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Air Astana to Launch Hong Kong Service as Visa-Free Deal Comes into Effect

Kazakhstan’s Air Astana is launching twice-weekly service between Almaty and Hong Kong on August 28, a month after Kazakhstan and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region begin a reciprocal 14-day visa-free travel agreement.

With effect from July 26, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) passport-holders can visit the Republic of Kazakhstan for 14 days without needing to obtain a visa.

Similarly, Kazakh nationals can similarly spend 14 days in Hong Kong on a visa-free basis. The visa-free agreement between the HKSAR and Kazakhstan governments was signed in May.

The five Boeing 757s in Air Astana's fleet are due to be replaced from the mid-teens, by Boeing 767-300ERs and Boeing 787s

Air Astana will operate the new Almaty-Hong Kong service with Boeing 757 single-aisle jets configured with 16 business class seats and 150 economy class seats.

The Almaty-Hong Kong flight will take 6 hours 10 minutes, while the Hong Kong-Almaty sector will take 7 hours 10 minutes.

Passengers arriving in Hong Kong will have access to convenient connections on partner airlines to southern China and south east Asia. For passengers arriving in Almaty, Air Astana offers a rapidly expanding network of international services to Russia, Central Asia and the Caucasus, as well as a host of domestic destinations.

Economy round-trip tickets from Hong Kong to Almaty start at US$792, including all airport taxes and other fees, and business class round-trip tickets start at US$2,606.

Air Astana began scheduled services on May 15, 2002 and now operates a network of more 50 international and domestic routes from hubs in Almaty, Astana and Atyrau.

The carrier flies an all-western fleet which comprises two Boeing 767-300ERs, five Boeing 757s, 10 Airbus A320-family jets, six Embraer 190s and three Fokker 50s.

Air Astana is a joint venture between Kazakhstan’s national wealth fund Samruk Kazyna and BAE Systems, with respective shares of 51 per cent and 49 per cent.

Source: www.airlinesanddestinations.com

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