Air Astana services between Almaty and Urumqi, western China, will increase from three times a week to daily service with effect from 1st August 2012, whist services from Astana to Urumqi will increase from twice weekly to four times a week with effect from 17th September 2012. All eleven weekly services to Urumqi will be operated by Airbus A320 in 16 business class / 132 economy configuration.
Services to Urumqi from Astana and Almaty commenced in November 2009 and July 2010 respectively, with almost 150,000 passengers and 130 tons of freight having been carried on these rapidly growing routes to date.
"Flights from Kazakhstan to Urumqi, western China’s regional trading hub, have proven to be very popular with both businessmen and tourists. Over the past three years, trade between the two countries has expanded dramatically. Whilst Kazakh tourists are attracted by world famous Chinese heritage sites, bathhouses and exquisite cuisine, Chinese visitors travelling to Kazakhstan, the world’s ninth largest country have been attracted by the diversity of sophisticated, alpine, Almaty, futuristic Astana, Silk Road heritage sites and the boundless steppes. By providing increased services and connectivity, we aim to offer a new gateway between Urumqi and our expanding network to Russia, Central Asia, Turkey and Caucasus,” said Ibrahim Canliel, Vice President Marketing and Sales, Air Astana.
Travelling with Air Astana to Urumqi, passengers can enjoy safe, reliable and comfortable service, which was awarded 4-star airline status and the title of “Best Airline in Central & South Asia” by Skytrax in recent months. Passengers can also take advantage of the Nomad Club Frequent Flyer Programme as well as a range of flight connections across the region.
Air Astana commenced regular flight operations on 15th May 2002 and currently operates a network of more 50 international and domestic services from hubs in Almaty, Astana and Atyrau. Air Astana flies an all western fleet comprising of two Boeing 767s, five Boeing 757s, ten Airbus A320s, six Embraer 190s and three Fokker 50s. Air Astana is a full member of the International Air Transport Association and was the first airline in Kazakhstan to achieve EASA Part 145 aircraft maintenance certification. In September 2011, Air Astana passed its third annual IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA), without any findings.
Air Astana is a joint venture between Kazakhstan’s national wealth fund Samruk Kazyna and BAE Systems, with respective shares of 51% and 49%.