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Old March 18th, 2010, 07:39 PM   #1721
deej
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Quote:
Originally Posted by siamu maharaj View Post
Can somebody, in plain English, explain to me the difference between Marco Polo and Asia Miles? And can the points be redeemed on oneworld members or just CP? Lastly, is there any loyalty card (or something similar) which is alliance-specifc and not carrier-specific?
Asia Miles is Cathay's mileage program. Miles can be redeemed for flights and upgrades on other Oneworld members.

The Marco Polo Club is Cathay's loyalty program, which provides benefits for CX frequent flyers as well as other Oneworld FFs. The higher the tier, the more the benefits. For instance, a Diamond member of the Marco Polo Club, the highest tier where one has to travel 120,000 miles in a membership year, can gain access to the CX First Class lounge even if they are only traveling in economy. Other benefits include priority boarding, priority unloading of check-in luggage and additional baggage weight.

As a frequent flyer, I think the Marco Polo Club is one of the better airline loyalty clubs out there -- far better than Singapore Airlines' PPS.
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Old March 20th, 2010, 09:12 AM   #1722
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Cabin crew at Cathay threaten to demonstrate
Flight attendants oppose shortening of rest period

20 March 2010
South China Morning Post



Cathay Pacific Airways flight attendants have hit out at the airline's plan to cut staff layover times for flights to Milan from 48 to 28 hours, saying it will affect service and safety.

The airline's Flight Attendants' Union has threatened to protest on Thursday if management does not meet its members before noon on Wednesday about reinstating the present arrangement and withdrawing a separate policy that restricts shift-swapping by attendants.

Becky Kwan Siu-wah, vice-chairwoman of the union, said the airline announced a cut in layover time for staff on a quarter of flights to Milan from March 28, when the carrier begins a direct service to the Italian city.

"We have been enjoying at least 48 hours of outport resting time if we fly to cities with a time difference of six hours or more. This is a consensus between us and the company," Kwan said. Usually, attendants work a five-day roster if they fly to and from Europe, she said. The new arrangement would shorten the trip to four days by reducing the rest period.

She said the move would not only affect the income and rest time of staff but also posed a threat to the quality of safety and service.

"We're afraid that this will apply to other long-haul flights in the future, too," Kwan said.

The complaint came two days after the airline suspended indefinitely a new policy requiring attendants to work at least 70 hours a month before they can swap shifts with colleagues. The airline said some attendants had abused the roster system and pocketed a minimum salary despite working less than 70 hours. The new policy was put on hold after attendants threatened to strike during the Easter break.

About 500 staff attended a union meeting yesterday to discuss the issues. They requested a meeting with chief executive Tony Tyler, urging him to withdraw the policy.

They also expressed concern that management had deployed Bangkok-based crew to work on flights from Hong Kong to Melbourne under a three-month trial.

A Cathay Pacific spokeswoman said that since the airline would launch four flights to Milan per week, one would have to operate on the four-day pattern.

"We've got 7,097 flight attendants, and it takes nine to 11 years for a flight attendant to get this four-day Milan schedule once," she said, adding changes would be made when the route was up and running.

She said the airline had only 24 cabin crew based in Thailand, and the impact on Hong Kong staff would be minimal. She said the union had been approached for a meeting.
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Old March 23rd, 2010, 10:48 AM   #1723
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Cathay Pacific transports heaviest ever cargo shipment
22 March 2010
Airline Industry Information

Cathay Pacific Airways reported today that on Sunday it moved its heaviest ever single piece of cargo.

The airline uploaded a 43 tonne piece of specialist oil rig drilling equipment onto a Boeing 747 Freighter aircraft.

The equipment was transported from Houston, Texas, to Incheon Airport in Seoul, Korea.
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Old March 29th, 2010, 11:46 AM   #1724
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Cathay drops plan to limit shift swapping after cabin crew protest
26 March 2010
South China Morning Post

Cathay Pacific has caved in to demands from its flight attendants to immediately scrap new restrictions on their ability to swap work shifts with one another, but has so far not budged on other issues.

