Category Archives: Cathay Pacific Airways

Cathay Pacific Airways returns to Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh International Airport made this announcement:

Cargo operations at Pittsburgh International Airport will get another boost with the return of twice weekly flights from Cathay Pacific Airways.

Cathay Pacific starts service on August 2, 2021, with its Boeing 777-300ER passenger planes that have been converted for cargo, with plans to serve PIT through the end of the year.

Planes will arrive on Mondays and Fridays and depart the next day. Cargo onboard the aircraft is for the garment industry.

The aircraft will start their flights from Hanoi, Vietnam, stopping at Cathay Pacific’s Cargo Terminal at Hong Kong International Airport before flying nonstop to PIT. Cathay Pacific initially started cargo service to PIT in September 2020 with 20 flights.

Cathay Pacific tells its flight crews to get vaccinated by August 31

Cathay Pacific Airways (Hong Kong) has told its remaining flight crews it must be vaccinated or they risk losing their jobs. The airline has given them a August 31 deadline.

90% of its pilots and 65% of its cabin crew have been vaccinated according to the airline.

Read more for the BBC: Cathay Pacific crew told to get vaccine or risk losing job – BBC News

Reuters: Cathay Pacific working with Airbus on single-pilot system for long-haul

From Reuters:

  • “Cathay Pacific, Airbus collaborating on single-pilot project
  • Program targets 2025 launch on Cathay A350s – sources
  • Airlines stand to save on long-haul crew costs

Cathay Pacific is working with Airbus to introduce “reduced crew” long-haul flights with a sole pilot in the cockpit much of the time, industry sources told Reuters.”

Read the full article: EXCLUSIVE Cathay working with Airbus on single-pilot system for long-haul | Reuters

(PRNewsfoto/Cathay Pacific Airways)

Cathay Pacific’s traffic is down 94% in March 2021

Cathay Pacific Airways Airbus A321-251NX WL D-AZAD (B-HPE) (msn 10171) XFW (Gerd Beilfuss). Image: 953389.

Cathay Pacific has released its traffic figures for March 2021 that continued to reflect the airline’s substantial capacity reductions in response to significantly reduced demand as well as travel restrictions and quarantine requirements in place in Hong Kong and other markets amid the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic.

Cathay Pacific carried a total of 18,539 passengers last month, a decrease of 94% compared to March 2020. The month’s revenue passenger kilometers (RPKs) fell 95.7% year-on-year. Passenger load factor dropped by 28 percentage points to 21.2%, while capacity, measured in available seat kilometers (ASKs), decreased by 90%. In the first three months of 2021, the number of passengers carried dropped by 98.4% against a 91.7% decrease in capacity and a 98.2% decrease in RPKs, as compared to the same period for 2020.

The airline carried 83,329 tonnes of cargo and mail last month, a decrease of 30.1% compared to March 2020. The month’s revenue freight tonne kilometers (RFTKs) fell 32.4% year-on-year. The cargo and mail load factor increased by 8.9 percentage points to 86.4%, while capacity, measured in available freight tonne kilometers (AFTKs), was down by 39.4%. In the first three months of 2021, the tonnage fell by 29.6% against a 39.6% drop in capacity and a 26.5% decrease in RFTKs, as compared to the same period for 2020.

 

Passenger

Cathay Pacific Group Chief Customer and Commercial Officer Ronald Lam said: “Our passenger business continues to face significant challenges. With the tightened crew quarantine requirements in Hong Kong, we only managed to maintain a skeleton schedule in March, operating passenger services to just 18 destinations. That represented a capacity decline of 47% when compared with February. Average daily passenger numbers decreased even further to just 598, compared to 755 in February.

Cargo

“Our overall cargo capacity was constrained by the stringent crew quarantine requirements in Hong Kong, resulting in a 39.4% year-on-year reduction in capacity. This was despite our efforts to operate more cargo-only passenger flights as well as chartered freighter flights from our subsidiary, Air Hong Kong.

