Philippine Airlines (PAL) is banking on the ease of connectivity between Phnom Penh, Manila, North America and Australia to attract air travellers to use the carrier.
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Ryan T Uy, vice president for sales, when speaking to Capital Cambodia Tuesday says: “We have timed the flights to arrive in Manila, in time to catch any of the 57 flights a week to Manila from New York, Toronto, Los Angeles, Vancouver, San Francisco, and Honolulu with Guam in the mix.
“We have already registered more than 20 percent passenger load through advanced booking to Phnom Penh via Manila, and originating from the destinations mentioned as well as Australia. Our connections are seamless, smooth and most important of all, it has minimum layover and without extended waiting time for connecting flights in almost all cases.
“We have about 90,000 Filipinos travelling to and from Cambodia as tourists each year. This does not include the 7,000 Filipinos, mostly white collar workers, who are located in Phnom Penh. Hence, our decision to fly five times a week,” he adds.
He pointed out that PAL was not depending only on Filipino travellers but also tourists and travellers from North America and Australia who wish to visit Cambodia via Phnom Penh. and onwards to other destinations where PAL also operates.
PAL, a trade name of PAL Holdings Inc, also known historically as Philippine Airlines, is the flag carrier of Philippines. Headquartered at the PNB Financial Center in Pasay City, the airline was founded in 1941.
It is the first and oldest commercial airline in Asia operating under its original name out of its hubs at Ninoy Aquino International Airport of Manila, Clark International Airport of Angeles, Mactan-Cebu International Airport of Cebu, and Francisco Bangoy International Airport of Davao.
“Our airlines probably has the youngest fleet in terms of aircraft age in southeast Asia with a fleet size of 70, comprising primarily of Airbus such Airbus A320, Airbus A321, Airbus A321neo, Airbus A330, Airbus A350, Bombardier Q400and also Boeing 777-300ER for its long distance flights”.
PAL’s wide route network covers 43 destinations in Asia, North America, Europe, the Middle East, Australasia and 33 domestic destinations.
“Our business model and unique selling points are essentially focussed on timely arrivals and departures, excellent connectivity, quality of service, and visa free entry into the Philippines of up to 30 days for most nations.
“We are aware that will be facing competition with other airlines that cover similar connecting destinations but we are confident that our ease of connections and relatively short waiting period will gain us the load,” Uy adds.
For the Phnom Penh to Manila route and vice versa, PAL expects an average of 77 percent load factor and expects this to increase with extensive promotion of Cambodia in all of its destinations, as witnessed by the 20 percent and fast growing pre-booking from North American destinations for flights to Cambodia, he points out.
PAL president and chief operating officer Jaime J Bautista describes PALS’s new service as an exciting venture that will help increase Cambodia’s connections to the rest of the world.
“We are eager to promote tourist travel and economic exchanges between the Philippines and Cambodia,” Bautista says.
Contributing Writer, Capital Cambodia