China Eastern (CE) was the first Chinese mainland airline on Wednesday to operate return flights across the Taiwan Strait between Shanghai and Taipei during the Spring Festival.
CE was followed by Shanghai Airlines Co. Ltd and a total of 96 direct, round-trip charter flights across the Taiwan Strait will be available during this year's Spring Festival.
The direct charter flight service across the Taiwan Strait for Spring Festival this year was started by Mandarin Airlines of Taiwan on Tuesday.
Apart from Shanghai and Guangzhou, the direct charter flights will also be available to Beijing and Xiamen.
Apart from major festivals such as the Spring Festival, there is no direct air service across the Taiwan Straits. All air companies are required by the Taiwan authorities to fly to their target destinations on both sides of the Taiwan Strait via Hong Kong.
This year's Spring Festival will start on Feb. 18. The direct charter flight peak will occur Feb. 13-16 and Feb. 23-26. This year's direct charter flight service for the Spring Festival is the fourth of its kind, having begun in 2003.