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Mandarin Airlines first ATR 72-600 has entered into commercial service, operating a Taipei Sungshan-Magong flight on 14 February.
The aircraft registered B-16851 operated its inaugural flight as AE375, carrying 70 passengers.
With the addition of the ATR 72 to its fleet, the China Airlines subsidiary will will raise the frequency of its Kaohsiung-Magong service from daily to six-times daily from March. It will also operate thrice daily between Taichung and Magong, and six-times daily from Sungshan to Magong.
Services on all three routes are currently operated using Embraer 190s.
Mandarin has said that with the introduction of the turboprops, its six E190s will turn its focus to international services.
It has three ATR 72s in its fleet, all of which have been leased from Avation. It has also signed with ATR for another six units and is scheduled to take two aircraft annually over the next three years, with all nine aircraft in service by 2020.
Mandarin Airlines is targeting to begin operations of its ATR 72-600 turboprops before the Lunar New Year period in mid-February.
The carrier has already taken delivery of three turboprops, and is conducting proving flights as part of the process of certificating them with Taiwan's Civil Aeronautics Administration. The plan is to use the aircraft largely on services to island destinations such as Magong and Kinmen, and also between some domestic points.
Its inaugural turboprop service will operate on the Kaohsiung-Magong route.
Parent China Airlines Group has also commissioned a 2,850sqm hangar at Taipei's Songshan airport to support the turboprops. The facility can hold up to three tubroprops concurrently and will have the capability to perform heavy maintenance up to C-check for the ATR 72-600. It will also do some work on China Airlines' narrowbody fleet.
The three ATR 72s in Mandarin Airlines' fleet are on lease from Avation, and the carrier has also signed with ATR for another six units. It is scheduled to take two ATR 72s annually over the next three years, with all nine aircraft to be in place by 2020.
With the introduction of the turboprops, Mandarin says its six Embraer 190s will return its focus to international services. It also has two Boeing 737-800s in its fleet.
"The improvement to carrying capacity and dispatching flexibility will expand the profit niche for the China Airlines Group," it adds.
Taiwanese carrier Mandarin Airlines took delivery of the first of three ATR 72-600s Nov. 24 on long-term lease from Singapore-based lessor Avation.
The turboprop aircraft, in a single-class, 70-seat configuration, will operate on Taiwan’s domestic network, which ATR has described as a competitive, highly challenging market.
Mandarin Airlines is a regional subsidiary of Taiwanese flag carrier China Airlines.
“With ATR 72-600s joining the fleet, Mandarin Airlines will significantly increase the flight frequencies on each domestic route and then introduce some potential new sectors afterwards,” Mandarin Airlines president Jenny Tsao said. “The ATR 72-600 contributes to increased flight frequencies … for example, three to five daily flights instead of one to two daily currently. Intensive flight frequency is a main goal as we introduce ATRs into our market.”
ATR indicated it is also willing to provide engineering and technical support to China Airlines and its subsidiaries to set up in-house capabilities for ATR heavy maintenance, up to C checks.
Mandarin Airlines entered into its eight-year lease arrangement with Avation July 19 as part of its fleet optimization plan, which calls for leasing three ATR 72-600s and the purchase of an additional six 72-6200s directly from ATR for a total of nine to be deployed by 2020. Mandarin announced its purchase of the six 72-600s the same day. The airline is expecting delivery of the three leased aircraft by the end of 2017. The six aircraft ordered directly from ATR are expected to be delivered in 2018 and 2019.
Describing its fleet plan, Mandarin said the new ATR 72-600s are “very suitable for [the] domestic network in Taiwan.” The new turboprops will join Mandarin’s fleet of six Embraer E-190s and two Boeing 737-800s as the airline “will continue to expand its domestic, international and cross-strait routes by means of synergic collaboration with its parent company China Airlines.”
Mandarin said its E-190 fleet will focus on more international and cross-strait routes as well as flexibly support domestic routes to meet peak season and holiday demand.
Hong Kong Xiamen
Taipei Songshan Airport
Taipei Songshan Airport is an airport serving Taipei, China and is the hub airport for Mandarin Airlines. It is the also the focus city for China Airlines and EVA Air.
The airport has one runaway and can handle nearly 10 million passengers every year. Airlines which fly to and from Taipei Songshan Airport include Air China, All Nippon Airways, China Airlines, China Eastern Airlines, EVA Air, Japan Airlines, Mandarin Airlines, Shanghai Airlines, Sichuan Airlines and many others.
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Mandarin Airlines (AE) is a regional scheduled airline based in Taipei, Taiwan and operating in South East China and Pacific Asia.
Mandarin Airlines flights
Founded in 1991 as a joint venture between Taiwan's China Airlines and Koos Development Corporation to operate international routes, Mandarin Airlines was restructured as a domestic and regional airline in 1999, and is now 94% owned by China Airlines. Flight operations are based at Taipei International airport and include domestic services to Taichung, Hualien, Makung, Kinmen, Kaohsiung, Taoyuan and Taitung; regional flights to China, serving Shenyang, Zhengzhou, Yancheng, Nanjing, Changsha, Ningbo, Wenzhou, Fuzhou, Xiamen, Hangzhou and Hong Kong, and international flights to Japan, Macau, Malaysia, Philippines, South Korea and Vietnam
The airline operates a fleet of modern Embraer E190 twinjets, which are proving ideally suited to the network.
Mandarin Airlines SE Asia Flights
Mandarin Airlines are a progressive airline and benefit from the backing of the huge aviation giant that is China Airlines. Flying on some of SE Asia’s prime business and leisure routes this modern airline will appeal to both the corporate customer and intrepid traveller alike.
Mandarin Airlines trivia : The golden eagle Hai Tung Ching, which according to an old Chinese legend has a small but agile body, is the company’s logo.
In 2015, the route network of Mandarin AIrlines has grown to include:
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