Hong Kong airlines initially operated a nice collection of routes around Asia. Then, the airline embarked on a massive expansion, ordering a very large number of new planes and using them to new long distance destinations in the Australian, New Zealand and North American.
In June 2017, Skytrax announced that Hong Kong Airlines was the second-best airline in the Asia region and 24th best internationally. Having flown them a few times, they are definitely a great airline.
The trouble is they have been losing money and things really came unstuck over the last year with resignations of management team and the HK government actively considering a contingency plan should the airline collapse.
In March 2019 HK airlines, announced a reduction in its passenger fleet, from 38 to 28 planes. Almost all of the new long distance destinations have been suspended.
This month, the airline announced it would stop its Hong Kong to Los Angeles service on February 6th, 2020, effectively exiting the US market. Vancouver is its only long distance route left and it faces schedule reductions. I cannot see it staying in place much longer.
With Hong Kong impacted by five months of anti-government protests, the airline’s already precarious financial situation has worsened. I am booked on them again next week and as per usual, am wondering if they will be flying! The HK government has ordered the airline reduce capacity by six percent to ensure its on going viability. Will this work? Will the Chinese authorities inject more money? Or will we finally say good bye to HK airlines?