Cathay Pacific traffic figures for July 2022 continued to reflect the positive impact of further adjustments to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government’s travel restrictions and quarantine requirements.
Cathay Pacific carried a total of 219,746 passengers last month, an increase of 306.2% compared to July 2021, but a 93.3% decrease compared to the pre-pandemic level in July 2019. The month’s revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs) increased 348.4% year-on-year, but were down 89.4% versus July 2019.
Passenger load factor increased by 44.7 percentage points to 73.3%, while capacity, measured in available seat kilometres (ASKs), increased by 74.6% year-on-year, but decreased by 87.6% compared with July 2019 levels. I
Chief Customer and Commercial Officer Ronald Lam said: “We continued to add more passenger flight capacity in July in light of the Hong Kong SAR Government’s progressive adjustments to travel and quarantine restrictions. Capacity increased by 24% compared to June, although it remained low at 12.4% of the pre-pandemic level. Passenger volume increased to an average of over 7,000 per day. Meanwhile, passenger load factor reached 73.3% – the highest it’s been since the start of the pandemic.
“The additional capacity we were able to operate provided enhanced connectivity options for our customers transiting through the Hong Kong hub, with demand from the Chinese Mainland to Australia and the US particularly robust. We also saw strong demand on our UK routes, especially from students returning to Hong Kong. As many of these flights were full, some of this student traffic shifted to our other European gateways such as Amsterdam and Frankfurt. Meanwhile, we were able to resume carrying passengers to Fuzhou, Nanjing and Wuhan in the Chinese Mainland again following adjustments to local capacity restrictions.”
Looking ahead on the travel side, the latest adjustments to quarantine arrangements for passengers arriving in Hong Kong are expected to have a positive impact on inbound traffic as well as leisure travel among Hong Kong residents. Student traffic to the US and UK is also expected to provide their travel business with a strong boost in August and September. However, their ability to add more passenger flight capacity will remain limited unless the restrictions on our aircrew are lifted.