Cebu Pacific Expands Clark Int’l Airport Operations


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Starting December this year, the country’s largest airlines Cebu Pacific (CEB) will increase its flights out of Clark International Airport.

CEB currently operates 21 weekly flights out of Clark to Singapore, Cebu, Hongkong, Macau. CEB will increase these to 27 weekly flights.

Starting 16 Dec 2016,  CEB will increase the following frequencies:

  1. Clark-Cebu-Clark, from 3 to 6 times/week
  2. Clark-HKG-Clark, from 7 to 10 times/week

CEB hopes to stimulate economic trade and investments in Central Luzon.

 

 

7 Foreign Airlines Eye Flights to Clark


Seven international airlines have expressed interest in mounting flights to Clark International Airport.

 

CIAC president Emigdio Tanjuatco III identified the seven airlines as Jet Star of Singapore, Thai Smile of Thailand, Rayani Air of Malaysia, Express Air of Indonesia, Air India, V-Air of Taiwan and Airline 4.0.

Currently Clark International Airport hosts Qatar Airways, Asiana Airlines, Dragonair, Jin Air, CebGo, Tiger Air of Singapore, Air Asia Berhad and Cebu Pacific Air. These airlines connect Clark to Hong Kong, Singapore, Bangkok, Macau, Pudong, Incheon, Doha, Dubai, Davao, Cebu and Kalibo.

Emirates Airlines announced that it would launch a daily service from Dubai to Cebu  and Clark starting March 30, using a  Boeing 777-300ER aircraft.

Tanjuatco earlier said he was in talks with other carriers to expand operations in Clark as the airport can accommodate five million passengers annually.

CIAC plans to construct a P7.2-billion  low-cost passenger terminal building, designed by Aeroport De Paris of France.

The first phase would increase the terminal’s capacity to eight million from the current five million passengers a year, while the second phase would increase the capacity to 46 million by 2025.

The government was also looking into the feasibility of bidding out the Clark Airport operations and maintenance and the construction of the legacy terminal and improvement of the facilities required on the airside and landslide.

Aside from Clark, the government plans to auction off the P74.56 billion NAIA Development Project, which aims to turn over the  operation and maintenance of the country’s main gateway to the private sector under a public-private partnership scheme.

It also aims to tap the private sector to redevelop the airport’s facilities. The plan is now being studied by the board of the National  Economic and Development Authority.

A recent study done by the Japan International Cooperation Agency showed NAIA would exceed its designed capacity this year, with its four terminals handling 37.78 million passengers, above the 30-million capacity.

By 2040, passenger traffic would reach 101.49 million, according to the Jica study.

Source: Darwin G. Amojelar, http://thestandard.com.ph

 

 

High Speed Rail Not Needed for Clark Int’l Airport?


The chief of Peregrine Development International Incorporated says the claim about the need for high-speed rail to service Clark International Airport is ‘folklore.’

Citing the realities of international and domestic air travel, a top official of an American knowledge management firm said a high speed rail system between the Clark Freeport Zone and Metro Manila is unnecessary for the full operation of the Clark International Airport.

Dennis Wright, president and CEO of Peregrine Development International Incorporated (PDI), emailed last February 18 a copy of the article he wrote for the American Chamber of Commerce Philippines’ monthly Journal wherein he tagged as “folklore” the claim about the need for high-speed rail to service Clark airport.

Citing the realities of international and domestic air travel, a top official of an American knowledge management firm said a high speed rail system between the Clark Freeport Zone and Metro Manila is unnecessary for the full operation of the Clark International Airport.

Dennis Wright, president and CEO of Peregrine Development International Incorporated (PDI), emailed last February 18 a copy of the article he wrote for the American Chamber of Commerce Philippines’ monthly Journal wherein he tagged as “folklore” the claim about the need for high-speed rail to service Clark airport.

“Most of these individuals have chauffeured cars and would still primarily utilize NAIA as would people south of the National Capital Region.”

The chief of PDI said overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) and their families are also unlikely to use the high speed rail.

'FOLKLORE'. A high speed rail system will not be beneficial to people using the Clark airport, an American businessman claims
Image Source: Rappler
Dragging boxes

“It is hardly likely that a large family wanting to greet a returning OFW or send one off to work (abroad) will gather at the train station for a trip to and from the airport,” Wright said.

