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Cathay Pacific To Launch Direct Flights from Hong Kong to Riyadh
Cathay Pacific To Launch Direct Flights from Hong Kong to Riyadh

Cathay Pacific is set to launch direct flights from Hong Kong to Riyadh starting October 28th, 2024, to enhance connectivity, tourism, and trade between Hong Kong and Saudi Arabia. 

Cathay Pacific will operate three weekly return flights using Airbus A350-900 aircraft featuring Business, Premium Economy, and Economy cabins.

The new flights underscore the airline’s commitment to expanding tourism and cultural exchanges with the Kingdom.

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The Announcement Ceremony

Image Credit Cathay Pacific

The announcement of this historic flight path from Hong Kong to Riyadh was commemorated with a ceremonial signing event in Hong Kong, graced by esteemed dignitaries from both nations. 

Among the distinguished attendees were Hong Kong’s Secretary for Transport and Logistics, Lam Sai-hung, the Consul General of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in Hong Kong SAR, Hamad Aljebreen, and Cathay Pacific’s Chief Executive Officer, Ronald Lam.

This pivotal addition to Cathay Pacific’s network underscores the carrier’s unwavering commitment to fortifying Hong Kong’s role as a crucial aviation nexus while bolstering economic, cultural, and tourism ties between the two nations.

Fostering Bilateral Cooperation

Image Credit Zheng Wanying

Launching this route is pivotal in nurturing improved relations, fostering communication and cooperation bridges, and fortifying economic, tourism, and cultural bonds between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Hong Kong SAR. 

Introducing this flight path would significantly contribute to broadening the horizons of cooperation, amplifying partnerships, and attracting increased investments, capital, and visitors to both nations, aligning seamlessly with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 and the Belt and Road Initiative aspirations.

Enhancing Travel Convenience 

Image Credit Cathay Pacific

The service’s pivotal role is to fortify the airline’s network in the Middle East and bolster Hong Kong’s connectivity with this strategically significant region. 

This new offering would provide travelers with enhanced convenience and various options while concurrently catalyzing business, trade, and tourism opportunities.

Cathay Pacific’s role as an enabler seamlessly connects Hong Kong and the Chinese Mainland with the world. Cathay Pacific’s steadfast support for the Central Government’s Belt and Road Initiative highlights the airline’s existing service to 21 destinations across 14 participating countries.

Belt and Road Initiative

Image Credit Tyrone Siu

Moreover, the introduction of this flight path aligns seamlessly with the overarching objectives of the Belt and Road Initiative, a visionary strategy spearheaded by the Chinese government. 

It aims to foster global development and interconnectivity through infrastructure investments and economic cooperation across more than 150 countries and international organizations.

Unlocking Saudi Arabia’s Tourism Potential

Image Credit Cathay Pacific

This development will further fortify air connectivity to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia from key source markets, stimulating inbound tourism growth. 

Travelers from Hong Kong and Cathay Pacific’s extensive network spanning China, Australia, New Zealand, Southeast Asia, and other Asia-Pacific nations would seize this opportunity to explore Saudi Arabia’s vast and diverse tourism potential.

Aircraft Specifications

Image Credit Cathay Pacific

Cathay Pacific will operate three weekly return flights between Hong Kong and Riyadh, utilizing its state-of-the-art Airbus A350-900 aircraft. On the state-of-the-art Airbus A350-900 aircraft, passengers will experience a world of comfort and luxury, with well-appointed cabins curated to their every need.

These cutting-edge jets feature well-appointed Business, Premium Economy, and Economy cabins, ensuring a comfortable and enjoyable travel experience for all passengers.

Image Credit Cathay Pacific

The Business Class cabin promises an unrivaled experience, offering luxurious lie-flat seats, gourmet cuisine, and personalized service that epitomizes the epitome of modern air travel.

Image Credit Cathay Pacific

For those seeking a balance between comfort and affordability, the Premium Economy and Economy cabins provide a comfortable and enjoyable journey, ensuring that every traveler arrives at their destination refreshed and rejuvenated.

Flight Schedules

Image Credit Cathay Pacific

The flight schedule for this highly anticipated service is as follows (all times are local and subject to regulatory approval):

Flight No.OriginDestinationDepartureArrivalDays of Operation
CX647Hong Kong (HKG)Riyadh (RUH)15:0520:15Monday, Thursday, Saturday
CX648Riyadh (RUH)Hong Kong (HKG)22:1511:10 (+1 day)Monday, Thursday, Saturday

Complementing Cargo Operations

Image Credit Cathay Pacific

In addition, Cathay Pacific’s dedicated cargo division, Cathay Cargo, currently operates weekly freighter flights between Hong Kong and Riyadh. This existing cargo link further reinforces the airline’s commitment to facilitating trade and commerce between the two nations.

