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Cathay Pacific heads to Manchester – new Avios routes to Asia

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Cathay Pacific has confirmed recent rumours that is going to launch a route from Manchester to Hong Kong from December 8th 2014.

As Cathay Pacific is a member of the oneworld alliance, alongside British Airways, this would allow you to use your Avios points to fly to Asia without having to transit through Heathrow.

Cathay already runs cargo flights to Manchester, interestingly.  With nine new Boeing 777’s due to be delivered over the next two years, featuring the new business class seats pictured above, the airline has been exploring new passenger routes.  The large Chinese population in the North West was apparently an attraction.

There will be four flights per week (compared to five per day from Heathrow!).  It will depart Manchester at noon on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.  It will land in Hong Kong at 07.55 the following day.

The plane will have a three class configuration, with Economy, Premium Economy and Business Class.  The 40-seat Business Class cabin should provide ample opportunities for Avios redemptions.

This service is more great news for Avios collectors who live outside London.  We have already seen Qatar Airways announce a new Edinburgh service, as well as the addition to oneworld of the US Airways services to the US from Manchester, Edinburgh and Glasgow.

Zurich is also rumoured to be on the list for a new Cathay route.  In Europe, Cathay Pacific currently flies to London, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Milan, Moscow, Paris and Rome.


How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (February 2023)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 21st February 2023, the sign-up bonus on the British Airways Premium Plus American Express card is increased to 35,000 Avios from 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

35,000 Avios (ONLY to 21st February) and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £12,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and unbeatable travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Run your own business?

We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,500 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

Get a 10,000 points bonus plus an extra 500 points for our readers Read our full review

You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

Comments (19)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • PGW says:

    Maybe it’s too soon but I haven’t been able to find a single redemption opportunity for this service on

  • James67 says:

    Qatar are reportedly going to go daily, and then double-daily out of EDI. Probably an attempt to counter Ethad who are also reportedly planinning flights from one, and possibly two, Scottish airports from next year. Just wish one of the far east carriers like CX would give EDI a go, even a one-stop service like SIN MAN route would be welcome. One of Thais most successfulroutes is Oslo so I’m sure Edinburgh could work for an Asian carrier too.

  • Richie says:

    How does tax on a business seat with cathey from Manchester compare

    • Rob says:

      We need to see when the flights are loaded. Unlikely to be much better than Heathrow – if you want to save big, price up Amsterdam, Paris etc departures where you will be avoiding Air Passenger Duty.

      • richie says:

        To be honest i prefer upgrades to outright redemptions. i like the fact you still get the tp and avios.

    • Adam W says:

      Given that tax is determined by distance between capital cities of the origin and destination countries, there will be no difference in tax between CX flights (or any other airline for that matter!) to/from LHR/MAN and HKG.

      • richie says:

        there is a difference. if you price up cathey pacific flight on redemption out of LHR it is cheaper than the same flight with BA. coming back there is an even bigger difference.
        when i say tax i mean total charges on top of the miles . so fuel surcharge is probably the thing that puts tyhe price up on a ba flight

      • James67 says:

        I think he means the other fees not the taxes themselves. For these CX is generally the cheapest of one world psrtners heading east if you ignore Air Berlins AUH routes.

  • Czechoslovakia says:

    Good news Indeed. Might actually get to make a proper use of my Marco Polo Gold card.

  • Paul says:

    Great news, especially after the experience in First on the BA A380 flight I have just had to Hong Kong. BA service on board was awful, truly 2nd division. I connected to CX in J at HKG but was able to enjoy their First lounge….outstanding on every level before my flight. I enjoyed their business class which in my view has as much usable personal space as BA First on the A380. It is simply light years ahead of Club world with it narrow high density seating crewed by charmless ill trained crew who see passengers as an inconvenience.
    Whilst the seat is a fabulous product it was the service; being called by name at every single interaction, the choice of superb food and getting my first choice, something that I again faled to receive not once but 3 times on BA in first on the same flight!
    So bring on the competition. It is the only way anything will improve for passengers on BA which is my view is heading towards being Bloody Awful as it was pre privatisation.

    • Percy Pig says:

      I have a French name (French grandfather) but the limits of my knowledge of the language is GSCE from 15 years ago. On a recent Cathay business redemption as the cabin crew looked through the manifest and noticed my name she came over, evidently delighted, to be able to use her French with me. Being English (and therefore valuing politeness above everything else) I failed to point out that actually I didn’t speak the language and just replied in my GCSE French (she had only asked how I was). From then on she continued to serve me for the entire flight in French and by that point it was too late to say anything. Meanwhile my wife was just laughing at me throughout. It was very silly. Great service though (even in French 🙂

      • Jenni says:

        OT, but I have a foreign last name, not Italian though! I recently phoned up to book a table in a local (Liverpool) Italian restaurant, and upon spelling my surname the woman on the phone shrieked in delight ‘you’re Italian!’ and went on to a tirade of Italian, I sheepishly had to say that I am not Italian and don’t actually speak any of the language so could she please repeat in English please. I’m actually considering not turning up for the reservation in case she’s there at the time…

    • CV says:

      Agree with comments, did a 4 hr flight on CX in Business and it was a pleasure. All the staff called me by name, my CX Gold status was acknowledged and they hoped I enjoyed ‘another pleasurable flight’ (it was actually my first time). Cant comment on BA, but Emirates could certainly learn a lot from the CS personal approach.

      Also the lounges at HKG were very good, including the food in the First class restaurant – cooked to order and apparently prepared by staff from the Peninsula hotel (access to First was due to a separate oneworld flight in First).

  • Heather says:

    Fantastic news.

    If any airlines are reading this blog, Leeds and Bradford is a fantastic airport. Excellent transport links and a very large catchment of potential passengers.

    • sandgrounder says:

      Good one- I just choked on my Hilton peanuts! 🙂

    • TrollBasher says:

      Excellent links..? I feel like a song coming on… High on a hill sits a lonely airport… cramped facilities, short runway, fogged out or windswept more often than any other 2nd tier commercial airport in the UK. I’d rather endure the M62 than take a risk with LBA.

      Large catchment of potential passengers? That will be why Pakistan is leaving in May.. Hmmm.

      Sandgrounder, pass the peanuts 😉

      • Sandgrounder says:

        Well, I have hidden the rest of last night’s jar in a drawer, so hopefully I’ll get another one tonight! 🙂

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