Mactan-Cebu International Airport Launches New Routes


Cebu-Xiamen

GMR Megawide Cebu Airport Corp. (GMCAC) announces the launch of two more international destinations out of Mactan-Cebu International Airport (MCIA).

Xiamen Airlines of China is launching a route between Cebu and Xiamen of Fujian province in China on March 28, 2016.

The flight departs Xiamen at 9am on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays, arrives in Cebu at 11:55 am, and return to Xiamen one hour later. This is three times a week. It will  the 170-seat capacity Boeing 737.

Xiamen Air has previously opened international routes to Southeast Asian countries including Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Cambodia and the Philippines.

Cebu-Taipei

Taiwan-based EVA Airways will inaugurate this March 27 the daily Cebu-Taipei-Cebu flight. It departs Taipei at 7:10 am and arrives in Cebu at 10:05 am. It leaves Cebu on the same day at 11:05am and arrives in Taipei at 2:00pm using an Airbus 321. This is EVA Air’s second Philippine destination after flying Manila daily.

“It’s a very exciting time for MCIA- we’re growing our capabilities as a gateway to one of the country’s most competitive regions,” said GMCAC President Louie Ferrer.

Before the month ends, GMCAC will be launching a Cebu-Dubai flight through Emirates.

 

13 Airlines with the Best Looking Flight Crew (Migme, http://asia361.com/)


On 14 September 2015, Air India announced that they will ground 125 cabin crew if they fail to lose weight and reach the required Body Mass Index (BMI) range. According to TIME magazine, the airline claims that this is due to safety concerns, as they want to ensure the crew are fit enough to handle emergency situations. Male crew have to have a BMI of 18-25, while females are required to meet the range of 18-22.

This follows the 2014 guidelines from the Indian Directorate General of Civil Aviation which states that overweight cabin crew have three months to lose weight or be declared unfit for duties for six months.

A user @susmitsenn on migme, a social entertainment platform, was happy that the “fat aunties will finally be out and make way for sexier air hostesses”, however he was shocked they would be sacked for being ‘fat’.

While Air India shapes up to meet safety standards, migme has put together a list of airlines with flight crew that are very fit— you know what we mean.

1. Emirates Airlines (Dubai, UAE)

Image Source: Emirates

Even though our list is not in order of merit, Emirates deserves to be mentioned first. They received unanimous votes in our casual poll in the migme office.

2. Singapore Airlines (Singapore)

Image Source: Singapore Airlines

Their tagline “Singapore Girl, you’re a great way to fly”, while being somewhat sexist, is not entirely wrong as the airline prides itself on high service standards.

3. Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi, UAE)

Image Source: Etihad Airways

Excuse me, I need to get an oxygen mask, because you take my breath away.

4. Virgin Atlantic (England, UK)

Image Source: Virgin Atlantic

You don’t need Vivienne Westwood to design your uniforms when you are looking like that.

5. Qatar Airways (Qatar)

Image Source: Qatar Airways

If there’s anything we’ve learnt from this list, it’s that the Middle Eastern airlines have a bunch of pretty good-looking crew.

6. China Eastern Airlines (China)

Image Source: China Eastern Airlines

If you didn’t know the Chinese word for elegance, now you do.

7. Lufthansa (Germany)

lufthansa
Image Source: Lufthansa

Hi Marc, we want a selfie too! Yes, that is his real name. Don’t ask us how we know. *shifty*

8. EVA Air (Taiwan)

Asia361-9461
Image Source: asia361.com, Kat Goh

As if the Hello Kitty Jet isn’t cute enough, the crew members are all pretty darn cute too.

9. Safi Airways (Dubai-based, Afghan-owned)

safiairways
Image Source: Safi Airways

Forgive me if I keep asking for assistance on the plane. I don’t really need water, I just want to look at your face.

10. Asiana Airlines (South Korea)

asianaairlines
Image Source: Asiana Airlines

Does an electronic boarding pass mean we get to see you sooner? Checking in online right now.

11. All Nippon Airways (Japan)

ANA
Image Source: ANA

Notice me, senpai!

12. Garuda Indonesia (Indonesia)

Image Source: Garuda Indonesia

You’ve learnt a Chinese word already, so now we will teach you the Bahasa Indonesia word to describe the crew – ‘cantik‘. That means beautiful.

13. Cebu Pacific Air (The Philippines)

Image Source: Cebu Pacific

Bright uniforms and an even brighter smile? You set our pre-flight jitters at ease.

