Taiwan’s Airlines Are Offering Flights To Nowhere, And They Sell Out Instantly

The two major Taiwanese airlines, Star Alliance member EVA Air and SkyTeam’s China Airlines, are running flights to nowhere in August. Both carrier’s flights instantly sold out.

Taiwan has been one of the real Covid-19 success stories, although the World Health Organization under China’s thumb has refused to recognize this. Even the Johns Hopkins tracking dashboard asterisks Taiwan, with fewer than 500 cases and only 7 deaths. Part of the price of their early lockdown is that they’ve cut themselves off from the rest of the world for longer than most.

For instance there are currently just 5 weekly flights between Taipei and Shanghai. (There are six Beijing flights per week, Hong Kong however now has more than daily service across three airlines.)

In June Taipei’s near-empty regional Songshan airport offered pretend flights where people could come to the airport and pretend to leave the country, boarding a plane and then getting back off.

Now the nation’s – and yes I’m calling Taiwan that – two main carriers have taken things a step further, “taking passengers around the nation for several hours before landing at the same airport.”

  • EVA Air offered this August 8 only, their local Father’s Day
  • China Airlines offered it for both August 8 and August 15

The China Airlines flights include meals at the airport lounge prior to flight and afternoon tea on board. This was limited to children between the ages of 6 and 10 along with their parents, and coach tickets for one child and a parent sold for $205 (an additional parent cost $122.50), while business class for a child and parent sold for $272.

The EVA Air flight is operated by a Hello Kitty aircraft. Inflight meals are branded by a Michelin three star chef. Coach cost $180, while business class sold for $214.

Low cost carrier Tigerair Taiwan reportedly is operating a similar sold out flight on August 6 including “Michelin meals and champagne.”

The Tigerair pleasure flight, which will hover over Taiwan and Japan’s Kyushu island, is priced at NT$8,888. The flight is limited to only 90 passengers, who will each be gifted with a round-trip ticket for any destination in Japan to be used within a year.

New carrier Starlux Airlines has applied to Taiwan’s Civil Aeronautics Administration to offer a flight August 7 on board an Airbus A321neo, and piloted by the airline’s chairman, but they haven’t received government approval to sell tickets as of this writing.

(HT: Demetrios)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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Comments

  1. So, questions:

    – which FF program to credit this to?
    – how many miles / segments would this accrue?
    – class of service bonus?

    Also, good on you Gary for properly calling Taiwan a nation. They are an amazing nation. A real success story, despite what the Communist Chinese want to claim.

  2. “they’ve cut themselves off from the rest of the world” — good for them, they didn’t miss much, especially from the States.

  3. I’d be all about this. Book a ticket, along with a hotel in the city for a few nights, dinner reservations, etc. Treat it like a real vacation.

  4. Taiwan has never been part of commie wumao land. Republic of China, Taiwan is the legitimate carrier to true Chinese tradition, not that corrupt Soviet/German rip-off to the west.

  5. @ ‘David’ & ‘Jason’

    What facts are you referring to?

    Is Taiwan administered by China? Do they pay taxes to China?

    Hint : the answers are both NO

    Is China threatening to use Military Force to take over a peaceful democracy?

    Sadly, yes. Yes it is.

    Why are they threatening to do so? Because Taiwan is a Democracy, offering a glimpse of what life would be like outside of an authoritarian system. Apparently this is too much of a ‘threat’.

  6. Taiwan is the legitimate carrier of true Chinese tradition and values and mainland China (CCP) is simply a watered down, hollow place following outdated draconian Western communist marxist rhetoric mixed up in a kleptocratic opaque and corrupt dictatorship.

  7. The barbarian warlord Xi Jinping is jealous of Taiwan’s success, and he wants to own it. What he doesn’t understand is that Taiwan’s success is based on their democracy, and if the CCP took over, that success would vanish.

  8. I am a citizen of the United States and the fact that Taiwan is a part of China, not an independent country, is verifiable with the U.S. Department of State.

  9. I’ll just go ahead say what everyone is thinking…Jason is a Chinese troll probably working for tik tok

  10. @Jason

    If Taiwan is part of China, then why is China so upset that the United States sold Taiwan fighter jets and torpedos?

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