If you’re to travel to Shanghai from Kolkata, there is no direct flight as yet. You have to detour via Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi airport or Hong Kong. In fact presently the air-connect between India and China is provided by China Eastern Airlines that flies between Mumbai and Delhi on this side and Beijing and Shanghai on China’s side.
This is now set to change come September. China Eastern plans to commence a daily flight from Kolkata to Shanghai via Kunming, the capital of China’s Yunan province by end of next month.
Incidentally, this will be the first time that a blue-blooded Chinese company will operate direct flights from the city to Chinese destinations. In the 80s there used to be a flight from Belgrade of erstwhile Yugoslavia (now capital and largest city of Serbia) to Kolkata via Beijing.
The Yugoslavian flight flew for just 3 months before discontinuing close on the heels of tragic happenings at Tiananmen Square in 1989.
Apart from China Eastern, at least 3 more companies have plans to start flights to/from Kolkata by this year end – Kuwait Airways, Qatar Airways and the low-cost Tiger Airways from Singapore.
[Collated from today’s ABP, Aug 3]