The carrier currently operates a total of 15 weekly flights to Beijing, Shanghai, Canton and Hong Kong and with this initiative, will be marking its presence in the South-western China as well.
“SriLankan Airlines has always viewed the Far East as one of its priority markets where a gradual increase in the number of tourists seeking Sri Lanka for holidaying has driven the airline to look into more expansion opportunities to cater to the growing demand as well as to motivate more travellers from both countries to explore the beauty of the two destinations,” said Kapila Chandrasena, Chief Executive of SriLankan Airlines.
“A330-300 aircraft which was added to our fleet recently as part of our wide-body fleet renewal programme, will be assigned primarily on the Far Eastern Routes such as Bangkok, Tokyo, Canton and Beijing.”Sri Lanka has received 106,888 tourists from China from Jan to October 2014, which is a 139 percent increase compared to the 44, 742 to tourists reported last year, statistics showed.
With 54,000 Chinese travellers choosing the national carrier to travel to the island in 2013, the airline, due to the high demand from the sector, expects a total of 120,000-140,000 Chinese travellers to visit and experience the country by the end of this year.
For the first four months ending 30 April, the number of travellers from China to Sri Lanka on SriLankan Airlines was 36,000.