Source: Migme, asia361.com

World’s Safest Airlines for 2015


AirlineRatings.com identified the top 10 safest airlines (legacy) in the world, in alphabetical order:

AIR NEW ZEALAND https://i2.wp.com/bestawards.co.nz/media/uploads/2012_7/Air_NZ_Black_Plane_Environmental_Graphics_2_1.jpg

BRITISH AIRWAYShttps://i2.wp.com/cms.travelstart.com/uploads/image/asset/1682/British_Airways_757.jpg

CATHAY PACIFIC https://i0.wp.com/upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/ff/Cathay_Pacific_Boeing_777-300_Pichugin-1.jpg

EMIRATEShttps://i1.wp.com/cache.pakistantoday.com.pk/emirates_9.jpg

ETIHAD

EVA AIRhttps://i0.wp.com/freeware.aerosoft.com/forum/screenshots/monthly_09_2012/6a7717b07a6fc3292a43b6261a09de88-a320_cfm_eva_air_b-25569-1.jpg

FINNAIR https://i1.wp.com/upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/a8/Finnair_B757-200_OH-LBS_at_CYYZ_20110605.jpg

LUFTHANSA https://i2.wp.com/www.insidesocal.com/aviation/files/2013/06/lufthansa-747-8.jpg

QANTAS https://i0.wp.com/australianaviation.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/AIRBUS-A330-200-QANTAS-SYD-SEP12-RF-IMG_6414.jpg

SINGAPORE AIRLINES

World Airline Awards 2014: World’s Top 10 Airlines


World's best airlines for 2014
World’s best airlines for 2014

World’s Top 10 Airlines 

1. Cathay Pacific Airways

2. Qatar Airways

3. Singapore Airlines

4. Emirates

5. Turkish Airlines

6. ANA All Nippon Airways

7. Garuda Indonesia

8. Asiana Airlines

9. Etihad Airways

10. Lufthansa

emirates

Best Inflight Entertainment

1. Emirates

2. Singapore Airlines

3. Turkish Airlines

4. Qantas

5. Cathay Pacific Airways

6. Virgin Atlantic

7. Qatar Airways

8. Air New Zealand

9. Virgin Australia

10. Etihad Airways

Garuda-Indonesia

Best Cabin Crew

1. Garuda Indonesia

2. Cathay Pacific

3. Singapore Airlines

4. Asiana Airlines

5. Malaysia Airlines

6. Qatar Airways

7. EVA Air

8. ANA All Nippon Airways

9. Thai Airways

10. Hainan Airlines

AAsia

Best Low Cost Carrier

1. AirAsia

2. Jetstar Airways

3. Virgin America

4. AirAsia X

5. Indigo

6. Norwegian

7. Jetstar Asia

8. easyJet

9. WestJet

10. Azul Airlines

Souce: http://www.smh.com.au/travel/traveller-tips/worlds-best-airline-named-at-2014-skytrax-awards-20140716-3c0a2.html#ixzz38p1MQQzk

CAPA: Philippine Airlines Seeks A Strategic Investor As International Expansion Continues


philippine-airlines

ANA: Not Planning To Invest In PAL

Attracting an investor from the airline sector has so far proven challenging. All Nippon Airways (ANA) emerged as a potential suitor in 2013 as part of the Japanese carrier’s initiative to invest in foreign airlines with focus on Southeast Asian market.

But ANA has since ruled out an investment in PAL. ANA also has decided not to complete a planned investment in small Myanmar carrier Asian Wings, which when announced in Aug-2013 was seen as a toe in the water with the idea it would be followed by larger investments in Southeast Asian airline sector.

ANA’s rival Japan Airlines also has been ruled out as a potential investor in PAL. Japan was a logical place for PAL to turn as Japan is PAL’s largest market accounting for about 22% of the carrier’s international seat capacity.

PAL currently operates 63 weekly flights to five Japanese destinations (FukuokaNagoya, Osaka, Tokyo-Haneda and Tokyo-Narita), according to OAG data. But synergies with Japanese carriers are relatively limited. ANA and JAL are strong competitors in the Philippines-US market.

PAL is now planning to expand its US operation, which is made possible by Philippine authorities securing a Category 1 rating from the US FAA earlier this year. As PAL expands in North America it will try to woo away passengers that have been flying via North Asian hubs including Tokyo, Hong KongSeoul and Taipei, thus increasing the competitive posture towards airlines from those countries.

Japan is an important and growing source market for the Philippines tourism sector. But Philippines-Japan is primarily a leisure point to point market and seemingly is not of sufficient importance to Japanese carriers to justify an investment. There are also limited opportunities to offer Japanese passengers connections beyond Manila.

