Cathay Pacific review: Sydney to Hong Kong | Finder

Cathay Pacific review: Sydney-Hong Kong

Posted: 6 June 2019 10:07 am
News

Picture not described

Taking off to Asia over Easter, I found Cathay Pacific offered the cheapest fares – but luckily, that didn't come at a price.

Travelling to Southeast Asia and meeting family travelling from Canada, I found that Hong Kong was the easiest meeting point for all of us. When arranging the trip, we managed to find Cathay Pacific flights from both countries that arrived within minutes of each other and, at the end of the trip, departed within an hour of each other.

Not only were these Cathay Pacific flights the most conveniently timed option (with an after-work departure from Sydney and an early-morning arrival allowing me to make the most of the next day), they were also the cheapest. Travelling over Easter and Anzac Day, I was shocked to see that these flights were at least $100 less than budget carriers like AirAsia and Scoot.

Cathay Pacific flight details

  • Route: Sydney to Hong Kong (and returning from Siem Reap)
  • Duration: 9h 20m
  • Flight number(s): CX138
  • Aircraft type: Boeing 777-300
  • Dates travelled: 10 April 2019
  • Class: Economy
  • Frequent flyer program: Marco Polo Club or Qantas Frequent Flyer
  • Points earned: 0

Alex's Cathay Pacific review:

★★★★☆

  • Full service flights
  • Cheaper than budget carriers
  • Convenient flight times
  • Food and entertainment
  • Expensive seat selection
  • Unable to earn frequent flyer points

What did I like?

  • Food: Compared to some of my recent long-haul journeys with airlines like Air Canada and Etihad, I'd rank Cathay's food as better than both. There's something nice about getting an actual menu on a plane and I found it difficult to choose between the options as there were a few that actually sounded good – a rarity on an airline.
  • Entertainment: I found Cathay's entertainment options to be plentiful, including new movies I'd yet to see to fill time on the nine-hour flight.
  • Schedule: As mentioned above, the Cathay Pacific flights I was catching from Sydney and that my parents were catching from Toronto couldn't have been more perfectly timed with each other. However, a long layover on the return wasn't ideal.
  • Everything's included: Being a full-service carrier, checked baggage, in-flight meals and entertainment were included in the fare, even on the two-hour journey from Siem Reap to Hong Kong which was operated by Cathay Dragon.

Cathay Pacific flight during take off from Hong Kong

Cathay Pacific legroom

What didn't I like?

  • Long layover: On the return journey, I was flying from Siem Reap, Cambodia to connect to a flight from Hong Kong to Sydney. Unfortunately the timing of the Siem Reap flight (operated by Cathay Dragon) wasn't ideally timed. It only arrived in Hong Kong at 11:30pm (which turned into 12:30am due to a delay) and my departing flight from Hong Kong wasn't scheduled until 9am. The arrival was too late to catch the MTR into the city and airport hotels are very expensive ($400+ per night) for the little time we'd be spending at it. We opted to spend the night in the 24-hour airport (as many other travellers were) and just sleep on our flights home.
  • Different quality of plane: While the first plane was not run-down or out-of-date by any means, the aircraft used on the return journey was noticeably more modern and had a better entertainment system, including a small fold-down tray that was perfect for holding a device like a phone or tablet.
  • Price of seat selection: I'm a stickler for a window seat on flights, especially if it's one I want to get some sleep on, so I always pre-select my seats. I was pretty shocked to see that reserving my seats for the return journey from Sydney to Hong Kong was going to set me back $110.
  • No frequent flyer points earned: I tried to claim Qantas Points for these flights, but was declined. Not all Cathay Pacific fares and booking classes qualify for Qantas Points, which I was disappointed to discover after the fact.
Cathay Pacific in-flight menu
Cathay Pacific in-flight meal

Would I use Cathay Pacific again?

If I'm flying to Hong Kong or somewhere I'm unable to book a direct flight from Sydney, yes. I couldn't fault the airline and liked that meals, bags and entertainment were included on all legs including the short journey from Siem Reap to Hong Kong.

Bonus tip: If you have a long layover in Hong Kong like I did and aren't able to leave the airport and don't have access to a lounge, try and find the reclining chairs that are tucked away by the windows throughout the terminal's halls. They all have privacy screens and a few plants to give you some seclusion if you want to try and rest.