“Cargo demand was strong in March, particularly from Northeast Asia and the Americas, while demand from Hong Kong and the Chinese mainland also ramped up during the latter half of the month. Load factor improved to an all-time high of 86.4%, whilst the revenue share for our Priority LIFT product continued to increase as customers sought express solutions for their critical shipments.

“Just this week, the Government announced that it would lift the mandatory quarantine requirement for fully vaccinated Hong Kong-based aircrew on freighters and cargo-only passenger flights from today. This will have a positive impact on our cargo business while also progressively reducing our monthly operating cash burn.

“Health and safety remain our top priority; we will remain vigilant and our aircrew will continue to adhere to our stringent risk-mitigation measures. Vaccinated aircrew will add a further layer of protection and risk mitigation against the spread of COVID-19.

“Our tight overseas layover control measures, and our crew’s professionalism in adhering to them, have been very effective in safeguarding the health and wellbeing of our customers, our people and the public. As a result so far this year, there have been zero positive tests among the more than 18,500 tests that our operating Hong Kong-based aircrew have taken in the days following their arrival in Hong Kong.

Outlook

“We welcome and support the government’s plan to use ‘vaccine bubbles’ as the basis for introducing further relaxation measures, including those relating to cross-boundary travel. This provides a framework under which fully vaccinated people could benefit from shorter or no quarantine requirements when traveling, such as via an Air Travel Bubble, which we are eagerly anticipating.

“Community-wide vaccination is pivotal to the global COVID-19 recovery. We have recently launched a campaign to encourage all of our employees, including aircrew, to get vaccinated as soon as possible, and we are very pleased to see that this has already received a positive response. We are grateful to all of our people who have already received or booked their vaccination, and we will continue with our efforts. This will not only help facilitate the return of regular international air travel and preserve vital connections between Hong Kong and the rest of the world, but most importantly it will also safeguard the health and wellbeing of them and their families.

“We’ve also continued to build on the momentum in moving vaccines both to Hong Kong and across our network, and earlier this week we passed the significant milestone of having so far shipped 15 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines.”

 

AIRLINES COMBINED TRAFFIC

MAR % Change Cumulative %

Change

  2021 VS MAR 2020

 

MAR 2021 YTD

 

RPK (000)        
 – Chinese mainland 9,649 -69.5% 24,710 -96.7%
 – North East Asia 3,466 -93.0% 14,051 -99.3%
 – South East Asia 11,501 -94.8% 46,643 -97.9%
– South Asia, Middle East  & Africa -100.0% -100.0%
 – South West Pacific 2,914 -99.1% 35,277 -98.8%
 – North America 34,146 -94.2% 161,569 -96.8%
 – Europe 15,245 -96.6% 40,882 -98.9%
RPK Total (000) 76,921 -95.7% 323,132 -98.2%
Passengers carried 18,539 -94.0% 70,083 -98.4%
Cargo and mail revenue tonne km (000) 503,057 -32.4% 1,687,540 -26.5%
Cargo and mail carried (000kg) 83,329 -30.1% 274,556 -29.6%
Number of flights 961 -48.3% 3,176 -73.6%

 

AIRLINES COMBINED CAPACITY

MAR % Change Cumulative %

Change

  2021 VS MAR 2020

 

MAR 2021 YTD

 

ASK (000)        
 – Chinese mainland 36,680 -39.9% 119,834 -89.8%
 – North East Asia 29,681 -77.9% 118,040 -95.9%
 – South East Asia 55,187 -89.5% 251,296 -92.7%
– South Asia, Middle East  & Africa -100.0% -100.0%
 – South West Pacific 19,759 -96.9% 508,493 -88.0%
 – North America 185,288 -83.9% 940,682 -86.9%
 – Europe 35,480 -95.8% 247,530 -95.3%
ASK Total (000) 362,075 -90.0% 2,185,875 -91.7%
Passenger load factor 21.2% -28.0pt 14.8% -54.5pt
Available cargo/mail tonne km (000) 582,431 -39.4% 2,072,724 -39.6%
Cargo and mail load factor 86.4% 8.9pt 81.4% 14.5pt
ATK (000) 616,888 -52.7% 2,280,650 -61.7%

Top Copyright Photo: Cathay Pacific Airways Airbus A321-251NX WL D-AZAD (B-HPE) (msn 10171) XFW (Gerd Beilfuss). Image: 953389.

