United Airlines (NYSE:UAL) filed permission with the U.S. Department of Transportation to operate three weekly nonstop flights between San Francisco and Chengdu, China, starting June 9, the company said Thursday.
The airline plans to use Boeing (NYSE:BA) 787 Dreamliners, which it called “the world’s most advanced passenger airplane,” for the flights. That craft has been in the news a lot in the past year due to various malfunctions, some of which were Boeing’s fault and some of which were not. Hopefully for United, all the kinks on the craft are worked out and people will have forgotten about the mishaps by summer 2014, when the flights are scheduled to begin.
United claims that it already offers the most nonstop flights from the U.S. across the Pacific. Chengdu, which is China’s fourth-largest city and capital of the Sichuan province, will be the ninth destination to which United offers nonstop trans-Pacific flights.
United gave a small description of the city in the press release announcing its intention to add the flights, saying the region is famous for being home to the panda bear and that the city is “one of the country’s fastest-developing cities economically.”