Phl to India flights by local carrier to resume


By Louella Desiderio | The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - Flights to India from the Philippines by at least one local carrier may resume by next year, think tank Centre for Aviation (CAPA) said.

It also said a new round of bilateral talks between the Philippines and India should be launched, citing the growing passenger market.

In its latest analysis, CAPA said flights to India from the Philippines may be made available by next year as local carriers Philippine Airlines (PAL), Cebu Pacific and Philippines AirAsia (PAA) are all seeking traffic rights, particularly for Delhi.

“Philippine authorities are not likely to award PAA the traffic rights if there are other Philippine carriers willing to operate the route nonstop. A nonstop service would have a much bigger impact on facilitating Philippines-India economic ties and on the Philippine tourism industry, which is keen to attract more Indian visitors,” it said.

CAPA noted that PAL has historically been favored in traffic right competitions in the Philippines and the fact it currently holds the India rights gives it a strong position.

CAPA said Cebu Pacific, however, could have a bigger impact on the Philippines-India market as it will operate A321s in a higher density configuration than PAL, and stimulate demand in the Indian inbound visitor market through low fares.

Currently, approximately 20 percent of Philippines-India passengers fly via low cost carriers using one stop products, primarily on AirAsia and Tigerair, showing the market is still under penetrated by budget airlines.