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Cathay Pacific and Australia: a shared history

Learn about our shared history and commitment to Australia's connectivity.

For over 50 years, Cathay Pacific has helped connect Australians to the world.

It began in 1970, with a Convair 880 taking to the skies from Perth. A few years later, we started non-stop services from Sydney to Hong Kong.

Today, Cathay Pacific is a multi-award winning airline with a network of over 200 destinations worldwide. In 2018-2019, we carried over 2.5 million passengers on our Australian flights. What began in a humble CV-880 over fifty years ago has turned into a large fleet of advanced aircraft flying from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide.

So join us as we continue to grow and push the boundaries of aviation, to connect you to the people, places and experiences that matter. 

Did you know?

  • One of our co-founders, Sydney de Kantzow, was an Australian pilot

  • Our first commercial flight saw us freight Australian clothing between Sydney and Shanghai

  • Our first Australian passenger route was Perth to Hong Kong via Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur

  • Since 1994, more than 1,800 Cathay Pacific pilots have undergone pilot training in Adelaide

  • We were the first carrier to operate the most advanced passenger aircraft, the A350-1000, on a commercial route out of Australia

  • We were the first to win Skytrax’s ‘World’s Best Airline’ four times

  • We are a founding member of the oneworld alliance


Where we are today

We are one of only ten 5-star airlines in the world, and have ranked within Skytrax's "World's Top 10 Airlines" for 20 years in a row.

We continue to win awards for our outstanding service, Business Class offering, cleanliness and more.

Together with our partner airlines, we service over 200 destinations across 54 countries and territories.

Our codeshare agreement with Qantas has provided more options and rewards for those travelling between Asia and Australia.

Our fleet comprises of around 240 aircraft, of which the average age is 8.7 years.

We operate a large network of award-winning lounges, six of which are based at our hub in Hong Kong International Airport.

A look back in time