“Also, have you ever tried doing a bag drag and/or Balikbayan boxes from an airport terminal to a rail terminal and on and off the train car to a taxi? While it can be done, it is not easy,” Wright added.

The American businessman said rail transportation is not necessary between the Clark airport and NAIA because airlines generally do not ticket or connect routes between sister airports in the same area.

“For example, no one flies to Narita (Japan) and connects out of Haneda, or flies O’Hare (Chicago, USA) and out of Midway. So passengers, in general, rarely need or would use a rail connection between the airports,” Wright said.

He said Clark International Airport should be developed as a major airport alongside NAIA.

Just like in most cities around the world, two or 3 major airports are needed to service locals and tourists, as the number of flights continue to increase, Wright added.

Wright cited the cases of Thailand that built a new airport some 30 kilometers away from the old airport; Japan, that built and operated Narita airport, some 60 kilometers away from the older Haneda airport; and Malaysia, that built a new airport some 45 kilometers from downtown Kuala Lumpur.

During her visit here early this month, presidential aspirant Senator Grace Poe said she supports the full utilization of Clark International Airport, but added that a rail system connecting Clark to Metro Manila and the Ilocos, Cordillera and Cagayan regions is also needed to realize this.

Liberal Party standard-bearer Manuel “Mar” Roxas II, who visited Pampanga last December, said Clark International Airport should be the country’s main international airport, but this cannot be done without support infrastructure, particularly a rapid rail system to bring passengers to Metro Manila.

Another presidential aspirant, Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, said last December that one way of easing the traffic problem in Metro Manila is the use of Clark International Airport as alternative to NAIA and the building of a Clark-Metro Manila fast train system for passengers.

Source: Jun A. Malig, Rappler.com

Clark Int’l Airport Holds Key for PH to Reap Rewards of Ballooning Air Traffic


Conclusion

Developing the Clark International Airport as a premier global gateway is a shared responsibility—meaning there should be concerted efforts and coordination between the government and the private sector—as its success would mean the decongestion of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), a development that would be felt across sectors.

Aside from developing land transportation, developing a new runway and building support infrastructure, government agencies must also open satellite offices near the area to make the processing of travel documents for overseas Filipino workers faster.

“Most of the passengers [who] fly out of Clark are overseas workers. We wanted the support of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration and the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration for them to have satellite offices here at Clark,” Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC) President Emigdio P. Tanjuatco III said.

Cebu Pacific Spokesman Paterno S. Mantaring agreed, saying that this takes away the pain of traveling to Manila that passengers from the North have to experience just to process their papers.

“Relevant agencies have also discussed the need to establish a one-stop government center in Clark, to provide easy access to basic government services for air passengers, especially overseas Filipino workers,” he said.

Mantaring added: “This will ensure that passengers departing out of Clark would be able to secure all necessary requirements or permits for domestic or international travel without delay, while guests arriving in Clark for business or leisure would be able to continue with their onward flights, i.e., via Manila, at the soonest possible time.”

‘No cure for NAIA’

Local carriers must also be willing to give Clark a second chance, as this would eventually entice passengers to use the airport and fill the gap between the supply and demand.

To do this, the government may dangle incentives to airlines that are willing and able to move out from the NAIA to Clark.

“Clark can accommodate at least an additional 100 weekly flights today, which can double every year and handle all flight frequencies in five years in a phased transfer of international flights during the period. The airport and transport authorities can mandate this in an official air-transportation policy that they may enunciate. Although they need much political will to do it,” said Avelino L. Zapanta, an aviation expert . “They can dangle incentives to the first airlines to volunteer to transfer.  Many would soon be willing to transfer anyway rather than not be able to expand services in Manila.”

The five-year phased transfer will require at least six things, he added.

“Clark needs a fourth terminal, the one they have already in blueprint that can handle 80 million passengers a year, which will make Clark an aerotropolis; a third one for low-cost carriers had been approved and is supposed to commence construction in 2016,” he said.

He added that the airport needs a third runway at the opposite side of the aerodrome to allow simultaneous take-off and landing of wide-body aircraft, and also to allow the Airbus A380s to operate there. The third requirement is the construction of a high-speed railway line that will connect Clark and NAIA to allow for connecting flights.