The apparent impasse after two days of meetings between representatives of the Flight Attendants' Union and the airline's management saw more than 200 cabin crew members demonstrate outside Cathay City yesterday afternoon.

Union chairwoman Dora Lai Yuk-sim said members wanted to be consulted on any policy affecting them in sufficient time to avoid similar industrial action in future.

They are also calling for staff on hourly wages to be paid at a rate reflecting that of the monthly one.

Cathay spokesman Quince Chong said the airline would continue to improve its communication with the union.

Basic salaries for flight attendants are generally not high and some rely on additional work shifts to supplement their income with overtime pay. On average, crew members are rostered for 80 to 83 flying hours a month. Those who work more than 70 hours receive additional pay of about HK$100 an hour. Flight attendants are guaranteed a minimum salary even if they work less than that.

On March 15, Cathay announced changes to the system that would have required attendants to work at least 70 hours a month before swapping with colleagues. This was said to be necessary to address misuse of the system by less than 5 per cent of cabin crew, who the airline said regularly swapped shifts without working at least 70 hours a month. Without the restrictions, the airline would be paying crew who worked fewer than 70 hours the guaranteed minimum salary as well as overtime to those who took additional shifts.

The policy changes were soon suspended after cabin crew complained. In a news alert issued to crew early yesterday, Cathay's general manager of in-flight services, Charlie Stewart-Cox, said the airline had cancelled and would not reintroduce the new guidelines restricting swapping below the 70-hour minimum. "We have made this decision because we want to reassure you that we have heard the concerns and the importance you placed on this particular issue," Stewart-Cox said.

The airline has more than 7,000 Hong Kong-based cabin crew, almost 60 per cent of whom are paid hourly wages. Hourly-paid crew were introduced in September 1996.

The airline has proposed an agreement with the union which emphasises job security and the crews' welfare, and cost and revenue are also to be considered in issues affecting crew. A working group will also be set up to meet monthly instead of two months at present. The union has yet to respond to the proposals.

The airline said it would look into what it called growing misuse of the swapping system, and liaise with the union on any measures to address it.

There are increasing disputes and industrial action by cabin crew as many airlines around the world emerge from one of the most difficult years for business amid the global downturn. This week, British Airways cancelled 1,100 flights after its cabin crews launched a three-day strike over complaints about smaller crew sizes and a pay freeze.
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Old April 7th, 2010, 10:45 PM   #1725
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Domodedovo Welcomes Cathay Pacific

06.04.2010

Moscow Domodedovo Airport is glad to announce that Cathay Pacific, a Hong Kong based airline, is scheduled to start operations from Domodedovo airport on July 13 this year, subject to government approval.

Flights Hong Kong – Moscow (Domodedovo) – Hong Kong will be operated three times a week by Airbus A340-300 with the following schedule:

Flight To/From Frequency DEP ARR
CX 207 Hong Kong – Moscow (DME) .2.4.6. 00:45 07:05
CX 206 Moscow (DME) – Hong Kong .2.4.6. 17:45 07:00 (+1)


Local time indicated


Cathay Pacific Airways is a Hong Kong-based airline offering scheduled passenger and cargo services to some 120 destinations in Asia, North America, Australia, Europe and Africa, using a fleet of 127 wide-body aircraft. The company is a member of the Swire group and is a public company listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Dragonair is a wholly owned subsidiary and Cathay Pacific also has a 60% stake in AHK Air Hong Kong Ltd. An all-cargo carrier operating regional express freight services. Cathay Pacific has made substantial investments to develop Hong Kong as one of the world’s leading global transportation hubs. The airline is a founder member of the oneworld global alliance.

