80-90% OF PREPANDEMIC CAPACITY RESTORED

Holiday travel seen to boost PAL’s H2 business

By: Tyrone Jasper Piad - Philippine Daily Inquirer | August 24,2022 - 12:24 PM
PAL planes for story:Holiday travel seen to boost PAL’s H2 business

Philippine Airlines (PAL) –INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

Flag carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) is hoping to maintain its momentum in the second half with the anticipated surge in passenger traffic during the holiday season.

PAL president Stanley Ng said they have observed a good volume of passengers traveling in the past two months, but warned that a slowdown might be experienced in September.

“That is the lean season, even historically, but we should be still okay,” he told the reporters at the sidelines of an event in Pasay City last week.

Nonetheless, PAL is banking on the fourth quarter boost—a period when more individuals travel usually for leisure.

“I hope it (second half performance) will be better, honestly, even compared [with] first half, I hope; or at least equal,” he said.

In the first semester, PAL achieved an operating income of P6.6 billion and net comprehensive income of P4.2 billion, a reversal from net loss in the previous year.

Its topline figures reached P58.1 billion for the period, driven by passenger and cargo revenues which were up 258 percent and 31 percent, respectively, amid the easing of mobility restrictions.

For its domestic network, Ng said they had restored about 80 percent to 90 percent of the prepandemic capacity level. Recently, it increased weekly flights between Manila and Basco, Batanes.

International capacity, meanwhile, stood at 60 percent. PAL has been beefing up flights between the Philippines and North America, Australia, the Middle East and the rest of Asia.

With air travel regaining a foothold, Ng said the flag carrier was looking to expand its fleet of 75 aircraft “but maybe not this year” yet.

Its parent firm, PAL Holdings Inc., posted a net income of P3.56 billion in the first half, a turnaround from P16.55 billion losses in the same period last year. This was supported by its revenues that grew by more than threefold to P57.37 billion.

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