Air China is the national, flag-carrying airline of the People's Republic of China and one of the biggest passenger airlines in China. It is headquartered in the Shunyi District of Beijing, and based at Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK). The airline was founded in 1988, and its parent company is Air China Group who has a number of subsidiary airlines.
Air China operates roughly 8500 flights per week over 400 routes, including more than 100 international flight routes. They provide services from eight different US gateways (Los Angeles, San Francisco, Honolulu, San Jose, New York, Houston, and Washington, DC to a number of different cities in China and around Asia including Shanghai, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Singapore, and Taipei via its main hub in Beijing. The total Air China fleet size is comprised of 590 passenger aircraft, mostly made up of a full range of narrow- and wide-body airliners built by Boeing and Airbus. Air China is a good airline by international standards, with a top safety rating in accordance with Federal Airline Authority (FAA) and International Air Transport Association (IATA) criteria. In terms of customer service and satisfaction, Air China has mixed reviews on feedback platforms but is generally renowned for its huge reach and wide range of cabin and ticket types.
Air China's frequent flyer program, PhoenixMiles, was China's first frequent flyer mileage program launched in mainland China. It offers members a range of benefits, including free upgrades, product discounts through duty free and Air China's online store, and shared membership rewards programs with affiliated airlines such as Air Macau, Inner Mongolia Airlines, and Beijing Airlines. It also offers the ability to earn rewards miles by using Air China's affiliated car hire companies, banks, and hotels. Air China flies over 100 million passengers per year, including both international and domestic flights, as well as being a full member of the international Star Alliance.
Air China offers a range of onboard services and amenities, depending on cabin class and flight route. International flights from the US on the larger Boeing 777, Boeing 787, Airbus A330 and Airbus A350 planes all have seat-back in-flight entertainment units, while meals and refreshments are available on all flights and can cater to special dietary requirements if ordered in advance. Air China were among the first global airlines to offer free onboard WiFi service, and you can enjoy easy-to-use, fast onboard internet on most flights from the US. All Air China aircraft are fitted with multiple bathrooms, with some having special baby-changing units.
Air China offers a full range of cabin classes, including Economy, Business, and First Class tickets. In Economy, most planes have a 3-4-3 or 3-3-3 seat configuration, with comfortable, 33-inch seats. Business Class passengers can enjoy extra legroom and an extra-wide seat in more spacious configurations, and First Class features luxurious seats with an 80 inch pitch and 180 degree recline, plus sliding doors for privacy and full 1.98m lie-flat beds. First and Business Class passengers can also enjoy a free limousine service when arriving into Beijing Airport.
Air China has a huge number of airport lounges available at different airports, including affiliated lounges, such as the Star Alliance Lounge at Los Angeles (LAX) Airport. Lounge access varies depending on the airport, but access is often available to PhoenixMiles members, Star Alliance airline cardholders, and First and Business Class passengers, as well as paid-entry options for Air China passengers who can show a valid boarding pass.
You can check-in online for Air China flights up to 24 hours prior to departure time. After this time, or if you prefer, passengers can check in at the airport kiosks. For international flights from the US, passengers who have checked in online should aim to arrive at the airport at least 2 hours before departure, and 3 hours for passengers who do not complete online check-in. For domestic and regional flights, it's a good idea to get to the airport at least 1.5-2 hours before the scheduled flight departure time.
Business and First Class
Business and First Class passengers are allowed to check up to 2 items of baggage, provided each bag weighs no more than 23 kg and the combined weight is no more than 32 kg. Business Class passengers may take up to 2 pieces of carry-on luggage, weighing no more than 8 kg (17 lbs) each.
Economy Class passengers may check in one bag weighing up to 23 kg. Economy Class passengers may take 1 piece of carry-on luggage weighing up to 5 kg (11 lbs).
The maximum dimensions for checked baggage should not exceed 158 cm, and carry-on bags must not exceed 95 cm.