ADDIS ABABA, Jan. 31 (Xinhua) -- The Ethiopian Airlines on Wednesday held a special event for Chinese nationals returning home for the Chinese New Year, or Spring Festival.
This year's event, the fourth of its kind held at Bole International Airport in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, featured many activities that aim to make the Chinese travelers feel at home.
Chinese traveling back home for the Spring Festival, which falls on Feb. 16th this year, from Ethiopia and other African countries enjoyed traditional Chinese foods like dumplings, received New Year gifts, and made wishes for their family and relatives as part of the celebrations.
According to the Ethiopian Airlines Group, the celebration is part of the airline's aspirations to grow its relations with its Chinese customers towards being the most Chinese-friendly transit hub and airline in the African continent.
"When we say that Ethiopian Airlines is the most Chinese friendly airline, it's not without anything. It's because of numerous things that we put in place.
"For example, we have a Chinese help desk here at the hub for passengers passing through here to Africa and coming back, we have Chinese dedicated staff here, we have Chinese crew on board, we have Chinese food, and we have Chinese call-center," Esayas Woldemariam, Managing Director of Ethiopian airline's International Service told Xinhua.
"Chinese passengers feel as if they are at home, they feel happy and this shows the relationship of China and Ethiopia," said Bian Yueming, Assistant manager of Chinese Help Desk at Bole International Airport.
"At first, I was surprised to see Chinese food and Chinese New Year event here in Ethiopia, now I am very happy," said Wen Liang, a passenger from Nigeria on transit to China in Addis Ababa, noting that the Ethiopian Airlines is becoming more convenient.
According to Woldemariam, Ethiopian Airlines is currently the biggest carrier of passenger and cargo between China and Africa, with 5 destinations in China that are Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Chengdu and Guangzhou. The company plans to add Shenzhen on the list.