Cathay Pacific has unveiled plans to more than double its flights frequency to China, after the Hong Kong SAR Government decided to allow quarantine-free travel between Hong Kong and the Chinese Mainland.

The new rule will be implemented from 8 January 2023.

Welcoming the move, the Hong Kong flagship carrier has decided to operate 61 return flights a week between Hong Kong and 13 Mainland cities.

Cathay Pacific currently runs 27 flights from Hong Kong to the Mainland, and 50 flights from the Mainland to Hong Kong on a weekly basis.

In a statement, the airline said: “From 8 January 2023, Cathay Pacific will increase its flights between Hong Kong and Beijing to ten pairs per week, and between Hong Kong and Shanghai (Pudong) to 21 pairs per week.

“The airline is also resuming flights to Guangzhou with five return flights per week. Meanwhile, from 14 January 2023, the airline will increase its flights between Hong Kong and Xiamen to four pairs per week, and between Hong Kong and Chengdu to six pairs per week.”

The carrier looks to gradually resume and add more flights ‘progressively’, with plans to operate more than 100 return flights a week by March 2023.

Cathay Pacific Group said that it is committed to re-establishing the connectivity of the Hong Kong international aviation hub, with a rebound to pre-pandemic levels expected by the end of next year.

Last April, the airline announced plans to introduce a pilot corporate sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) programme in Asia.

As part of this initiative, it decided to work with eight corporates to support the use of green fuel on its business travel flights from Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA).