February 23, 2012
Inflight Cellar is First Class
Post by Joyce Wong

Business Traveller Cellars in the Sky Awards

Cathay Pacific’s expertise in selecting the world’s finest wines for passengers was recognised at the annual Cellars in the Sky Awards held in London on 6 February.

CX won the Most Improved Business Class Cellar award as well as the Best First Class Fortified Wine for the Ramos Pinto 10 Years Quinta Da Ervamoira at the competition, organised by Business Traveller magazine. The Champagne Amour de Deutz 2002 was runner-up in the Best First Class Sparkling Wine category.

Manager Catering Services Charles Grossrieder says the awards acknowledge the skill and dedication of the airline’s wine experts. “We aim to provide passengers with a superior travel experience which includes offering the chance to sample some of the world’s finest wines and matching these perfectly with the unique flavours of our inflight cuisine,” he says.


December 22, 2011
Cathay Pacific welcomes the 40 millionth visitor to Hong Kong
Post by Joyce Wong

Nancy Ryan, who hails from the United States, is the 40 millionth visitor to Hong Kong.

Cathay Pacific and the Hong Kong Tourism Board jointly welcomed the 40 millionth visitor to Hong Kong at a reception held at the iconic Peninsula Hotel yesterday.

The lucky visitor is U.S. resident Nancy Ryan, who flew to Hong Kong from Chicago on a Cathay Pacific direct flight. She is accompanied by her sister Muffy Lerner, Muffy’s husband Alexander Lerner and their daughter, Lindsey Lerner.

Director Corporate Affairs Quince Chong was on hand to congratulate the winner.

“The fact that she flew in from Chicago in the United States has a special significance for our airline,” said Quince.

“The U.S., which we have been serving for more than 20 years, is one of our most important markets, and Chicago is our newest destination in the States,” she said. “We launched a daily flight to this fantastic city, the gateway to the US Midwest, in July this year, and it’s been very well received by passengers.”

This is Nancy’s first trip to Hong Kong, but the second for Alexander and Muffy.

Alexander and Muffy flew to Hong Kong via San Francisco in February 2010 to spend the Chinese New Year in Hong Kong and Shanghai. The family unanimously decided to visit Hong Kong again this Christmas— this time for a longer duration.

Alexander Lerner flew with CX for both trips. He was full of praise for the airline’s service and new Business Class product.

Alexander Lerner (second left), Muffy Lerner (third left), and Lindsey Lerner (second right) joined Nancy on her Hong Kong trip.

Nancy recieved two CX Business Class tickets from Chicago to Hong Kong as a gift.

September 21, 2011
All Spruced Up And Ready To Fly
Post by Joyce Wong

The retrofit of the new Business Class product on B-KPB was successfully completed on 2 September after 24 days of hard work by Engineering team, TAECO, HAECO, Boeing and product suppliers.


It marked the start of the Boeing 777-300ER retrofit programme with the next aircraft going to TAECO at the end of September.

In total, 31 aircraft will be retrofitted with the new JCL product - 18 777-300ERs and 13 Airbus 330-300s. By the end of the year, eight aircraft will have been retrofitted and the whole programme is expected to end by January 2013.

September 14, 2011
Windy City? A breeze!
Post by Joyce Wong

Passengers make the connection as Chicago gets off to solid start

As Cathay Pacific executives and VIP guests flew in to O’Hare International Airport to celebrate the launch of the Chicago service, the team in the new destination’s Town Office were giving themselves a pat on the back for helping to get things off to a good start.

The first CX807 out of ORD on 1 September was fully booked, and outbound loads for this month and beyond “continue to build on a week over basis,” says Sales Manager Midwest USA, Matt Seymour.

The team conducted a number of sales blitzes in many of the major cities throughout the Midwest, attending various events associated with Chinese community, and national and international events such as the Global Business Travel Association Convention.

Currently, load factors in the premium cabins are “very high” while Economy loads are on a par with the rest of the country.

“We are very pleased with the results thus far,” says Matt.

Sales teams in the States have been very focused on the new service, working with corporate clients and their key agency account base to secure new and incremental business.

“Our product and service speak volumes in the market place and is such an improvement over the competition,” says Matt, who works with a team of three Account Managers and one Inside Sales SupportAgent.

At the moment, most of the sales out of Chicago are for passengers going direct to Hong Kong.

“Taipei, Manila, Guangzhou and Shanghai are our top connection opportunities and these are served very well by the 8pm arrival time. However, other connections are more limited with the current schedule,” says Matt.

The first flight out of Hong Kong was also close to full and loads are looking quite promising over the first two months – more so in the Economy cabin than in the front.

