SILAY CITY, Negros Occidental, Philippines – The new Bacolod-Silay Airport welcomed its first international flight with a chartered Zest Air Airbus A320 landing here from Incheon, South Korea with 120 passengers on board last Saturday, January 7.
“Koreans like to play golf,” said Chris Kim, senior manager for business planning of Zest Air in South Korea, referring to the passengers who were mostly businessmen and their families who flew to Negros Occidental to play golf for the weekend.
“They have great golf courses here,” added Arturo Alejandrino, Zest Air board of director, who cited a reason for the Koreans’ coming to this part of the Visayas.
The Negros Occidental province has three major golf courses, all located in the provincial capital, Bacolod City. Said golf courses are the Bacolod City Golf and Country Club, Negros Occidental Golf and Country Club, and Victorias Golf and Country Club.
Zest Air’s chartered flight from Incheon to the new Bacolod-Silay Airport and vice versa flies twice a week until March.
Alejandrino said the airline company will study the possibility of expansion after the scheduled two months of chartered flights.Silay City Mayor Jose Montelibano expressed optimism that the airport’s first international flight will encourage other airlines to open the possibility of a direct flight from other Asian countries including China and Singapore.