LOS ANGELES − Following the recent aviation upgrade to Category 1 status the Philippines has received from the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Philippines Airlines (PAL), the country’s flag carrier, added three new B777-300ERs to its fleet.
PAL’s acquisition of the new B777s is part of the Philippine carrier’s modernization program aimed at improving the company’s financial and operational performance.
In a product update event on Thursday, May 8, 2014 held at the Reef Restaurant in Long Beach, CA, Philippine Airlines-Los Angeles headed by Area Manager Marie Jemma Saranillo said that PAL will start using the more powerful Boeing 777 for its flights to the US.
This development is a welcome boost to the Philippines growing tourism industry and is well received by tourists and tour operators. Travelers who generally prefer to take a direct flight to Manila from the United States will benefit from PAL’s fleet upgrade because the powerful B777s can fly 14,700 kilometers from Manila to the United States mainland and back nonstop without refueling.
Consul General Leo Herrera-Lim, who graced the event, in his remarks said that from California alone there are a lot of potential travelers who will benefit from PAL’s fleet upgrade. According to the Consul General today’s travelers and investors are focused on Asia because of its robust tourism potential and growing economy.
“If you’re an investor or a traveler and you’re not focused on Asia, you’re missing a lot,” he said. PAL as the Philippines’ flag carrier is actively involved in promoting the country as a travel destination.
In line with the launching of Philippine Airlines new B777 aircraft, representatives from DOT-LA, Malaysia Tourism Promotion Board and Tourism Authority of Thailand each provided a 15-minute product presentation promoting triple tourism program that highlights the Philippines, Malaysia and Thailand’s unique tourism destinations.
DOT’L.A.’s presentation focused on the recent developments in the Philippines, specifically the newly opened mega facilities in the country geared to strengthen the Philippines’ position as a major destination for international meetings and conventions as shown by the list of major international convention scheduled to be held in the Philippines from 2014 to 2016.
According to Ms. Saranillo, passenger comfort tops the benefits that passengers of the new B777-300ER will enjoy.
Tagged by the Business Traveler Magazine as the world’s best passenger plane, PAL’s new B777-300er aircraft include state-of-the-art in-flight entertainment systems and new business class and economy class seats. The PAL fleet is also infused with a modern look that emulates the beautiful coastal areas of the Philippines.
With the acquisition of the more fuel efficient B777s, PAL is set to mount additional flights to and from the United States. Currently, PAL operates a total of 26 weekly flights to the US, with frequencies to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Honolulu and Guam.
After flying the US skies for 68 years, PAL’s Boeing 747, its first flagship aircraft is retiring. The airlines’ new Boeing B-77s started flying from LAX last May 3, 2013. Expectedly PAL passengers taking the evening flights out of LAX are now enjoying the comfort and amenities of the powerful and modern 777 aircraft.
Also in attendance were members of the Filipino-American media, frequent travelers, friends of PAL, and numerous travel agents from Southern California.