CX has already captured a healthy share of the market to ORD, where only one other carrier operates direct flights, and a good percentage of passengers are connecting to cities such as Boston, Miami and Washington.


August 22, 2011
Cargo spreads wings on the subcontinent
Post by Joyce Wong

Airline now offers ‘one-stop shop’ for Indian airfreight

Cathay Pacific is taking advantage of an expanding India cargo market with the launch of two new freighter services.

The twice-weekly service to Bengaluru launched on 1 August with a full load, while the twice-weekly direct freighter service from Chennai to Frankfurt launched on 19 June.

Regional Manager Cargo – India, Middle East, Africa Ashish Kapur says the additional service to Bengaluru means CX now has a presence all over the country with freighter services at all the four major airports from India.

“This makes us one of the few airlines who can provide solutions to the forwarders not only in terms of handling special cargo but also be a one-stop-shop in all the major cities,” he says.

The team is thinking big for the Bengaluru service.

“The focus is on cars, auto parts, odd-size special handing shipments like helicopter blades and aircraft engines,” Ashish says.

The Chennai-Frankfurt service continues onwards to Manchester on Wednesday and Brussels on Thursday, providing access to three European destinations from South India.

“With Chennai becoming a hub for the manufacturing of auto parts, electronics, garments and finished leather, it is a good time to add this service,” Ashish says.

“The route also has the advantage of strong two-way traffic where we come in full and go out full, which makes the route very attractive,” he adds.

Cathay Pacific Cargo picked up the top award of Airline of the Year at the 3rd South East CEO Conclave & Awards ceremony in Chennai on 27 July. Nominees for the awards are decided by recommendations by the trade including shippers, exporters, forwarders, airports and government bodies.


August 18, 2011
12 new planes on order book
Post by Joyce Wong

777-200Fs to boost efficiency of freighter fleet

Cathay Pacific confirmed its commitment to growing the airline– and building the Hong Kong hub– by announcing yet another major aircraft order. Adding to the purchase of 36 aircraft announced in August last year and 27 more added in March this year, on 10 August CX stated it was buying another 12 aircraft from Boeing – four more 777-300ERs and eight 777-200 Freighters. The latest orders – all powered by GE90 engines – are slated for delivery between 2013 and 2016. With the latest purchases, there are now 97 new aircraft on the order books, including 79 passenger jets and 18 freighters, with a list price value of almost HK$200 billion.

The announcement confirms the airline’s intention to modernise as well as grow the fleet, adding highly efficient new aircraft and retiring older planes – Boeing 747-400s and Airbus A340-300s in the passenger fleet and 747-400 BCFs in the freighter fleet – before the end of the decade. “This latest order highlights our commitment to operating a modern and efficient fleet together with a deep commitment to our home city,” says Chief Executive John Slosar, adding that the 772F will improve freighter operations by delivering improved payload range capability at competitive operating costs. The 777-200F, a new aircraft type for the airline, will certainly improve the efficiency of the freighter fleet.

For a typical 3,000 nautical mile trip, it will burn 15% and 24% less fuel per payload tonne than the 747-400F and 747-400BCF respectively. The new aircraft, which has a range of 4,900 nautical miles with a full payload of 102 tonnes, will be employed primarily on regional and European routes, while the10 new Boeing 747-8 Freighters will be used almost exclusively on routes between Hong Kong and North America. Director Cargo Nick Rhodes says the new freighters will provide replacement aircraft for the BCFs and also inject additional capacity to meet the forecast growth in cargo traffic within the region. “The 777-200F is a direct replacement for the BCF but will be considerably more efficient as it is a twin-engined aircraft and has no upper deck – which is surplus weight in the BCF,” Nick says. “With rising fuel prices, improved fuel efficiency is vital if the freighter fleet is to operate profitably.

May 30, 2011
Changing tyres of a passenger aircraft
Post by Joyce Wong

They’re not just ordinary tyres.

They’re big and tough, each weighing 209 kilograms. And, with 16 main wheels and two nose wheels, they bear the weight of a fully loaded Boeing 747-400 passenger aircraft as it takes off and lands over and over and over again.

But there comes a time when all that work takes its toll, with the main wheels wearing out more quickly due to landing and braking than the nose wheels.

These wheels are checked by the operating captain and engineer before each flight and a tyre is retreaded or replaced as needed. In its normal lifespan, a tyre is retreaded up to six times then finally replaced after 1,500 landings.

