MANILA, -- Flag carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with Clark International Airport Corporation (CIAC) on Tuesday, as the carrier's domestic flights will begin operating in the Pampanga hub starting Friday (Dec. 16).
Flights between Clark and Caticlan will operate daily -- flight PR 2371 departs Clark at 11:35 a.m. and arrives in Caticlan at 12:50 p.m.; flight PR 2370 departs Caticlan at 10 a.m. and arrives in Clark at 11:15 a.m.
The phase 2 of the agreement will commence on the first quarter of 2017. Non-stop flights between Clark and Cebu, Davao and Cagayan, as well as flights between Clark and Incheon, South Korea will be offered.
In a press conference, PAL president and chief operations officer Jaime Bautista said the move is PAL's contribution to help ease traffic congestion in Metro Manila.
"This is also an avenue for PAL to grow," he said, adding that it was PAL's target to have Pampanga as its next hub.
Bautista said the target passengers for this agreement are the residents of central and northern Luzon, Tarlac, Pampanga.
"Can you just imagine the volume of cars that would be reduced (in Metro Manila) as there would be no need for these residents and their families to go NAIA for their flights?" stated Alexander Cauguiran, CIAC president and chief executive officer.
Cauguiran told the Philippine News Agency that PAL is the first airline which will offer flights from Clark to Caticlan, Davao and Cagayan and vice versa.
"PAL is also the first domestic carrier which will offer flights between Clark and Incheon," he noted.
Meanwhile, Bautista thanked the CIAC for its logistical and ground support to ensure smooth flight operations.
For his part, Caguiran said it has always been CIAC's dream to have the flag carrier in Clark.
The MOA signing was held at PAL's headquarters in Manila.
PAL said flights between Clark and Cebu will begin on January 30, while flights between Clark and Davao as well as between Clark and Incheon will begin on February 1, 2017.
Source: Philippines News Agency