Hong Kong To Allow More Than 400k Flights to Enhance Tourism

As part of a scheme to get more people to buy aircraft tickets, 500,000 people might be able to take advantage of free long-haul flights.

Plans to distribute 500,000 tickets that were pre-purchased two years ago have been verified by the Hong Kong airport administration.

As Hong Kong airlines start to reopen its doors to tourism, the plan is to pay customers to use their services in order to support them.

Due to its Covid-19 quarantine regulations, which at one point compelled entering passengers to spend 21 days in a hotel room at their own expense with only Hong Kong residents being given access, Hong Kong has been essentially walled off from the rest of the globe.

Hong Kong’s covid restrictions had shut down tourism for a long time

When the quarantine period was formally abolished on September 26, it had been shortened from seven to three days, causing hordes of residents to visit airline websites to make flight reservations.

The city’s primary airline, Cathay Pacific, established a virtual “waiting room” for users to access its website at one point, and Expedia, an online travel agency, noticed an increase in demand for flights from Hong Kong to Tokyo and Osaka of nine and eleven times, respectively.

As was previously noted, Hong Kong, which adopted China’s “zero-Covid” policies, had some of the strictest quarantine regulations in the entire world. But as of last month, visitors to the city were no longer obliged to submit to hotel quarantine or have a COVID test come back negative before boarding a flight to Hong Kong.

Why does giving off free flights enhance tourism?

Giving away free airline tickets, in the opinion of Prudence Lai, will speed up the process of regaining Hong Kong’s reputation as a premier tourism destination. The BBC was informed by the senior analyst at market research firm Euromonitor International that Hong Kong’s pre-Covid position depicted the market prospect of a full comeback.

Next year, Lai said, both inbound and outbound travelers will receive complimentary tickets.

The city’s Covid curbs were removed last month. All foreign visitors are now permitted to go back to their homes or other accommodations of their choosing, but they are required to practice self-monitoring for three days after leaving the Chinese special administrative hub.

Profit margins to increase through free flights and tourist luring

The Travel Industry Council of Hong Kong anticipates a 50% increase in outward travel during the coming few months. Just over 183,600 visitors came to Hong Kong between January and August of 2022, according to the most recent numbers released by the tourism board. The BBC notes that although that represents a huge increase over the prior year, it is still a considerable distance below the pre-pandemic figures of 56 million back in 2019.

How does one apply for free flight tickets to Hong Kong?

Since Hong Kong intends to issue complimentary tickets next year, there is no reliable information on how to apply for these free seats. Both inbound and outbound travelers will be given tickets by the Hong Kong airport authority. But no timetable has been established as of yet.

Dane Cheng, executive director of the Hong Kong Tourism Board, notified the BBC that Hong Kong Tourism will begin the advertising campaigns for the complimentary tickets as soon as the government proclaims that it will end all Covid-19 limitations for arriving travelers. The airport authorities will complete the deal with the airline companies, he continued.

Well, we will update you if there’s news on the availability of the free flight tickets.

Thus, this was all about Hong Kong allowing more than 400k flights for enhancing tourism.