Comac’s ARJ21 has completed its first commercial flight from a high-altitude airport in China, the latest in a series of milestones for the regional jet.

The first flight – operated by prolific ARJ21 customer Chengdu Airlines – was from Kashgar to Tashkurgan in China’s Xinjiang region. The carrier will serve the route – its first foray to Tashkurgan –  three times weekly.

Comac ARJ21 high-altitude

Source: Comac

Tashkurgan Khunjerab airport sits at 3,200m (10,695ft) above sea level, and is Xinjiang’s first high-altitude airport. Chinese civil aviation data shows there are 24 airports across the country classified as high-altitude – sitting at 2,438m or above. 

Comac is also developing a higher-altitude variant of its C919 narrowbody; launch customer Tibet Airlines signed for 40 examples during the Singapore air show in 2024. 

Meanwhile, the ARJ21 continues to expand its international presence. In mid-June, Chengdu Airlines operated the ARJ21’s first flight in Central Asia, flying between Kashgar to Khujand in Tajikistan.