Philippine Airlines to Introduce Cebu-Los Angeles Flights

Direct flights to the United States are set to increase.  On March 15 2016, Philippine Airlines (PAL) adds another flight to Los Angeles, this time via Cebu.  

Copyright photo: Angelo Agcamaran/PPSG

PAL President and COO Jaime Bautista said in a statement that "customers in the Visayas and Mindanao have long clamored for direct flights between Cebu and the US due to the travel convenience this will bring".  This flight will be the first direct US flight from either Visayas or Mindanao.  Bautista added that "One can simply take a short hop to Cebu from any point in the Visayas and Mindanao and connect to Los Angeles, instead of flying all the way to Manila".  

The launch of this flight takes place on the day the flag carrier celebrates its 75th anniversary of founding.

Flights between Cebu and Los Angeles will take place three times a week.  PAL's 254-seat Airbus A340-300 will ferry passengers between the two cities.  Although the flight is tagged as direct, it is unclear if the aircraft will fly nonstop all the way.  The Airbus A340-300 is capable of flying up to 7,400 nautical miles, and the two cities are 6,382 nautical miles away from each other using the great circle distance.  However, actual flight routings, passenger and cargo loads, and weather conditions affect the aircraft's ability to travel nonstop.  

Since the country emerged out of Category 2 earlier last year, Philippine Airlines has made good on its promise to increase and improve its offerings to the US.  It deployed the Boeing 777-300ER aircraft on flights to San Francisco and Los Angeles.  Earlier this year, it reopened flights to New York's JFK airport.  Previous PAL management said that flights to Chicago and cities in Florida are also being considered.

With the addition of this flight, Los Angeles gets up to 14 weekly services from Philippine Airlines.  This also brings the total number of weekly flights the flag carrier has to the US to 38.  

Los Angeles will become the fifth international destination served by the flag carrier from Cebu after Tokyo (Narita), Seoul (Incheon), Osaka (Kansai), and Nagoya (Centair).  Moreover, PAL also serves Bacolod, Butuan, Cagayan de Oro, Davao, Iloilo and Tacloban through subsidiary PAL Express.

50 comments:

  1. Oh my god.ive been waiting this for so long.thank you pal and i will share this good news to filipino communities and to all my american friends.

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  2. you guys got the ranges wrong.... the 7344 is stature miles, in nautical miles its 6382, which is within the A343's range. Lets hope this becomes an A350/787 route in the future....

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  3. This is great news for our countrymen in the Visayas and Mindanao area! I wish this route would be successful.

    I'm glad that PAL is expanding its direct service to the US as our ASEAN neighbors have discontinued the same. The next challenge for PAL is to make it the airline of choice among ASEAN travellers to the US west coast. PAL need to improve their strategy in competing with Taiwan, Japan, and Korea for the ASEAN to US route. Improve the timings/connections from MNL and make the LAX and SFO daily double when the 2 newly ordered 777 arrives!

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    1. Do not forget superpower China's 4 airlines serving USA! They have the cheapest fares now! Reminds me of KE in late 70's when it started incredible low fares from MNL to USA, thinking that it would not survive financially because of such crazy strategy - I was wrong! KE accumulated satisfied customers that gradually became "addicted" to its super excellent services, lowest fares and extra amenities! Now, look at Korean Air's super success! Paging PAL management!

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    2. And China's (airlines) passengers from US of A connect to your exotic and exciting Manila, Philippines as well.......very interesting!!!!! More competitors for PAL !!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    3. True, the USA to Asia airline market will experience "fare wars soon" as legacy and well-heeled airlines of progressive countries will fill their jumbo jets A380, B748, B777 with passengers on either side of the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans.....example, Middle Eastern jumbo jets flying LAX to Manila will undermine air fares set by IATA by means of "under the table" bucket shops in the USA and Europe. Yes, there are countless of them here in the USA. If I can purchase a one way LAX to MNL fare for $300 via Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Doha and Istanbul, I will go for it! I do not care of flying extra hours in a comfortable, well-stocked inflight food and amenities of 4 to 5-star carriers as long as I can pocket some extra green money for my folks waiting for my arrival in my homeland. I am a FilAm fo your info. LOL..................

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    4. Another fast-rising, aggressive marketer Hainan Airlines of China, yes, China is also making waves in the west coast of USA offering $599 round trip fare to Beijing and Shanghai. Take a round trip Cebu Pacific flight Beijing/Manila/Beijing for $200 and you can still have tours in Beijing and other nearby cities there! Come and get it!

