Continental pushes DOT China decision

Continental Airlines has said that its application to serve the largest U.S.-China market
without nonstop service—New York/Newark-Shanghai—should be approved
by the U.S. Department of Transportation because the airline has made the
best case for the route award.The company makes its case thus:

The New York/Newark-Shanghai market is nearly five times larger than
the Dallas/Fort Worth-Beijing market, which American proposes to serve. The
New York/Newark-Shanghai market is nearly as large as the combined
Washington, D.C.-Beijing and Detroit-Shanghai markets combined. The two
airlines currently dominating U.S.-China air travel, United and Northwest,
propose to serve these routes.
  Continental’s proposed flight from Newark Liberty International Airport
would conveniently link metropolitan New York City with China’s center for
finance and trade.
  The show of support the airline is receiving from all interested
parties has been impressive. Continental’s application is being endorsed by
area residents, airline passengers across the U.S., the airline’s corporate
and agency partners, government supporters, the airline’s employees and
loyal OnePass members.
  At a news conference in Lower Manhattan’s Chinatown, Continental asked
its stakeholders to continue to show support for its route application to
the DOT. Those who wish to endorse Continental’s planned flight to Shanghai
can do so easily via a special page on—look for the
“Support our Shanghai bid” link on the home page.
  Continental’s proposal should be selected by DOT for many additional

  There are no nonstop flights to Shanghai—China’s largest city—from anywhere in the Northeast despite the large Northeast-China market.

    *  The New York/New Jersey area has a far larger population of Chinese-
Americans than any of the other cities seeking a new China route.

    *  Continental’s route application has already received the endorsement
of numerous supporters, including:
-  Port Authority of New York & New Jersey
-  The New Jersey Regional Business Partnership
-  New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine
-  The Manhattan Chamber of Commerce
-  Many influential leaders in the New York/New Jersey Chinese
community, such as Wellington Chen, Executive Director Chinatown
Partnership Local Development Corporation and John Leo of the Lower
Manhattan Development Corporation
-  Many communities across the country, ranging all the way from
Omaha, Neb. to Durham, N.C.
  “The New York metro area has extremely strong ties to China,” said Mark
Erwin, Continental’s senior vice president-Asia/Pacific. “The cultural and
commercial links between New York and Shanghai can be further strengthened
with the addition of nonstop air service. Flying nonstop from Newark
Liberty to Shanghai would save at least five hours over current routings
and provide huge benefits to the local community and relations between our
two countries.”
  If awarded the new route, Continental plans to operate the flight daily
with a Boeing 777 aircraft with 283 seats. The flight would depart Newark
Liberty at 11:50 a.m., arriving in Shanghai mid-afternoon the following day
at 2:05 p.m. The return flight would depart Shanghai in the late afternoon
at 4:05 p.m. and arrive at Newark Liberty in the evening of the same day at
6:30 p.m. These flights would offer connecting service between Shanghai and
over 75 cities served through Continental’s Newark Liberty hub.
  The new Shanghai flight would give travelers another option for
reaching China on Continental in addition to Continental’s current nonstop
flights from Newark Liberty to Beijing and Hong Kong.


Continental has also been nominated this year for a


World Travel Award as World’s Leading Business Class Airline.