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SCMP: CX axing IAD, BRU, LGW, EWR, SEA, DUB and MLE permanently

SCMP: CX axing IAD, BRU, LGW, EWR, SEA, DUB and MLE permanently

Old Nov 17, 20, 11:05 am
  #16  
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There goes the only OW-carrier to East Asia from WAS (IIRC JL also served IAD years ago with a 743).

Back before COVID became what it is today, and CX "temporarily" suspended IAD, I had a feeling that it wasn't going to resume. As a DC resident, I was thrilled when CX announced service to IAD, although I saw the writing on the wall when it was almost immediately down-gauged to a A359 from A35K. From the times I had taken it, the flight was almost always nearly empty. There was never a need to pay for J or PE on the route because you could almost always get a whole row in Y to yourself.

Personally, I cannot understand why the WAS market struggles with its East Asian services. There is a daily ICN service on KE (77W pre-COVID), a HND service on both UA and NH (772 and 77W respectively), and PEK on both UA and CA (787-8 and 77W, respectively). WAS is soon to be the third largest metro area in the country, and is by far the metro area with the highest income. A common argument is that IAD fails to attract long-haul routes because of the nature of the market (government-related travel). While government-related travel is important, I argue that the region has become very diversified within the last 15 years or so to the point where it isn't as large of a factor. I would have expected IAD to have both TPE (BR announced plans for IAD years back but never started) and PVG service by now (COVID-free world).

Take BOS, which is a significantly smaller market, for example, which is keeping its CX services, but also has PVG service, in addition to PEK/ICN/TYO.
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Old Nov 17, 20, 11:29 am
  #17  
 
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Hate to see IAD grow since we move to the area and it make for a great trip to SE Asia via HKG. It didnt seem to be doing well before covid so I can understand why it would need to go though.
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Old Nov 17, 20, 12:31 pm
  #18  
 
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Originally Posted by Reply1984 View Post
Read some comments from Facebook Group about SEA getting axed.

The business of SEA alone was not very bad. I guess the main reason is about the competition between YVR and SEA. Passengers to cities other than Vancouver and Toronto in Canada used to transit in YVR but then were diverted to SEA. Cargo business in YVR also relied on US markets but SEA took away some cargo business. Now the demand between YVR and HKG will take years to resume, so cut SEA first.
Alaska's Canadian departures aren't timed very well for CX connections. I've had a peek at the connections list ex-SEA a couple of times and didn't spot any Canadian connections. Granted, I have a small sample size, but it does make me doubt the extent to which SEA was cannibalizing on YVR traffic. If anything there seemed to be lot more ex-SFO/LAX passengers on the list.

One thing's for sure, though - Y seemed to be rather dependent on domestic connecting traffic.
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Old Nov 18, 20, 9:27 pm
  #19  
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Originally Posted by CLT View Post
There goes the only OW-carrier to East Asia from WAS (IIRC JL also served IAD years ago with a 743).

Back before COVID became what it is today, and CX "temporarily" suspended IAD, I had a feeling that it wasn't going to resume. As a DC resident, I was thrilled when CX announced service to IAD, although I saw the writing on the wall when it was almost immediately down-gauged to a A359 from A35K. From the times I had taken it, the flight was almost always nearly empty. There was never a need to pay for J or PE on the route because you could almost always get a whole row in Y to yourself.

Personally, I cannot understand why the WAS market struggles with its East Asian services. There is a daily ICN service on KE (77W pre-COVID), a HND service on both UA and NH (772 and 77W respectively), and PEK on both UA and CA (787-8 and 77W, respectively). WAS is soon to be the third largest metro area in the country, and is by far the metro area with the highest income. A common argument is that IAD fails to attract long-haul routes because of the nature of the market (government-related travel). While government-related travel is important, I argue that the region has become very diversified within the last 15 years or so to the point where it isn't as large of a factor. I would have expected IAD to have both TPE (BR announced plans for IAD years back but never started) and PVG service by now (COVID-free world).

