Miami – Hong Kong Airlines (HX) is gradually expanding amid the COVID-19 pandemic following the shut down of Cathay Pacific Airways (CX) sister airline Cathay Dragon (KA).
Having served 51 destinations regionally and throughout mainland China, the fall of KA leaves a void that HX and CX subsidiary HK Express (UO) can potentially fill.
Director of Corporate Governance and Development at HX Ricky Chong Wai-ki said, “If there are available slots and traffic rights, of course, it would be an opportunity to other airlines, but we need to see the situation and also make an evaluation afterward”.
New routes may be open, but the COVID-19 pandemic rages on with HX operating around five to 10 percent of normal services.
While HX had to lay off around 400 staff members in February with remaining employees taking deep pay cuts, necessitating a boost in revenue.
Hong Kong Airlines recently hosted a “flight to nowhere”, with flight HX852 taking 104 paying passengers for a scenic 90-minute sunset flight departing from Hong Kong International Airport (HKG) and returning to HKG.
Chong further added that “we hope we can keep the momentum, and the Hong Kong-to-Hong Kong flights is an additional source of revenue for us” along with the 100 weekly passenger and special cargo flights operated by the carrier.
With HX receiving HK$77.1m (around US$9.9m) for salaries from the Hong Kong government along with CNY1bn (around US$149.5m) from Chinese banks, the airline can hopefully emerge from the crisis with strength so its A350s can keep flying high.
【J.O.S.O.】HX312 B-LGC by N509FZ – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0