Moscow Domodedovo Airport is the largest airport of Russia. Its market share in total passenger traffic in Moscow makes 46%. At the moment 75 partner airlines (35 foreign, 29 Russian and 11 from the CIS) connecting over 220 destinations operate flights all over the world. The unique route network covered by Domodedovo partner airlines provides for 89 exclusive destinations. In 2009 18,7 million passengers benefited from Domodedovo services.

http://domodedovo.ru
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Old April 8th, 2010, 04:35 AM   #1726
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Welcome to Milan, CX
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Old April 8th, 2010, 08:35 AM   #1727
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Cathay cabin crew abandon planned industrial action
6 April 2010
SCMP

Cathay Pacific passengers have been spared flight disruptions - for now.

The company's flight attendants have agreed to abandon plans for industrial action today - the peak time for Easter holidaymakers returning to work.

But there could be more threats of chaos ahead, with negotiations on other issues between the union and the airline still unresolved.

Cathay's Flight Attendants' Union signed an agreement with the airline at the Labour Department yesterday after more than 300 of the 350 voting cabin crew members ruled out a strike.

Under the agreement, the airline will remove a controversial condition on shift swapping, management will consult the union before it brings in new policies, and bi-monthly meetings will be held with the union.

More than 700 attended yesterday's special staff meeting, although only half stayed behind to vote. Twenty-three voted for cabin crew to work to rule, which could have meant flight delays of 10 to 15 minutes. Another 19 abstained from the vote.

Dora Lai Yuk-sim, the union's chairwoman, welcomed the airline's cancellation of a policy requiring staff to work a minimum of 70 hours per month before they could swap shifts, which had triggered the dispute.

But she said that was not enough to end the saga.

"The management has until the end of this month to respond to our demand that they stop replacing local staff with our foreign colleagues on certain routes," she said.

Lai said that after last night's deal was struck, both sides had agreed to hold another meeting on April 23.

The union would stage a rally on May 1, Labour Day, if Cathay failed to offer a satisfactory resolution, Lai said, adding she would not rule out more disruptive action if necessary.

One flight attendant said management had recently replaced local cabin crew with staff from Thailand and Singapore on better-paying routes - including direct flights between Hong Kong and Melbourne and Hong Kong and Tokyo - while some local staff were told to take up routes between Bangkok and Colombo, or Bangkok and Bombay.

"The daily allowance for Japanese and Australian routes can be up to five times higher than that of some other services, so those flights are more desirable," the flight attendant said. The airline could also get more from their staff by putting foreign employees on those routes because local staff were entitled to fewer holidays, the flight attendant said.

Cathay said it was a trial scheme that would end in May.

A person familiar with the situation said Cathay's management had acknowledged the union's growing power.

The airline's union comprises about 70 per cent of its staff.

"[The union] always uses the long holidays to their advantage. In some cases, a strong union could seriously cripple a company's operation when it stands in the way of wage cuts, layoffs and staff restructuring," the person said.

Lai, however, said it was never the union's intention to use passengers as their bargaining chips.

"We don't want to disrupt passengers' travel plans - it just so happened that this negotiation happened around Easter, so it attracted wide media attention."

The agreement reached yesterday between Cathay management and the union came after four days of discussions.
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Old April 9th, 2010, 04:22 AM   #1728
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Cathay Pacific sees Thai bookings slip
3 April 2010
The Nation

Political unrest in Thailand is expected to cause the number of passengers on Cathay Pacific's Hong Kong-Bangkok route to drop by 5-10 percentage points this month, country manager for Thailand Maggie Yeung said yesterday.

The airline revised downward the average load factor on the route from 80-85 per cent in March to 75-80 per cent for April.

"Market demand was very strong originally and many people made bookings. However, we have seen some cancellations over Easter and Songkran [because of the unrest]," Yeung said.

She added that the airline expects the drop to be temporary and hopes the figures will bounce back when the political situation is stable.

Cathay Pacific also estimates the average load factor for the entire year will be 80-85 per cent, up from 80 per cent in 2009.

This year, the airline plans to launch promotions tied to new attractions, including Singapore's Universal Studio and Casino and Shanghai's World Expo 2010. It expects to maintain its Hong Kong Disneyland promotion.

