© Reuters. Airplanes at Paris Charles de Gaulle airport in Roissy-en-France
(Reuters) – Freight carrier FedEx Corp (NYSE:) will temporarily relocate its Hong Kong-based pilots to San Francisco because it expects the Asian financial capital to establish strict 14-day hotel quarantine requirements for crew, it said in a memo to pilots.
The company said it did not think it was appropriate to subject Hong Kong-based crew members to extended periods of isolation, preventing them from seeing their families after finishing a trip.
“While we don’t know what the rule will state, when it will precisely take effect, or how long it will last, we do not want unknowns to prevent us from taking action on what we understand may likely occur,” FedEx System Chief Pilot Robin Sebasco said in the memo seen by Reuters, which was first reported by the South China Morning Post on Thursday.
FedEx did not respond immediately to a request for comment. The memo said the company would cover hotel costs and out-of-pocket expenses for pilots and their families in San Francisco, while continuing to pay their housing allowances in Hong Kong.
However, a Hong Kong-based FedEx pilot said on condition of anonymity that there were flaws in the plan. Many pilots have children in school in Hong Kong, he said, and regardless, it will be difficult for families to live in hotel rooms for weeks or months at a time.
Hong Kong’s biggest airline, Cathay Pacific Airways (OTC:) Ltd, on Monday warned passenger capacity could fall by 60%, cargo capacity by 25% and cash burn would rise if the new quarantine arrangements were put in place.
Cathay, in an internal memo seen by Reuters, requested volunteers among its crew who could fly for three weeks, followed by 14 days of quarantine and 14 days free of duty, adding that it would be a temporary measure and that not all of its flights would require such an operation.
Many foreign airlines are already double-crewing their flights into Hong Kong or stopping in cities like Bangkok or Tokyo to allow for quick turnarounds and avoid testing and quarantine requirements.
Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.
Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.