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Published on Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Cathay Pacific to honour premium tickets accidentally sold at fraction of normal fare

Cathay Pacific is to honour premium tickets that it accidentally sold for a fraction of the usual fares.

The Hong Kong-based airline posted a tweet this morning stating that the fares released on New Year's Day were a 'mistake' but it said it looked forward to welcoming passengers with their tickets.

It is understood that the airline sold first-class and business-class fares on flights from Vietnam to New York in August for HK$5,500 and $6,600 return when the actual fares are normally around $35,000 and $55,000.

The fares were reported by travel bloggers on New Year's Eve and later pulled by Cathay Pacific.

It is not known how many seats the airline had sold before the price was changed.

Earlier this morning, Cathay tweeted that it would honour the tickets, using the hashtags promisemadepromisekept and lessonlearnt.

While many users praised Cathay for its stance, one user suggested the 'mistake' was actually a publicity stunt as rival Hong Kong Airlines had made the same error last summer and was subsequently applauded for honouring tickets. Cathay replied saying 'no airline would ever want that to happen to them'.

Cathay hasn't said how the wrong fares were loaded on to its website, which was later showing a technical error. Last year Cathay Pacific's systems were hacked, leading to the theft of the personal data of up to 9.4 million customers.

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  • might not have been a mistake

    Richard it costs a huge amount more to supply 1st & business class seats on any airline !!! The real estate alone, might be 5 times or more that of an economy seat. These mistakes are happening very often. Think airlines are doing this when having trouble selling seats at all.

    By Michael Anderson, Thursday, January 3, 2019

  • It's good that Cathy...

    ...are honouring these mis-sold tickets, but in truth it's not costing them very much to do so. It costs much the same to fly a passenger in the same aeroplane regardless of where he or she is sitting. The extra cost of food and drinks is very small - less than £100 I would suggest. Of course, there is the possibility to some of the seats sold for 10% of the proper price might have been seats that would have sold at the full fare - but, unless the premium cabin was always operating at 100% load factor, I suspect that this is unlikely.

    By Richard English, Wednesday, January 2, 2019

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