On Monday this week, the airline resumed 35 flights a week between Hong Kong and Bangkok, up from 28. The increase is a result of the improving economic climate.

The airline also started a new service between Hong Kong and Milan last Sunday, with four flights a week.

In July, the airline will operate between Hong Kong and Moscow with three weekly flights.

Yeung said the airline faced a tough time last year, but was nevertheless able to post profit growth of 13.3 per cent.

This year, five new aircraft are scheduled for delivery in the second and third quarters, which will help the airline to spread its wings even more globally.

Yongyut Lujintanon, sales and marketing manager for Thailand and Burma, said it is offering a "buy two get one free" promotion to Hong Kong Disneyland during the summer holiday.
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Old April 12th, 2010, 05:15 AM   #1729
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Dragonair crew seek lost bonus
9 April 2010
The Standard

Three Dragonair flight attendants representing about 1,200 crew members appeared before the Labour Tribunal yesterday seeking payment of a year-end bonus which could amount to as much as HK$10.8 million.

One of the claimants, Dragonair Flight Attendants Association chairwoman Winnie Poon, said they had not received a year-end bonus since 2008-2009 but each had received a ``special payment'' of HK$8,000.

Poon told the tribunal she had received a one-month salary bonus at Lunar New Year since joining the company in 1990, but starting from 2008-2009 she was told that the bonus was discretionary.

``It is a reasonable expectation for us to receive a one-month salary bonus when we got them from 1990 to 2007,'' she said. ``Even if the company gave us money in another name, it could not replace our year- end bonus.''

The association wrote to the Labour Department and the company management in 2008 to complain about not receiving the bonus and was told the airline was suffering huge losses, the tribunal heard.

But Poon said their bonuses should not be affected as a verbal contract was given that they were to receive ``13 months' salary'' a year.

She told the tribunal they had received an ``extra bonus'' over the Lunar New Year bonus in the past when the airline had recorded a profit.

Poon said more than 95 percent of the 1,200 flight attendants had not received a year-end bonus since 2008-2009 and about 800 to 900 of them are claiming HK$20,000 each, minus the HK$8,000 ``special payment'' they received.

A representative of the airline told the tribunal that, according to their contracts, the year-end bonus was discretionary only.

The hearing continues today.
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Old April 12th, 2010, 05:41 PM   #1730
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Author : http://fotop.net/aircanon

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Old April 13th, 2010, 01:52 PM   #1731
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RTHK News:
8 injured in Cathay emergency landing
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Old April 13th, 2010, 05:55 PM   #1732
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Cathay Pacific Statement on Incident at Hong Kong International Airport
13 April 2010
Press Release







Cathay Pacific today confirmed that our flight CX780 from Surabaya made an emergency landing at Hong Kong International Airport at 1343. The aircraft is an A330 with 309 passengers and 13 crew on board.

Cathay Pacific is working closely with the Civil Aviation Department which is investigating the incident.

A Cathay Pacific spokesman said that the left hand engine of the aircraft had shut down as the aircraft made its landing approach at Hong Kong International Airport.

The other engine was functioning.

The spokesman said: "Cathay Pacific flight crew are all trained on a regular basis to handle such situations."

This spokesman also said that during landing, all four tyres on the left hand side of the aircraft had deflated while two of the four on the right hand side also deflated.

He said that the tyres were designed to deflate during such high energy braking to avoid them bursting. Such landings were usually accompanied by smoke or dust as the tyres become warm and deflate.

As a precaution, the passengers and crew were deplaned through the aircraft's evacuation slides.

Eight passengers suffered injuries and were taken to hospitals accompanied by Cathay Pacific airport staff.

The aircraft entered into service with Cathay Pacific in 1998 and it had been through all the checks and servicing procedure recommended by its manufacturer, Airbus.

The spokesman added that all the passengers who had not required hospital treatment had been released from the holding area of the airport, assisted and supported by Cathay Pacific staff. Cathay Pacific staff were also present at Princess Margaret Hospital and Yan Chai Hospital to support the injured passengers and their friends and relatives.