“Fourth is to encourage the operation of helicopter city hopper to connect Clark, particularly with Metro Manila, so that high-end passengers would have an alternative faster transfer service; business executives can even be arranged to land on top of the high-rise building they’d go to in the central business districts,” Zapanta said.

The last two are the establishment of terminals for buses, rent-a-car services, and limousine transfers; and the strengthening of domestic-to-international transfer services.

“Whether we like it or not, Clark will become an international gateway because there is no cure for the congestion of NAIA except Clark,” he said.

Building high-speed railway

Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio A. Abaya said these recommendations are currently being looked at by his agency. The general direction for Clark, according to him, is for the government to improve its capacity to accommodate further growth.

“The National Economic and Development Authority Board approved the Clark International Airport New Passenger Terminal Building Project last September. Right now, we are about to bid out the detailed engineering design for the development of this passenger terminal building. This project is part of the Clark master plan, which was developed by Aéroports de Paris,” he said.

The new terminal will be done in three phases: the first phase will have an annual passenger capacity of 3 million. It will then be increased to 5 million during the second phase, and eventually to 8 million in the final phase.

Abaya added that the government is also trying to address the need for faster connectivity by constructing a high-speed railway that will connect the northern and southern Luzon.

“In terms of accessibility, there is a long-term plan to extend railway operations in the north through the North-South Rail Project. Phase 1 will be the P171-billion Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)-Official Development Assistance project that will connect Metro Manila to Malolos in Bulacan; and Phase 2 will be handled by the Bases Conversion and Development Authority that will connect Malolos to Clark International Airport,” he said.

This, however, will come only in the next five years, according to a timeline provided by Abaya’s office.

Clark vs Sangley

While Clark has been perceived as a Band-Aid solution for Naia’s woes, the development of a new airport based in Sangley Point in Cavite is seen as the long-term answer to the chronic mess at Manila’s main gateway.

The transportation department recently received a pre-feasibility study from the JICA that lists the possible locations of the new airport. The study pinpointed two Cavite-based locations, called Sangley 1A and 1B. As to the official location that will be endorsed by JICA, the transport chief can only speculate.

Whichever the site will be, the statesman noted, however, his camp will be forwarding it to the country’s chief economic-planning body, the National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) Board.

Sangley 1A is in the same site as the naval station in Cavite. The other one is near the central Manila Bay, between the military base and a reclaimed area.

The first option will cost both the government and a private-sector partner less than the second choice. The first one only costs $10 billion, while the other is pegged at around $13 billion.

The future airport will boast of four runways, which can handle 700,000 aircraft movements per year. It will have a rated capacity of 130 million passengers annually.

The deal is expected to be implemented under the government’s key infrastructure program, mixed with funding from official development assistance. Commercial operations of the new air hub should start by 2025, just about 10 years from now.

“Sangley came up only with Abaya apparently because it is in his district in Cavite. Clark has always been the subject of development since Fidel V. Ramos’s time. I prefer Clark. Sangley’s reclamation need is huge and will impede commercial shipping traffic in/out Manila Bay, among many other disadvantages,” Zapanta said.

Philippine Airlines President Jaime J. Bautista added that given the amount of time that the government needs to construct a new airport, it is but wiser to consider Clark first before Sangley.

“Sangley is a good plan. But it will take time, right? It will take about 10 years to 15 years to be completed. In the meantime, let’s fix Clark first,” he said.

For his part, Cebu Pacific’s Mantaring said his camp is more excited with the soon-to-be-built Sangley Airport.

“To cater to travelers used to Manila, it would be ideal to develop a new airport closer to the capital city, while forging ahead with the continuous development and improvement of NAIA. In particular, Cebu Pacific looks forward to the optimization of the NAIA runways with the development of rapid exit taxiways, which will allow up to two more aircraft movements per hour and significantly reduce consequential flight delays,” he said.

He added: “Cebu Pacific also highly anticipates the commencement of air-traffic navigation services from British firm Nats Services Ltd., which aim to boost hourly air-traffic movements to 60 from its current 40 limit. NAIA and Sangley Point remain more accessible to travelers from Manila, and would greatly benefit from the government’s proposed expansion projects.”

Triple airport strategy

American Chamber of Commerce Senior Advisor John D. Forbes and European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines External Vice President Henry J. Schumacher both agreed that developing Clark instead of Sangley is the best option for the Philippines.