Securing Investment from Korean Carriers Would Be Challenging

South Korea is also an important and growing source market for Philippine tourism sector. South Korea is PAL’s second largest market based on current seat capacity and is served with 46 weekly flights across five routes (Seoul to Cebu, Kalibo and Manila and Busan to Kalibo and Manila).

Korean Air and Asiana each have large presences in Philippine market, supported by strong inbound demand from Korea as well as sixth freedom traffic, particularly to North America.

Asiana is the second largest foreign carrier in Philippine market based on seat capacity and currently has 39 weekly flights to the Philippines while KAL is the fourth largest and has 23 weekly flights. It is similarly hard to build a business case for a Korean carrier to invest in PAL.

As is the case with Japanese carriers, potential opportunities for Korean carriers to use Manila as a transit hub for other regions of Asia are limited. San Miguel has talked up building Manila into a transit hub. PAL is generally not well positioned for this type of traffic and will need to compromise yields to attract passengers in markets such as Australia-London and Singapore-North America.

And potential North Asian partners would be impacted if PAL were to pursue this type of traffic aggressively. While an investment seems unlikely PAL could still use partners in Korea and Japan. A Korean and/or Japanese partner would help with local point of sales and connections to secondary cities in Japan.

A Japanese or Korean carrier could also potentially help provide offline coverage to smaller North American markets which PAL does not intend to cover on its own.

Cathay Pacific Codeshare Or Relationship With A Chinese Carrier Is Unlikely

Currently PAL has codeshare with only two North Asians carriers, Air Macau and Cathay Pacific. But both partnerships are limited. The Air Macau codeshare is limited to the MNL-Macau route, which is currently served only by PAL (as well as Cebu Pacific).

The Cathay codeshare is limited to the CEB-HKG route, which is only served by Cathay (as well as Cebu Pacific). The Cathay partnership excludes the much larger and more competitive MNL-HKG route or any destinations beyond Hongkong.

The Cathay-PAL partnership is unlikely to be extended as Cathay competes with PAL in several key PAL markets including Philippines-North America, Philippines-Middle East and Philippines-North Asia. Cathay is now the largest foreign carrier in the Philippines with 43 weekly flights and 12,000 one-way seats.

Cathay regional subsidiary Dragonair also operates nine weekly flights to the Philippines, giving the Cathay group about 25,000 weekly seats and over 5% of capacity in Philippine international market. A partnership with a mainland Chinese carrier would be more appealing as PAL only now serves four destinations in mainland China with a combined 22 weekly return flights.

But a strong partnership or investment from a Chinese carrier may be made less likely in view of the tense state of relations between China and the Philippines. A partnership with a Taiwanese carrier would be more conceivable but again would likely be relatively limited.

Taiwan is a much smaller local market for the Philippines than Hong Kong, Korea or Japan. PAL has only 11 weekly frequencies to Taiwan while China Airlines and EVA Air serve the Philippines with 20 weekly flights and seven weekly flights respectively. The close proximity of Taipei and Manila mean the two hubs compete for traffic and are not synergistic.

Singapore Airlines: Not A Likely Suitor for PAL

PAL’s codeshare partnerships in Southeast Asia are also relatively limited. Currently PAL has codeshares with Garuda IndonesiaMalaysia Airlines (MAS) and Vietnam Airlines.

Garuda and Vietnam Airlines currently do not serve Manila although Garuda is planning to enter the Jakarta-Manila route by the end of 2014.

The MAS codeshare initially provided PAL with offline access to Kuala Lumpur and has been maintained since PAL resumed services to Kuala Lumpur in early 2013. None of these airlines are in position to invest in PAL or any other foreign carrier.

A partnership with Singapore Airlines (SIA) would be more intriguing as Singapore is by far the largest Southeast Asian market from the Philippines. There are currently over 60,000 weekly seats between Singapore and the Philippines, making it the Philippines largest market after South Korea. But there would be limited synergies for SIA.

PAL is not believed to be on SIA’s list of potential acquisition targets.

PAL Forges A New Partnership With Etihad

In recent years most of PAL’s codeshare partners have been from the Mideast. PAL currently codeshares with Emirates and Gulf Air, according to OAG data. But PAL also previously codeshared with Etihad and Qatar Airways.

Most of its codeshares with Gulf carriers were forged during a period when PAL did not operate any services to the Middle East. In some cases Philippine authorities allowed PAL to have its codeshare partners use PAL traffic rights to Middle East countries, which enabled Gulf carriers to continue expanding in Manila after their own traffic rights were exhausted.

