Photo: Cathay PacificReading Time: 2 minutes
Given that the Cathay Pacific be operating just a fraction of their services in the foreseeable future, the airline will continue to transfer some of their passenger fleet to locations outside of Hong Kong for long-term parking.
The Cathay Pacific Group today released its combined traffic figures for August 2020 that reflected the airlines’ continued substantial capacity reductions in response to significantly reduced demand as well as travel restrictions and quarantine requirements in place in Hong Kong and other markets amid the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic.
Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon carried a total of 35,773 passengers last month, a decrease of 98.8% compared to August 2019. Passenger load factor dropped by 60 percentage points to 19.9%, while capacity, measured in available seat kilometres (ASKs), decreased by 92.2%. In the first eight months of 2020, the number of passengers carried dropped by 81.7% against a 72.8% decrease in capacity and a 79.2% decrease in RPKs, as compared to the same period for 2019.
Cathay Pacific Group Chief Customer and Commercial Officer Ronald Lam said: “It is clear that we are facing a long and uncertain road to recovery. The entire aviation industry has been hit hard by COVID-19 and the environment will continue to be extremely challenging for many years. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has pushed back its forecast for passenger recovery by a year to 2024, demonstrating just how slow a return to pre-pandemic levels will be. We have already taken decisive actions to reduce our costs, but despite these efforts will continue to experience significant cash burn until the market recovers.”
“On the passenger demand front, we still haven’t seen solid signs of immediate improvement. We have therefore revised our operating passenger flight capacity down to about 10% in September and similar levels in October, subject to the further relaxation or tightening of travel restrictions and quarantine requirements.”
“We welcome and are encouraged by the efforts of the HKSAR Government to engage in discussions with 11 countries on the establishment of travel bubbles. We look forward to further relaxation measures in the future that will help revitalise travel activities and ensure the continued strength and importance of Hong Kong as a global aviation hub.”