“We support the dual-airport policy. Clark has been marginalized for two decades. With NAIA now at capacity, the government must be more serious about using Clark,” Forbes said. “Sangley and any other NAIA replacement is unlikely for 15 years. Unless Clark and other international airports are used more, tourist arrivals cannot meet targets.” The dual-airport strategy calls for the simultaneous development of both Clark and NAIA.

“We support the dual-airport strategy. We believe budget flight, including part of Cebu Pacific, should be moved to Clark. This will require a fast transit bus or rail system. If it will work on Edsa from Quezon City to Makati, the bus transit could be extended to Clark,” Schumacher said.

But for Philippines AirAsia President Joy D. Cañeba, there is no reason for the government not to develop both airports at once.

“Clark is already a viable airport. Let’s develop this first; but there is no reason for us to develop only one or two major airports as the demand for air travel has grown exponentially and the growth is forecast to continue with increasing low-cost airline operations and the expanding middle class and the Philippines is losing opportunities if we do not start building, expanding and improving airports now,” she said.

The transport chief, for his part, said the government will be keen on developing all three airports to reap the benefits of the ballooning domestic and international traffic volumes.

“The government is developing Clark and is, likewise, going to develop a new Manila international airport. The short- to medium- term plan is to develop NAIA via public-private partnership to expand its capacity in order to meet projected throughput until 2037, which is estimated at 51.4 million passengers per annum. The proposal is for a 15- to 20-year concession under an operate-rehabilitate-add-transfer scheme at an estimated cost of over P120 billion,” he said.

This project, expected to be completed by 2017, is still for the approval of the Neda Board.

“We are developing Clark by building a new passenger terminal building, which will eventually increase its capacity to 8 million passengers annually. In the long term, JICA is finishing its site-location study on the new Manila International Airport,” he said.

But with all these only expected to be completed in a matter of decades, the Philippines will continue to lose its potential passengers to its neighbors in the region.

SOURCE: Lorenz S. Marasigan, http://www.businessmirror.com.ph

Clark International Airport: Underutilized


DMIA

CLARK FREEPORT, Philippines—The expanded terminal at Clark International Airport (CRK) is underutilized due to the lack of a broad information campaign as well as connectivity to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia), airport officials told the House committee on transportation during a hearing here on Friday.

Darwin Cunanan, vice president for commercial development of the state-owned Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC), said that CRK was not being maximized when questioned by Pampanga Rep. Joseller Guiao.
CRK’s Terminal 1 served 1.2 million passengers in 2013 and 569,000 from January to June 2014, way below its 4.5-million capacity, Guiao noted from CIAC figures.

Cunanan said CIAC surveys showed that 88 percent of passengers in the CRK catchment area (Ilocos, Cagayan Valley, Cordillera and Central Luzon) would fly via CRK if flights were available and schedules were convenient.

Twenty-two percent of Naia passengers from northern and Central Luzon said they were not aware of flights at CRK. The Commission on Audit (COA) confirmed Terminal 1 was underutilized in its audit of the CIAC last year.

“The use of the aerobridges, which Terminal 1 exclusively caters, is extended to a few privileged airlines, namely, Dragon Air, Asiana, Qatar Air and Emirates. As such, the sprawling terminal of 2,700 square meters is sparsely utilized exclusively by said full-service airlines,” the COA said.

“Records show that flights of these airlines for 2011 to 2013 captured a minimal 10 to 18 percent share of the total international flights,” it added.

Catanduanes Rep. Cesar Sarmiento, chair of the committee on transportation, committed to take up in a Sept. 2 budget hearing the needs of CRK for massive promotion and a high-speed rail system.

Victor Jose Luciano, CIAC president and chief executive officer, said President Aquino, in a Cabinet cluster meeting on Aug. 19, gave the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) the green light to proceed with a feasibility study for a modern rail connecting CRK and Naia.

The DOTC budget for 2015, Luciano said, allocated P1.2 billion for detailed engineering plans for a bigger terminal at CRK.

 

Source: Tonette Orejas, Philippine Daily Inquirer 

 

Clark as NAIA twin? Noy Not Interested


DMIA

CLARK NEGLECTED: The prospect of Clark International Airport in Pampanga becoming the twin world gateway of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport is dimming as President Noynoy Aquino, who ironically comes from Central Luzon, nears the end of his term in 2016.

