Silk Air Boosting Flights in Davao, Adding Flights to Kalibo

SilkAir, a subsidiary of Singapore Airlines, has announced that it will be increasing direct flights between Davao and Singapore from five to six weekly flights beginning in November. 

silkair kalibo
Copyright Photo: M. Radzi Desa/
The current five weekly flights are routed via Mactan-Cebu Airport. Officials say that the extra flight will continue to route via Cebu. "We fly Singapore-Cebu-Davao-Singapore, calling it triangular routing," said Leslie Thng, CEO of SilkAir. "The other half of the aircraft is shared by Cebu passengers. Hopefully, the Davao market will give us the additional demand that we are looking for."

SilkAir had been marketing Davao as an international gateway in an effort to produce demand. Flights are currently used by businessmen along with Australian and European tourists. "We are trying to improve connectivity and we are looking at expanding in the Philippines and providing connections to our wider network in Europe, Australia, and the US," said Thng. 

Davao tourism officials welcome the added service as they anticipate a rise in tourism. The Department of Tourism Regional Director Arturo Boncato is seeing an opportunity to market Davao not just to Singaporeans but to other key markets as well. "We are working on certain tour packages like free golf and adventure sports," said Boncato. He added that local tourism leaders are planning to host a Davao Cultural Festival next year to promote the city with assistance from the Philippine embassy in Singapore. "These plans form part of efforts to bring in more tourists to Davao," added Boncato. 

Meanwhile, SilkAir is also planning to tap into the rising numbers of tourists that are headed for vacations on Boracay Island. According to a Department of Tourism officer, Artemio Ticar, the airline is planning to launch passenger flights to Kalibo International Airport from Singapore in June 2014 with an initial frequency of two weekly flights. "We are pushing SilkAir to start flying the Singapore-Kalibo route this year for the Christmas season, but the decision would depend on SilkAir," said Ticar. TigerAir Philippines is currently the only airline serving Singapore with a direct flight to Kalibo. 

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