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    5. Now i can fly direct to my province in less hassle.i dont care connecting flight anymore.

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  4. Can pal be more specific when in 2016 will the 2 additional 777 will join the fleet and commence operations?

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    1. December I guess?

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    2. Filipino friends, glad to see you pushing PAL management to hastily acquire more B777s for its west coast USA routes! Also push PAL to ensure a 3-3-3 seating on all its B777s like what CX, OZ, KE, SQ, Eva and All Nippon have. PAL's crews can compete with nice services. IFE, inflight food and other amenities are secondary for me! That's what a sane competing strategy is supposed to be nowadays! If you can't beat them, join them!

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  5. Mr Bautista, make sure your one way fare from LAX to the Philippines is lower than $400 a any season as we see this fare all around travel sites here in the USA. That's the only time I will fly PAL again. You have to compete vigorously with those 4-star southeast Asian airlines!

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    Replies
    1. Ranges from 685 to 830 USD. Kaso lang A340...no IFEs. :/

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    2. thats what ruined PAL in the first place, they shouldnt have given into the pressure to compete with Cebu Pacific or any other 4 star airlines, they shouldve focused more on service and quality than making the quick bucj

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    3. You are right, Jelo! Why on earth is this old, supposed to be experienced PAL, is still struggling? Because of the Pinoy culture of instant profit/greed! Typical of a Pinoy grocer here in the USA whose goods are way expensive than those of Korean groceries! Resulta: Close shop (or bankruptcy in the real commercial word). Thanks Jelo for reminding Pinoy businesses of any type, including airlines!!!!!!!!!!

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  6. Okay ito so di ko na kailangan pupunta sa mainit mabaho at overcrowded naia terminal or mawawala or nakakapagod maglakad na nagsilakihan na terminal ng japan,korea or hongkong.

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  7. Rumors have it United Airlines were talking about flying from San Francisco to Manila sometime this October rumors have it they will make an announcement to return back to Manila nonstop SFO to Mnl and they was talking about fly in to Cebu too only time will tell for that announcement

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    1. But of course, Juan de la Cruz! United has the first priority rights to USA/Philippines Aviation Agreement since day one. And now that UA is making profits, it can always send its new B787 or A350s from USA to your country nonstop(including services to Laoag, Cebu, Davao, Boracay, etc) anytime it wants to. PAL has also a reciprocity in flying to Chicago, Miami, Las Vegas, etc And why is PAL not making the move? Ask Bautista! He may be waiting for Cebu Pacific to test the market first! You cannot blame PAL for that.

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    2. ANOTHER COMPETITION FOR PAL.......Good for the traveling public !!!!!!

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    3. I'm not sure. For one, if this will happen, UA would have announced this at least 6 months before.

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    4. Hybrid, do not expect formal announcements yet because there is none as of yet. But given the fact that the USA and your country (if you are not FilAm) have a so-called Bilateral Aviation Agreement wherein their respective airline or airlines are free to fly to one another's cities any time. I thought you guys already have access to the internet? Make research from there..........

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    5. I don't think United will be announcing any new servce anytime soon. The one exception maybe a Cebu-Guam flight, but overall they won't dedicate operating 2-3 brand new aircraft to a low yield market like the Philippines.

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    6. For your info, the Big 3 of USA (UA, DL, AA) are complaining about the Middle East's Big 3 (Emirates, Etihad and Qatar) because of apparent unfair competition because the latter are state-owned airlines whose governments are providing financial and other business needs of their respective airlines in order to siphon the market via low fares, etc. In this regard, an example is the San Francisco market which has been penetrated recently by the big Mideast 3's. United needs to protect this market by reopening its SFO/MNL route irrespective of any logic or market yield as noted by another blogger. Does this make sense? I think so! Let's wait for UAL's next move.

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  8. That is why Mr. Bautista is restructuring the fleet and the management of PAL. Mr. Ang's manangement placed the order for these A330s and the A321s without IFEs. And don't forget the A340s too! Some say the A340 are there to replace the old PAL A340 and while waiting for the new aircrafts. But they (Ang's mgmt.) only spent the the money buying the all economy A330s. Mr. Ang just made PAL go down to CEB's level. Which should not be.
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    You cannot launch a route that fast! Even if PAL have rights to fly to Chicago, Miami, Las Vegas, etc., they still need to study the route if they'll have profit/losses. Moreover, if PAL indeed plans to open routes to the mentioned US cities, they should expedite the refleeting program as the A340s, though making profit, receives complaints regarding to the lack of IFEs and being a gas guzzler.