Officials and businessmen in the region have noticed the President’s lack of enthusiasm for upgrading Clark, which has ample space for expansion and world-class parallel runways built by the US Air Force, to complement congested NAIA an hour away by a dedicated rail or bus line.

Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya told Reuters this week that President Aquino has ordered another runway built at NAIA to ease air traffic congestion there. The project, which includes a fourth terminal, will cost at least P2.4 billion.

“The President’s guidance was very clear,” Abaya said. “We’ll find ways to have this completed before his term ends because the benefits are clear.”

*      *      *

LIKE A RESTO: With just one year before his administration is engulfed by the frenzy of the 2016 election campaign, the President is obviously in a hurry to save NAIA from being one of the world’s worst airports.

Abaya probably sees another runway as a quick fix. He did not say, however, where the runway will be built in the NAIA fringes choked with residential subdivisions.

He said the new runway would increase from 42 to 48 the number of planes taking off and landing per hour. If an additional terminal is built, he added, the take-off and landing rate could rise to at least 58 planes an hour.

Apparently he did not notice that the NAIA situation is much like that of an over-crowded restaurant. Squeezing in another long table without opening more dining space and improving the menu, the kitchen and parking area will not make customer satisfaction any better.

*      *      *

SPACE PROBLEM: The basic problem of NAIA is lack of space.

With only 700 hectares for terminals, aviation and other related facilities, the airport is hemmed in by the South Luzon Expressway and the Parañaque perimeter road on the northeast and the Multinational Village of El Shaddai leader Mike Velarde on the southwest.

In comparison, Clark airport has 2,400 hectares for a world-class passenger terminal, parking aprons, taxiways, cargo handling, aircraft repair and commercial spaces. NAIA and all its facilities can fit in a tiny corner of Clark’s 26,000 hectares.

The only missing link in making Clark the ideal partner of NAIA is a dedicated rail or bus line connecting them. This can run in the middle of the capacious North Luzon Expressway without having to buy right of way.

*      *      *

TOP RUNWAY: Formerly home base of the US 13th Air Force, Clark has six maintenance hangars, 12 aircraft shelters, five air cargo terminals and two control towers. At the height of the Vietnam war, it took in stride the punishing traffic, including the giant B-52 bombers.

It has two runways, each 3.2 kilometers long, and another runway for small planes. Its wide reinforced concrete runways, made to strict USAF specifications, could take the US Space Shuttle in an emergency, and the C5 Galaxy, largest military cargo plane that can carry more than 150 percent of the workload of a B747.

Its runway configuration allows the airport to handle 30 operations per hour and is capable of up to 100 peak-hour operations with the use of the two independent runways. They have been classified as Category 1, based on ICAO standards.

UNDERUTILIZED: Waiting to be tapped fully by the administration, Clark is underutilized. Its weekly commercial flights number about 73, with daily flights averaging 11. In 2013, only a million passengers went through it.

The regular flights include: Qatar Airways via Doha; Asiana Airlines via Inchon; JinAir via Incheon; Cebu Pacific Air via Hong Kong, Singapore and Macao; DragonAir via Hong Kong; SEAIR-I via Caticlan; and Cebu Pacific via Cebu. Air Asia Berhad will relaunch Clark-Kuala Lumpur flights on Oct. 17.

Most OFW (overseas Filipino workers) from Central Luzon choose to fly through Clark instead of going all the way to the NAIA.

Source: Federico D. Pascual Jr (The Philippine Star)

P7.2 Billion Budget for Clark International Airport


DMIA

MANILA, Philippines – The Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC) is set to present to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) the master plan for the aerotropolis and the feasibility study for the proposed P7.2-billion low cost carrier (LCC) terminal in Pampanga.

Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya said the master plan and feasibility study prepared by Aeroports de Paris (ADP) of France would be presented to the NEDA-Investment Coordination Committee next month.

“ADP presented its concept design for a new LCC terminal to DOTC and CIAC officials last month, and CIAC is now scheduled to present this proposal to the NEDA-ICC in August,” Abaya said.

According to Abaya, the P417-million improvement project of the existing passenger terminal building at the Clark International Airport was completed last May raising the annual passenger capacity from 2.5 million to four million.

