THE Philippines and Thailand have entered into an agreement to increase the number of flights between Manila and Bangkok, following talks in the Thai capital last week (TTG Asia e-Daily, October 31, 2012).
According to the Philippines’ Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB), 1,480 seats will be added to the current 5,400 weekly seats connecting Manila and Bangkok, while both countries have given the green light to unlimited traffic rights between points outside the capital cities.
The additional seats translate to a daily flight to be divided between the country’s top carriers, Philippine Airlines (PAL) and Cebu Pacific, both of which use smaller aircraft of up to 180-seat capacity on regional routes.
CAB records revealed that both carriers have yet to apply for routes outside Manila and Bangkok, but they are expected to take advantage of the regulations that will effectively open the Philippines’ secondary gateways to regional traffic.
Cebu Pacific, for instance, has expanded its regional hub outside of Manila as it continues to develop the gateways of Cebu and Iloilo in the Visayas and Davao in the south. Outside Manila, PAL’s hubs include Davao, Cebu and Bohol.