PAL to launch nonstop flights to India this year
Flag carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) on Sunday announced that it will be launching nonstop flights to India in the last quarter of 2018.
Philippine Airlines president and chief operating officer, said as the airline accepts the delivery of new aircraft, it will allow them to operate new domestic and foreign routes from their hubs in Manila, Cebu, Clark, and Davao.
He added that introducing new routes to India is the airline’s response to the call of Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo for a direct link to the country – a potentially rich source of future tourists for the Philippines.
PAL’s expansion in 2018 also includes the following new routes:
- Manila to New York, nonstop flights beginning October 2018
- Manila to New Delhi and Mumbai in India, nonstop flights by last quarter of 2018
- Manila to Sapporo in Japan’s northernmost island of Hokkaido, by last quarter of 2018.
The number of leisure travel visitors from India to Philippines is steadily going up and crossed the 100,000 mark last year, surpassing Malaysia and Hong Kong to become the 10th largest source for the Philippines.
Indian tourists currently account for less than 2% of total visitor arrivals in Philippines due to lack of direct flights and visa restrictions. Last year Department of Tourism had proposed Visa on arrival for Indian passport holders.
Last year, Philippines offered Visa on arrival facility to Chinese visitors resulting in phenomenal increase in Chinese Tourist arrivals in the country.