PAL and other Philippine carriers have since taken back most of these traffic rights. In 2H2014 PAL launched Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Dammam and Riyadh services (Dubai is served by PAL Express).

Cebu Pacific launched Dubai and is planning to launch Kuwait in Sep-2014. (Cebu Pacific also has been looking to serve Saudi ArabiaOman and Qatar.) PAL forged a partnership agreement with Etihad in late Apr-2014 that builds on the original codeshare between two carriers.

The two carriers announced on 9-Jul-2014 that the new partnership will initially cover the Manila-Abu Dhabi route, which Etihad and PAL both operate. For now the only extension announced beyond the parallel routing is to be on PAL/PAL Express services to 20 Philippine destinations, including holiday destinations such as Cebu, Palawan and Kalibo (a gateway to Boracay Island).

Etihad has said it has no intention of acquiring a stake in PAL. While an investment is always a future possibility for any carrier Etihad partners with, PAL has a better chance of finding a suitor within Asia – although even there it faces an uphill battle to secure an investment.

PAL recognizes the need to work with a Gulf carrier to support its effort to build a more global network. PAL currently does not codeshare with any European carrier. The new Etihad partnership could potentially be extended to destinations beyond Abu Dhabi in continental Europe and Africa as well as secondary destinations in the Mideast.

Much of the foundation for Philippine services to the Mideast is in carrying migrant worker traffic, but Gulf countries in particular have shown increasing interest in holidaying in friendly countries outside the region.

PAL has been looking at launching several potential destinations in continental Europe including AmsterdamFrankfurt, Paris and Rome. One or two European destinations may still be added over the medium term but following the Category 1 upgrade by the US FAA it is more likely to focus on expanding in the US market.

As PAL’s only current European destination is London, which is not generally considered a convenient hub for Asia to Europe connections, using Etihad and the Abu Dhabi hub to cover the rest of Europe would be a sensible move.

PAL Expands In US But Lacks A US Partner

In US, PAL currently serves Los AngelesSan FranciscoHonolulu and Guam. Restoration of Category 1 status has allowed PAL to shift all its LAX and some  its SFO flights to the 777-300ER.

PAL plans to shift its remaining San Francisco 747-400 flights to the 777-300ER at the beginning of Sep-2014. This will allow PAL to finally retire its 747-400s after an initial plan to retire the fleet in May-2014 had to be postponed.

Moving the 777-300ERs to the US market improves PAL’s product and efficiency but comes with a catch as PAL has to transition its Vancouver and Toronto services from 777-300ERs to A340s to free up 777s for the US market. PAL currently serves LAX with 11 weekly frequencies, SFO with seven weekly frequencies, GUM with five weekly frequencies and HNL with three weekly frequencies. Vancouver is served with seven weekly frequencies, three of which continue onto Toronto.

PAL has been looking at launching new destinations in the US in late 2014 or 2015. Chicago and New York are the most likely candidates. PAL is also planning to increase GUM and HNL to daily services from late Oct-2014. PAL uses A320s to GUM and A340s to HNL.

The increases in these markets come ahead of Cebu Pacific’s planned launch of services to the US, which is also made possible by the Philippines regaining a Category 1 ranking. Cebu Pacific aims to launch Guam by the end of 2014 using its A320 fleet and begin serving Hawaii in 2015 using its A330-300s. Category 1 also enables Philippine carriers to codeshare with US carriers.

A codeshare partnership with a US carrier would improve PAL’s position in the US market as PAL would gain offline access to domestic destinations. But PAL could find it challenging to attract a US major and may have to settle for a codeshare or interline with a smaller carriers such as Alaska AirlinesJetBlue and Virgin America. Partnering with a top European carrier may also be challenging although this may not be as critical if its able to expand its new partnership with Etihad.

In addition to potentially providing offline access to Europe via Abu Dhabi, the Etihad partnership could lead to partnerships with European carriers that are part of the Etihad equity alliance such as Alitalia and airberlin.

Australia: Philippine Airlines vs. Cebu Pacific

PAL would also find partnership with an Australian carrier valuable, although options are few.

PAL is pursuing significant expansion in Australia. PAL currently operates four weekly A340 flights to Sydney, three weekly A340 flights to Melbourne and three A320 flights to Darwin, with continuing service to Brisbane.

PAL plans to upgrade Sydney to daily in late Oct-2014. At about the same time PAL reportedly is intending to upgrade Melbourne to daily and begin non-stop flights to Brisbane and Perth. PAL briefly served Perth in 2013 with four weekly flights via Darwin but quickly dropped the route while maintaining Manila-Darwin-Brisbane.

