Philippines Airlines Newest Boeing 777 to Strengthen US Network

Philippines Airlines continue to modernize its fleet and just received its seventh Boeing 777-300ER. And the drive is taken by 83-year old tycoon Lucio Tan who is piloting again the Philippines national carrier as its chairman since 2014. On board again is also former CEO Jaime Bautista, who used to head the airline before 2014. The team works well as PAL is profitable again.

Last year, the airline wrote down a profit of US$134.42 million, up by 560% over the previous year. And it will certainly see another profitable year in 2016.

Lucio Tan and Jaime Bautista. Photo of Mike Amoroso-PhilStar
Lucio Tan and Jaime Bautista. (Photo by Mike Amoroso, PhilStar)

The carrier is expanding again. It just received its seventh Boeing 777-300-ER. “We’re happy and proud to welcome the newest member of the PAL family — our seventh Boeing 777 aircraft,” Tan said. The next 777 will be delivered a few weeks by early December, Tan announced. “These planes are proof of my commitment and full support to Philippine Airlines. As promised, we continue to invest billions of pesos to make PAL truly a world-class five-star airline,” Tan said to media.

PAL Boeing 777-300-ER has a seating capacity for 370 passengers including 42 in business class. The new aircraft will introduce new and modern amenities such as myPAL Entertainment system. The aircraft is the largest long-range twin-engine commercial airplane in the world.

PAL president and COO Jaime Bautista said the new Boeing 777s would enable PAL to increase its flights to North America. Before Christmas, PAL will start operating double daily flights between Manila and Los Angeles from the current 10 weekly flights, allowing passengers to choose between morning and evening flights.  Some of the frequencies to San Francisco will also be done by the new aircraft. Flights between Manila and Vancouver will increase from seven to 10 weekly, while flights between Manila and Toronto will increase from three to four weekly frequencies.

The airline will focus next year at further expanding in North America. In Europe, the airline will only look at potentially adding another destination in 2018.