Air Astana passengers with Chinese passports continue to enjoy 72 hours visa free stopover in Kazakhstan


Chinese transit passengers also enjoy Stopover Holiday Program benefits

The 72 hours visa free programme for passengers holding Chinese passports and wishing to stopover in Kazakhstan has been extended until the end of 2018 following its first successful implementation during Expo 2017. Air Astana passengers, who are transiting in Almaty and Astana simply need to notify check-in staff at their point of departure in order to enjoy the benefits of the visa free visit.

Air Astana’s transit traffic to and from China grew to over 62% in 2018 compared with the same period in 2017. Total passenger numbers on routes to China have grown to more than 1.5 million, since Air Astana first launched services to Beijing in 2002. Together with the visa free programme, the Air Astana Stopover Holiday Program has proved to be very popular with Chinese travellers and has been another factor contributing to traffic growth. The program offers one night’s accommodation with breakfast and return airport transfers for as little as US$1. For more information, please visit

Air Astana currently operates daily flights from Almaty to both Beijing and Urumqi. Flights from Astana to Beijing operate four times a week on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday. Flights from Astana to Urumqi operate six times a week from Tuesday through Sunday. Astana – Urumqi service will become daily effective from June 2018. Flights to Beijing are served by the Airbus A320 family of aircraft including the new generation A320neo and A321neo. Flights to Urumqi are served by Boeing 757 and 767 aircraft during the summer peak season and the Embraer 190 during the winter off-peak season.

Top destinations for Air Astana’s Chinese passengers departing from Beijing and Urumqi include Moscow, St.Petersburg, Frankfurt, Paris, Istanbul, Dubai, Kiev, London, Dushanbe and Bishkek. Air Astana provides convenient onward flights to Tashkent, Tehran, Baku, Tbilisi, Delhi and Kuala Lumpur.

Economy Class airfares start from:

  • Beijing / Almaty return - US$516 including tax
  • Urumqi / Almaty return - US$221 including tax
  • Beijing / Astana return - US$391 including tax
  • Urumqi / Astana return - US$256 including tax

“It has been over 16 years since Air Astana launched its first flight to China. During that time, we have significantly grown our Chinese market business by offering daily services between Almaty – Beijing and Almaty – Urumqi, as well as launching and adding frequencies on routes from Astana to China,” said Richard Ledger, Vice President Marketing and Sales, Air Astana. “We have been working hard to attract Chinese business and leisure travellers, not just by launching new routes and increasing number of frequencies, but also by offering various convenient connections to numerous destinations in the CIS, Europe and elsewhere on the network. I’m in no doubt that the extension of the 72 hour visa free entry to Kazakhstan for Chinese passport holders will further boost transit traffic.”

News and Press Releases


Air Astana receives Five Star Airline Rating at APEX Awards
Air Astana received a Five Star Airline Rating in the Major Regional Airlines category at the APEX Awards.


Air Astana demonstrates strong traffic and revenue growth in the first half of 2018
Air Astana recorded a 10% increase in passenger traffic and a 17% uptick in revenues in the first half of the year compared with the corresponding period of 2017.


Air Astana offers special fares for registered runners of the Astana Marathon
Air Astana, Kazakhstan’s award winning national carrier, is offering special fares for travel to this year's Astana Marathon taking place on September 16, 2018 in the Kazakh capital.


Skytrax World Airline Awards names Air Astana a winner seven years in a row
London, UK - Air Astana, the flag carrier of Kazakhstan, has been recognised for 4 Star service excellence, retaining the accolade of "Best Airline in Central Asia and India" in the Skytrax World Airline Awards for the seventh consecutive year.


Air Astana celebrates 16 years in the Russian market
Air Astana, the award-winning Kazakh flag carrier, celebrated 16 years of successful operation in the Russian market at a press event with Moscow’s leading journalists and bloggers today.


Air Astana enhances its international network and expands fleet
The airline launches two new flights to the Russian Federation and takes delivery of its third A320neo family of aircraft


Information for shareholders
Air Astana JSC announces on the decision of the General Meeting of Stockholders of the Company dated 31st May 2018 on approval of the procedure for distribution of net profit of the Company for the year 2017, deciding on payment of dividends on common stocks and approval of the amount of the dividend for the year 2017 per one common stock of the Company


Air Astana celebrates sixteenth anniversary with opening of new Aviation Technical Centre in Astana
Air Astana, the award-winning Kazakh flag carrier, marked its sixteenth anniversary with the opening of a new Aviation Technical Centre at Astana’s Nursultan Nazarbayev international airport today.