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    1. That is right. In this era of mega-carriers like the big 3 of USA (United, American, Delta), it is really difficult for 3rd world country airlines to start a route or destination project without the ample and fluid capital, aircrafts, marketing strategy, marketing ambiance and influence, superior alliances with worldwide super-airlines, etc. Look at PAL's short-lived Las Vegas destination several years ago, that's the big difference......it just faded unexpectedly......

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  9. Good job PAL - it looks as if you are on the right path!

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  10. Mactan Cebu is a good alternative of NAIA because of its proximity in Mindanao. it is more convenient for Mindanao residents to choose Cebu Mactan than NAIA

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    1. MOST people from visayas and mindanao prefer non stop or direct flight to/from U.S...even my american colleagues are now booked on roundtrip flight from los angelis to cebu via pal...bohol here we come!

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    2. Oo nga no! CEB is a good transit area when tourists and balikbayans alike plans to go to tourist destinations in the VisMin area.

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    3. I am from Bohol and I still prefer TAG-MLA-LAX. Why? Because it's more stressful to take 2 hrs ferry to Cebu then 30 mins taxi [traffic may take hrs] to Mactan with luggage in tow. Whereas, I can just drop my luggage in TAG, fly an hour to MLA, walk few minutes to International departure area of T2 without luggage.

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  11. Dear pal
    How about cebu to sydney (via melbourne?)
    Or cebu to riyahd (via clark?) at least twice a week.

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  12. Congrtz to PAL Management and Employees for the positive performance in Net Income for the second quarter of 2015

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  13. Asan si Mr. Hong Kong? Ayaw mg comment HAHAHA LUL

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  14. He is a lonesome, tired blogger from Pasay. I was the one who called him Mr. Hongkong when he made waves about flying to Manila in a tuxedo and airline staff could not contain themselves of such a comedy. He will appear again.......

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    1. this isn't a Cebu Pacific article where he usually hangs out.

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  15. If PAL is in shortage of long haul aircraft why is that they are using the 777-300ER for their Manila to Bangkok flights why not utilize it for London or New York leg instead?

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    1. I believe PAL's utilization of 773ER for MNL-BKK during the day is for augmentation. Instead of being idle after their early morning arrivals from USA and fly for evening departure back to USA, why not maximize it..

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    2. Ah ok? that answers it, With that strategy I know for sure PAL is not gambling with such move without looking into the load factor and the cost benifit of the trip. Maybe the MNL-BKK is high traffic destination for PAL thats why they are utilizing such type of aircraft.

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    3. Bangkok is one of pal most profitable route.many of its passengers are from north america..so it goes like this: los angelis to bangkok via manila on boeing 777.

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  16. Just did a mock booking on April 2016 and got a return fare of USD850..the westbound flight puzzled me for a 17 hour flight while eastbound was 14h30..will there be a tech stop in HNL or GUM similar to the retired B744 on the westbound flight,just wondering?

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    1. im not sure, did you see a (1) stop in the booking? cause i see that indicator whenever pal has a stop whether to refuel, drop passengers, or something technical

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    2. It is actually normal for the eastbound flight to be shorter due to the jet stream and tail winds. My hunch is the eastbound leg will actually be closer to 13 hours and change. But as the article above suggests, several factors will determine whether the flight is actually nonstop, especially westbound.

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    3. I understand the implications of headwinds on westbound flights especially during winter months but how come d current A343 LAX-MNL remained 2 b non-stop n there r few hundred nautical miles between MNL n CEB ? Will PR b flying a different route for LAX-CEB ?

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  17. Is MNL-YVR (PR116/117) now cancelled at the expense of this new flight? I can't seem to find that flight after march 15

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    Replies
    1. Yes, after March 15 PAL will fly to YVR once per day except for Sunday with 2 flights.

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  18. PAL USA/Philippines SOON TO HAVE Direct flights from BOSTON, NEW YORK, ATLANTA, MIAMI, DIRECT TO "CEBU ONLY" JUNE 2017

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  19. I just hope I make it hehe. LA to cebu of course then back I'm glad a-340 has 4 engines. But hope I sleep whole time to hehe

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  20. You make so many great points here that I read your article a couple of times. Your views are in accordance with my own for the most part. This is great content for your readers. Teleprompter Los Angeles

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