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PAL to add aircraft this week; more to come for Q4 2023

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IN a move aimed at minimizing flight delays and cancellations in the process also boosting its fleet count and enabling the airline to meet the continuing surge in travel demand, the Philippine Airlines (PAL) announced having taken various actions.

It was learned from PAL spokesperson Ma. Cielo Villaluna that the airline is set to accept another Airbus A321CEO aircraft this week to augment its fleet and boost network reliability.

“The A321 aircraft, which accommodates 199 passengers in a dual-class configuration, will be utilized for PAL’s domestic and regional routes. This single-aisle jet is the first of several aircraft that PAL is working to acquire or reactivate in the coming months,” she said.

Villaluna said others expected to join the fleet in the near term include one Airbus A330-300 widebody aircraft with a capacity of 363 seats, to be used on medium haul routes, as well as one De Havilland Dash 8-400NG aircraft with a capacity of ​86 seats to be used for PAL’s inter-island operations. , even as negotiations are also underway to secure additional aircraft.

The flag carrier is also actively engaged in coordinating with its suppliers and service partners to reactivate more aircraft that have been parked for extended periods while awaiting replacement engines and parts, as a consequence of delays in the global supply chain that afflict the worldwide airline industry, she added.

Christoph Gaertner, PAL Vice President for Network Planning, said: “We have also pro-actively reduced some frequencies on a number of routes as part of a rationalization of our schedules, so that we can ensure high reliability going forward. We are working with our suppliers as well as aircraft and engine manufacturers on initiatives to increase efficiency without compromising safety, which is our absolute top priority. This is our obligation to our passengers, who expect a pleasant flying experience when traveling on our global network.”

PAL recently announced that it had firmed up the purchase of nine rand-new Airbus A350-1000 long haul aircraft for its signature routes to North America and potentially to Europe. These 380-seater new-generation jets, to be delivered starting in 2025, will be the most advanced to fly the Philippine skies.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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