New Era For Cathay Dragon
23rd November 2016 Paul Andrews
Dragonair has officially rebranded as Cathay Dragon, bringing the award-winning airline closer to Cathay Pacific in a launch that will provide customers with a more seamless travel experience.
At an unveiling ceremony at the newly-named Cathay Dragon House, the airline's headquarters in Hong Kong, Cathay Dragon Chief Executive Officer Algernon Yau said: "This is a momentous day in the history of Cathay Dragon and I am excited about the future of the airline and the fresh opportunities that our rebranding brings. As we align more closely with Cathay Pacific, new prospects will open up on multiple fronts enabling us to become stronger and thrive in this intensely competitive industry."
The airline's customers also joined in the launch celebration at a separate event at Hong Kong International Airport, which involved Cathay Dragon pilots, cabin crew and ground staff at a specially-arranged ceremony. Local celebrity Nicholas Tse was also on hand to welcome Cathay Dragon passengers at the departure gate with an assortment of treats from his Chef Nic's Cookie Cha Chaan Teng range. In a newly formed partnership with the widely acclaimed singer-actor (and now culinary aficionado), Cathay Dragon will carry Chef Nic's Cookies in all classes for selected periods and flights as part of the rebranding celebration.
The Dragonair-to-Cathay Dragon brand conversion process started earlier this year following an initial rebranding announcement in January. The most visible change to date, which has received an overwhelmingly positive response from passengers, has been the progressive introduction of the new Cathay Dragon livery, which includes the iconic Cathay 'brushwing' logo, serving as a strong visual association to the integrated airline group that offers an expansive regional and international network.
The rebranding, however, encompasses far more than simply a new name and look. It will introduce both airlines to a wider audience, from the growing inflow of overseas passengers who are more familiar with the Cathay Pacific brand, to the increasingly large numbers of Cathay Dragon passengers from Mainland China who seek the convenience and assurance of an internationally-recognised premium airline with global connectivity.
Cathay Dragon, which last year won the title of the World's Best Regional Airline in the Skytrax World Awards for an unprecedented fourth time, has been a wholly owned subsidiary of Cathay Pacific since 2006. Over that time the two airlines have built up significant synergy, and have improved their customer products substantially, enhancing their cabins, seats and inflight entertainment with a view to greater brand alignment.
The business of connecting its customers through each other's networks has been an overwhelming success for Cathay Dragon and Cathay Pacific, with many millions of passengers a year choosing to fly on both airlines. By being more closely aligned, the airlines are better equipped to deliver on their brand promise of a "Life Well Travelled", ensuring that all customers enjoy a consistently premium experience at every stage of their journey.
Passengers will be greeted with the new Cathay Dragon identity at check-in desks, boarding gates and lounges across the airlines' networks, from crew uniforms to boarding passes. The airline's website will become fully integrated into a single shared website with Cathay Pacific in early 2017.
Passengers will also enjoy a more unified brand experience, from aircraft interiors and inflight services, such as pillows and blankets, seating, entertainment and meals, to the Marco Polo Club loyalty programme. In addition, the G16 lounge in Hong Kong, which is currently undergoing an extensive renovation, will reopen as a group lounge in 2017.
Cathay Dragon, which operates a fleet of 42 passenger aircraft serving 52 destinations, has earned a well-deserved reputation built on its distinctive Chinese culture and hospitality. And while the rebranding brings many new benefits to its customers, the airline will retain its contemporary Chinese character. This especially applies to the cuisine it serves.
Partnerships with renowned Chinese restaurants and local delicacies, such as Chef Nic Cookies Cha Chaan Teng range, in addition to seasonal menus - offering poon choi, winter melon soup, crab roe dishes and hot pot rice at certain times of the year, will characterise Cathay Dragon's inflight dining experience. Similarly, Cathay Dragon's reputation for excellence in service standards will remain.
"I am confident that Cathay Dragon will maintain the highest level of operational and service excellence built by our people over the past 30 years. I truly believe that we have great potential and an amazing future ahead of us by working together to make the most of the opportunities for both our airline and our people," added Algernon Yau.
To learn more about Cathay Dragon, click here to watch a video detailing the story behind the new brand.