We are not in a position to release any further details at this stage. We will release information as and when it is available.
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Old April 17th, 2010, 07:38 PM   #1733
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Airbus engine failed shortly after takeoff
The Standard
Thursday, April 15, 2010

Cathay Pacific admitted yesterday that an engine on the Airbus A330-300 which made an emergency landing in Hong Kong on Tuesday had experienced a power fluctuation shortly after takeoff from Surabaya in Indonesia.

However, the airline's manager of maintenance support Dennis Hui King-wai said the right engine power fluctuation when the plane had reached cruising altitude was not considered at the time to be a safety concern as an Airbus can fly with just one engine.

"The pilots notified ground control and decided to continue the flight as the other engine parameter was normal," he said.

But about 20 minutes out of Hong Kong there was a problem with the left engine and the pilot requested an emergency landing, he said.

Hui stressed that while the two engines experienced power fluctuations, at no point did they shut down.

He said the plane was landing with the right engine idling and the left engine at 70 percent of its maximum power. A normal landing should be with 50 percent power in both engines and at a speed of 135 knots.

As the emergency landing on Tuesday was at around 230 knots, the pilots had to brake hard and this resulted in the tires deflating and catching fire.

He said the smoke from the fire prompted the pilots to evacuate all passengers by emergency chutes.

The airline's corporate affairs director Quince Chong said the pilots had 12 years of experience and gave priority to passengers' safety when deciding on the evacuation of the plane.

"The crew used less than two minutes to evacuate 309 passengers," she said. "We consider that a successful evacuation."

She said one of the eight passengers injured in the evacuation was still in hospital yesterday while the other seven had been discharged.

"The flight crew had tried their best to pacify the passengers but chaos during an emergency evacuation is unavoidable."

She said the airline will give all passengers on the flight a refund and also offer them a free trip to a destination in Asia.

Hui said there had been no similar problem with the Airbus A330-300 before, and consequently a grounding of the planes was not necessary. He said the plane had been refueled in Surabaya and the investigation will include the possibility of a fuel problem.

Civil Aviation director-general Norman Lo Shung-man said the department was still investigating the incident with Cathay Pacific and may contact the manufacturer of the engines, Rolls-Royce.
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Old April 23rd, 2010, 06:07 PM   #1734
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Cathay Pacific May Get Immunity In UK Price Fixing Case
23 April 2010

HONG KONG (Dow Jones)--Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. (0293.HK) said Friday it would be immune from paying penalties in a price fixing case by the U.K. competition authority if it fully cooperates with the investigation, a move that could save the Hong Kong-based carrier millions of dollars worth of fines at a time when cash preservation remains a priority amid an uncertain outlook.

The blue-chip airline said in a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange it "has a policy of full compliance with competition law and will cooperate in full with the requirements of any relevant authorities."

The U.K.'s Office Of Fair Trading on Thursday alleged that Cathay Pacific and Virgin Atlantic Airways Ltd. colluded to set airfares on passenger flights between London and Hong Kong in breach of competition law. The U.K. authority said Cathay Pacific, which first alerted the OFT to the alleged price fixing, will be immune from any penalty that could be imposed if it continues to cooperate with investigators.

According to the OFT, airlines acting as whistle-blowers can avoid paying fines imposed by the authority if they acknowledge they colluded with competitors to fix prices. Virgin Atlantic said Thursday it vigorously denies the allegations, while Cathay Pacific hasn't commented directly on the allegations.

In recent years, competition authorities in countries such as the U.S. and U.K. have successfully charged many major airlines on collusion over fuel surcharges as well as on passenger and air cargo fares. Airlines have been slapped with hefty fines for their activities, which authorities say suppress competition and lead to higher prices.

Among those, British Airways PLC (BAIRY) was fined more than US$500 million in 2007 by U.S. and U.K. authorities for its role in a fuel-surcharge price-fixing case with Virgin Atlantic. The following year, Air France-KLM SA was fined US$350 million by the U.S. Department of Justice for its involvement in a price fixing cartel in cargo services. Cathay Pacific was also charged in the same investigation, and was fined US$60 million.

