Cathay Pacific resumes more flights

HONG KONG, 25 July 2022: Cathay Pacific’s June traffic figures continued to reflect the positive impact following adjustments to travel restrictions and quarantine requirements in Hong Kong, notably the circuit-breaker mechanism, effective from 1 June.

Chief Customer and Commercial Officer Ronald Lam said: “As sentiment for travel continued to improve, we resumed more flights to more destinations. We deployed additional passenger flight capacity – about 170% more than we did in May – to meet the demand. However, We still only operated about 11% of our pre-pandemic capacity. Load factor increased to 67%, and on average, we carried more than 5,000 passengers daily.

“The additional flights we operated helped provide greater connectivity for our transit passengers, notably from the Chinese Mainland. We also saw increased demand for flights between the UK and Australia and between the US and the Philippines. travel into Hong Kong was strong, and our flights from the UK averaged high load factors of 93%. We also resumed flights to Auckland in June, which saw good demand not only to and from Hong Kong but also between New Zealand and the UK as well as India. On the other hand, our flights to the Chinese Mainland remained limited by capacity restrictions relating to anti-pandemic measures there. ”

Cathay Pacific carried 150,077 passengers last month, an increase of 269.2% compared to June 2021 but a 95.2% decrease compared to the pre-pandemic level in June 2019.

The month’s revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs) increased 320.2% year-on-year, but were down 91.7% versus June 2019. Passenger load factor increased by 45.3 percentage points to 67%, while capacity, measured in available seat kilometres (ASKs), increased by 36.2% year-on-year, but decreased by 89.3% compared with June 2019 levels. In the first six months of 2022, the number of passengers carried increased by 113.5% against a 26.6% decrease in capacity and a 129.8% increase in RPKs, as compared to the same period for 2021.

Outlook

Lam commented on the business outlook: “Looking ahead, we welcome the Hong Kong SAR Government’s recent decision to suspend the circuit-breaker mechanism effective 7 July, which will help provide customers with far greater certainty and confidence when flying to and transiting via Hong Kong We are also encouraged that the Government is considering possible adjustments to the number of days inbound travelers will need to spend in designated quarantine hotels after arriving in Hong Kong. We continue to actively add back flight capacity as we work to rebuild our hub and network ..

“On the passenger side, we expect travel sentiment to improve over the coming months. Assuming current travel and operating restrictions at the time of this report remain unchanged, we anticipate we will be able to operate up to about a quarter of our pre-pandemic passenger flight capacity levels by the end of the year. The pandemic situation remains highly dynamic, and we will need to remain agile with regard to managing our flight capacity.

“We have enjoyed improved cash performance since the further adjustments in the travel restrictions and quarantine requirements came into effect on 1 May. We expect that the anticipated capacity increases will continue to positively impact our monthly operating cash burn, so we are targeting to be operating cash generative going forward. ”

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