V Air Terminates Manila

20 June 2016

V Air Cancels Flight To MNL

Taiwan’s low-cost carrier V Air announced the cancellation of its Philippine service, just less than 4 months from its first inaugural flight after booking poor sales.

The TransAsia Airways subsidiary went to a bad start after Taiwan-based competitors China Airlines and Eva Air increased capacity to Manila while discounting prices. Manila-based carriers Philippine Airlines and low cost competitor Cebu Pacific also flies this sector.

The airline is scheduling last flight on 14 July 2016, currently served 4 times a week with Airbus A320 aircraft

New Parking Bay Opens Up In NAIA

5J Exclusive Use

14 June 2016

Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) broke ground Tuesday a 2.5-hectare aircraft parking bay at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) South General Aviation Area, formerly Flight Operations Briefing Station for exclusive use of Cebu Pacific.

“This area supplements the space requirement of our growing fleet and will contribute to the optimization of our ground operations,” Lance Y. Gokongwei, the airline’s president and CEO, said in a statement.

The parking bay can accommodate approximately four Airbus A320-family aircraft or six ATR turboprops, opening much needed terminal bays for Terminal 3 operations.

CEB Chief Executive Adviser Michael Szucs and MIAA General Manager Jose Angel Honrado graced the groundbreaking ceremony this morning.

5J To Add Two More A330s

Brings Widebody Fleet to Eight

12 June 2016

Low cost carrier Cebu Pacific has announced that it will acquire two more Airbus 330-300 aircraft, company President Lance Gokongwei said.

"That is under consideration because we're looking to fly to additional routes particularly Honolulu or increasing potential flights to the Middle East," Gokongwei adds.

The airline intends to have the widebody delivered this year and the next as it addresses long haul capacity shortfall made more difficult by Manila slot allocation problems.

Cebu Pacific acquired 6 A330-300 which were delivered between 2013 and 2015. The 436 seater aircraft flies to the Middle East particularly Dubai, Riyadh, Doha and Kuwait City. It is also flown to Sydney in Australia.

The company which boast a fleet of 55 aircraft, expects delivery of two more A320s, 30 Airbus A321neo and 16 ATR 72-600 up to 2021. It intends to add 14 narrow body frames to its fleet by 2018.

The airline's fleet currently comprises 5 Airbus A319, 36 Airbus A320, six Airbus A330, and eight ATR 72-500 aircraft which flies to 29 international and 34 domestic destinations. It is Southeast Asia’s third largest LCC group behind AirAsia and Lion.

CX Flies First A350 To MNL

June 2, 2016

Cathay Pacific has officially flown its first Airbus A350-900 flight to Manila yesterday after it was unveiled in a spectacular ceremony in Hong Kong where employees, media and distinguished guests were introduced to the newest member of Cathay Pacific’s fleet.

Cathay Pacific's A350-900XWB MSN29 (B-LRA) made inaugural service to Manila flying CX907/906 in a historical fashion, following its long tradition to the country, and also making the first A350 service to land in the Philippines.

The A350 aircraft arrived in Hong Kong International Airport from Toulouse, France on Sunday, 29 May. It is the first of 48 A350s scheduled to be delivered to the airline.

Sibulan Loses Runway Length

17 May 2016

Sibulan Airport loses another usable runway length after an Airbus A320 plane (RP-C3237) of Cebu Pacific doing flight 5J 629 (Manila-Dumaguete) struck the Acasia tree while landing at Dumaguete airport's runway 09 on April 26.

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) has issued new NOTAM extending the runway displaced threshold of 408m (1,338ft) for runway 09, reducing the available landing distance to 1,437 meters which effectively prevent A320 jets from landing at the runway.

Airline and CAAP investigators found “branches and leaves” in the starboard main-gear assembly of the A320. Hydraulic fluid leak was also noted prompting the airline to ground the aircraft until appropriate repairs were made.

CAAP Assistant Director General for Operations Rodante Joya said that “CAAP shortened the usable length of the runway due to safety concerns posed by tall trees obstructing the glide path of incoming flights on the approach to runway 09 from the west.”

CAAP said runway 09 will be restricted to propeller-type commercial aircraft and general aviation jets for approach and landing, citing trees posing as hazards.

Joya explained the decision to limit the airport approach to runway 09 to propeller-type aircraft is in keeping with standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), where trees pose significant safety issues, endangering the lives of commercial jet passengers, as they are located within the final approach of the runway.

CAAP's Aerodrome and Air Navigation Safety Oversight Office found conditions at the Dumaguete Airport runway as “critical and has the potential to result in loss of life, serious injury or damage to facilities and which requires corrective action to be completed immediately and if not may lead to downgrading of aircraft operation to a similar airplane or worst, closure of the airport.”

The airport is serving an average of 14 commercial flights daily from Manila to Dumaguete and to Cebu, while 15 general aviation flights or private aircraft are landing or taking off daily.

Both Cebu Pacific and PAL Express A320's continues to operate to and from Dumaguete Airport using Runway 27.

Value Alliance Takes Off

17 May 2016

Eight budget airlines that flies160 destinations from 17 hubs across Australia, North Asia and South East Asia, with a combined fleet of 176 aircraft and serves 47 million passengers has formed on Monday the world’s first and biggest pan-regional low-cost carrier alliances, which enables customers to book connections using a shared platform.

The Value Alliance comprises members Cebu Pacific, Jeju Air, Nok, NokScoot, Scoot, Tigerair Singapore, Tigerair Australia and Vanilla Air, and allows customers to book flights and ancillary services offered by any partner carrier from any of the airlines’ websites.

The service is powered by technology developed by Air Black Box (ABB), which allows passengers to book multi-destination and connecting flights, as well as ancillary services including seat and meal selection, and variable baggage allowances, across all partner airline sectors, in a single itinerary.

"Value Alliance is a clear example of how LCC can accomplish more by working together than we could do individually," said Lance Gokongwei, president and chief executive of Cebu Pacific.

PAL Wins Gov't Contract

26 April 2016

Flag carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) has won 10.3 billion air travel contract with the Philippine government for official government trips of officials and employees.

The General Fares Agreement (GFA) on domestic airline travel comprising 23 government agencies was sealed today by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) and Philippine Airlines (PAL).

“Under the said agreement, all official domestic trips of government officials, employees and personnel will be given 8 percent discount for all economy class reservations, 10 percent discount for business class, additional baggage allowance, and waiver of processing fee worth P250 per ticket, and waiver of fees for first rebooking, among others,” the DBM said in a statement.

“Our partnership with Philippine Airlines will greatly impact government transactions for domestic airline travel. As part of the government’s common requirement which we will aggregate, we can purchase domestic airline tickers faster and easier,” Procurement Service (PS) executive director Jose Tomas Syquia said.

The Philippine government owns 4.3% of the national carrier through Land Bank of the Philippines and other government non-bank financial intermediaries.

CEB Selects Recaro For New Seats

16 April 2016

Philippine based low-cost carrier (LCC) Cebu Pacific has ordered 6,600 Recaro SL3510 seats for its new 30 Airbus A321neos, making it the first airline in the Asia-Pacific region for the new seat model.

Recaro earlier installed 30,000 SL3510 seat order from easyJet last year to retrofit the carrier’s existing 56 A320s with the new seats, and to provide seating for easyJet’s upcoming deliveries of 100 A320neos on order.

The A321 aircraft are scheduled for delivery from next year and will seat 220 single-class layout.

The SL3510 seats use netting rather than a solid foam material in the seat back to reduces weight and allows a thinner seat back for greater seating density.