During Friday, Cathay Pacific completed the planned acquisition of low-cost carrier Hong Kong Express Airlines.
As such, Hong Kong Express Airlines (HK Express) is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Cathay Pacific, after purchasing it from HNA Group
All services that are booked to operate will remain as-is, with customers being able to book flights as needed.
HK Express currently has a fleet of 8 Airbus A320ceo, 5 Airbus A320neo and 11 Airbus A321 aircraft in its fleet.
At the top, Ronald Lam will join HK Express as its CEO.
For those collecting miles, with Asia Miles (Cathay Pacific’s mileage programme) will become a new rewards partner, with the reward-U programme being wound down. There will be a conversion optiona available, converting 8 reward-U points to 1 Asia Miles.
The options will be
- Passengers purchasing HK Express tickets on or before 20 August 2019 will continue to earn reward-U points
- All points holders will have the flexibility to redeem their reward-U points on HK Express flights any time on or before 31 December 2019
- Alternatively, passengers can choose to convert their reward-U points to Asia Miles from the fourth quarter of 2019 to 31 December 2019 at a one-off conversion rate offered by Asia Miles, 8 reward-U points to 1 Asia Miles. After conversion, guests can redeem points on HK Express e-vouchers and other offers via the Asia Miles platform.
HK Express ceases issuing reward-U points for tickets purchased after 20 August 2019. If you have any, now is a good time to check at https://www.reward-u.com/en/earn/goodbye-reward-u-232
Cathay Pacific Chief Executive Officer and HK Express Chairman Rupert Hogg said:
“We are very excited to welcome HK Express into the group. We strongly believe that the acquisition is good for the travelling public, good for HK Express, good for the Cathay Pacific Group, and good for the development of Hong Kong as a global aviation hub.
“HK Express will continue to operate as a stand-alone airline using the low-cost carrier business model. I would also like to reassure HK Express customers that there is no change to the airline’s operating model and that business will continue as usual. There will be more value fares and more destinations available to travellers.
“We look forward to working with the HK Express teams to ensure a smooth transition and to continue to grow the airline in order to better serve its customers.”
Snapping up Hong Kong Express means Cathay Pacific has got two important things – a pre-built low-cost carrier that it can grow out, and additional slots at Hong Kong International Airport – a valuable commodity until the next phase airport expansion is completed.
With 26 destinations, there will be a chance for Cathay Pacific to segment its traffic without cannibalising the main-line operation too much.
And it’s not often you can buy a fully built airline, ready to go and integrate with your own group of airlines.
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