The Australia expansion comes just as Cebu Pacific enters the Philippines-Australia market. Cebu Pacific plans to initially operate four weekly flights to Sydney from Sep-2014 and is looking at adding Melbourne in 2015. While Cebu Pacific should stimulate new demand, overcapacity is likely if PAL implements its plan to double capacity to Australia.

Overcapacity is also likely in the Hawaii and Guam markets as both PAL and Cebu Pacific expand. Overcapacity has already resulted in the Philippines-UAE market after both PAL and Cebu Pacific entered the market in 2H2014. Both carriers have also been pursuing significant expansion to Japan.

The prospect of overcapacity and irrational competition results in a relatively gloomy short to medium term outlook for the Philippine international market. The inevitable discounting has the potential to stimulate new business but there is no indication just how the market would respond to lower prices.

 

Source: http://centreforaviation.com/, Centre for Aviation

World’s Safest Airlines In 2013 Found In Asia-Pacific, Middle East


Image

Anyone with a fear of flying should consider this before boarding their next flight: 2013 was, by far, the safest year for air travel since the dawn of the jet age, according to new data from the Aviation Safety Network, or ASN, an independent organization based in the Netherlands.

Some 29 fatal airliner accidents resulted in a total of just 265 fatalities last year, making 2013 the safest year for number of fatalities and second-safest year for number of accidents. By comparison, the 10-year average for accidents and fatalities is 32 and 720, respectively.

“Since 1997, the average number of airliner accidents has shown a steady and persistent decline, probably for a great deal thanks to the continuing safety-driven efforts by international aviation organizations such as ICAO, IATA, Flight Safety Foundation and the aviation industry,” ASN president Harro Ranter noted.

The worst accident of 2013 occurred on Nov. 17 when a Tatarstan Airlines Boeing 737 crashed on approach to Kazan, Russia, killing 50. Beyond Russia, the entire continent of Africa remained the least safe for air travel in 2013, containing one-fifth of all fatal airliner accidents and just 3 percent of all world aircraft departures.

Europe and North America remained exceedingly safe last year, despite the fact that only one of the two continents’ carriers, Virgin Atlantic, earned seven stars for safety and in-flight product in a new ranking of the world’s safest airlines by safety and product ranking website AirlineRatings.com.

With a fatality-free record in the jet era (since 1951), Australian flag-carrier Qantas once again beat out 447 global airlines to top the AirlineRatings.com list. Website editor Geoffrey Thomas noted that Qantas had amassed an “extraordinary record of firsts in safety and operations” and had been a leader in introducing a host of technologies in the cockpit. “There is no question that Qantas stands alone in its safety achievements and is an industry benchmark for best practices,” he said.

Qantas was the first international airline to operate around the world service in 1958 with its Lockheed Super Constellations and the first to take delivery of the Boeing 707 outside the U.S. in 1959. Thomas said the Australian carrier was also among the first to pioneer long-range operations for twin-engine planes, use a flight data recorder to monitor performance and implement real-time monitoring of its engines using satellite communications.

1836222
Image Source: T. Laurent

Air New Zealand joined Qantas on top of the list, as did fellow Asian airlines All Nippon, Cathay Pacific, Eva Air and Singapore Airlines. Middle Eastern carriers Emirates, Etihad Airways and Royal Jordanian also received seven stars for safety and in-flight product, rounding out the top 10.

ANA

In creating its list, AirlineRatings.com took into account a number of different factors, including audits from aviation governing bodies and lead associations, as well as government audits and the airline’s fatality record. Some 137 of the 448 airlines surveyed received the top seven-star safety ranking — a testament to the industry’s stellar safety record. Yet, there remains a stark divide between the top-tier carriers and their underperforming counterparts.

EY

Nearly 50 airlines received safety rankings of just three stars or less. Afghan Airways (Afghanistan), Daallo Airlines (UAE), Eritrean Airlines (Eritrea), Lion Air (Indonesia), Merpati Airlines (Indonesia), Susi Air (Indonesia) and Air Bagan (Myanmar) all received just two stars, while Kam Air (Afghanistan), Scat Airlines (Kazakhstan) and Blue Wing Airlines (Suriname) earned the dubious title of world’s least-safe airlines with just one star apiece.

EK

All three one-star carriers are banned from flying within the EU. While the U.S. doesn’t blacklist individual airlines, it does issue a public list of nations that it judges to fall short of international aviation safety standards. That list includes Indonesia, Serbia and the Philippines, among others.

Source: , http://www.ibtimes.com/worlds-safest-airlines-2013-found-asia-pacific-middle-east-1534348