Shanghai Takes Flight With Increased Summer Air Traffic

View across Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport.
Photo Credit: Hongqiao International Airport
Len Varley - Assistant Editor 4 Min Read
4 Min Read

Summer officially arrived in Shanghai on March 31, 2024, bringing with it a significant boost in air travel movements.

Passengers can expect a daily average of 2,481 flights, representing an 11.5% increase compared to the previous season.

General Recovery and Growth

This growth is spread across Shanghai’s two major airports: Pudong International Airport will see 1,699 daily flights, while Hongqiao International Airport will handle 782.

The international market is experiencing a strong recovery, with Shanghai’s airports now connecting to 91 international, Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan destinations.

This marks a welcome addition of 3 destinations compared to the last winter season. Notably, 32 intercontinental routes are now available, with 26 offering daily or more frequent flights.

These destinations include major cities like Los Angeles, Dallas, Seattle, and San Francisco in the US; Frankfurt (Germany), Paris (France), London (UK), Rome and Milan (Italy), Moscow (Russia), Sydney and Melbourne (Australia), Auckland (New Zealand), and Addis Ababa (Ethiopia).

Shanghai International Airports

Pudong International Airport takes center stage for long-haul travel, connecting to a total of 154 domestic destinations and 90 international, Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan destinations.

Notably, this summer season sees the resumption of flights to St. Petersburg and Novosibirsk, while Athens and Riyadh have been added as exciting new options.

Additionally, with the recent update in air services policy between China and the US, passengers can expect increased frequencies on Pudong’s routes to LAX, SFO, and DTW.

Hongqiao International Airport focuses primarily on domestic travel, offering connections to 75 destinations within China.

However, it will continue to serve key regional routes to Hong Kong (HKA), Macau (MFM), Taoyuan (TSA), Tokyo-Haneda (HND), and Gimpo (GMP) throughout the summer season.

Pudong and Hongqiao Airports in Focus

Shanghai boasts two world-class airports, each catering to distinct travel needs:

  • Pudong International Airport (PVG): This is the city’s primary hub for international travel.

PVG offers an extensive network spanning 154 domestic destinations and a staggering 90 international, Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan destinations.

Passengers seeking long-haul connections will find Pudong to be their gateway, with flights to major global cities like Los Angeles, Frankfurt, Paris, and Sydney.

This summer season welcomes back St. Petersburg and Novosibirsk to the route map, while Athens and Riyadh present exciting new options.

Additionally, recent policy changes between China and the US have resulted in increased frequencies on flights to LAX, SFO, and DTW.

  • Hongqiao International Airport (SHA): This airport prioritizes domestic travel, efficiently connecting passengers to 75 destinations within China.
View across Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport.
Photo Credits: Hongqiao International Airport

However, Hongqiao doesn’t neglect regional connectivity, maintaining crucial routes to Hong Kong, Macau, Taoyuan, Tokyo-Haneda, and Gimpo. This makes it a convenient option for shorter trips within East Asia.

By strategically utilizing both Pudong and Hongqiao, travelers can access a vast network of destinations. This has elevated Shanghai’s profile as a truly global aviation hub.


Shanghai’s air traffic is xiǎnzhù huíshēng or “significantly recovering” in the post-pandemic era. This is evidenced by the 11.5% increase in daily scheduled flights compared to the previous season.

The resumption of connections to several destinations and the addition of new routes further indicate a positive trajectory for Shanghai’s aviation industry.

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With summer scheduling now in effect, Shanghai's two international airports are projected to see an 11.5% year-on-year increase in flight movements.
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