Cathay Pacific aircraft slide show:

Cathay Pacific Cargo develops solution for vaccine distribution

Cathay Pacific Airways made this announcement:

Cathay Pacific Cargo has built on its many years of experience in transporting pharmaceutical shipments to develop a vaccine solution specifically for the fast and effective distribution of COVID-19 vaccines across the globe.

Cathay Pacific Director Cargo Tom Owen said: “With our 20 dedicated freighters and cargo bellies of passenger aircraft supporting our extensive freighter network, we stand ready to assist with what will be the biggest humanitarian response to a situation involving civil aviation that anyone has ever seen.”

Ultra Track

Cathay Pacific Cargo is progressively rolling out Ultra Track as a key part of the vaccine solution. The next-generation track-and-trace system monitors information including temperature, GPS location, and humidity, using low-energy Bluetooth readers. This gives shippers and forwarders near real time visibility, and ensures vaccines will remain within their transportation temperature ranges.

Operations Control Center

In addition, shipments using Ultra Track will also be monitored by the newly established Operations Control Centre. Based in Hong Kong, and staffed by dedicated cargo professionals 24/7, the team can instruct ramp and cargo terminal staff to take proactive steps to ensure the various storage requirements of vaccines are maintained.

Owen said: “Ultra Track will allow forwarders to monitor the condition of their vaccine shipments in near real time. It will be progressively rolled out through the first quarter of this year, and we will be offering the service free of charge for any COVID-19 vaccine shipments.”

CEIV Pharma accreditation

The combined approach follows on from an airport-wide recertification of IATA’s CEIV Pharma accreditation (the internationally recognized quality-assurance scheme for pharmaceutical shipments) at Hong Kong International Airport. Cathay Pacific Cargo, the Cathay Pacific Cargo Terminal managed by Cathay Pacific Services Limited (CPSL) and ground-handling subsidiary Hong Kong Airport Services (HAS) have all been re-certified, offering a complete level of quality assurance at every stage of the import and tran-shipment journey.

Airport Authority Hong Kong General Manager Aviation Logistics Alaina Shum said: “Hong Kong International Airport advocates and supports the airport community in its CEIV Pharma recertification, which helps to cement its status as the world’s leading and busiest cargo airport.”

The Cathay Pacific Cargo Terminal is being expanded to offer more temperature controlled capacity. While it is currently able to temporarily hold and transit 6.6 million doses of vaccine a day, there is more to come. Cathay Pacific Cargo’s Owen says: “We have just expanded so that it can handle more than seven million doses, and there will be more cold storage coming online soon. This new cold room storage will be able to handle a further 1.6 million doses.”

“With the vaccine being so valuable and in such limited supply, it’s critical that we get it right at every stage of the journey. We are confident about meeting the challenge, and we stand ready to play our part.”

To read more about Cathay Pacific Cargo’s vaccine-handling capabilities, please click here.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Cathay Pacific Cargo has been operating a full freighter schedule using its fleet of 14 Boeing 747-8F freighters and six 747-400ERFs (Extended Range Freighter). It has also operated thousands of pairs of cargo-only passenger flights, some with cargo loaded in the passenger cabins, and chartered hundreds of pairs of flights from its all-cargo subsidiary Air Hong Kong to add additional air freight capacity.

Former "Hong Kong Trader" special livery

Above Copyright Photo: Cathay Pacific Airways Cargo Boeing 747-867F B-LJA (msn 39238) ANC (Michael B. Ing). Image: 951742.

Cathay Pacific aircraft slide show:

Cathay Pacific to resume London Heathrow flights

Cathay Pacific flights from Hong Kong to London-Heathrow (LHR) will resume on January 12, 2021 in order to assist passengers needing to travel to the United Kingdom.

