The year 2017 marks 40 years since Cathay Pacific began operations on its Dubai route from its hub in Hong Kong in 1977, marking its 20th destination.
Cathay Pacific Country Manager UAE & Oman, Ashish Kapur, says, “Since launching the Dubai route four decades ago, we have played an important part in bringing visitors from different parts of the world to this fast growing country. We, as an airline, have come a long way in developing our products and services for our customers in this region and will continue our commitment in providing a high standard of service and connecting travellers from Dubai to Hong Kong and beyond.”
The twice-weekly service marked the Asian airline’s second destination in the region. The first flight, serviced by a Boeing 707, launched within a year of Cathay Pacific adding its first Middle East route to Bahrain. Leaving Hong Kong on Wednesdays and Sundays, CX741 and CX740, initially flew via Bangkok and Bahrain. A direct Hong Kong-Dubai service was introduced just 24 years late in 1993, complimenting Cathay Pacific’s existing service to the United Arab Emirates via Bangkok and Mumbai. During the last 40 years, the route has seen a number of enhancements, including the introduction of the Super Tristar L1011 – Cathay Pacific’s first wide-body jet – on the Dubai route in 1982. The new aircraft supported the launch of a twice weekly Hong Kong to Mumbai service that operated via Bangkok and on to Dubai (CX751/750).
By the end of 1989, the Hong Kong-Bangkok-Mumbai-Dubai service increased to four times a week. Throughout the last four decades, the route has been serviced by the airline’s Boeing 747-300, Boeing 777, and Airbus A330-300. By 2008, Dubai had expanded to 18 flights a week, 14 being direct operating twice a day, and one operating via Mumbai. The remainder were routed through Bangkok and on to Bahrain.