HAINAN, CHINA — Hainan Airlines resumed its flights on the Boeing 737 MAX 8, becoming the second airline in China to bring back the single-aisle aircraft to service after a four-year grounding.

On Feb. 1st, Hainan Airlines' 737 MAX 8, registered as B-207H, operated flight HU7089 between Haikou-Meilan and Kunming-Changshi airports. The aircraft was transferred from Qionghai to Haikou the day before its scheduled service, where several test flights had been conducted.

Based in Haikou in the province of Hainan and with eleven of the 50 expected MAX 8s received (8 seats in Business Class and 168 in Economy Class), the airline is following in the footsteps of China Southern Airlines, which became the first Chinese operator to reintroduce the MAX on Jan. 13th, after being grounded since March 2019.

The Chinese civil aviation regulator (CAAC) was the first to ground all the 737 MAX jets following the two crashes that killed 346 people in Indonesia and Ethiopia. It was also among the last regulators to allow the aircraft to use the country's airspace, with MIAT Mongolian Airlines resuming operations on its MAX in October 2022.