Just a few months on from the Taiwanese border reopening, China Airlines is shucking off its ‘slow and steady’ rebuild mantra, giving flights between Brisbane, Auckland and Taipei a significant boost in the early new year.
From January 1, the current thrice-weekly Brisbane-Taipei connection will rise to five per week, with flights between Auckland and Brisbane receiving the same boost.
- CI54 will depart Auckland at 8.50pm to reach Brisbane at 9.25pm, before setting out to Taipei to arrive at 5.50am the following day
- CI53 is wheels-up from Taipei at 11.55pm and landing at Brisbane at 10.45am; the Auckland leg spans from 12.55pm to 7:10pm
The expansion is made possible under a $200 million joint Queensland Government and industry Attracting Aviation Investment Fund, which was created to boost the state’s tourism sector.
As previously reported, Sydney-Taipei and Melbourne-Taipei will also shift from three to four times a week in December.
China Airlines’ flights to Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane all feature the modern Airbus A350, which sports an upmarket business class cabin of 32 seats offering direct aisle access.
These convert into a 78 inch (1.9 metre) fully-flat bed, with an 18 inch video screen to keep you entertained during the flight.
Behind the business class cabin is the Sky Bistro bar with self-serve drinks and snacks; further back are 31 premium economy seats arranged in rows of 2-3-2...
... which at 20 inches wide and with a 39 inch pitch add two inches in width and seven inches of pitch compared to the A350’s 243 standard 3-3-3 economy seats.
All passengers will be able to tap into an inflight satellite Internet service, with prices ranging from US$12 for one hour to US$22 for a 24-hour plan which can be used over multiple flights (such as Sydney-Taipei-London).
The SkyTeam member plans to swell its international fleet from 2025 with the delivery of 16 Boeing 787-9 jets to replace the ageing Airbus A330s, with an option to add eight more and also convert orders to the larger 787-10 model.
Additional reporting by Chris Ashton