Take BOS, which is a significantly smaller market, for example, which is keeping its CX services, but also has PVG service, in addition to PEK/ICN/TYO.
IAD HKG didn't work as there is no political reason to fly between the two cities unlike ICN PEK HND/NRT.

BOS HKG serve the oversea student market plus there are more Chinese diaspora with HK roots in the Boston area.
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Old Nov 18, 20, 10:52 pm
  #20  
 
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The mentioned routes have not been 'axed'.
They have been 'suspended'.
The SCMP article mentioned above is yet another example their 'tabloid' reporting where accurately reporting facts are often a secondary consideration.
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Old Nov 18, 20, 11:44 pm
  #21  
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Originally Posted by oldchinahand View Post
The mentioned routes have not been 'axed'.
They have been 'suspended'.
The SCMP article mentioned above is yet another example their 'tabloid' reporting where accurately reporting facts are often a secondary consideration.
For all intents and purposes they are cancelled.
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Old Nov 19, 20, 2:25 am
  #22  
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Originally Posted by CLT View Post
Personally, I cannot understand why the WAS market struggles with its East Asian services. There is a daily ICN service on KE (77W pre-COVID), a HND service on both UA and NH (772 and 77W respectively), and PEK on both UA and CA (787-8 and 77W, respectively). WAS is soon to be the third largest metro area in the country, and is by far the metro area with the highest income. A common argument is that IAD fails to attract long-haul routes because of the nature of the market (government-related travel). While government-related travel is important, I argue that the region has become very diversified within the last 15 years or so to the point where it isn't as large of a factor. I would have expected IAD to have both TPE (BR announced plans for IAD years back but never started) and PVG service by now (COVID-free world).
But there is one thing you seem to forget - IAD is the only "international" airport in the area. The majority of AA flights are operated out of DCA instead. Do you believe that AA will schedule a IAD-DCA shuttle?

FWIW - it does not matter whether the market is large or not, rich or not rich. The reality is simple - no demand. Before CX entering the market, UA was the only airline capable of operating IAD-HKG, if desired. Given all the data UA has, if the demand was there, wouldn't you believe that UA would not cash on that?

Originally Posted by tentseller View Post
BOS HKG serve the oversea student market plus there are more Chinese diaspora with HK roots in the Boston area.
International students can barely justify a seasonal flight. But for regular service, you need more.

FWIW - given all the research facilities near Boston, there should be some demand. But I am afraid that BOS is already on the chopping board. It is lucky for now not to meet the cut. Don't forget you get YYZ and JFK nearby, which makes transfer quite easy.
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Old Nov 19, 20, 8:31 pm
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Originally Posted by garykung View Post
FWIW - given all the research facilities near Boston, there should be some demand. But I am afraid that BOS is already on the chopping board. It is lucky for now not to meet the cut. Don't forget you get YYZ and JFK nearby, which makes transfer quite easy.
Previously ORD was the gateway for BOS. AA was very happy about the transit passengers on ORD-BOS from their partners. But nowadays when airlines find that the demand of BOS, especially the demand in the business class, is quite robust, they started to cut ORD service. (AA cut all ORD-Asia service, UA cut ORD-HKG, OZ cut ORD-ICN)
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Old Nov 19, 20, 10:26 pm
  #24  
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Originally Posted by Reply1984 View Post
Previously ORD was the gateway for BOS. AA was very happy about the transit passengers on ORD-BOS from their partners. But nowadays when airlines find that the demand of BOS, especially the demand in the business class, is quite robust, they started to cut ORD service. (AA cut all ORD-Asia service, UA cut ORD-HKG, OZ cut ORD-ICN)
UA's ORD-HKG is only suspended, not cancelled. The anti-extradition bill movement harms UA's HKG business seriously.

Also - for the record - all UA HKG passenger service is still on suspension due to COVID-19.
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Old Nov 20, 20, 12:44 am
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Originally Posted by garykung View Post
But there is one thing you seem to forget - IAD is the only "international" airport in the area. The majority of AA flights are operated out of DCA instead. Do you believe that AA will schedule a IAD-DCA shuttle?

