Delta Air Lines wants to fly between Los Angeles and Shanghai beginning in July with a 291-seat Boeing 777LR aircraft, according to a filing with the U.S. Department of Transportation.
The government almost always grants these applications, so by summer, all major U.S. airlines -- American, United and Delta -- will have nonstops between Shanghai and L.A. China Eastern, a member of the SkyTeam alliance with Delta, is the only Chinese carrier flying between Shanghai and Los Angeles.
What's interesting is that, before 2011, no U.S.-based airlines were flying this route. American started flying it in April 2011, while American began flying it one month later, according to the Dallas Morning News. If we're talking aircraft economics, United might have a slight edge with the route, as it flies a fuel efficient Boeing 787 aircraft. American, meanwhile, is operating a Boeing 777-200.
Delta's outbound flight will leave Los Angeles daily at 1:15 p.m., arriving in Shanghai the next day at 6:15 p.m. The return flight will leave Shanghai at 8:55 p.m., arriving in Los Angeles the same day at 6:15 p.m.
"Delta's new nonstop service provides our business customers with more access to Shanghai and markets beyond through our partnerships with China Eastern Airlines and China Southern Airlines," Ranjan Goswami, Delta's vice president of sales for the west, said in a statement. "This route was the most requested by our corporate customers, and everyone will enjoy the investments we've made to upgrade our airport facilities, our onboard service, full flat-bed seats with direct aisle access in BusinessElite, and industry-leading complimentary in-flight entertainment."
Here are some facts on the proposed flight from Delta:
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