DALLAS — Cathay Pacific Airways (CX) is expected to increase operations from Hong Kong International Airport (HKG), as the Hong Kong-based carrier is scheduled to double the number of flights by the end of March.
The carrier stated that it is in the process of resuming flights to mainland China and hopes to operate around 100 flights a week by the end of March, which is double the number of flights it currently operates.
On January 14, the carrier will operate a total of 61 return flights between Hong Kong and mainland China. CX operates 27 outbound and 50 inbound flights from China to Hong Kong.
Even with the new addition of flights, CX still operates under pre-pandemic levels to mainland China. Before the pandemic, the airline and its partner, the now-bankrupt Cathay Dragon, operated an extensive network between Hong Kong and mainland China.
The carrier will double its flight schedule to 13 destinations across mainland China. These include Beijing (PEK), Guangzhou (CAN), and Shanghai (PVG), among others. PVG will have the largest increase in flights, as Cathay currently operates only two outbound flights per week from Hong Kong (HKG).
This is scheduled to increase to 21 flights per week. Cathay will also fly ten flights per week between HKG and PEK and five from CAN. CX will also operate four-week flights per week to Xiamen (XMN).
The new increase in operations comes as China is scheduled to open its borders to international travelers on January 8th. Since 2020, mainland China has been closed to international travelers. Beginning on January 8th, travelers arriving in China will not need to be quarantined but must take a PCR test 48 before arriving in China. Additionally, China has stopped pandemic restrictions for domestic travelers.
Cathay is the first carrier in Asia to announce a ramp-up following the opening of China’s borders. Many major international carriers have not announced a resumption of pre-pandemic levels, primarily because of testing requirements that some countries require when traveling to China.
Featured image: Cathay Pacific B-LXA Airbus A350-1041. Photo: Brandon Farris/Airways