Home » Aviation, Breaking News, Press Releases » PAL, Cebu Pacific, Air Asia resume more international operations from Aug

Disinfection of aircraft | Photo from Cebu Pacific

Domestic airlines are operating more overseas flights in August.

Philippine Airlines (PAL) flights for the month include:

  • Singapore thrice weekly on August 1 and four times weekly starting August 17
  • Manila-Sydney on August 14 and 28 and Sydney-Manila on August 15 and 29 (subject to government approval)
  • Honolulu on August 6
  • Manila-Jakarta on August 9 and 23 and Jakarta-Manila on August 10 and 24
  • Bangkok on August 5, 15, and 29
  • Cebu-Narita on August 1 and 15
  • Dubai on August 4
  • Dammam on August 3
  • Doha on August 6
  • Seoul on August 26

In August PAL will also fly to Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, Toronto, Vancouver, Guam, London, Kuala Lumpur, Taipei, Tokyo (Narita and Haneda), Fukuoka, Osaka, Nagoya, Ho Chi Minh, Hong Kong, and Riyadh.

PAL said certain flights may be re-routed to land in Cebu or in Clark airports instead of Manila, due to limited COVID-19 testing slots in Manila. If so, passengers will undergo testing and hotel quarantine at their gateway point in Cebu or Clark.

PAL said it will arrange for transfer to Manila for those who receive negative test results, usually within 24 to 48 hours of testing.

For domestic flights, new flights between Manila to other destinations include:

  • Basco (August 15 and 30)
  • Laoag (August 6)
  • Busuanga (August 8 and 22
  • Manila-Bacolod (August 3 to 15) and Bacolod-Manila (August 2 to 15)
  • Dumaguete (August 4)
  • Kalibo (August 7)
  • Tagbilaran, Iloilo and Cotabato (August 3)

Out of Cebu, routes that will start in August include Zamboanga (August 3); Tacloban (August 4); and Dumaguete (August 10). August flights from Davao to Tagbilaran and Zamboanga starts on August 6.

Other PAL routes operational in August are Legazpi, Puerto Princesa, Cebu, Catarman, Roxas, Tacloban, Cagayan De Oro, Dipolog, Butuan, Davao, General Santos, Ozamiz, Pagadian, Zamboanga and Clark.

Cebu Pacific

Cebu Pacific said it is gradually rebuilding its international flight network with the restart of flights between Manila and key Asian destinations this month. This is on top of the once-a-week flights between Manila and Dubai which re-started in mid-July.

Beginning August 1, 2020, Cebu Pacific will fly twice weekly from Tokyo (Narita) to Manila (Wednesday and Saturday).

On August 6, Cebu Pacific will operate two weekly flights (Thursday and Saturday) between Manila and Singapore; and fly every Thursday from Seoul (Incheon) to Manila.  

Twice weekly flights (Wednesday and Friday) between Taipei and Manila are to begin on August 7.

One-way flights to Manila from Osaka (Kansai) every Friday are also scheduled to begin on August 7.

“We are taking a conservative and agile approach to rebuilding our international network. While demand remains soft, there is latent demand for travel, particularly from stranded individuals and those who are eager to come home to visit their families,” Cebu Pacific vice president for Marketing and Customer Experience Candice Iyog said.  

Cebu Pacific noted that travel regulations issued by the governments of the Philippines, Japan, South Korea, Singapore and Taiwan will be implemented as necessary. These include a requirement to secure a negative real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test prior to departure, mandatory coronavirus disease screening or tests, and mandatory 14-day quarantine upon arrival.

The airline said travelers can expect layers of bio-security measures that begin at the point of online check-in for a flight. Contactless flight procedures are implemented using scanners and physical distancing, to minimize physical contact of passengers among each other and with personnel.

From ground facilities to aircraft, Cebu Pacific has a cleaning and disinfection protocol in place. All aircraft undergo extensive daily disinfection before, during and after flights.

Jet aircraft are also equipped with High Efficiency Particular Arrestor (HEPA) filters similar to those in hospital operating rooms. These trap all contaminants in the air, including the novel coronavirus, with 99.99% efficiency.

The airline has also adjusted its policies, allowing for greater flexibility. These options include unlimited rebooking and extension of the travel fund validity to two years.

For passengers with cancelled flights, or those who want to voluntarily alter travel plans, they may manage their bookings through the “Manage Booking” portal in the Cebu Pacific website (http://bit.ly/CEBmanageflight).

Air Asia flights

AirAsia Philippines said it also plans to resume more international flights within the month.

AirAsia resumed international passenger service last July 21 with a Manila-Kuala Lumpur-Manila flight. Flights to/from Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok-Don Mueang are also now open for booking.

The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) has earlier allowed entry into the Philippines of foreign spouses, minor children including children with special needs of Filipino nationals, and foreign parents of minor Filipino nationals provided they have appropriate visas.

Foreign nationals with long-term visas are likewise allowed entry starting August 1.

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