PAL, AirAsia will not immediately transfer to Sangley Airport
Philippine Airlines and AirAsia on Wednesday said they will not immediately transfer commercial flights to Sangley Airport when it opens.
During the signing of the Pledge of Commitment to support decongestion of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) and development of Sangley Airport, both airline companies said they are undecided whether they will transfer flights to Sangley by November, two months after its scheduled construction.
“I’m not sure if we still have some turboprops. What we could do is we will conduct some studies. I hope that we can talk about it and discuss," PAL Officer-in Charge Vivienne Tan said.
AirAsia's president and CEO Dexter Comendador explained that while they may not be able to make a commitment in transferring flights to Sangley, they are focusing on their airline hubs in Cebu, Kalibo, and Clark.
Comendador added they are working on their hubs in Panglao and Puerto Princesa.
“For Philippines AirAsia, we operate only Airbus 320s. So, at the moment, we are able to utilize Sangley. Until Sangley is able to accommodate the jets, then we will consider moving our base to Sangley,” he explained.
Unlike Philippine Airlines and AirAsia, Cebu Pacific noted it might be able to transfer their flights to Sangley on the airport's first month of operation.
“Once Sangley is built, we will have flights there. I think the first step of this is we will be having our cargo turboprop flights there. (We) will allow general aviation to move from NAIA to Sangley," Cebu Pacific president and CEO Lance Gokongwei said.
"We will be able to reduce the number of flights but maintain the number of passengers (and) continue to support the country's tourism agenda," he added. Cristina Eloisa Baclig/DMS