Edited by: Nick Ellis
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Cathay Pacific passengers passing through Hong Kong International Airport (HKG) might notice some changes to their lounge experience starting tomorrow, November 1, 2023.
Hong Kong’s flag carrier confirmed to Executive Traveller that customer-facing roles will carried out by Cathay Pacific personnel rather than employees of contractor Sodexo.
An airline spokesperson told Executive Traveller that the move will allow the carrier to provide a better customer experience within lounges and more consistency across different elements of a passenger’s journey with the airline.
Here’s what the changes will mean for your next visit to a Hong Kong Cathay Pacific lounge.
Service Changes Coming to Cathay Pacific’s Hong Kong Lounges
Cathay Pacific has a total of 5 premium lounges at Hong Kong International: The Deck, The Pier Business, The Pier First, The Wing Business, and The Wing First.
While this news may seem minor on its face, frequent travelers or fans of the airline will longingly remember the period from 1998 through 2016 when Cathay’s lounges were operated by a branch of the ultra-exclusive Peninsula Hotels Group. During this period of time, it meant anyone visiting the airline’s lounges could expect the very best in customer service and the passenger experience before stepping foot on a Cathay Pacific plane.
In recent years, the airline shifted operations of its lounges to Sodexo, a third-party contractor, which took the experience down a notch or 2 in the minds of many.
Now, however, that’s changing once again. Starting tomorrow, November 1, 2023, Cathay Pacific begins the process of bringing the operation of each of its 5 Hong Kong lounges back in-house. The Pier First lounge will be the starting point for this project, and the rest of the airline’s lounges at its home hub will follow over the next several months.
The Pier First — often rated by frequent premium travelers as Cathay’s best lounge in Hong Kong — was the last to welcome back passengers after the pandemic when it finally reopened its doors in July 2023.
The best way to experience the refreshed service at Cathay’s Hong Kong lounges is to do so on a flight from Asia back to North America. The airline operates nonstop flights to the following cities around the continent: Boston (BOS), Chicago (ORD), Los Angeles (LAX), New York (JFK), San Francisco (SFO), Toronto (YYZ), and Vancouver (YVR).
Eligible Cathay Pacific flyers can look forward to an elevated standard of service across the airline’s lounges at its home base in Hong Kong starting this week. The Pier First lounge is the first to see in-house employees return, but the 4 other lounges will follow in its footsteps over the course of the next few months.
Featured Image Credit: Daniel Ross
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