Cathay Pacific flight deals and sales:

It looks like we don't have any coupons at the moment. Take a look at our most recent deals

Virgin AustraliaVirgin Australia
FLASH SALE

Australia-wide flights from $59 each way

Available on select dates from April - September 2021. Destinations include Melbourne, Canberra, Gold Coast, Brisbane, Newcastle, Adelaide, Launceston, Hobart and more. Sample fare is Sydney-Ballina. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

KayakKayak
FLASH SALE

Jetstar flights from $33 each way

Available on select travel dates until December 2021. Destinations include Sydney, Ballina, Brisbane, Townsville, Gold Coast, Perth, Uluru and more. Sample fare is Melbourne-Adelaide. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Virgin AustraliaVirgin Australia

Up to 50% off: Flights from $55 each way

Available on flights from April - September 2021. Destinations include Hobart, Sunshine Coast, Sydney, Gold Coast, Cairns, Adelaide, Canberra, Brisbane, Perth and more. Sample fare is Melbourne-Launceston. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

JUCYJUCY

Campervans from $99/day or less

Pick up a campervan in Adelaide, Brisbane, Cairns, Gold Coast, Melbourne, Sydney, Auckland, Christchurch or Queenstown before until 20 September 2021.

Last verified

Deal ends

Cheap FlightsCheap Flights

New Zealand flights from $353 return

Available until December 2021 to Queenstown, Wellington, Christchurch and more with Jetstar, Air New Zealand and Qantas. Sample fare is Melbourne-Auckland. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

SkyscannerSkyscanner

Jetstar sale: Australia-wide flights from $32 each way

Available on flights from April - September 2021 to Launceston, Gold Coast, Hobart, Adelaide, Whitsundays, Townsville, Hamilton Island, Darwin, Uluru and more. Sample fare is Melbourne-Adelaide. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

KayakKayak

Up to 50% off Australia flights

Available on Qantas flights from April - September 2021. Destinations include Sydney, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Launceston, Hobart, Cairns, Darwin, Broome, Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

WotifWotif

Up to 53% off Australia-wide getaways

Available on select travel dates in 2021. Destinations include Cairns, Gold Coast, Melbourne, Sunshine Coast, Sydney, Brisbane and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

DiDiDiDi
Exclusive

Get $20 credit

Get $5 off each of your first four rides in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Geelong, Perth and Newcastle. Valid on all dates for new users. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

RedBalloonRedBalloon
Exclusive

Get $5 off activities with code

Available on experiences across Australia including Sydney, Brisbane, Cairns, Adelaide, Gold Coast, Melbourne, Perth, Hobart and more. Minimum spend of $250 required. Activities include hot air balloon flights, hop-on hop-off bus tours, whale watching cruises, skydives, high teas, quad biking experiences and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

RedBalloonRedBalloon
Exclusive

Get $10 off activities with code

Available on experiences across Australia including Sydney, Brisbane, Cairns, Gold Coast, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide, Canberra, Hobart and more. Minimum spend of $300 required. Activities include hot air balloon flights, hop-on hop-off bus tours, whale watching cruises, skydives, high teas, quad biking experiences and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

KlookKlook
Exclusive

$15 off all Australian activities with code

Available on select travel dates when you spend a minimum of $100. Activities include hot air balloon flights, tandem skydives and attraction passes. Destinations include Sydney, Gold Coast, Cairns, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra, Adelaide, Perth, Hobart and more. Exclusive for new members. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Trip.comTrip.com

Australia-wide flights from $64 each way + Extra $30 off with code

Available on flights until 31 December 2021when you spend a minimum of $250. Destinations include Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, Hobart, Cairns, Darwin, Canberra, Sunshine Coast and more. Sample fare is Sydney-Melbourne with Jetstar. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

Trip.comTrip.com

Up to 46% off Australia stays + Extra $50 off with code

Available on stays until 31 December 2021. Destinations include Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, Hobart, Cairns, Darwin, Canberra and more. Minimum spend of $250 required. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

HotelsCombinedHotelsCombined

Up to 33% off Sea World Resort and Water Park stays with park entry

Available for stays until 30 April 2021 with packages available to include entry to Warner Bros. Movie World, Sea World, Wet'n'Wild Gold Coast and Paradise Country during your stay.

Last verified

DriveNowDriveNow

Campervan hire from $5/day

Available on select routes, dates and locations in Australia, including Darwin, Alice Springs, Cairns and Brisbane, and New Zealand.

Last verified

Qatar AirwaysQatar Airways

Up to 10% off international flights with code

Available for Mastercard holders on flights from 1 November 2020 - 30 June 2021. Valid on flights departing from Melbourne, Sydney, Perth, Adelaide, and Canberra. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

Rentalcars.comRentalcars.com

Up to 20% off car hire

Compare car hire prices on Rentalcars.com and save up to 20% compared to booking direct.

