In response to passenger frustration caused by flight cancellations during the holiday season, Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. acknowledged that a contributing factor in the issue was pilots who were approaching or had reached their 12-month flying hour cap.

The airline’s director of flight operations stated in a memo that although there were “higher sickness rates on some days,” many of the pilots had reached or nearly reached the cap of 900 block hours on a rolling 12-month basis, meaning “there is much less flexibility around the deployment of pilots on Reserve and days off.”

According to airport data, Cathay canceled 9% of the 126 scheduled departures from Hong Kong on December 30. On Sunday, the airline canceled six more flights. Requests for comments made outside of regular business hours were not answered by its representatives.

During the Christmas and New Year period, Cathay operated approximately 8% more flights per day on average than its regular schedule. According to Kempis, some pilots have been forced to take multiple flight swaps and work on their days off, which are guaranteed to give them enough time to rest.
He continued, “We are still very much in our rebuild phase.” “We are moving toward reaching our maximum potential and are already experiencing the tangible advantages that accompany that.”

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