The project increased the size of the building to 19,799 square meters from 11,439 square meters.

Likewise, the number of check-in counters was also increased to 34 from 13 with the addition of 12 departure counters and five arrival counters to accommodate more passengers and ease queuing.

The modernized portion of the terminal itself has eight entry points and three customs stations allowing the international airport to accommodate more international flights from Qatar Airways and Emirates.

On the other hand, Abaya said the proposed new budget terminal would further boost the capacity of the international airport to between eight and 16 million passengers per year from the current four million.

“We are hoping for a smooth process in order for the project to be completed within 2016,” he said.

Abaya said the government is pouring investments into the Clark aerotropolis’ development, to prepare it as an international hub alongside the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) and the Sangley airport for decades to come.

“We see Clark International Airport as a premier gateway alongside NAIA and Sangley, especially in view of its rapid growth over the past few years, as well as government’s development plans for the entire economic zone and the rest of the region. This is the direction we are taking for presentation to the President, for his consideration,” he said.

Source: Lawrence Agcaoili, Philippine Star

Qatar Airways To Continue Flying To Clark International Airport (CRK)


Qatar_Airways_Boeing_777-300ER_A7-BAC

Qatar Airways will continue flying to the Clark International Airport (CIA) in the Philippines, even though the Emirates Airlines, the only other Gulf carrier to the destination, suspended daily flights from May 3.

In a press statement sent to Gulf Times, Clark International Airport Corporation (CIAC) said Qatar Airways country manager (Philippines) Abdallah Okasha made the announcement during the Clark Aviation Conference held at Holiday Inn Resort at Clark Freeport Zone in Pampanga yesterday.

Okasha noted that Qatar Airways has recorded at least a 50% to 90% increase in the load factor since its maiden flight to CIA. The airline is using Airbus 330 aircraft with a capacity of 305 passengers.

“We are proud to highlight Qatar Airways’ commitment to the Philippines will continue,” he said, as he thanked the Philippine government, business communities, trade players, Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) officials and the CIAC management headed by CEO Victor Jose Luciano for all the support they have given to QA.

“Special thanks to the management of CIAC for putting Qatar Airways to the Global Community when we launched our 133 destinations last October 2013 at Clark Airport,” Okasha stressed in the same statement.

Ambassador Crescente Relacion joined senior Qatar Airways officials and hundreds of OFWs from Qatar during the maiden flight in October last year.

Supporting the statement of Okasha, CIAC president and CEO Victor Jose Luciano also noted an increase of Qatar Airways  passengers via its Clark daily flights. He said that the airline’s flights to Clark were always fully booked and OFWs from Northern Philippines preferred to land at CIA.

Luciano also thanked Qatar Airways  for its trust and confidence to CIA. He vowed to continue supporting all the endeavours and operations of the airline at the 2,367-hectare Clark Civil Aviation Complex.

CIAC said Emirates Airlines had suspended its Clark flights due to low load factor, intense competition and reportedly because of the huge excise tax imposed by the Philippine Bureau of International Revenue on jet fuel used for international flights.

In an earlier statement sent to Gulf Times, an airline spokesperson said: “Emirates can confirm that it is suspending its daily, non-stop service between Clark International Airport and Dubai from 1st May 2014. The decision was made after a review of the airline’s operations to ensure the best utilisation of its aircraft fleet for its overall business objectives.” The airline will continue its three daily, non-stop flights between Manila and Dubai.

CIA is currently rehabilitating its facilities in a bid to improve its services as it prepares to be the next alternative airport after NAIA in Manila.

The new passenger terminal building had been completed recently and fully operating. It can accommodate at least 4mn passengers annually. CIAC spent P417mn for its phase 2 expansion project and another P7.2bn was proposed for the construction of a low-cost carrier terminal designed to accommodate 10 million passengers annually.

Besides Qatar Airways, other airlines operating at Clark Airport included Cebu Pacific Air, Tiger Air Philippines, Asiana Airlines, Dragonair, Jin Air, and Seair-International.

Daily Flights to Clark Int’l Airport Get Positive Response


Qatar_Airways_Boeing_777-300ER_A7-BAC
Image Source: bangaloreaviation.com

While Emirates Airlines recently decided to stop services to Clark International Airport (CIA), Qatar Airways continues to get positive response to its daily flights it launched  to the Philippine city in November last year, a top official of the airport has told Gulf Times.


