Airline sector in trouble – Solon

A DAVAO-BASED congressman yesterday said the country’s airline sector is in trouble because of rapidly shrinking financial viability due to severe congestion and operational foul-ups in major airports.

“It’s obviously becoming very difficult for airline companies to operate because of airport congestion and seeming management foul-ups in our airports,” said Rep. Jericho Nograles.

Nograles said the mounting complaints on flight cancellation, especially Manila-bound flights due to airport congestions, is putting so much financial pressure on all airline operators, particularly local airline companies such as Cebu Pacific and Philippine Airlines.

He said while airline companies are trying to cope up with the increasing demand during peak season, they ultimately end up canceling and delaying some of their flights because of airport congestion at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

“A cancellation or even a delay on the flight of an airline costs a lot of money. This congestion problem at the NAIA is really becoming a very serious problem. The government must really find a solution as soon as possible,” Nograles said.

“Clearly, no airline will cancel flights without a reason, it eats into their profitability,” he said.

“As the principal author of the Occupational Safety and Health Standards Law of 2018, I worry about the emotional stress airline front-liners receive from irate customers. Lately, delays and cancellations are attributed to impossible take off and landing schedules. It takes government and airlines to work together closely to fix that. I just hope that the CAB (Civil Aeronautics Board) will also take into consideration the welfare of the workers,” said Nograles.