SIHANOUKVILLE, Cambodia, 19 July 2019: Two Chinese owned airlines are increasing their services to Sihanoukville, a port town in Cambodia famed for its beach hotels and casinos.
Hainan Airlines launched a three-weekly service from Haikou the capital of Hainan province to Sihanoukville earlier this week.
Using a Boeing 737-800 the flight operates on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, departing Haikou at 1920 and arriving in Sihanoukville at 2220.
The return flight departs Sihanoukville at 2120 and arrives in Haikou at 0105, according to timetable information provided by Airlineroute.
Based in Phnom Penh, Lanmei Airlines is launching five new routes that will link Chinese cities from Sihanoukville and one from Siem Reap. The expansion started last month and continues into early August. A new route from Siem Reap to Datong in Shanxi province started at the end of June with a single flight every five days using an A319.
From Sihanoukville, a three-weekly service to Fuzhou the capital of Fujian province started 3 July, while a three-weekly service to Jinghong in Yunnan province using an A320 is scheduled to begin 2 August.
A single-weekly flight to Taiyuan, the capital of Shanxi province started 15 July also using an A320.
Four-weekly flights are serving Wuhan the capital of Hubei province since 15 July, and the airline will fly to Yichang a city in the same province also with four-weekly services effective 24 July.
Fights are designated scheduled services, but seats are allotted to Chinese tour operators who package heritage, beaches and casino entertainment. There are no local sales in either Siem Reap or Sihanoukville.
Local newspapers claim there are 80 casinos of varying quality in Sihanoukville while Chinese investors own more than half of the city’s restaurant and entertainment establishments. Last month, a hotel under construction and owned by Chinese collapsed leaving 28 dead. The province’s governor resigned following the tragedy, and an investigation of all properties under construction is now underway.