Victor Jose Luciano, president of the Clark International Airport Corporation, noted an increasing number of passengers from Doha arriving at CIA flying Qatar Airways. “We have observed that Qatar Airways flights to Clark are always fully booked,” he stressed. Qatar’s flag carrier also flies daily to Manila. 


He said many overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) coming from the northern Philippines and those living in some parts of Metro Manila prefer to land at Clark. Many newly-hired Filipinos and OFWs working in other GCC countries such as Kuwait, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia take QA’s Clark-Doha flights, according to Luciano. 


A passenger who spoke to Gulf Times said their home in Subic, Zambales is only about 45 minutes away from the airport. From Manila, it would take him more than five hours (depending on the flow of the traffic) before he finally reach his native town. 
Clark is about 96km north of Manila. A female passenger who lives in Manila but took the Clark flight said it only takes less than two hours to reach their house in Quezon City.

Clark International Airport
Clark International Airport


“There was a time when we spent more than six hours on the road because of the huge traffic going out of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila,” she recounted. Passengers who land in Clark also enjoy a complimentary bus service to and from Trinoma Mall and Resorts World-Manila daily. 


Many airline passengers said travel from Clark to some parts of Manila is more convenient since travel time becomes less using the north Luzon expressway. Besides OFWs from nearby GCC countries, Luciano also noted that transit passengers from the US and Europe also use the Doha-Clark flights.


Although other budget carriers such as Air Asia had left CIA, it still hosts a number of airlines such as Asiana (Seoul-Incheon), Cebu Pacific (Hongkong, Macau, Singapore), Dragonair (Hongkong), Jin Air (Seoul-Incheon), Tigerair (Singapore) and Tigerair-Philippine (Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi, Hongkong and Kalibo).


The national government has allotted P7.2bn for the airport’s terminal expansion to accommodate some 15m passengers per year.
Luciano, some airport officials and stakeholders are planning to hold road shows in the Gulf region this year to promote CIA.

 

Source: Joey Aguilar, Gulf Times

Tigerair Philippines Sets Flights to South Korea, Japan


Image

LOW-COST carrier Tigerair Philippines on Friday said it will mount flights to South Korea and Japan early next year.

Tigerair Philippines President Olive Ramos said the budget airline wants to further expand its Clark operations by conducting international flights via Clark to Incheon in South Korea and Tokyo, Japan, by early 2014.

“Clark International Airport is a vital location for our operations, especially in our flights in the Asia-Pacific region, and we intend to expand our presence in the area,” Ramos said.

At present, Tigerair flies to Hong Kong, Singapore and Bangkok with domestic flights to Kalibo via Clark Airport.

“With these flight, travelers from the Northern and Central Luzon no longer need to drive all the way to Metro Manila to take their flights to these destinations,” Ramos added.

Also, Tigerair will formally launch its Clark-Davao flights on December 17 with a tri-weekly frequency as part of its expansion programs at Clark International Airport.

“Tigerair will maximize its presence in Clark and as a hub for its flights because of its ideal location. Unlike the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Metro Manila, it is not as busy and congested,” Ramos said, while adding that “operating in Clark offers many incentives, such the fuel is tax free, and fuel is 60 percent to 70 percent of the cost of operating carriers, That’s why it is cheaper to fly out of Clark.”

For his part, Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC) President Victor Jose I. Luciano welcomed the additional domestic flights of Tigerair as this would boost passenger volume at the Clark International Airport.

Luciano said the French and the Philippine governments are set to sign a memorandum of agreement that will pave the way for French company Airport Du Paris to plan and design a separate Budget Terminal for Clark International Airport that is designed to handle 15 million passengers annually.

He said the funds for the project amounting to P7.2 billion will be provided by the Department of Transportation and Communication. The project will be implemented in two phases.

Tigerair also mounts domestic flights from Naia Terminal 4 with its Manila-Cebu, Manila-Davao, Manila-Tacloban, Manila-Bacolod, Manila-Iloilo, Manila-Kalibo and Manila-Puerto Princesa flights. It is also flying the Manila-Phuket route.

Source: Lenie Lectura, Business Mirror