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Why Europe remains a crucial market for Cathay Pacific ?

Despite flying to Hong Kong for 30 years, Virgin Atlantic announced this week that it was pulling out of the Special Administrative Region. While the European carrier is not interested in continuing its operations in Hong Kong, Cathay Pacific has confirmed that the Europe-Hong Kong market remains vital to its network. Simple Flying caught up with Cathay Pacific’s Head of Marketing and Sales, Paul Johannes, to learn more about this importance.

Cathay Pacific has a strong presence across Europe with operations in the UK, France, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands. Even though Israel falls under Johannes’ purview. Additionally, destinations are making a comeback for the carrier, with cities like Madrid and Milan recently returning to the route map.

Johannes explains that Cathay is well positioned with its flights and will slowly add to Europe to bring better connections and connect customers to Hong Kong and through the hub. With quarantine requirements easing, the airline will slowly begin to gradually increase capacity from Europe to help open up opportunities as the continent is such a key market for the company.

“At the moment we have nine destinations, sometimes 10 depending on the season, and these are strategic cities connecting Europe with APAC and China.”

Both point-to-point and transit traffic remain core to Cathay’s operations. In this next chapter, these segments are in strong demand.

“There is a certain market in Europe that flies to Hong Kong for family and friends, tourism or even business – there are many corporate links between Hong Kong and Europe, particularly with the UK. Then we have a market that goes beyond Hong Kong, which is just as important, into places like China, Australia, Southeast Asia, North Asia. Also, everyone is talking about the kangaroo road. This is also very important to us because there are many links between Australia and Europe.’



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