Flag-carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) has gone full throttle in its pursuit for a five-star rating and rolled out its newest flagship, the Airbus A350-900.
PAL became the 19th airline in the world to operate the A350, and at the launch last July 17, it had said it wanted to make sure patrons in North America and Europe will feel "the Heart of the Filipino" as they arrive or leave the Philippines.
Designed to make travelers feel better upon arriving at their destination, the A350 is configured in a three-class layout that can accommodate 295 passengers in business class, premium economy, and economy.
The 30 business class seats are laid out in a 1-2-1 configuration, all of which boast of direct-aisle access. This means passengers no longer have to disturb or step over their seatmate just to go to the lavatory.
Each Vantage XL seat from Thompson Aerospace can turn to a full-flat, 78-inch bed with enough space even for someone who likes to twist and turn while sleeping.
PAL, meanwhile, laid out 24 seats in premium economy on a 2-4-2 configuration. Each has a 38-inch seat pitch, a seat width of 19 inches and can recline of up to eight inches. It also has its own reading light, leg rest and footrest.
The remaining 241 seats can be found in economy class on a nine-abreast configuration. Each seat from Zodiac Aerospace has a four-way headrest. It has a pitch of 33 inches, a width of 18 inches, and a recline of up to six inches.
All seats in the carbon composite aircraft have their own in-flight-entertainment and power ports. Free Wi-Fi is also available.
The A350 boasts of a few things: a unique filtration in its air-conditioning system that makes the air inside the cabin cleaner and prevent passengers from that feeling dry and dehydrated, a lower cabin pressure compared to other aircrafts (so in-flight headaches may be a thing of the past), and most importantly a quieter cabin — about four times less noise than normal, thanks to the massive Rolls Royce Trent XWB engines powering the aircraft.
PAL has six A350's on order from Airbus and has options to order another six. Aside from New York, the A350 is also expected the replace the Boeing 777-300ER in the London route this year.
PAL welcomed the A350 with an official rollout attended by business executives and government officials, including President Rodrigo Duterte, at a ceremony on Tuesday. — LA, GMA News