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Western U.S. cities getting new connections


More overseas airlines are targeting cities in the western U.S. for new routes, providing options not only for incoming visitors to popular areas, but also allowing American travelers more connection choices overseas.

Two announcements this week include Austrian Airlines making its first leap to the far west, with a 6-a-week Vienna schedule to Los Angeles, starting next April 10. The flight will be about 12 hours long. Austrian, part of the Lufthansa group, has recently added Chicago, its only other U.S. destination past the East Coast.

The airline says it expects that about 2/3 of the passengers on the Los-Angeles-to-Vienna flights to use Vienna as a hub for other cities. The flight will use a 777-200.

Meanwhile, Las Vegas, will be seeing 3-a-week direct service to Beijing on Hainan Airlines, using a 787. It's aimed primarily at Chinese visitors to Las Vegas, the fastest-growing segment of visitors to the city. Many of the newest developments on and off the strip are aimed at the growing Chinese market. 

Las Vegas has one other direct-to-Asia connection, a Korean Air flight to Seoul.

The best part of every trip is realizing that it has upset your expectations

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