Hong Kong Airlines to add North America services in 2017

30 Nov 2016 by Craig Bright
Hong Kong Airlines' new A350-900 business class seat product
Hong Kong Airlines will be expanding its services to key North American cities as well as extending its coverage in Asia-Pacific in 2017. The enhancements were announced at the airline's recent 10th anniversary celebration in Hong Kong on Monday (November 28), which was attended by members of the Hong Kong government including HKSAR Chief Executive, CY Leung. Key among the new North America routes will be a daily flight service to Vancouver, the airline's North American debut, set to begin June 30, 2017. Hong Kong Airlines currently operates services to Boston, Chicago, Seattle and Toronto through a codeshare with Hainan Airlines via Beijing Capital Airport and Shanghai Pudong Airport. The carrier will be deploying its A330-200 on the Vancouver route in a two-class set up with 264 seats - 18 in business and 246 in economy. In addition to the new route announcement, Hong Kong Airlines has launched a Marvellous Journey Symphony competition, offering passengers the chance to win pairs of round-trip tickets to select destinations by sharing their experiences of those destinations. The promotion runs until December 19, with destinations changing each week. Speaking at the event, Zhang Kui, co-chairman of Hong Kong Airlines, said: "With its roots firmly in Hong Kong and a focus on the Asia-Pacific, Hong Kong Airlines strives to chart its future course and maintain its robust growth. As of today, Hong Kong Airlines has established a vast destination network covering over 30 major cities in the Asia-Pacific. Our passenger traffic will reach a record high of 6.6 million, bringing our market share of Hong Kong airport to approximately ten per cent. This year marks the launch of 11 new destinations including Australia and New Zealand, which is a record-breaking achievement." Attendees at the celebration were also given the chance to sample the Hong Kong carrier's new business class seat product. The seat will be introduced on the airline’s new Airbus A350-900 aircraft, the first of which is scheduled to be delivered in August next year. The seat is comfortable, offering a 180-degree recline, and comes with three storage compartments. Two of these are on the partition side, with one concealing a set of headphones and a TV controller with a screen (a second set of controls for lighting and assistance is located on the partition beneath the compartment), while the third compartment is located within the opposite armrest, which can be adjusted manually. On the demonstration seat product, the tray table - which slides along a rack down and towards the passenger - didn't fully stow, however Business Traveller Asia-Pacific has been informed by Hong Kong Airlines that the demonstration seat product was not fully representative and that the tray table on the final A350 business class seat on the A350 will be able to stow. Hong Kong Airlines currently has a total of 15 A350-900 aircraft on order. These aircraft will complement the carrier’s North America expansion, though with the new Vancouver route beginning prior to the delivery of the first A350, it remains to be seen on which route the aircraft will first be deployed. The Hong Kong carrier recently launched new daily direct services to Auckland and Incheon, both served by A330 aircraft, along with ordering nine A330s in September.
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