MANILA – The combined passenger traffic of Cebu Pacific and affiliate Tiger Airways Philippines grew by double digits at the start of the second half of the year amid an improvement in the number of occupied seats per flight.
Data from Gokongwei-owned Cebu Air Inc (CEB) show that Cebu Pacific and Tigerair Philippines flew 1.33 million passengers last July, up 16.3 percent from 1.14 million in the same period last year.
This brought year-to-date traffic to 9.85 million, up 14.3 percent from 8.62 million in the same seven months of 2013.
Cebu Pacific targets to carry in excess of 15 million passengers this year. Including the traffic of recently acquired Tigerair Philippines, Cebu Pacific expects more than 17 million by yearend.
Cebu Pacific and Tigerair Philippines’ combined load factor also went up by 3.5 points to 80.8 percent in July from 77.3 percent a year ago.
Load factor pertains to number of seats occupied per flight. Year-to-date, load factor also grew by 0.7 points to 85 percent from 84.2 percent last year.
Jorenz Tanada, CEB spokesperson, attributed the higher passenger traffic to the increase in the number of flights and seat capacity.
“We continue to offer low fares to an extensive route network covering Asia, Middle East and Australia. We have also increased our presence in key markets,” he said.
Cebu Pacific and Tigerair Philippines recorded a total number of 9,985 flights in July, up 4.4 percent from 9,560 in the same period last year.
In the first seven months, the combined number of flights reached 71,133, also up from 68,130 last year.
Cebu Pacific has 51-strong fleet comprises 10 Airbus A319, 28 Airbus A320, 5 Airbus A330 and 8 ATR-72 500 aircraft. It is one of the most modern aircraft fleets in the world.
Between 2014 and 2021, Cebu Pacific will take delivery of 11 more brand-new Airbus A320, 30 Airbus A321neo, and 1 Airbus A330 aircraft.
In March, the shareholders of Singapore’s Tiger Airways Holdings Ltd and the Civil Aeronautics Board separately approved the 100 percent acquisition of Tigerair by Cebu Pacific. The transaction was valued at $15 million.
Source: Darwin G. Amojelar, InterAksyon.com