Air Astana marks tenth anniversary of ab-initio pilot training program
Air Astana has marked the tenth anniversary of the highly successful ab-initio pilot training program with the promotion of 10 graduates of the course from First Officer to Captain.


Enhanced security measures at the FIFA World Cup 2018
In accordance with Decree № 202 authorised by the President of the Russian Federation, significantly enhanced security measures will be in place during the period of May 25 to July 25, 2018, coinciding with the FIFA World Cup.


Air Astana passengers with Chinese passports continue to enjoy 72 hours visa free stopover in Kazakhstan
The 72 hours visa free programme for passengers holding Chinese passports and wishing to stopover in Kazakhstan has been extended until the end of 2018 following its first successful implementation during Expo 2017.


Air Astana’s Indian passengers enjoy 72 hours visa free stopover in Kazakhstan
Air Astana passengers holding Indian passports can enjoy 72 hours visa free stopovers in Kazakhstan with effect from 23th April 2018 until the end of the year.


Air Astana named Winner in TripAdvisor 2018 Travellers' Choice Awards
TripAdvisor, the global travel planning and booking site, has named Air Astana as a Winner in the Regional-Asia category in the 2018 Travellers’ Choice Awards, which identifies travellers’ favourite carriers around the globe.


Air Astana and LOT announce codeshare partnership
Under the new agreement, Kazakhstan’s award-winning carrier is now selling tickets for LOT’s direct flights from the Polish capital, Warsaw to Astana, Kazakhstan’s capital, as well onwards across its domestic and international network.


Air Astana launches new service between Atyrau to Frankfurt
Air Astana, the Skytrax 4-star award-winning national carrier of Kazakhstan, will launch a new direct flight between Atyrau and Frankfurt on 26th March, 2018.


Cathay Pacific and Air Astana bring Hong Kong, Kazakhstan and the world closer together
Cathay Pacific and Air Astana today announced an agreement that will enhance travel options for Cathay Pacific customers travelling to and from Kazakhstan and for Air Astana customers travelling to and from destinations in Asia and Australia via the airlines’ hubs in Hong Kong and Almaty respectively.


Air Astana takes Astana - London daily from June 1st
Air Astana, the Skytrax award-winning national carrier of Kazakhstan will offer daily, non-stop flights from Nazarbayev International airport in Astana to London Heathrow, effective 1st June.


Air Astana profit rebounds in 2017
Air Astana posted a profit of US$39.1 million in 2017, returning to profit after its first ever loss in 2016. The airline recorded passenger growth of 12% and revenue growth of 22% in 2017, after negative growth in both 2015 and 2016 following the devaluation of the Kazakh Tenge in mid-2015.


Air Astana wins most dynamic carrier award from Pulkovo airport
Air Astana has received ‘The most dynamic carrier in the CIS’ award from Pulkovo Airport for the second consecutive year.


Air Astana offers in-flight connectivity across Boeing 767 fleet
Air Astana has completed the installation of an in-flight broadband communication system across the Boeing 767 fleet.


Air Astana takes delivery of first Airbus A321neo
Air Astana, the award-winning Kazakh flag carrier, has taken delivery of the first A321neo at the Airbus facility in Hamburg, Germany.


Air Astana carries record breaking four millionth passenger in 2017
Air Astana has celebrated Kazakhstan’s Independence Day by carrying its four millionth passenger of the year so far, which is the highest number achieved since the airline was launched services in 2002.


Air Astana completes Aviation Technical Centre in Astana
The opening of the centre will create one of the largest aircraft repair centres in Central Asia, which will likely prove to be a leading centre of its kind in the region.


Air Astana destined to become one of the largest Airbus A320neo Family operators in Central Asia and CIS
Air Astana, the flag carrier of Kazakhstan, is destined to become one of the largest A320neo Family operators in Central Asia and CIS over the next three years.


Air Astana launches national recruitment drive as fleet expansion continues
The airline is launching a major “Try on a Dream” recruitment campaign in Almaty today in order to start attracting new pilots, engineers, flight attendants and ground service agents from all over the country.


Air Astana launches MySeat service
The new MYSEAT service from Air Astana offers passengers the ability to reserve seats in the front row of Business Class as well as first and second row seats or emergency exit seats in Economy Class.


