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Competition Heats up in the Seattle-Taipei Market With Three New Entrants

Three airlines are starting service between Seattle and Taipei this summer.

A China Airlines Airbus A350-900 (Photo: AirlineGeeks | Fabian Behr)

Three new and returning players are entering the Seattle–Taipei market, marking a significant capacity increase for the route. China Airlines, Delta Air Lines and Starlux Airlines have all announced that they will be joining EVA Air in connecting the two cities.

Three Airlines Entering the Seattle–Taipei Market

Back in December of 2023, Delta announced that it was returning to Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, the primary airport serving Taipei. Delta plans on operating a daily service from its hub at Seattle–Tacoma International Airport to Taipei starting on June 6, 2024. The flight will be operated by Delta’s Airbus A350-900 aircraft. Delta previously served Taipei from its former hub at Tokyo Narita International Airport but discontinued the route in 2017 as it wound down its Narita hub operations.

Last week, Taiwanese carrier Starlux Airlines also filed its schedule for a new Taipei–Seattle service with a planned start date of Aug. 16, 2024. The airline will operate the route three times a week using its Airbus A350-900s.

Finally, fellow Taiwanese airline China Airlines announced this week that it would be returning to Seattle with five flights weekly starting on July 14, 2024. The airline will be joining its fellow SkyTeam member (Delta) and its newer domestic competitor (Starlux) in using the Airbus A350-900 on the route. China Airlines previously served the route between 2004 and 2008.

EVA Air: An Established Player

EVA Air has long flown between Taipei and Seattle. While it is currently the lone player in the market, it will soon face new pressure as competition ramps up with the entry of the three new entrants. The Taipei-based carrier has a year-round daily service using its Boeing 787-10 aircraft and typically adds three additional flights during the summer months. For 2024, the extra summer flights will be operated by Boeing 777-300ERs.

An EVA Air Boeing 787-10 on approach to Seattle–Tacoma International Airport (Photo: AirlineGeeks | Katie Zera)

Varied Departure Times

The three new entrants will give travelers multiple different departure time options. On the westbound leg from Seattle to Taipei, Delta is offering a midday departure and an afternoon arrival, while Starlux and China Airlines will have late-night departures and early-morning arrivals. Starlux and China Airlines’ overnight service is typical for westbound flights from North America to East Asia on Asian carriers, as it allows for same-day connections to other destinations throughout Asia.

On the eastbound leg from Taipei to Seattle, Delta and Starlux will have evening departures and afternoon arrivals, while China Airlines is offering a late-night departure and an evening arrival. EVA Air’s existing departure times closely match China Airlines’ planned times.

Andrew Chen

Author

  • Andrew Chen

    Andrew is a lifelong lover of aviation and travel. He has flown all over the world and is fascinated by the workings of the air travel industry. As a private pilot and glider pilot who has worked with airlines, airports and other industry stakeholders, he is always excited to share his passion for aviation with others. In addition to being a writer, he also hosts Flying Smarter, an educational travel podcast that explores the complex world of air travel to help listeners become better-informed and savvier travelers.

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