Called it. 😉
Earlier I wrote about how Cathay Pacific hinted at how they’d soon launch a new flight to the US. They narrowed it down to nine cities for us, and just now they’ve announced what that new route will be.
Cathay Pacific will launch 4x weekly flights between Hong Kong and Seattle as of March 31, 2019. The new flight will operate with the following schedule:
CX857 Seattle to Hong Kong departing 1:05AM arriving 5:25AM (+1 day) [Mon, Wed, Fri, Sun]
CX858 Hong Kong to Seattle departing 11:55PM arriving 9:00PM [Tue, Thu, Sat, Sun]
The A350-900 that Cathay Pacific will use for the route features a total of 280 seats, including 38 business class seats, 28 premium economy seats, and 214 economy seats. Cathay Pacific’s A350s have wifi, and excellent reverse herringbone seats in business class.
The flight will cover a distance of 6,500 miles in each direction, and is blocked at 12hr5min eastbound and 13hr20min westbound. This will be Cathay Pacific’s eight US gateway and 10th North American gateway.
Cathay Pacific’s new flight is already bookable, and award availability is plentiful. It looks like all flights have four business class award seats available. If you want to redeem miles for this flight, you have two best options:
- You can redeem 70,000 American AAdvantage miles for a one-way business class ticket between the US and anywhere in Asia Zone 2
- You can redeem 50,000 Alaska Mileage Plan miles for a one-way ticket between the US and Asia, and you’re even allowed a free stopover in Hong Kong enroute to your final destination
- If you want to travel beyond Asia, Alaska Mileage Plan is a great deal, as you can redeem 60,000 miles to fly all the way to Australia, or 62,500 miles to fly all the way to Africa, India, or the Middle East; in all of those cases you can have a free stopover in Hong Kong enroute to your final destination
As I shared in my earlier post, Seattle seems like an obvious choice for Cathay Pacific:
- Seattle is a growing US market that has seen a ton of longhaul expansion
- Seattle is the closest major lower 48 US city to Asia, meaning the flight time is shortest, and therefore operating costs are lowest
- Cathay Pacific has a partnership with Alaska Airlines, so they’ll have a ton of connectivity
- Delta just announced that they’re discontinuing their flight between Seattle and Hong Kong, so Cathay Pacific will have a monopoly (and unlike Delta, they have the key benefit of having extensive connectivity at both airports)
What do you make of Cathay Pacific’s new route to Seattle?