ANA, PAL, and Cebu Pacific Launch New Flights to Japan

Japan's All Nippon Airways and the two largest carriers in the Philippines simultaneously launched new routes between Japan and the Philippines yesterday after the two countries concluded a successful round of air talks last year. The new routes represent an effort to draw more Japanese tourists to the Philippines while increasing trade between the two countries.

cebu pacific tokyo
Image Source: Cebu Pacific/Facebook
With the addition of the new flights operated by the three carriers, flights between Japan and the Philippines will increase from 56 flights per week to 81 flights per week. Philippine Airlines launched two new daily flights between Manila and Tokyo's Haneda Airport to complement its existing services to Osaka, Fukuoka, Nagoya, and Tokyo Narita.

pal haneda airport
Copyright Photo: Angelo Agcamaran/PPSG
Low-cost carrier Cebu Pacific launched its first direct flights between Manila and Tokyo Narita along with four weekly services to Nagoya. Prior to the new air agreement between the two countries, Cebu Pacific was only permitted to operate three weekly flights to Osaka. That route has now been increased to daily service with further expansion planned throughout Japan. The carrier is also targeting Fukuoka, Ibaraki, Kansai, Hiroshima, Sapporo, and Okinawa. Cebu Pacific also intends to launch service from Cebu to three Japanese cities.
cebu pacific japan
Image Source: Cebu Pacific/Facebook
"With our seat sales, seamless Manila airport terminal connection and extensive network, we hope to stimulate travel and bring Japanese tourists to various destinations in the Philippines," said Candice Iyog, Cebu Pacific's Vice President for Marketing and Distribution. "Similarly, we hope these two new destinations will enable many Filipinos to explore Japan for leisure or business travel. Japan is now more accessible and more affordable with Cebu Pacific flights." 

ana tokyo to manila
Image Source: Wikimedia
Meanwhile, All Nippon Airways, the largest airline in Japan by passenger traffic, has launched a new service between Manila and Tokyo Haneda Airport to compete directly with the new service launched by Philippine Airlines. ANA has been operating in the Philippines for the last three years with a flight between Manila and Tokyo Narita. From Haneda, passengers will be able to connect to ANA's extensive network in Japan. In addition, to increase its competitive edge, ANA will be deploying its Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft to operate the route. 

ana narita to manila flights
Image Source: Wikimedia
More than 700 Japanese businesses have set up operations in various parts of the Philippines making Japan one of the country's largest investors with more than P15 billion worth of investment in the first 9 months of 2013 alone. According to the Department of Tourism, the move to increase flights between the two countries will have a significant impact on the country's tourism industry.

"The increase in flights is a step forward from the recently concluded re-negotiation of the Japan-Philippines air services agreement, which is seen to open gates for additional flights between the Philippines and various points in Japan such as Osaka, Nagoya, Fukuoka, Hiroshima, Sapporo, Okinawa, Ibaraki, Tokyo Narita, and Tokyo Haneda," said Ramon Jimenez, Tourism Secretary. "The fun on the Philippines can now be experienced by more tourists from Japan."

cebu pacific nagoya japan
Image Source: Cebu Pacific/Facebook
Meanwhile, Ramon Ang, President of Philippine Airlines, highlighted the limitless opportunities for trade and tourism between the two countries. "With this service, and what we already have, we are providing both our Japanese and Filipino customers the benefit of choice in terms of which gateway best suits their travel itinerary," said Ang. "As the operator of the Philippines' flag carrier, we are deeply honoured to serve as a bridge by which tourism and business between our two countries can grow.”

Under the new Philippine-Japan air agreement, the total number of weekly flights allowed between Manila and Tokyo Narita have increased to 400 per week. In addition, 14 weekly flights have been granted between Manila and Tokyo Haneda, while unlimited traffic rights exist between points outside of Manila in the Philippines and points outside of Tokyo Haneda in Japan.

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