The Hong Kong airline said earlier it remains subject to antitrust investigations in the E.U., New Zealand, and Australia on alleged air cargo price-fixing. It made a provision of HK$80 million in its 2009 accounts for possible fines.

"The process for investigations involving price fixing is lengthy and disturbing, while the fines charged can be very substantial," said Kelvin Lau, an aviation analyst at Daiwa Securities. Cathay Pacific's decision to be a whistle-blower can prevent it from paying big fines and remove uncertainties, he said.

Lau said as a result of the government actions, many major airlines have set up specialized teams to deal with antitrust issues, while also reducing dealings with competing carriers to avoid regulatory scrutiny.

The likelihood for immunity in the U.K. probe is good news for Cathay Pacific, which has begun to recover from a sharp decline in passenger revenue in 2009. Although demand has improved in recent months, the airline said it remained cautious on its outlook.

Cathay Pacific has said cash preservation remained a top priority, and has taken a number of measures to boost its cash position. In September, it reduced its stake in its engineering services affiliate to raise HK$1.9 billion.
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Old April 26th, 2010, 10:06 AM   #1735
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Two weeks to clear backlog, Cathay estimates
23 April 2010
SCMP

A total of 24 planes departed Hong Kong for Europe and another 24 landed yesterday, but the backlog of stranded passengers appears little changed as airlines scramble to resume scheduled services.

Cathay Pacific chief executive Tony Tyler said the carrier operated extra flights yesterday and would do so again today. Two more flights, both to and from Amsterdam, will take off on Saturday and Sunday. But it could take up to two weeks to clear the passenger backlog, Tyler said.

"We'll be looking to upgrade to larger aircraft on some 30 round-trip flights over the next two or three weeks," he said. "My suspicion is that often the backlog is not as great as it sometimes appears because people cancel their trips, postpone trips, decide not to travel. I hope we will be able to clear the backlog quite quickly, but it's very hard to predict. It could be as long as two weeks."

Qantas Airways also resumed normal services and sent a plane to London in the morning.

Although air traffic in Europe was largely back to normal after the huge cloud of Icelandic volcanic ash prevented planes from taking off and landing there for a week, affected passengers, some of whom have been stranded since Thursday last week, are increasingly desperate to go home.

At Chek Lap Kok, about 150 passengers with Cathay Pacific tickets threatened to storm the check-in counters yesterday to prevent others from getting on flights if they did not receive answers from the airline on when they could depart and on temporary living arrangements.

Passenger representative Adrienne Mead, who flew to Phuket from London with her husband and son, said it was unfair priority seats were being given to Marco Polo Club members and students studying for exams in Britain. The British Council said about 300 affected students boarded flights to Europe on Wednesday. "There are children here. We've been sleeping on the floor. We have had no food, no help," Mead said. "We have a young baby. Some of the people have been here since April 16."

Cathay Pacific director of service delivery Ivan Chu said the airline had offered hotel rooms to the passengers last night. Other passengers had fashioned makeshift beds out of cardboard and blankets provided on Tuesday by Cathay and the Airport Authority. Meal vouchers worth HK$50 each were also distributed.
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Old May 4th, 2010, 09:18 PM   #1736
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Fly non-stop to Moscow 3 times a week

On 13 July 2010, Cathay Pacific begins non-stop service three times a week to Moscow. Whether you're travelling on business or to realise your dream of seeing St. Basil's Cathedral, you'll enjoy greater convenience and the pleasure of Cathay Pacific's personal service and inflight entertainment at your command.

To celebrate our new launch, we're offering special promotional fares from HKD3,390, and you can earn Double Asia Miles* when you book flights from HKD5,590.


