Cathay Pacific To Operate More Of Network

Credit: Rob Finlayson

Cathay Pacific expects to be able to restore more of its flight schedule following the announcement of a partial easing of COVID-19 entry and quarantine rules by the Hong Kong government.

The airline said it is “actively working on resuming more flights for our customers from April 1.” This is in response to government plans to lift flight suspensions for nine countries from that date, as well as easing quarantine requirements for all vaccinated Hong Kong residents upon arrival, the carrier said.

Cathay recently said it would only operate about 2% of its pre-pandemic passenger capacity and 30-35% of its cargo capacity while the stricter operational constraints remained in place.

The airline said it will share more details of flights being resumed “as soon as possible.”

The Hong Kong government will be reducing the hotel quarantine requirement for arriving residents to seven days from the current rule of 14 days, according to local media. A PCR test will be required on the fifth day of quarantine, and rapid antigen tests on the sixth and seventh days.

Most non-residents are still not able to enter Hong Kong, except for those from mainland China or Macau. This means that Hong Kong residents will be the main beneficiaries of the latest changes.

Cathay Pacific has had to drastically reduce its capacity in recent months because of tightened travel restrictions and crew quarantine requirements. The new measures resulted from a spike in cases in Hong Kong linked to the omicron variant of COVID-19.

Adrian Schofield

Adrian is a senior air transport editor for Aviation Week, based in New Zealand. He covers commercial aviation in the Asia-Pacific region.