Philippine Airlines (PAL), the country’s flag carrier, maintains good performance as it operates four-daily-flight schedule in Davao, one of its major destinations.
PAL Davao branch manager Andy Mandanas said the operation in Davao has returned to its regular schedule of four-flights daily where the company deploys its flagship Boeing 747-400 to Davao twice daily.
Lawyer Domingo Duerme, assistant vice president for Mindanao, said the operation has been normalized after PAL embarked on its outsourcing program.
Duerme said “our performance here is good although it is not really as good as last year, I’d rather say it on the average. But 2010 was really a good year for cargo,” he said.
He said there was a boom in agricultural produce in 2010 and cargo loads increased with the volume of fruits and vegetables that were transported to other domestic and international markets.
Load factor on the average is at 80 to 90 percent, he said.
The General Santos route he said is heavily dependent on cargoes and when there is abundant produce of our crops we can bring back, if not increase our cargo loads.
The other routes of PAL in Mindanao are Butuan, Cagayan, Cotabato, Dipolog, Ozamiz and Zamboanga.
PAL’s vice president for Corporate Communications Joey G. De Guzman said something good will happen in the months to come with additional Boeing 737 aircraft in 2012 and 2013 even as the entry of the lean months on January to March is really a challenge.
“We have to bite the bullet”, he said and we see the outsourcing scheme to be viable.
“We’ll work hard to improve our On Time Performance with the current manpower,” he said.
He said PAL is a legacy airline and all efforts are directed to making it more efficient and consumer friendly.
By February or March he said they will be piloting the PAL’s Simplified Solutions (PSS) where consumers transact on line.
With the increasing number of travellers accessing their tickets on line through the PSS they are given good choices as to schedules and cost.
He said the system is user friendly and consumers are given better options.
On the other hand, PAL’s spokesperson Cielo Villaluna said as PAL’s service providers gradually fill up their manpower complement, all operational requirements, from passenger handling to ground handling of all PAL flights, shall now be done at PAL’s home base at Terminal 2.
She said the airline’s signature meals presentation and its wide array of complimentary drinks are also back on board.
She also said daily domestic flights will average 50 to 60 while international will remain at 80, for an average daily flights of 140.
PAL uses a fleet of wide and narrow-bodied aircraft for Domestic and International routes.
Villaluna also said it is the only certified by International Air Transport Association (IATA) Operational Safety Audit (IOSA) PHL carrier even as she said that safety remains the cornerstone of PAL’s operations.
PAL pilots and cabin crew are highly-trained safety professionals, she said.
The company she said invests on the continuing education of pilots with the estimated cost of a pilot’s schooling for five years at P5 million.