Last verified

Skydive AustraliaSkydive Australia

$30 off 15,000ft tandem skydives

Available on weekday jumps until 31 August 2021. Destination includes Cairns and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

Skydive AustraliaSkydive Australia

$60 off tandem skydives with code

Available on weekday jumps until 31 August 2021. Destinations include Byron Bay and Great Ocean Road. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

Expedia.com.auExpedia.com.au

Up to 38% off last-minute Australia escapes

Available on stays within the next 14 days. Destinations include Sydney, Gold Coast, Byron Bay, Sunshine Coast, Brisbane, Canberra and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Expedia.com.auExpedia.com.au

Up to 33% off Australia stays + free cancellations

Available on select travel dates to Broome, Mackay, Launceston, Darwin, Perth, Cairns, Sydney, Gold Coast and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

CudoCudo

Up to 93% off things to do in Australia

Available on select dates and activities like classes, spas, getaways, dining experiences and more. Destinations include Sydney, Perth, Melbourne Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Gold Coast and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Destination InternationalDestination International

6-day Adelaide getaway with flights from $399

Available for travel on select dates from 1 May - 10 September 2021. Package includes return airfare and 5 nights stay at Grosvenor Hotel, BreakFree Directors Studio or Adelaide Paringa Hotel. Sample rate departs from Melbourne. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

G AdventuresG Adventures

Up to 15% off Australia adventures

Available on select travel dates until 30 June 2022. Destinations included Sydney, Cairns, Melbourne, Uluru, Brisbane and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

G AdventuresG Adventures

Up to 15% off New Zealand tours

Available on select travel dates until 30 June 2022. Destinations included Christchurch, Auckland, Wellington, Queenstown and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

KayakKayak

Jetstar sale: Auckland flights from $165 each way

Available on flights from July - September 2021 departing from Sydney, Melbourne and more. Sample fare departs from Gold Coast.

Last verified

Deal ends

ContikiContiki

Up to 10% off New Zealand tours

Available on select trips from 19 April 2021 onward. Destinations include Wellington, Auckland, Christchurch and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

KayakKayak

Domestic flights from $55 each way

Available on Rex Airline flights from April - September 2021 to Adelaide, Kangaroo Island, Burnie and more. Sample fare is Sydney-Gold Coast. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

G AdventuresG Adventures

Up to 15% off classic tours and My Own Room

Available on select trips until 30 June 2022 to Australia, New Zealand, Bali, Alaska, India, Thailand, Peru, South Africa, Japan, Maldives, Canada and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Cheap FlightsCheap Flights

Ayers Rock flights from $188 return

Available on select flight until June 2021. Sample fare departs from Brisbane with Jetstar. Other flights depart from Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

AvisAvis

Sixth day free + free upgrade on car hires

Available on 6+ day rentals from 15 July - 15 September 2021. Destinations include Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Cairns, Perth, Adelaide and Hobart. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

AvisAvis

Third day free on Australia car rentals

Available on 3+ days rentals, including a Saturday night from 22 April - 21 June 2021. Destinations include Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Cairns, Perth, Adelaide and Hobart. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

Cheap FlightsCheap Flights

Australia flights from $64 return

Available on select 2021 flights to Ballina, Gold Coast, Brisbane, Launceston, Sydney and more. Sample fares are Melbourne-Adelaide with Jetstar. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

KayakKayak

Flights to New Zealand from $321 return

Available on flights from July - September 2021 to Queenstown, Wellington, Christchurch and more. Sample fare is Melbourne-Auckland with Jetstar. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

KayakKayak

Fiji flights from $590 return

Available on flights from June - August 2021. Sample fare departs from Sydney with Fiji Airways. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

KayakKayak

Brisbane flights from $55 each way

Available on flights until July 20210 departing from Adelaide, Cairns, Melbourne, Brisbane and more. Sample fare departs from Sydney with Jetstar. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

KayakKayak

Melbourne flights from $39 each way

Available on flights until June 20210 departing from Hobart, Gold Coast and more. Sample fare departs from Adelaide with Virgin Australia. Other airlines include Rex, Jetstar and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Tick Travel InsuranceTick Travel Insurance
Exclusive

Get 7% off all Tick travel insurance policies

Only on Finder. Use this code to get a 7% discount. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

EuropcarEuropcar
Exclusive

Extra $24 off car hires with code

Available on rentals until 31 July 2021 when you spend a minimum of $240. Destinations include Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Cairns, Sydney and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

Get more from Finder

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms of Use, Disclaimer & Privacy Policy and Privacy & Cookies Policy.
Go to site