Philippine Airlines to Launch Cairns, Auckland Service in December

Philippine Airlines will commence its scheduled flights from Manila to Auckland in December in hopes of bringing in close to 65,000 visitors a year into New Zealand.

The carrier will operate four times a week to Auckland, with stopover in Cairns, Australia, utilizing Airbus A320.

Auckland International Airport aeronautical commercial general manager Norris Carter said the addition of Philippine Airlines was good news for the New Zealand tourism industry and the economy.

There are 64,500 seats allocated yearly between Manila and Auckland. New Zealand has experienced “solid growth” of visitors from the Philippines in recent years, with travelers visiting friends and relatives as the top segment, followed by leisure travelers.

“We have experienced solid growth from the Philippines market in recent years and the addition of a new carrier will certainly help to further stimulate this,” Carter said.

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Over the five years, short-term arrivals from the Philippines increased by 9.4 per cent, he added.

The Cairns stopover offers another option for travelers; at the moment only Air New Zealand is the only airline offering direct flights between Cairns and Auckland three times a week.

Philippine Airlines’ president Jaime Bautista said with nearly 40,000 Filipinos living in New Zealand, the new service offered a convenient link to their home country.

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