Malaysian Carrier MASwings Reduces Palawan Flights

After increasing the frequency of its flights between Kota Kinabalu and Puerto Princesa less than a month earlier, Malaysian carrier MASwings has decided to reduce the frequency of its new Philippine route from five to three flights per week. 

Image Source: Mole.My
According to Doreen Padilla of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines, MASwings issued a notice to the local regulator that two of the original weekly flights would be suspended effective June 30. "The airline advised us they will temporarily suspend their Monday and Thursday flights as there are some requirements they need to comply with," said Padilla.

Padilla was unable to comment further on the requirements and no officials from MASwings were available for comment. The airline previously revealed on its website that it would operate the route between Kota Kinabalu and Puerto Princesa five times weekly effective June 2 using its 64-seat ATR 72-500 aircraft. Flights would operate every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Sunday.

In an earlier statement, MASwings Chief Commercial Officer Shauqi Ahmad noted the growing popularity of Puerto Princesa as a tourist destination. "MASwings is please to be able to meet the great demand on the route from Kota Kinabalu to Puerto Princesa," said Ahmad. "With its eco-tourism attractions, Puerto Princesa is quickly making its mark on the list of Must-Go destinations."

The Mindanao Development Authority confirmed that traffic between Kota Kinabalu and Palawan has been on the rise since last month though no specific figures were released. It remains unclear when MASwings flights will be restored back to the five weekly frequency amidst positive growth trends and recent efforts to promote tourism and air connectivity in the BIMP East ASEAN Growth Area. 

Palawan and Kota Kinabalu in Malaysia have been two key focus areas to accelerate social and economic growth in the region. MASwings first launched flights between Puerto Princesa and Kota Kinabalu in November 2013.

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