Hong Kong’s outbound flights slow to a trickle as Covid isolation deepens

By TIN Media | Asean News Published 7 months ago on 28 February 2022
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HONGKONG:

A worldwide flying ban will be extended until April 20 for nine countries, including the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia.

The number of options for getting out of Hong Kong by plane is at its lowest level in at least two decades, precisely as the number of residents wishing to evacuate the city of 7.4 million continues to rise.
Before the epidemic, a passenger plane left Hong Kong every three minutes on average, making it nearly as busy as John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. According to the most recent figures, an hour can go by without a single departure these days.

Airlines are planned just 592 flights out of Hong Kong for the entire month of February, an average of only 21 per day, according to aviation data provider Cirium, with numerous routes restricted and several destinations blacklisted due to high levels of Covid. On schedules dating back to August 2003, this is the fewest. Before the epidemic, Hong Kong had more than 14,000 services departing practically every month.

Cerium data show that departures on Thursday were down to only 22, nearly half of the daily number in December. Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. is only flying three trips to Shanghai and one to Chengdu on Friday. Before the virus wiped all travel, Hong Kong's flagship carrier and its defunct sister Cathay Dragon flew out of the city on more than 210 flights every day.

The comprehensive flight ban on nine nations, including the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia, will be extended until April 20, according to Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam. Except for travelers from the mainland and Taiwan, all transit travel is prohibited.

Despite upgrading one service to a wide-body aircraft to meet high demand, Hong Kong Airlines Ltd. stated it would operate two daily flights to Shanghai through the end of March. However, all tickets except March 25 are sold out on the company's website.

The airline has acknowledged that passenger capacity on flights to Shanghai will be halved. "To accordance with local authorities' current pandemic preventive measures, seat capacity for aircraft departing from Hong Kong is restricted at 50%," a business spokeswoman stated in a text message.

The comprehensive flight ban on nine nations, including the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia, will be extended until April 20, according to Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam. Except for travelers from the mainland and Taiwan, all transit travel is prohibited.S


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