Philippine Airlines to Launch Papua New Guinea Route in October

After successfully launching New York and Jinjiang as its latest international destinations, Philippine Airlines continues to push forward with expansion as it prepares to launch direct service to Port Moresby, the capital of Papua New Guinea, on October 25. 

philippine airlines port moresby
Copyright Photo: Angelo Agcamaran/PPSG
The national flag carrier will operate direct flights between Manila and Port Moresby twice each week on Fridays and Sundays. Flights will depart Manila at 2:10am, arriving at Port Moresby's Jackson International Airport at 9:20am. The return service departs Papua New Guinea at 10:10am, and arrives back at Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila at 1:20pm.

The schedule is designed to enable passengers to connect onward to either domestic or international flights operated by Philippine Airlines. The Papua New Guinea flights will be flown using an Airbus A320 aircraft equipped with 12 seats in business class and 144 seats in economy class. Flights are approximately five hours and ten minutes long.

According to Philippine Airlines President Jaime Bautista, an increase in business travel between the two countries served as the basis to launch the new route. "I am pleased to announce PAL's newest destination within the Oceania Region," said Bautista. "The robust investment climate and the upsurge of business travel to and from Papua New Guinea make it ideal for PAL to open services between Manila and Port Moresby."

Introductory round-trip fares on the route are expected to start at USD $680 for economy class. According to Papua New Guinea's Minister of Trade, Commerce, and Industry, the new flights are expected to provide competition and reduce airfares. "This has been the largest obstacle to growing the tourism industry and business travel to Papua New Guinea," said Minister Richard Maru. "Both our domestic and international airfares need to be reduced substantially to global levels to increase tourism and business travel."

With the introduction of the new service, Port Moresby becomes the third international destination to be launched by Philippine Airlines in 2015. Earlier this year, PAL launched new routes to New York on March 15 and Jinjiang, China on April 25. This brings the total number of international destinations in the Philippine Airlines network up to thirty seven.

Philippine Airlines launched its new flights to the city of Jinjiang in China following the massive outcry from the large number of Chinese-Filipinos, who trace their roots back to the Chinese city. Flights are now operated three times weekly between Manila and Jinjiang.

Last month, PAL also launched a new non-stop charter flight from Cebu to Nanning, the capital of China's Guangxi Zhuang region. The chartered flight will utilize an Airbus A320 aircraft and operate every five days, bringing a number of Chinese tourists to the Visayas region of the Philippines.

Earlier this year, Philippine Airlines also expanded its domestic network with the introduction of direct flights between Manila and Tablas, Romblon after an eighteen year absence. The 269-kilometre route is operated by a PAL Express Dash 8-300 turbo-prop aircraft. Flights operate three times weekly every Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday. It is the only commercial air service to operate from Tablas.

Meanwhile, Philippine Airlines also has plans to introduce new service to Cairns, Australia and Auckland, New Zealand on December 2, 2015.

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