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After 45 months of construction, Beijing Daxing International Airport has finally opened its doors to the flying public. The first inaugural flight of the China Southern Airbus A380 has already taken off from the new hub already nicknamed ‘starfish’ (because of its design).
The airport, the construction costs of which reached nearly $17.47 billion, is huge. It is claimed to be the biggest in the world. It has four runways (the website of the airport says it will expand to seven runways in the future), parking space for 150 aircraft and a terminal building of 700,000 square meters. Currently Daxing has 79 airport stands suitable both for one twin-aisle plane and two single-aisle ones.
As for the airlines operating in the airport, reportedly, the airport has commenced operations with only seven carriers.
Nevertheless, the number of operators will be a way bigger. Daxing says that the most important transfer to the new hub would be of the Skyteam Alliance, which consists of the following airlines: Aeroflot, Aerolineas Argentinas, AeroMexico, Air Europa, Air France, Alitalia, China Airlines, China Eastern, Czech Airlines, Delta, Garuda Indonesia, Kenya Airways, KLM, Korean Air, MEA, Saudia, Tarom, Vietnam Airlines, Xiamen Air.
Evidently, not all the airlines will move to Daxing Airport instantly after the opening ceremony, as transitions would be completed gradually.
Apart from the 19 members of the above-mentioned alliance, the airport is also expected to welcome more Chinese airlines, among these are Air China, China Southern Airlines, Beijing Capital Airlines, Hebei Airlines, Shanghai Airlines. The new runways will also see the aircraft of British Airways, Finnair, LOT and Malaysia Airlines.
This way the airport is set to welcome up to 45 million passengers yearly by 2021, and when operating at full capacity, to handle 100 million passengers annually.
Daxing Airport is the second international hub in the Chinese capital city. Daxing is expected to lessen the pressure put on the Beijing Capital International Airport by making its life a bit less busy to secure smoother operations on all the levels.