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Cathay to codeshare on Qantas Hong Kong flights?

written by WOFA | January 9, 2019

A file image of Cathay Pacific and Qantas aircraft at Sydney Airport. (Rob Finlayson)
A file image of Cathay Pacific and Qantas aircraft at Sydney Airport. (Rob Finlayson)

Qantas has sought regulatory approval for Cathay Pacific to codeshare on its flights between Australia and Hong Kong.

The apparent expansion of the airlines’ recently-announced codesharing arrangement is revealed in a Qantas application to the International Air Services Commission (IASC), the Australian government body which allocates international airline capacity.

“The International Air Services Commission (the Commission) has received an application from Qantas seeking to vary Determination [2015] IASC 115 (as varied) to permit the use of the capacity for the provision of codeshare services with Cathay Pacific Airways Limited (Cathay Pacific) on the Hong Kong route,” the IASC said on its website on Tuesday.

In a letter to the IASC, Megan Morris, Qantas’s acting head of international affairs wrote that: “it is proposed that Cathay Pacific will offer codeshare services on flights operated by Qantas on the Hong Kong route from 31 March 2019.”

For now Qantas is keeping details of the proposed codeshare expansion under wraps.

“We are looking at expanding our codeshare arrangement with Cathay Pacific to provide more options for our customers,” a Qantas spokesperson told Australian Aviation via email.

“We will provide further details following the IASC process.”


Qantas operates nonstop flights from Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney to Hong Kong with a mix of Airbus A330s, A380s and Boeing 747s and 787s.

Meanwhile, Cathay Pacific uses all available capacity for Hong Kong flag carriers to Australia’s four major gateways of Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney under the current bilateral air services agreement between the two countries.


  • Mick


    I wonder if this is possibly a pullback from CX on selected routes/frequencies to Australia to control costs?
    Yes, they use all available capacity between HKG and AUS today – but do they still need to and can afford to?
    They must’ve been hurt by several mainland Chinese airlines now flying directly to Australia where CX would’ve once picked up much of that feeder traffic in HKG.
    Don’t know if VA flying MEL/SYD-HKG has had any impact on CX.
    The flights still seem full – I flew CX HKG-SYD last month in Premium Economy and the flight seemed very full (granted it was 10 days before Christmas so peak travelling season).
    Interested to see how this plays out as a frequent QF/CX customer through HKG between Australia and Europe.

  • David


    A good idea. Qantas can then fill all their seats, and maybe upgrade the planes used to HKG.

  • Rhino


    Will this finally include CX ADL flights?

  • OVflyer


    Love the idea of using points to upgrade on a flight to HongKong, as long it isn’t a B 787 with minimal business class seating which makes the chance of an upgrade next to impossible. What are the chances of using the beloved A 380 if the link proves popular?

  • Craig


    Every time Virgin start a route the encumbent airlines want codeshares to minimise or push Virgin out. I hope it gets rejected

  • Scott


    Craig, I totally agree. The timing is uncanny here, Virgin enter the market, and then you have the two major players wanting a tie up controlling between them 90% of the market, the regulator should laugh this application out of the building.

  • Mark


    It seems QF and CX might actually of kissed and made up after years of not seeing eye to eye. It makes commercial sense to have a better partnership as both are major Arline’s within Oneworld. Would be nice to see more reward seats in business too.

  • Dave


    Mick, maybe its the opposite. CX are full and can’t put anymore seats/flights on, so they look to put passengers on QF flights by codesharing.

  • Corey


    Qantas is planning to use more 787s for the HNK route. I know for sure they will be using the 787 from Brisbane once they get the further 6 which they have on order. I do think a 787-10 would be better suited for these routes and or higher capacity 787-9s. Asia/Japan/Koria/China, middle east and Europe could be all operated with 787-9s and 10s with a stopover in either Thailand or Singapour. More bums in seats the better!

  • I just seen that Boeing has added its next schedule deliveries from Airframes 900 to 950. In this list is airframes 921 for QANTAS, Airframe 929 for QANTAS and Airframe 941 for QANTAS. Based on current deliveries (average per month), this will have the next three aircraft being delivered to QANTAS as follows: Airframes 921 and 929 in March 2020 and Airframe 949 in May 2020. All aircraft are 787-900 fo QANTS, so no new aircraft for Jetstar.

  • Mike


    Unrelated to the QF/CX codeshare topic, in response to Andrew Ferguson’s comment about no new B787 deliveries scheduled for Jetstar, reason perhaps is that in 2020 JQ will receive the first of eighteen A321-neo LR aircraft.
    The arrival of the new Airbus aircraft will free up a number of JQ B787s from the SYD-DPS(Denpasar/Bali) and MEL-DPS routes initially.
    The A321-neo LR could conceivably operate JQ’s CNS-NRT(Tokyo Narita) and KIX(Osaka) services too, releasing further B787s.
    The “surplus” B787-8s might be deployed on new routes or could even be transferred to QF which has crews already operating the B787-9 series.
    Wait for the announcement!

  • Andrew Ferguson


    After doing further analysis of the Boeing 787 Production schedule, Boeing now appears to be averaging the delivery of 145 Airframes to Airline operators per year. On that basis and on the analysis of 2018 deliveries, I expect the most likely delivery dates (on the currently unpublished delivery schedule) will mean QANTAS will receive aircraft 921 in at the end of Nov 2019 or at the beginning of Dec 2019, with Aircraft 929 delivered that same month (probably end Dec 2019). The third aircraft should be delivered in February 2020 if the same average deliveries take place.

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