FWIW - it does not matter whether the market is large or not, rich or not rich. The reality is simple - no demand. Before CX entering the market, UA was the only airline capable of operating IAD-HKG, if desired. Given all the data UA has, if the demand was there, wouldn't you believe that UA would not cash on that?



International students can barely justify a seasonal flight. But for regular service, you need more.

FWIW - given all the research facilities near Boston, there should be some demand. But I am afraid that BOS is already on the chopping board. It is lucky for now not to meet the cut. Don't forget you get YYZ and JFK nearby, which makes transfer quite easy.
FWIW I am not sure about how JFK and YYZ make transfers easy. YYZ T3 which CX uses doesn't seem to have Intl-USA (or vv) connection facilities, and always requires Canadian immigration/customs, a baggage claim and recheck. JFK T8 was great for some time, until AA cut so many routes from JFK that many connections require a ride to LGA. Yes there is the agreement with B6, but an airtrain to T5 isn't exactly fun and B6 isn't the B6 it used to be.

The BOS flights seem to always do pretty well in the front, as IME award seats are harder to come by (than say IAD or EWR). So my hope is they at least keep some BOS frequencies.
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Old Nov 20, 20, 2:53 am
  #26  
 
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Originally Posted by tentseller View Post
IAD HKG didn't work as there is no political reason to fly between the two cities unlike ICN PEK HND/NRT.

BOS HKG serve the oversea student market plus there are more Chinese diaspora with HK roots in the Boston area.

I flew SGN HKG IAD a fair bit (to get back to see family, not for business). Usually pretty full in J. Observationally, seemed to be way more ex SGN traffic on the IAD leg than to JFK, for example (in J anyway). I will def miss the IAD flight (though not surprised it was cut at all). That airport is so much nicer to navigate than JFK, and also much easier to in and out of the airport to home with a family in tow. Downside was no F optionality.
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Old Nov 20, 20, 3:14 am
  #27  
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Originally Posted by oldchinahand View Post
The mentioned routes have not been 'axed'.
They have been 'suspended'.
The SCMP article mentioned above is yet another example their 'tabloid' reporting where accurately reporting facts are often a secondary consideration.
Whatever word is used, CX won't fly these routes for the next few years.If traffic rebounds a bit in the next couple of years, they might restart some of their 13 European destinations (included both LHR and LGW) but not BRU or DUB.
Scrapping the route means that all local staff/arrangements/contracts are terminated. That is a bit different from suspension.
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Old Nov 20, 20, 10:20 am
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Originally Posted by brunos View Post
Whatever word is used, CX won't fly these routes for the next few years.If traffic rebounds a bit in the next couple of years, they might restart some of their 13 European destinations (included both LHR and LGW) but not BRU or DUB.
Scrapping the route means that all local staff/arrangements/contracts are terminated. That is a bit different from suspension.
I agree. CX indicates that the demand for international travelling may rebound rapidly in H2 2021 and I guess CX may bring back almost all destinations by the end of 2021. CX sees these seven destinations will not be back at that time, so they decide to close the operation at first, instead of just suspending temporarily.
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Old Nov 20, 20, 2:03 pm
  #29  
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Originally Posted by shd9 View Post
FWIW I am not sure about how JFK and YYZ make transfers easy.
Partners, not procedures.
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Old Nov 20, 20, 10:11 pm
  #30  
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Originally Posted by Reply1984 View Post
I agree. CX indicates that the demand for international travelling may rebound rapidly in H2 2021 and I guess CX may bring back almost all destinations by the end of 2021. CX sees these seven destinations will not be back at that time, so they decide to close the operation at first, instead of just suspending temporarily.
I doubt that CX anticipates that international travel may rebound rapidly in H2 2021. The 25%/50% numbers were the most optimistic forecast (actually before Europe and US situation deteriorated badly). This was about capacity not pax traffic. And heavily biased towards regional as opposed to longhaul.
My guess, no better than yours, it that CX will not fly many more than the dozen of destinations that they currently serve (often not on a daily basis).
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