PAL, CPA Ferries OFW Home

22 December 2017

Flag carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) has announced that it would put on sale four hundred forty (440) more tickets for those left without a seat after Peya Travel, a company specializing in flights for domestic helpers, sold Cebu Pacific air tickets that were not guaranteed, leaving customers stranded.

The extra seats will be available for their Hong Kong to Manila flights on Friday and Saturday (December 22 and 23) as the airline send Boeing 777 to allow stranded Filipinos to fly home for Christmas and for flights returning on January 3 and 4 from Manila to Hong Kong.

Defrauded passengers have been told to head to Philippine Airline’s Tsim Sha Tsui ticket office in East Ocean Centre building to get their tickets. They will need to bring proof that they were affected by the scam to get the discount.

The Philippine consulate in Hong Kong has pegged the number of fraud victims to as many as 1,000 Overseas Filipino Workers who bought promo tickets for a return flight home for the duration of the holidays.

President Rodrigo Duterte has approved funding the cost of round trip travel of affected Filipinos through OWWA.

“Our kababayans in Hong Kong and other parts of the world have a very special place in President Duterte’s heart and it is just right that we make their Christmas wishes come true by doing what we can to bring them home,” DFA Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano said.

“Our hearts go out to our stranded countrymen. We hope this gesture will serve as a means to help a number of them come home to the Philippines in time for Christmas Day,” Philippine Airlines president and chief operating officer Jaime J. Bautista also said in a statement.

The airline said it will also upgrade A321 flights to A330 to accommodate more passengers coming home.

At the same time, Cathay Pacific Airways (CPA) has offered “distress fares” to affected OFWs for travel plans to the Philippines. The airline has offered discounted fares since Tuesday to fill any remaining seats.

It said it would add larger planes to make more seats available on its Manila route so more domestic helpers could make it home for Christmas.

Budget airline Cebu Pacific said it was reviewing its options to figure out how to make additional tickets available as all their flights are fully booked for the holidays. They however offered 50 complimentary return tickets for the affected Filipinos.

Meanwhile, TNG members, the cashless payments company popular with domestic helpers for remittances, will give away HK$500,000 to help those affected pay for new flights. Each helper will receive a maximum gift of HK$1,000 so that at least 500 people can benefit.

Most flights to the Philippines were reportedly sold out by the start of the week right before Christmas Day, prompting PAL and CPA to upgrade their planes to Manila to ferry distress workers who feared they would be unable to spend the festive period with their families.

1 comment:

  1. Cathay is also set to adopt 3-4-3 economy configuration on 777-300ER and regional 777-300. They'll soon be able to accommodate more passengers. But there has been no recent word about it yet. Reconfiguration hasn't started yet. Neither is about their plan on purchasing old 777-300s from Emirates.