CHINA SOUTHERN: Brisbane fights recommence in November 2023
China Southern Airlines, with the country’s largest aircraft fleet, is returning to service Brisbane, Queensland, from Guangzhou starting 17 November 2023. Initially, with four flights per week, the schedule is expected to expand to daily flights.
The Brisbane schedule will start like this
- CZ382 – from Brisbane 10:10 am on M, T, Th, Sa, arrives in Guangzhou 5:25 pm.
- CZ381 – from Guangzhou 9:20 pm F, Su, M, W arrives Brisbane 8:30 am +1
Last week, the Chinese Government announced it would overturn the pandemic suspension of Australia as an approved destination, allowing travel agencies in China to book group travel there.
“Currently more than half of Queensland’s visitors from China are forced to fly via Sydney or Melbourne and the rest are coming via destinations like Singapore and Hong Kong. Today’s announcement will restore Queensland’s direct connection to our most lucrative market.”Gert-Jan de Graaff, Brisbane Airport CEO
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China Southern will fly an Airbus A350 aircraft to Brisbane. It can operate 50% quieter, using 25% less fuel with a corresponding reduction in CO2 emissions than older aircraft.
China Southern will be using an A350 with 28 Business Class ie-flat Recaro seats in a 1-2-1 layout with 43″ pitch. The aircraft also has a Premium Economy cabin of 24 seats (2-4-2, 38″ pitch) and 262 seats in Economy (3-3-3, 32″ pitch).
Although the aircraft has Premium Economy, so far in the booking system it is unavailable.
China Southern is without an alliance at the moment. It used to belong to SkyTeam but withdrew in 2019. Industry sources are tipping it will join OneWorld, despite the possible objections of Cathay Pacific.
Qantas is currently a codeshare partner of China Southern Airlines.
The Queensland government runs the AU$ 200 million Attracting Aviation Investment Fund (AAIF), subsidising the route, which buys them 59,000 seats into Brisbane in the first year and 278,000 inbound seats over three years. Before the pandemic, China provided just shy of half-a-million inbound travellers and was Queenslands’ largest source of tourists.
China Southern Airlines already services Sydney and Melbourne with direct flights to Guangzhou.
This is an outward and visible sign of the thawing of government relations between China and Australia. As well as encouraging tourism between the two countries, it also will benefit the travel and education industries. Chinese undergraduates represent a significant proportion of overseas students studying in Australia. A market that Australian Universities now rely on for more and more of their income.
It also makes travelling to fascinatingly diverse China a much easier proposition, opening it as a stop-over destination on the way to Europe.