Unlocking New Horizons for Traveling

For leisure travelers, the direct flights between Hong Kong and Riyadh will unveil a world of unexplored wonders and rich cultural tapestries. 

Visitors from Hong Kong and Cathay Pacific’s extensive network will now have the opportunity to immerse themselves in Saudi Arabia’s and Riyadh’s captivating heritage, architectural marvels, and diverse landscapes, ranging from pristine deserts to vibrant urban centers.

Simultaneously, business travelers will benefit from enhanced convenience and efficiency, enabling them to forge new partnerships, explore investment opportunities, and cultivate commercial ties between the two economic powerhouses. 

The reduced travel times and seamless connectivity will undoubtedly facilitate the exchange of ideas, expertise, and resources, fostering an environment conducive to innovation and growth.

Best Places to Visit in Riyadh

Riyadh provides a wide range of attractions to suit different interests and preferences. Whether someone desires to fully experience the lively local culture, savor delicious dishes, or discover the city’s impressive architectural wonders, these are the top destinations to check out in Riyadh:

A Promising Future Ahead

Image Credit Cathay Pacific

Launching direct flights between Hong Kong and Riyadh marks a significant milestone in the ever-growing partnership between Cathay Pacific and Saudi Arabia. 

As the two nations continue to strengthen their ties, this new air bridge promises to unlock many opportunities for collaboration, cultural exchange, and economic prosperity.

With Cathay Pacific’s unwavering commitment to excellence and Saudi Arabia’s ambitious Vision 2030, the future holds immense potential for further enhancing air connectivity, fostering tourism, and catalyzing mutually beneficial endeavors that will shape the global landscape for years.

Recent Developments in Riyadh 

Novotel Riyadh Sahafa Hotel 

Image Credit Accor

The new Novotel Riyadh Sahafa Hotel, located in the lively Al Sahafa district of Riyadh, has been opened by Accor for guests. 

Hessa Al Mazroa, the first female General Manager in the country for Accor, leads the hotel, conveniently situated near the King Abdullah Financial District (KAFD) and just 15 km from King Khalid International Airport. 

With 232 luxurious and contemporary rooms and suites, a top-notch fitness center, an outdoor pool, a variety of dining options, and impressive views of Olaya Street, one of the bustling streets of Riyadh, the hotel is a prime destination for guests. 

This marks Accor’s 9th Novotel property in Saudi Arabia as they continue to expand in the country.

Radisson Collection Residence Hotel Riyadh

Image Credit Radisson Hotel Group

Radisson Hotel Group and Zamil Group have collaborated to introduce a five-star Radisson Collection Residence hotel in Riyadh by the end of 2024.

This new establishment, Radisson Collection Residence Riyadh, will be the first in Saudi Arabia. It was designed in the iconic Salmani architectural style and on King Fahad Road.

The hotel will boast 170 opulent rooms and suites, including 8 penthouses and 4 villas, along with a rooftop pool offering breathtaking city views. With this being Radisson’s 10th property in Riyadh, it aligns with the city’s rapid development as a sought-after destination for business and leisure.

Marriott W Riyadh

Marriott International and King Abdullah Financial District have agreed to introduce the W Hotels brand to Riyadh’s KAFD

The upcoming establishment, W Riyadh, is set to launch in 2025 and will feature 210 lavish rooms and suites, 7 diverse dining options, and spacious event venues, including signature W brand areas such as the AWAY Spa and FIT fitness center. 

This collaboration aligns with KAFD’s goal to become the most renowned and cutting-edge business district globally, currently housing Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund and various multinational companies.

IHG and Regent Hotels Luxury Hotels in KAFD

Image Credit Riyadh Expo 2030

IHG Hotels & Resorts will be expanding their presence in Riyadh’s King Abdullah Financial District (KAFD) with the opening of two new luxury hotels – Regent Riyadh KAFD and InterContinental Riyadh KAFD by January 2027, 

Visitors will have the opportunity to experience the stunning architecture of KAFD and dine at world-class restaurants in the world’s largest LEED-certified mixed-use business district when IHG’s first KAFD hotel, Kimpton at KAFD, opens later this year.

The Rotana Group Hotels

Image Credit Rotana Hotel Management Corporation

The Rotana Hotel Group has announced its plans to double its presence in Saudi Arabia by launching 8 new hotels within the Kingdom in four years. 

This announcement was made during the recent Saudi Tourism Forum held in Riyadh to expand to a total of 16 properties and 4,400 guest rooms. The growth plan encompasses the development of new hotels in Riyadh, Madinah, Khobar, and Al Baha.

These hotel developments will redefine luxury hospitality standards and contribute to Saudi Arabia’s vision of becoming a leading global tourism destination.

Keep Reading: Radisson and Zamil Group Partner To Open Radisson Collection Residence in Riyadh

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