Flight attendants usually wish to get pleasure from lengthy layovers in sought-after worldwide locations, however crew at one airline aren’t attending to get pleasure from any of their time overseas as a result of they’re nonetheless being stored of their resort rooms prefer it’s early 2020.
The reason being that Hong Kong’s authorities expects aircrew to adjust to onerous ‘closed loop’ protocols once they arrive at their vacation spot. Basically, meaning aircrew should isolate themselves away from the native inhabitants by locking themselves of their resort rooms.
In 2021, Cathay Pacific cabin crew spent a collective 73,000 nights in quarantine – both in closed loop isolation in international international locations or again in Hong Kong. One thousand crew even spent greater than 11,000 nights within the infamous Penny’s Bay quarantine camp.
Final week, the Hong Kong authorities lastly lifted quarantine necessities on aircrew who have been returning to the territory however solely on the proviso that pilots and cabin crew proceed to isolate themselves downroute.
In impact, Cathay Pacific cabin crew are nonetheless being anticipated to frequently endure quarantine as the remainder of the world strikes on from any type of isolation or lockdown.
Cathay Pacific has tried to cut back the period of time that flight attendants need to quarantine by lowering layover durations, however after a long-haul flight, this doesn’t crew a lot time to relaxation.
As a substitute, flight attendants say the airline ought to present two units of cabin crew when the layover time has been decreased. One to work the outbound flight and the opposite to work the return flight. That is very true for flights to North America the place flight instances from Hong Kong to New York can transcend 15 hours.
After all, what flight attendants actually need is the liberty to depart their resort rooms, however that can require an enormous change in coverage from the Hong Kong authorities. Sources declare an enormous announcement is within the works, however nothing has but been formally confirmed.
Cathay Pacific carried simply 253,907 passengers in August and while adjustments to quarantine guidelines are welcome, the airline has warned that it’s going to take time to construct up capability as pandemic journey restrictions are lifted.
An earlier model of this text incorrectly said that cabin crew have been in search of shorter layovers to minimise the period of time they spent in resort quarantine. This was because of a translation error.
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