Cathay Pacific will boost capacity between Hong Kong and Sydney from October 1 when it deploys a Boeing 777-300ER on a second of its four daily flights on the route.
The Hong Kong-based carrier says the move to replace the Airbus A330-300 with the 777-300ER will increase the seat count by eight per cent.
The airline already uses the 777-300ER on one of its four flights a day between Sydney and Hong Kong, with the remaining three currently operated by A330-300 aircraft.
Cathay Pacific general manager for southwest Pacific Nelson Chin said the move to add a second 777-300ER service was to cater for growing demand both to Hong Kong and to the oneworld alliance member’s wider China, European and North American network.
The flights to receive the big Boeing twin will be CX100, which leaves Sydney at 1500 and arrives in Hong Kong at 2135, and CX101, which departs Hong Kong at 2355 and touches down in the NSW capital at 1205 the next day.
“The two 777-300ER flights cater to the increasing demand from our passengers wanting the best morning or night connections to our large network, which includes our newest destinations Manchester, Zurich, Boston, and Dusseldorf,” Chin said in a statement on Monday.
“It also serves those who simply wish to make the most of a whole day’s work in Hong Kong.
“Aside from adding 1,253 seats per week or 65,156 seats per year with more business, premium economy and economy class seats, the 777-300ER also provides better payload which will help facilitate cargo uplift.”
In December 2014 Cathay upgraded its evening departure from Sydney, CX138, and morning departure from Hong Kong, CX139 to the 777-300ER.
The airline flies 74 times a week to Australia and has utilised the full amount of available frequencies to the country’s four major gateways – Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney – for Hong Kong-designated carriers.
Therefore, any increase in capacity will have to come through larger aircraft and not additional flights.
Hong Kong has been keen to renegotiate the current air services agreement to give Hong Kong airlines more traffic rights to Australia.