All posts tagged: Cathay Pacific

Singapore-Hong Kong ATB launch deferred by two weeks

The travel bubble bursts for now, bubble slated for re-start on 6 Dec 2020 Travellers hoping to catch the Singapore-Hong Kong air travel bubble (ATB) will now have to wait another two weeks for it to begin, as Hong Kong is facing a possible ‘fourth wave’ in Covid-19 cases. The ATB was originally slated to commence today (22 Nov), but a decision was made on Saturday afternoon to postpone it by two weeks given the unstable situation in Hong Kong. On Saturday (21 Nov 2020), Hong Kong saw a total of 13 unlinked cases, bringing the seven day average of unlinked cases to 3.86. While this did not reach the mutually agreed threshold of 5, both countries agreed that it would be unwise to commence the ATB at this point. Given the evolving situation in Hong Kong, Secretary Edward Yau and I discussed further this afternoon, and decided that it would be better to defer the launch of the ATB, by two weeks. We will review within two weeks on the new launch date and …

Singapore-Hong Kong Air Travel Bubble to start 22 Nov

Details of the Singapore-Hong Kong ‘Air Travel Bubble’ has been announced. Here’s what you need to know from testing to flights, landing arrangements and more. As promised, the Singapore authorities today shed more light on the details of the first Air Travel Bubble (ATB) arrangements between Singapore and Hong Kong. From 22 Nov, there will be one flight a day with an initial quota of 200 passengers. This increases to 2 flights a day from 7 December, with a total of 400 visitors to be carried each day. The story so far… When the bilateral ATB was first announced back in October 2020 by Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam and Singapore’s Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung, it was met with much excitement by residents on both ends. The excitement arose from the fact that this is the first true leisure travel arrangement, with no restrictions on the type of travel and, more importantly, no quarantine required at either end of the journey. These are some of the facts that were put out for those …

Cathay Pacific to axe 6,000 employees, gets rid of Cathay Dragon brand

The original plan was to make 8,000 roles redundant. Multiple news outlets today reported that Cathay Pacific will be retrenching 6,000 employees worldwide, with close to 5,000 of these roles lost in Hong Kong itself. The international airline was originally planning to axe up to 8,000 staff, but reduced it to 6,000 after government intervention. The airline will also remove another close to 2,600 unfilled positions, bringing the total tally of positions lost to 8,500. With a total workforce of 33,000 staff, the 6,000 employees axed come to under 20% of its staff strength, signifying a smaller cut that what some other airlines have undertaken. The cuts came after Cathay Pacific Group took up a government aid worth HK$27.3 billion (S$4.8 billion) in June, which came with the condition that the airline must appoint two government selected observers to the board to oversee the investment and protect taxpayers’ money. According to the airline, affected staff will be offered “severance packages that go well beyond statutory requirements”, and extending medical benefits and staff travel entitlements, as …

Singapore-Hong Kong leisure travel bubble to commence ‘soon’

No quarantine required, but pre-trip Covid-19 tests and booking of ‘dedicated flights’ required if you want to go In a surprise move, Singapore newly-minted Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung announced on Thursday (15 Oct) that it has confirmed a travel arrangement with Hong Kong to allow ‘general travel’ for residents between both countries. The most salient point of this agreement is that there will be “no restrictions on travel purpose”, effectively making this the first leisure ‘green lane’ for Singapore and Hong Kong residents, since the COVID-19 closed most borders this year. Travellers will be subject to Covid-19 PCR testings that are recognised by both governments, but will not need to serve any isolation requirements nor be subjected to movement restrictions under ‘controlled itineraries’. Travellers can also only travel on dedicated flights that only serve travellers under this Air Travel Bubble (ATB) arrangement. No firm timeframe yet Both governments have not confirmed nor indicated any firm date to start the ATB flights. However reports have suggested that the bubble could comments in ‘weeks’, even though …

Hong Kong airport to accept transit passengers from 1 Jun

The airport joins Singapore in opening up air passenger transit traffic once again Hong Kong’s chief executive Carrie Lam announced on 26 May that transit services at Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) will “partly resume” from 1 Jun. This announcement came weeks after Singapore announced a similar move to allow transit traffic from 2 Jun. Hong Kong implemented a ban on all non-resident visitors into Hong Kong, as well as transit passengers through HKIA since 25 Mar. All returning residents were also required to go to AsiaWorld Expo site for a compulsory Covid-19 test, before they were dispatched home to serve a 14-day self-quarantine. Cathay Pacific group to benefit Since the ban on transit passengers kicked in from 25 Mar, Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon collectively saw a drastic drop in passenger numbers, well over 99% compared to same period last year. Cathay Pacific, which has been hard-hit by the coronavirus pandemic, has since April operated to “a skeleton schedule” of barely a dozen destinations served by just a handful of flights per week. The reopening of …