OUTBOUND travel experts in Malaysia are expecting Airphil Express' introduction of thrice-weekly Manila-Kuala Lumpur services, effective today, to reduce the seat crunch during the peak year-end travel period.
Utilising the Airbus A320 aircraft, the budget arm of Philippine Airlines will mount an additional 540 seats weekly between the two capitals, with flights departing every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.
Prince Mahmud Doel, manager of SAF Maju Travel & Tours Kuala Lumpur, said the thrice-weekly services would provide much needed relief for his Manila-bound customers. “In the past, we had to send passengers (to the Philippines) through Singapore, as it was impossible to get seats out of Kuala Lumpur," he said.
John Chan, senior manager, sales, distribution & global support, PYO Travel Kuala Lumpur, said the new flight would boost traffic between Malaysia and the Philippines, and further develop their respective tourism markets.
The extra seat capacity has prompted his company to intensify its marketing and promotional efforts in the Philippines, and to develop more comprehensive short-term packages to Clark and Manila, Chan added.
Other airlines flying on the Manila-Kuala Lumpur route include Cebu Pacific Air and Malaysia Airlines, which together provide 7,513 seats weekly.
Meanwhile, Airphil Express is offering promotional airfares from RM49 (US$15) – one way on the new Manila-KL route, excluding tax and fuel surcharge – for bookings made by July 15 and for travel till September 30, 2012.