In light of the HKSAR Government’s ongoing ban on all flights from the United Kingdom to Hong Kong and the more stringent CAP. 599H requirements, flights from London and Manchester will remain suspended.

Our flight schedule for the period January 12 to 24, 2021 is as follows:

From Hong Kong to London Heathrow

  • CX251 – Departing on January 12, 14, 15, 17, 18, 21 and 24, 2021

From London Heathrow to Hong Kong

  • CX252 – Cancelled until January 25, 2021

Cathay Pacific aircraft photo gallery:

Cathay Pacific aircraft slide show:

Cathay Pacific to cut seven loss-making routes

Cathay Pacific Airways, according to South China Morning Post, is planning to drop seven loss-making routes.

The seven routes to be cut are to Brussels, Dublin, London (Gatwick), Male (Maldives), Newark, Seattle/Tacoma, Washington (Dulles).

Cathay Pacific aircraft photo gallery:

 

Cathay Pacific Group will cease Cathay Dragon operations, and reduce workforce and passenger capacity

Cathay Pacific Group has made it official:

The Cathay Pacific Group has announced a corporate restructuring in response to the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the aviation market.

The restructuring will enable the Company to secure its future, so it can protect as many jobs as possible, whilst meeting its responsibilities to the Hong Kong aviation hub and its customers.

The Group will create a more focused, efficient and competitive business. It will do this by harnessing Cathay Pacific’s strengths and unparalleled customer experience, while leveraging the potential of its low-cost carrier, HK Express.

Major elements of the restructuring include:

  • Reducing approximately 8,500 positions across the entire Group, which accounts for around 24% of its established headcount. Through a recruitment freeze and natural attrition, the Group has been able to reduce this to 5,900 actual jobs (or 17% of its established headcount). This means some 5,300 Hong Kong-based employees being made redundant, and approximately 600 employees based outside of Hong Kong also possibly being affected subject to local regulatory requirements.
  • Cathay Dragon, the Group’s wholly owned regional subsidiary, will cease operations with immediate effect. It is intended that regulatory approval will be sought for a majority of Cathay Dragon’s routes to be operated by Cathay Pacific and HK Express, a wholly-owned subsidiary.
  • Hong Kong-based cabin and cockpit crew members of Cathay Pacific will be asked to agree to changes in their conditions of service which are designed to match remuneration more closely to productivity and to enhance market competitiveness.
  • Executive pay cuts will continue throughout 2021 and a third voluntary Special Leave Scheme for non-flying employees will be introduced for the first half of next year. There will be no salary increases for 2021 nor the payment of the annual discretionary bonus for 2020 across the board for all employees. Outport colleagues will be subject to local arrangements.

 

Cathay Pacific Chief Executive Officer Augustus Tang said: “The global pandemic continues to have a devastating impact on aviation and the hard truth is we must fundamentally restructure the Group to survive. We have to do this to protect as many jobs as possible, and meet our responsibilities to the Hong Kong aviation hub and our customers.

“Our immediate priority is to support those affected by today’s announcement. We are deeply saddened to part ways with our talented and respected colleagues, and I want to thank them for their hard work, achievements and dedication.”

Cathay Pacific will be offering severance packages that go well beyond statutory requirements. It will also be extending medical benefits and staff travel entitlements, as well as providing counselling and job transition support services. There will be no offset against pension contributions.

Mr Tang said: “We have taken every possible action to avoid job losses up to this point. We have scaled back capacity to match demand, deferred new aircraft deliveries, suspended non-essential spend, implemented a recruitment freeze, executive pay cuts and two rounds of Special Leave Schemes.

“But in spite of these efforts, we continue to burn HK$1.5-2 billion cash per month. This is simply unsustainable. The changes announced today will reduce our cash burn by about HK$500 million per month.

“We have studied multiple scenarios and have adopted the most responsible approach to retain as many jobs as possible. Even so, it is quite clear now recovery is going to be slow. We expect to operate well under 25% of 2019 passenger capacity in the first half of 2021 and below 50% for the entire year.”