Young disabled scientist from Kazakhstan meets Stephen Hawking
Issaak Mustopulo, a 15-year-old school student from Taraz with cerebral palsy who won a special prize in a national STEM competition, met with theoretical physicist Professor Stephen Hawking on 4 October as part of a study tour to the UK organised by the British Council and Air Astana.


Air Astana to offer passengers in-flight broadband speed connectivity
Passengers flying on Air Astana are now able to experience high-speed broadband In-Flight connectivity, with the airline’s first Boeing 767 featuring the service. The award-winning Kazakh air carrier has installed the Rockwell Collins cabin system, which utilises Inmarsat’s Global Xpress (GX) Aviation capabilities to provide In-Flight connectivity.


Air Astana passes sixth IATA Operational Safety Audit
Air Astana has successfully completed the International Air Transport Association's Operational Safety Audit (IOSA) for the sixth time following an evaluation in May 2017. The airline first passed the audit in 2007 and then again in 2009, 2011, 2013 and 2015. The next audit is scheduled in 2019.


Air Astana is official air carrier of the Republican Aerospace Competition
Air Astana, the national airline of Kazakhstan, supported thirty six students and six staff travelling to London to attend a special course on aerospace technology at Cranfield University. The group departed on Air Astana Sunday’s flight on August 6th from Nazarbayev International airport in Astana to London Heathrow and return on August 13th after attending a seven day course.


Air Astana leases five E190-E2s from AERCAP
Air Astana, the national carrier of Kazakhstan, has signed a long-term lease agreement with AerCap for five Embraer E190-E2s, which will commence delivery to the airline during the final quarter of 2018.


Air Astana sees strong international traffic recovery in first half 2017
Air Astana has announced its operational results for the 1st half of 2017. The airline carried


Air Astana celebrates Skytrax success - for sixth consecutive year
Paris, France- Air Astana, the flag carrier of Kazakhstan, has once again been recognised for 4 Star service excellence, retaining the accolade of ‘Best Airline in Central Asia and India’ in the Skytrax World Airline Awards for the sixth consecutive year. The airline also scooped the prize for ‘Best Airline Staff Service in Central Asia/India’ for the fifth time. The prestigious awards ceremony took place at the 52nd edition of the Paris Air Show at Le Bourget today.


Air Astana launches service from Astana to New Delhi
Air Astana will launch direct flights from Astana, the capital of Kazakhstan to New Delhi, the capital of India on 2nd July 2017. The service will be operated three times a week using Airbus A320 and Embraer 190 aircraft. Air Astana continues to operate daily flights between Almaty and New Delhi, with the service having been inaugurated on 4th September 2004.


Air Astana relaunches flights from Astana to Kiev
Air Astana will relaunch direct flights from Astana, the capital of Kazakhstan to Kiev, the capital of Ukraine on 1st June 2017. The service will be operated five times a week using Airbus A320 and Embraer 190 aircraft.


Air Astana announces expanded summer schedule
Kazakh flag carrier strongly focuses on traffic growth through Astana hub


Air Astana: a MRO leader in Central Asia
Kazakhstan’s leading air carrier, Air Astana provided maintenance to more than 90 local and foreign airlines in 2016.


Air Astana promotes six former Ab-Initio graduate pilots to captain
Air Astana has held a ceremony to mark the promotion of six of the original Ab-Initio graduate pilots to Captain following many years of serving as First Officers with the airline. The new Captains,Akhmetov Talgat, Chugay Victor, Agmurov Berdykhan, Turgambayev Timur, Suleimanov Roma and Petin Dmitriy will all serve the A320 fleet. Two further pilots from the first Ab-Initio programme and are finalising their training for Captain and will be promoted in April.


Air Astana supports Service of Kindness charity contest
Air Astana and the Interfax News Agency recently joined forces to provide support for the "Service of Kindness” contest organised amongst local journalists, with the intention of contributing to the “Ayla" charity fund. The contest was undertaken to coincide with the 10th anniversary of the fund, with focus on identifying creative articles that had informed viewers and readers about everyday good deeds and effective charity work in Kazakhstan.


Air Astana signs engine services contract
Air Astana, the national carrier of Kazakhstan, has concluded an exclusive long-term repair and overhaul agreement for the V2500 engines powering its Airbus A320 fleet. Peter Foster, President and CEO, signed the corresponding contract on 14 February 2017. Lufthansa Technik will provide the full range of engine repair and overhaul services, including warranty management and spare engine coverage.