Hong Kong/Moscow Flight Schedule
Routing Flight no. Day of week Dep. Time Arr. Time
Hong Kong - Moscow CX207 Tue, Thu, Sat 0045 0705
Moscow - Hong Kong CX206 Tue, Thu, Sat 1745 0700+1^
^Next Day
All times local.

http://www.cathaypacific.com

FARES ARE JUST AMAZING!!! Both direct flight and connections, also connection time for many destinations is incredibly great!

Last edited by Iggis; May 4th, 2010 at 09:31 PM.
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Old May 6th, 2010, 05:27 AM   #1737
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WestJet, Cathay Pacific sign partnership deal

Pact to make it easier for Hong Kong airline’s passengers to connect with WestJet flights

BRENT JANG TRANSPORTATION REPORTER

Globe and Mail Update Published on Wednesday, May. 05, 2010 8:33AM EDT Last updated on Wednesday, May. 05, 2010 8:34AM EDT

WestJet Airlines Ltd. and Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. have signed a partnership deal, one in a series of co-operation pacts that WestJet is targeting with foreign carriers.

Calgary-based WestJet has been looking to forge links with the Hong Kong-based carrier for nearly six years, but they needed to overcome technology hurdles. With WestJet recently upgrading its computer reservations system, the two airlines will be taking their first step in the partnership.

“We signed and are in the process of implementing an inbound interline agreement with Cathay Pacific that should be in place later this month,” WestJet chief executive officer Gregg Saretsky said during a conference call Tuesday.

The “interline” pact calls for co-operation on ticketing and baggage handling, making it easier for a traveller on a Cathay trip into Canada to catch a connecting flight operated by WestJet. The partnership should be rolled out over the next several weeks, said Cathay spokeswoman Jennifer Pearson, who added that the Asian carrier already has an interline agreement in place with Air Canada.

WestJet inked a key partnership deal last year with Air France-KLM, and hopes to form a co-operation arrangement with Delta Air Lines Inc. of Atlanta, after Dallas-based Southwest Airlines Co. terminated a planned U.S.-Canada link with WestJet.

“While Southwest Airlines provided us with notice of termination in mid-April of our code-sharing agreement, we remain committed to pursuing airline partnerships, and plan on signing and implementing partnership agreements with other strategically aligned carriers,” Mr. Saretsky said. “Our plan is to partner with carriers from each of the major geographic regions around the world.”

Mr. Saretsky replaced Sean Durfy as WestJet CEO on April 1. The airline disclosed Tuesday that Mr. Durfy received a $4.1-million severance package, a “special item” that reduced first-quarter profit. Under the departure agreement, Mr. Durfy has left the carrier’s head office, but will make himself available to WestJet if required by current management until Sept. 1, a WestJet spokesman said.

Amid higher fuel prices and increased travel agent commissions, WestJet posted a $13.8-million profit in the first quarter, down 63 per cent from $37.4-million in the same period last year. The latest quarterly profit missed analysts’ expectations, but revenue rose 7 per cent to $619.8-million.

Industry observers say problems with implementing the new computer reservations system disrupted WestJet’s operations last fall, and with the glitches taking weeks to resolve, some irritated consumers switched at least temporarily to Air Canada.

RBC Dominion Securities Inc. analyst Walter Spracklin said WestJet has $1.1-billion in cash on its balance sheet, and management could earmark some of the capital toward reducing debt and acquiring planes.

He said the airline’s new frequent flier program and loyalty credit card could help lure more business travellers in a bid to strengthen revenue per available seat mile, or RASM, a key industry measure of unit revenue.
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe...rticle1557361/
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Old May 16th, 2010, 08:11 AM   #1738
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Fighter jets escort plane into Vancouver after bomb threat

[IMG]http://i43.************/28hecud.jpg[/IMG]
A CF18 Hornet fighter jet intercepts a Cathay Pacific passenger plane headed for Vancouver on Saturday.

Camille Bains

Vancouver — The Canadian Press Published on Saturday, May. 15, 2010 7:17PM EDT Last updated on Sunday, May. 16, 2010 12:12AM EDT


Passengers aboard a trans-Pacific flight bound for Vancouver were alarmed, fascinated and confused as they looked out their windows and saw their aircraft being escorted by military fighter jets Saturday.