Using a jack (two for the centre wheel), a wheel dolly, a spanner and a wrench, it takes two aircraft mechanics 45 minutes to an hour to replace a tyre. And thousands of tyres have to be replaced every year with Cathay Pacific and Dragonair’s 160 aircraft. A Boeing 747-400 alone gets approximately 50 tyres changed in a year, which means 2,250 tyre changes for the Boeing 747 fleet every year.

December 15, 2010
CX Flashback- The Beatles
Post by Joyce Wong

July 1966

The world’s most popular band, The Beatles, arrive in Hong Kong on their second visit to the city. John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr received a rousing welcome in Hong Kong on 3 July when they arrived on board a Cathay Pacific Convair 880M aircraft.  The visit was a 70-minute stopover as part of their Asian tour which included Tokyo and the Philippines, where they unintentionally snubbed First Lady Imelda Marcos.


Photo credit: The Beatles: Bob Whitaker - Hulton Archive/Getty Images

October 19, 2010
Lounges Hit New Level
Post by Joyce Wong

Cathay Solus chair just one of a host of innovative features in The Cabin

There are many things that stand out in The Cabin, the latest CX lounge at HKIA, but perhaps the most striking is the Cathay Solus chair. This exclusive creation – first glimpsed by passengers in the reception but also featured in the IT Zone and the Relaxing Zone – is a chair like no other, specifically designed around the needs of individual passengers. “The first thing people want when they come into a lounge is to find a space of their own, and the Solus enables them to find a seat and spread out without disturbing others or being disturbed,” says Head of Product Alex McGowan.“With its generous space, table, power socket, coat hook and transparent privacy screen, the Solus provides the ideal environment for passengers. It is designed to provide a private space to eat, drink, work on a laptop, make a phone call, read a paper or simply relax.” The chair, with its distinctive contoured white shell and red leather seating, was jointly created by Cathay Pacific and Foster + Partners – the UK-based architectural firm responsible for the overall lounge design – and was handcrafted by Poltrona Frau in Italy. The Product team went through multiple rounds of trials with Marco Polo Club members – and the CX Rome team – to refine the functionality and ergonomics. “Our passengers really seem to appreciate the innovative and stylish design,” says Alex. But The Cabin is about much more than a chair. The long, elegant space features floor-to-ceiling windows along its entire length, giving extensive views over the airport apron. Divided into five zones, all linked by a strip of plush red carpet, the lounge offers areas to simply relax or eat and drink, while the IT Zone connects passengers to the world through iMacs, PCs and 20 Wi-Fi-enabled iPads pre-loaded with apps. For the hungry and thirsty, The Deli serves freshly prepared food to suit the international tastes of premium passengers, the Health Bar has Chinese herbal teas and juices, smoothies and alcoholic drinks, and an extensive hot buffet provides Asian and Western choices. In terms of design, The Cabin builds on the palette of other CX lounges but brings it up to date. “There is natural granite which echoes The Wing, white marble with lineage in The Pier and outport lounges, and sustainable bamboo – stained the same tone as our original ‘Walnut Wall’. This is a palette we will continue to work with as we progress with our other lounge plans at HKIA,” says Alex. The Cathay Solus chair will certainly be part of future lounges, “though it is currently intended to feature less prominently than it does in The Cabin”. Another new feature, the striking Fabbian wall behind the reception desk, with two rows of sparking glass tiles lit from top and bottom, will also be employed in future lounge updates.


August 16, 2010
20 Years of Change
Post by Joyce Wong

Milestone year is celebrated with new video, awareness campaign

The “Change for Good” inflight fundraising programme turns 20 this year and is celebrating with a new inflight video, new donation envelopes and a roadshow throughout Hong Kong to help raise awareness.

Launched in 1991, the programmesaw Cathay Pacifi c and UNICEF join hands to improve the lives of under privileged children worldwide by collecting spare change from passengers. As of February this year, more than HK$100 million had been raised.

In September, a new “Change for Good” inflight video starring UNICEF Ambassadors Leon Lai and Miriam Yeung will be shown on all CX flights and crew will also be distributing new-look envelopes to passengers.

An anniversary roadshow and charity sale will be held in Hong Kong throughout August and September to help raise awareness about the programme.

The roadshow includes a photo exhibition featuring a history of the programme, highlights from the Kenya and Ethiopia CX staff field trips held earlier this year, and photos showing the making of the new inflight video.

The roadshow, which kicked off on 9 August at Festival Walk shopping mall with Chief Executive Tony Tyler in attendance, will tour several shopping areas, as well as visiting Cathay City, Hong Kong International Airport and CPCS.

Several stops will include a charity sale of UNICEF items with CX staff helping out at the booth. More information about the anniversary activities will be announced on Daily News.


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