Home » Aviation » RP passenger volume rises 10.5% in first semester

PASSAGE volume in the Philippines grew 10.5% in the first six months of the year to 8.39 million from 7.59 million in the same period last year, thanks to strong local economic conditions, according to the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB).

Cebu Pacific was the country’s top passenger carrier for the period, transporting 4.09 million passengers, 13.2% more than the 3.614 million it carried last year. The budget carrier as a result accounted for 48.75% of the market for the first half of the year.

Philippine Airlines transported 2.88 million passengers, 10.3% less than 3.21 million passengers it catered to last year.

Budget airline AirPhil Express, the sister firm of PAL, had better luck as it more than doubled its passage volume from 254,244 to 667,686 this year.

Another low-cost carrier Zest Air posted a 42% increase in volume from 433,576 for the first six months last year to 616,058 this year while Southeast Asian Air carried 132,416 passengers, up 59.3% from 83,132 last year.

For the whole of 2009, the Philippines saw local and international passenger volumes grow 13.2% to 40.934 million from 36.162 million in 2008.

The average monthly passenger volume last year was 3.5 million, with the most monthly volume seen in May at 4.094 million and the lowest in September at 2.691 million.

In 2008, the average monthly passenger volume was 3 million, with May seeing the most number of passengers at 3.409 million and September with the least at 2.708 million.

Aircraft movement

Meanwhile, the Philippines registered a 10.54% hike in aircraft movement for 2009 to 625,582 flights from 565,894 flights in the previous year, according to latest data from the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP).

The agency identified PAL, Cebu Pacific and AirPhil Express as market leaders. No breakdown was released.

The Philippines hosted 50,000 to 55,000 flights a month with the highest in March at 60,399 flights and the lowest in September at 40,512 flights.

In 2008, there were between 45,000 and 50,000 flights a month. The peak was recorded in May with 52,459 flights and the trough in September with 41,050 flights.

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