Tour demand boosts flagging fortunes
Special tours leaving Kai Tak on its last day provided a boost for the struggling travel industry with all of them snapped up and adding tens of thousands to the numbers of passengers flying yesterday.
Housewife Tsoi Lam Yuk-chun left for a four-day tour to Hangzhou with her son, daughter and six friends.
'We were originally offered a trip to Hangzhou leaving on Friday,' said Mrs Tsoi.
'But we decided against it. We asked to join this trip so we could set off on Kai Tak's last day.
'And we're happy we'll be returning to Chek Lap Kok in four days' time. We can use both airports.' Her seven-year-old son, Chi-keung, was overjoyed as yesterday was also his first time on a plane.
'I've watched planes flying in and out, but I've never been on one,' he said.
'I don't know much about Hangzhou but I'm very excited.' William Chong of Hong Thai Travel said his company arranged more than 40 tours out of Kai Tak yesterday. Many of the trips were for three or four days to the mainland.
'People like these special tours. They can depart Kai Tak and land at Chek Lap Kok. They're also cheap, costing $2,000 to $3,000 per head.
'I hope this will be a fresh start for the travel industry. I think the new airport will encourage more people to travel.'