SEATAC, Wash., Oct. 20, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- A group of 97 students from Lincoln High School in Tacoma, WA, returned home yesterday after an 11-day trip to China at the invitation of Chinese President Xi Jinping.
President Xi invited the students in September 2015 when he toured Lincoln as part of a state visit. He shared with the students that he hoped they would "know China better" as a result of the trip, and that "hopefully you will fall in love with China."
The students returned home on a brand new Hainan Airlines airplane – a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner – with a specially designed livery featuring characters from the "Kung Fu Panda" film franchise.
The students' itinerary included stops in Hong Kong, Sichuan Province, famous as the home of pandas, Fuzhou and Beijing. They visited iconic sites like the Great Wall of China, the Forbidden City, and engaged with their peer students at schools throughout the country.
"Hainan Airlines is proud to support exchanges like this one that enhance engagement between our two countries and build deeper understanding and lasting friendships across the Pacific," said Hou Wei, Vice President of Hainan Airlines. "We couldn't be more excited to debut our new 'Kung Fu Panda' airplane with this delegation. The story is deeply rooted in Chinese history, culture and society, and we know these students will retain a lifetime of memories from their experience."
"Boeing is delighted that Hainan and DreamWorks Animation have collaborated to create this unique, engaging airplane," said Ihssane Mounir, senior vice president, Northeast Asia Sales, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. "The 787-9 Dreamliner is the most state-of-the-art airplane in the world, connecting people and cultures across the globe. This is an exciting collaboration and a wonderful way to celebrate the close ties between China and the United States."
About Hainan Airlines
Hainan Airlines was founded in 1993 and has grown to be China's largest independent airline. The airline is a subsidiary of the HNA Group, a Fortune 500 company from China. Hainan began service to the United States in 2008. Hainan prioritizes elite-level service, earning numerous awards for safety, punctuality and a high-quality product.