Business | TRAVEL INSIDER

Cathay names Japan GM; Hong Kong adds route; Iberia joins flight group

New Cathay Japan boss

Cathay Pacific recently appointed Lionel Kwok as general manager of the Hong Kong-based airline’s Japan office. Kwok assumed his new position from Sept. 19.

Born in 1964 in Hong Kong, Kwok joined Cathay Pacific in 1987 after graduating from the University of Hong Kong.

Serving as the assistant to the general manager of Japan from 1994 to 1996, Kwok maintains a deep interest in the Japanese market and local culture.

Having also served as the country manager of Vietnam and South Africa, Kwok has the experience of working as the managing director of Cathay Holidays, a Cathay group company, as well as the CEO of Global Logistics Systems, another group company.

Since 2012, Kwok was the general manager of the cargo service system project at Cathay’s Hong Kong headquarters.

Hong Kong adds route

Celebrating its 10th year, Hong Kong Airlines currently operates flights between Hong Kong and Narita, Kansai, Sapporo, Okayama, Miyazaki, Kagoshima and Okinawa airports.

On Sept. 14 it started twice-a-week direct flights between Hong Kong and Yonago in Tottori Prefecture.

Servicing the route with Airbus 320 aircraft, all seats on the new flight are economy class.

The new route has increased Japan-Hong Kong services to 51 flights every week.

The carrier is confident the new Yonago route serving western Japan will be as successful as the Hong Kong-Okayama route that it started in March.

Hong Kong Airlines currently covers major cities in the Asia Pacific region, including the Gold Coast, Cairns, Bali, Hanoi and Bangkok, and is expanding its network further from Hong Kong to Japan and beyond.

Iberia joins code group

From Sept. 21, Iberia Airlines has joined British Airways, Finnair and Japan Airlines in joint flight operations on routes from Japan to Europe.

The addition allows the four carriers to code share. Some will charge the same airfares for their respective flights.

Travelers will be offered more choices of departure and arrival times at airports in Japan.

The airports include those at Haneda, Narita, Chubu, Kansai and Fukuoka.

Overall, the larger coalition is expected to provide travelers with improved convenience and flexibility.

Additionally, this four-carrier group has allowed Japan Airlines to expand its code share flight services with Iberia Airlines.

These currently comprise the London-Madrid and Frankfurt-Madrid routes to include the Tokyo-Madrid route from Oct. 18.