On Cathay Dragon, Mr Tang said: “Over its 35 years, Cathay Dragon has earned a well-deserved reputation for excellence, thanks to its outstanding service and distinct hospitality, delivered by a remarkable team.

“Whilst this is a difficult time, we are a resilient Group and a proud Hong Kong brand. I believe in this plan and I know we will prevail. We remain absolutely confident in the long-term future of Cathay Pacific, the Hong Kong aviation hub and the critical role Hong Kong will play in the Greater Bay Area and beyond.”

Cathay Pacific Group reports a drop of 98.1% in traffic in September

Cathay Pacific issued this report for September 2020:

 

The Cathay Pacific Group has released its combined traffic figures for September 2020 that continued to reflect the airlines’ substantial capacity reductions in response to significantly reduced demand as well as travel restrictions and quarantine requirements in place in Hong Kong and other markets amid the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic. 

Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon carried a total of 47,061 passengers last month, a decrease of 98.1% compared to September 2019. The month’s revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs) fell 97% year-on-year. Passenger load factor dropped by 48.8 percentage points to 24.9%, while capacity, measured in available seat kilometres (ASKs), decreased by 91%. In the first nine months of 2020, the number of passengers carried dropped by 83.2% against a 74.8% decrease in capacity and an 81% decrease in RPKs, as compared to the same period for 2019.

The two airlines carried 109,453 tons of cargo and mail last month, a decrease of 36.6% compared to September 2019. The month’s revenue freight tonne kilometres (RFTKs) fell 30.4% year-on-year. The cargo and mail load factor increased by 9.8 percentage points to 75.3%, while capacity, measured in available freight tonne kilometres (AFTKs), was down by 39.5%. In the first nine months of 2020, the tonnage fell by 33.9% against a 34.9% drop in capacity and a 26.9% decrease in RFTKs, as compared to the same period for 2019.

Passenger

Cathay Pacific Group Chief Customer and Commercial Officer Ronald Lam said: “September rounded off what has been an incredibly difficult summer, traditionally the peak passenger travel season of the year. We continued to operate minimal capacity – just 9% in September – a marginal month-on-month increase from about 8% in August. This was despite the resumption of some services, notably Cebu and Perth. Daily passenger numbers remained low, averaging just 1,568, while load factor sat at about 25%.

“In September, we continued to rely heavily on student traffic to the UK. We launched three charter services from Hong Kong to London to cater to demand from transit passengers from the Chinese mainland, and another from Hong Kong to Tel Aviv for transit passengers from Shanghai. Demand from the Chinese mainland has gradually increased since the lifting of the ban in Hong Kong of ex-Chinese mainland transit travel in mid-August. Overall, transit passengers accounted for about 33% of our total traffic in September.

Cargo

“Cargo demand has begun to ramp up across the network as we entered into the traditional peak season. Tonnage carried improved about 7% month-on-month, though this was still substantially below pre-COVID-19 levels. Our freighter fleet schedule has been stepped up and is now operating at peak season levels, with services notably increased on Trans-Pacific routes. We also operated a greater number of cargo-only passenger flights compared to August – 525 pairs in total – and continued to charter Air Hong Kong flights to complement our freighter and passenger schedules.

“In September, we began uplifting mail for Hongkong Post in our passenger cabins using our reconfigured Boeing 777-300ER “preighters”, which have had some of the Economy Class seats removed to provide additional cargo space. This aircraft was also deployed to run a new, temporary service to Pittsburgh serving the seasonal upsurge in demand.”

Outlook

The 2020 summer season has been an especially difficult one for the entire aviation industry. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has since downgraded its full-year 2020 passenger traffic forecast to reflect a drop of 66% and does not anticipate passenger travel will return to pre-COVID-19 levels until 2024. Meanwhile, cargo demand remains depressed and is only recovering at a slower-than-expected pace due to capacity constraints.

Lam said: “After carefully studying numerous scenarios facing the industry and our airlines, we expect we will be operating approximately 10% of our pre-pandemic passenger flight capacity for the rest of 2020 and under 50% for overall 2021.

