PAL resumes flights to KL


BusinessWorld Online

PHILIPPINE AIRLINES on Thursday resumed its daily flights to Kuala Lumpur (KL) in Malaysia after three years, as it continues to expand its regional footprint and address the demand for direct air service between the two key Southeast Asian cities.

The Lucio C. Tan-led airline said Malaysia is a “profit center” in the ASEAN region and the resumption of flights will open up investment opportunities from both countries and direct access to close to 800,000 overseas Filipino workers employed in Malaysia.

“The resumption of PAL flights between Manila and Kuala Lumpur will help foster economic and cultural ties between the Philippines and Malaysia. Most importantly, it addresses the clamor for a direct service between the two capital cities,” PAL President and COO Jaime J. Bautista was quoted as saying.

“Through PAL flights and code-share partners, we can carry passenger traffic from Kuala Lumpur to China, Japan, South Pacific and North America and thus enhance our ASEAN network,” he added.

PAL said it is deploying the Airbus A321 on the route. The 199-seater aircraft has 12 seats in business class, 18 in premium economy and 169 in regular economy.

“The decision to return to Kuala Lumpur comes after PAL and Malaysia Airlines expanded their code-share arrangement. The enhancements include code-sharing on 12 domestic Malaysian destinations and nine domestic Philippine destinations,” PAL said in its statement.

Philippine Airlines halted its flights to Kuala Lumpur in 2014.

The expanded code-share agreement would allow PAL to reach the following points in Malaysia: Alor Setar, Johor Bahru, Kota Bharu, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Terengganu, Kuching, Labuan (Sabah), Langkawi, Miri (Sarawak), Penang, Sibu (Sarawak), Tawau (Sabah).

In the Philippines, it would also expand the reach to key cities including Bacolod, Cagayan de Oro, Cebu, Davao, General Santos, Iloilo, Kalibo, Puerto Princesa, Caticlan.

Shares in PAL Holdings closed at P5.20 apiece on Thursday, down 1.52% from its previous finish of P5.28. -- Imee Charlee C. Delavin