.

Thai Airways International - Royal Orchid Plus

16 May 2011

Total posts 112

But there needs to be demand for airlines to fly such routes, right now both MEL and SYD have attracted a lot of new services to both first and second tier cities. If there is no demand than the flight won't exist, even if it's just to block out the competition. 

07 Feb 2016

Total posts 21

Yes, the demand is there and can't be ignored. But there is sense of randomness when it comes to Chinese airlines flying to Australia. And profitability for routes such as the one announced by Beijing Capital Airlines will be difficult without subsidies.

Additionally, the new route will also see the company fly to Qingdao for the very first time. There is a strong case to block competition if Beijing Capital its first ever flight from Qingdao is to Australia (and also Shenyang).

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