“Among the multiple scenarios studied, this one is already the most optimistic that we can responsibly adopt at this moment. We assume we will be operating well below a quarter of pre-pandemic capacity in the first half of next year but will see a recovery in the second half of the year – only assuming the vaccines currently under development prove to be effective and are widely adopted in our key markets by summer 2021.

CATHAY PACIFIC /

CATHAY DRAGON COMBINED TRAFFIC

SEP % Change Cumulative %

Change

  2020 VS SEP 2019

 

SEP 2020 YTD

 

RPK (000)        
 – Chinese mainland 9,481 -98.2% 779,314 -88.1%
 – North East Asia 5,276 -99.5% 2,024,924 -83.5%
 – South East Asia 17,796 -98.4% 2,367,748 -81.9%
– South Asia, Middle East  & Africa -100.0% 1,449,874 -81.4%
 – South West Pacific 22,819 -98.1% 3,176,943 -73.1%
 – North America 88,558 -96.4% 5,585,296 -79.8%
 – Europe 157,768 -94.3% 4,051,129 -82.4%
RPK Total (000) 301,698 -97.0% 19,435,228 -81.0%
Passengers carried 47,061 -98.1% 4,514,910 -83.2%
Cargo and mail revenue tonne km (000) 668,278 -30.4% 6,077,220 -26.9%
Cargo and mail carried (000kg) 109,453 -36.6% 980,228 -33.9%
Number of flights 1,283 -80.3% 19,292 -68.6%

 

CATHAY PACIFIC /

CATHAY DRAGON COMBINED CAPACITY

SEP % Change Cumulative %

Change

  2020 VS SEP 2019

 

SEP 2020 YTD

 

ASK (000)        
 – Chinese mainland 41,256 -95.4% 1,350,587 -84.5%
 – North East Asia 34,534 -97.9% 3,071,749 -80.3%
 – South East Asia 91,329 -94.5% 3,960,314 -75.3%
– South Asia, Middle East  & Africa -100.0% 2,278,996 -75.8%
 – South West Pacific 153,259 -89.4% 4,761,427 -65.7%
 – North America 516,497 -85.7% 9,304,983 -72.0%
 – Europe 377,102 -88.1% 6,373,892 -75.9%
ASK Total (000) 1,213,977 -91.0% 31,101,948 -74.8%
Passenger load factor 24.9% -48.8pt 62.5% -20.3pt
Available cargo/mail tonne km (000) 887,471 -39.5% 8,542,575 -34.9%
Cargo and mail load factor 75.3% 9.8pt 71.1% 7.8pt
ATK (000) 1,003,011 -63.5% 11,499,933 -53.7%

Cathay Pacific aircraft photo library:

Cathay Pacific Airways launches 12-week cargo service to Pittsburgh

Cathay Pacific Airways today launched a temporary expansion of its operations in the Americas, with a 12-week cargo service linking Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT) with Southeast Asia, to supplement the airline’s existing network of 19 cargo stations throughout the Americas, including East Coast cargo services to Boston, Newark, and Washington, Dulles, and a dedicated freighter port at New York (JFK). The first arrival touched down in Pittsburgh today at 10:30am local time, carrying consumer goods from Asia.

The temporary service  will originate in Ho Chi Minh (SGN), stopping at Cathay Pacific’s Cargo Terminal at Hong Kong International Airport, landing in PIT every Monday and Thursday until November 26, 2020.

Notably, flight CX8800 will be operated by a reconfigured Boeing 777-300ER passenger aircraft instead of Cathay Pacific’s go-to ultra-long-haul freighter, the Boeing 747-8, of which there are currently 14 in its fleet.

In an effort to introduce additional cargo capacity where possible and help support global supply chains, Cathay Pacific reconfigured two Boeing 777-300ER passenger aircraft into ‘preighters,’ with seats removed in the Economy and Premium Economy cabins to enable the airline to carry 12 tons of additional cargo under extra safety and security measures.

Cargo is currently the stronger performer for Cathay Pacific, operating over 436 pairs of cargo-only passenger flights and carrying over 102,122 tons of cargo and mail in August 2020.