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PAL eyes operation of largest flight network between China, Philippines

Flag carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) seeks to operate the largest network of multiple routes between mainland China and the Philippines, as it is set to fly to Jinjiang and Beijing after restarting Shanghai flights earlier this week.

PAL President and Chief Operating Officer Capt. Stanley Ng on Wednesday said the carrier is pushing through with its Greater China flight network to strengthen connections to economic hubs in mainland China.

“We hope that our relaunch of flights to Beijing and Shanghai will help fuel a rebound in tourist and business travel,” he said in an emailed statement.

“Our goal is to once again operate the largest network of flights on multiple routes between mainland China and the Philippines.”

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, PAL serviced the mainland Chinese cities of Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou, Quanzhou (Jinjiang), and Xiamen for a total of 34 weekly flights.

The carrier relaunched its Manila-Shanghai (Pudong)-Manila flights on Tuesday, February 14, initially at three flights a week or every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday.

Flights within the route are then set to be increased to daily flights starting March 26, 2023.

It will also start the Manila-Beijing-Manila service on February 21, available every Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday.

The airline said it will also offer flights to Jinjiang in Quangzhou on March 19, 22, and 24, which will then be increased to daily flights starting March 26, 2023.

PAL said it will also increase weekly flights to Guangzhou (Canton) to twice a week starting February 16, and eventually boost it to a full daily service by March 26, 2023.

It increased the Manila-Xiamen-Manila service to twice weekly effective February 14, with a third weekly flight starting on February 25. The schedule will be every Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday.

Outside the mainland, PAL will restore the twice weekly regular flights — every Thursday and Sunday — between Manila and Macau starting March 26.

“PAL is working closely with Chinese and Philippine health and aviation authorities to ensure the highest level of health safety protections for travelers,” the carrier said. —Jon Viktor D. Cabuenas/KBK, GMA Integrated News