The Cathay Pacific flight, which originated in Hong Kong, was the subject of a bomb threat RCMP said they had taken “very seriously.”

But for those aboard, the presence of the CF18 Hornet jets was an ominous mystery that eventually led to hours spent hours waiting for luggage that won't come until Sunday.

“ When we got down it was a little scary when we found out it was a bomb threat. ”— Bhavesh Vaswani, 16, passenger aboard flight CX838

Passenger Deepika Vaswani of Mumbai said she saw a fighter jet over the wing by her seat and one of her teenaged sons told her it looked like an F18.

Her son, Bhavesh Vaswani, 16, said seeing the fighter jets was “pretty cool at first.”

“When we got down it was a little scary when we found out it was a bomb threat.”

Ms. Vaswani said passengers were given water and granola bars while they waited six hours for their luggage inside the airport.

“First we were told there was a problem with the conveyor belt, and then they told us it was a bomb threat.”

[IMG]http://i44.************/23wwieq.jpg[/IMG]

A woman who referred to herself only as Mrs. Cheung said passengers aboard the plane began taking pictures of the two fighter jets as they flew beside the plane, but nobody knew why they were there.

“I have been waiting at the airport for three to four hours because I cannot claim my baggage,” she said through a Mandarin translator.

“The people from the airport just told me there are some safety issues.”

Mrs. Cheung said passengers were told they could return to the airport on Sunday to collect their luggage if they wished to leave.

Kevin Yip, who was in the airport's arrivals area, said he waited for his friends for three hours while the plane sat on the tarmac.

He said the family of four is moving to Canada from Malaysia and their first day on Canadian soil is not a good one.

“They're starting their lives here in Canada,” Mr. Yip said. “It's terrible. It's not a way to land in your new country.”

The RCMP said the flight's 283 passengers were safely taken off the plane and no one was injured.

The flight originated in Hong Kong and after RCMP received the threat Saturday morning, the fighter jets acting under the North American Aerospace Defence Command intercepted the plane.

The fighters have the ability to respond to security threats with measures including lethal force if necessary. They flew alongside the passenger jet until it landed safely around 1:40 p.m. , said NORAD Major Holly Apostoliuk.

She said the jets arrived quickly from their base in Comox, B.C., but did not land with flight CX838 and have since returned to Comox.

RCMP Corporal Sherrdean Turley said the RCMP's Richmond detachment learned about the threat on the plane shortly before 11 a.m.

“The threat is being taken very seriously and I'd like to assure the travelling public that there is no threat to them at this time,” she said.

“All necessary screening procedures were carried out and it was deemed that there was no threat aboard the aircraft.”

Cpl. Turley said she could not discuss whether any group has taken responsibility for the threat and said the investigation into the incident is still underway.

A statement issued by Cathay Pacific hours after the incident said the airline was not aware of any issues arising on board the aircraft itself.

“A security issue raised on the ground in Vancouver resulted in extra security for the aircraft inbound to the airport and upon arrival,” the airline said.

The airline said it was appreciative of the extreme precaution exerted by Canadian authorities.

“It is very heartening to know that Canada — and Vancouver in particular — is so well prepared to handle a real crisis should one occur in the future.”

Vancouver airport spokeswoman Alisa Gloag said the aircraft's passengers and 14 crew safely left the plane. She could not, however, say what happened to them once they were on the ground.

Ms. Gloag said the situation has been resolved from an airport perspective without causing any delays to other flights.

“We are business as usual, the airport is fully operational,” she said. “Everything is running smoothly.”
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/...rticle1570286/
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Old May 20th, 2010, 08:24 PM   #1739
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By dennis1182 from HKADB :

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Old May 22nd, 2010, 08:29 PM   #1740
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I was right all along!! Those Cathay business seats are crap and will be duly replaced with much better and saner ones!

Cathay will be installing Sicma Aero Seats.
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