Best airline to Fly to Hong Kong

It’s no secret that I love American Airlines. There are things that drive me nuts about them, but at the end of the day I think they do the best job of any airline at recognizing their top tier elites. My domestic upgrades almost always clear, and as an AAdvantage Executive Platinum member I also get eight systemwide upgrades that can be applied to any revenue fare. That’s an incredible value, and I’ve yet to miss an international upgrade.

That being said, I love traveling to Asia, and that’s one region where American has a lot of catching up to do. Whenever American announces a new route to Latin America or London — where they’re already ridiculously strong — I’ve always said “what about Hong Kong?”

Well, today’s announcement couldn’t come soon enough!

American Airlines will launch service between Dallas and Hong Kong

Starting Summer 2014, American will launch nonstop daily service between Dallas and Hong Kong. The route will be operated by a 777-300ER, which features American’s brand new fully flat first and business class products. This is super exciting, as it’s their first route to Asia operated by a 777-300ER, as they’ve otherwise only flown to London and Sao Paulo as of now.

American_New_Business_Class
American’s new business class

Subject to government approval the flight will operate the following schedule:

Departing Dallas 12:40PM arriving Hong Kong 6:00PM (+1 day)
Departing Hong Kong 1:30PM arriving Dallas 4:30PM

This is a long flight — 8, 123 miles in each direction and is blocked at 16hr20min on the outbound. The economics of ultra longhaul flights can be tough, as we learned when American cut service between Chicago and New Delhi a couple of years back. This will be American’s longest route.

But with a legitimately competitive business class product and all the potential for connecting traffic in Hong Kong thanks to their partnership with Cathay Pacific, I think the route has a lot of potential. Up until now American has simply pulled the “we codeshare with Cathay Pacific, so why should we fly to Hong Kong?” card. And while there’s some merit to that given what a great product Cathay Pacific has, ultimately as an elite member of an airline you’re getting lots more benefits for flying that airline versus a partner airline.

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