AirAsia Suspending Operations at Clark

AirAsia Philippines has announced that it will suspend all of its local and regional flights from Clark International Airport. Flights to Hong Kong, Taipei, Davao, and Kalibo will all be suspended beginning in October. 

air asia clark flights
Copyright Photo: Kit Stephen Agad/PPSG
Marianne Hontiveros, CEO of AirAsia Philippines, confirmed that the airline would suspend the Kalibo and Davao routes starting on October 9, while flights to Taipei and Hong Kong will be halted on November 6. But flights to Hong Kong will temporarily resume for the busy Christmas season. "We will resume our operation to Hong Kong from December 20 to January 5," said Hontiveros. "But Taipei flights will remain suspended because of weak demand."

The airline stated that the reason for the suspension of operations at Clark Airport is to offer financial support to Zest Air. Hontiveros indicated that Zest Air suffered "significant losses" during its four-day suspension imposed by the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines. The airline is expected to have lost approximately P280 million during the suspension. According to Hontiveros, AirAsia Philippines is said to be seeking financial support from its sister airline, AirAsia Malaysia, in an effort to prop up Zest Air.

As for passengers affected by the upcoming suspension of flights from Clark International Airport, Hontiveros indicated that passengers can either seek a refund or rebook their flights out of Manila on Zest Air. The decision is not expected to affect any AirAsia employees and Hontiveros confirmed that no employees would be terminated.

Meanwhile, the airline has already informed the Civil Aeronautics Board of its planned suspension and is continuing to pursue the development of a hub at Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila. It was revealed that AirAsia owner, Tony Fernandes, made a courtesy call to President Aquino and Transportation Secretary Joseph Abaya earlier this year indicating his intentions.

AirAsia Philippines obtained a 49% stake in Zest Air last March in an effort to gain access to valuable slots in Manila. The airline has since announced that it is interested in increasing its stake and is planning a rebrand of both ZestAir and AirAsia Philippines within the next couple of months to create a uniform identity for marketing purposes and brand awareness. Both airlines have applied to the Civil Aeronautics Board for approval to cross-sell flights on either carrier.

Industry analysts suggest that a single brand and product across the Philippines would improve the outlook for AirAsia particularly if they are able to fully integrate their operations with Zest Air.

1 comment:

  1. REFUND IS NOT ENOUGH!THEY SHOULD CONSIDER THE HOTEL WE HAVE PAID AND THE COST OF THE NEW TICKET SINCE IT WAS BELOW A MONTH TO BOOK FOR A FLIGHT!THEY SHOULD ALSO SHOULDER ALL OF THIS!

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