As a result of the ongoing COVID-19 epidemic, Cathay Pacific passenger traffic was hampered in March 2022 by capacity limitations and travel restrictions.
Hong Kong’s flag carrier carried a total of 30,628 passengers in March 2022, a modest reduction from February 2022 and a significant drop of 99 percent from pre-pandemic levels.
“March was yet another very difficult month for our travel business. Passenger flight capacity remained extremely low at just under 2% of pre-COVID-19 levels,” chief customer and commercial officer at Cathay Pacific, Ronald Lam announced in a statement dated April 14, 2022.
Flight capacity limitations to Mainland China, particularly Shanghai, in reaction to the city’s stricter quarantine regulations, were blamed for the poor passenger traffic in March 2022.
The flight restriction for passengers arriving from Australia, Canada, France, India, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, the United Kingdom, and the United States was lifted on April 1, 2022.
Hong Kong has also reduced the hotel quarantine period for fully vaccinated passengers arriving in the city from 14 to seven days.
After testing negative for COVID-19 on the sixth and seventh days of self-isolation, arrivals can leave the hotel quarantine.
Cathay Pacific applauded the action, citing low passenger flow as a result of the city’s limitations.
“We welcome the lifting of the transit ban and the place-specific suspension mechanism, the rationalization of the flight-specific suspension mechanism, as well as the reduction of the mandatory quarantine period for both travelers and aircrew alike in April,” Lam said.
However, according to Lam, travel restrictions remain strong, and the airline has only been allowed to boost passenger flight capacity by a small amount.
Looking ahead to April 2022, the airline does not expect short-term passenger travel demand to improve significantly.