MANILA, Philippines – Budget carrier Cebu Pacific has brought down ticket prices by cutting fuel surcharge as much as 20%.
On Monday, June 25, the surcharge reduction took effect for the following flights:
- Manila to Visayas, Mindanao and select Luzon routes (less P100);
- Manila to select Luzon routes (less P50);
- Visayas to Luzon and Mindanao, and within Visayas (less P50), and;
- Mindanao to Visayas and within Mindanao (less P50).
Airlines add fuel surcharge into customers fares to help offset the rising cost of fuel, which is often the biggest cost in their budgets.
Cebu Pacific vice president for marketing and distribution Candice Iyog told Rappler they lowered their fuel surcharge because of the decline in world oil prices.
High oil prices affected the bottom line of some local airlines last year. At the beginning of 2012, fuel prices remained high amid tensions in the Middle East and expectations of faster global recovery, which was expected to fuel consumption. But since April, prices have slumped and economists say oil prices are likely to remain level for the rest of 2012.
Seat sales and more flights
The reduction in fuel surcharge was introduced along with a domestic seat sale from Manila to Visayas (P888 all-in seat sale), and from Manila to Mindanao (P1,188 all-in seat sale). Cebu Pacific said the sale would run from June 25 to 27 or until seats last, for travel from August 25 to October 31, 2012.
Meanwhile, an international seat sale to China (Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai or Xiamen), Korea (Seoul or Busan), Hong Kong and Macau was also available, for travel from August 1 to October 31, 2012.
A second seat sale will take place on August 2 for P688 all-in-seats on Cebu Pacific’s newest domestic routes: Davao to Puerto Princesa and Davao to Kalibo (Boracay).
The company is pursuing a strategy to reduce fares on top of increasing its fleet, which is already the largest in the Philippines.
“Now, CEB’s all-in lowest fares will be even more affordable to business and leisure travelers in the Philippines. CEB will continue to look for ways to make flying accessible to everyone, with the expected delivery of 3 more brand new Airbus A320 in the 2nd half of the year. More aircraft will make a difference in supporting the growth of Philippine tourism and trade,” said Iyog.
Cebu Pacfic operates 8 ATR-72 500, 10 Airbus A319 and 20 Airbus A320. Its fleet of 38 aircrafts has an average age of 3.6 years. Between 2012 and 2021, Cebu Pacific will take delivery of 22 more Airbus A320 and 30 Airbus A321neo aircraft. The airline plans to start long-haul services between July and September 2013.
Cebu Pacific’s expansion plans come even as the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) mandates reductions in flights at the main Manila airport during peak hours to reduce congestion from 7 am to 6 pm.
The DOTC reported that around 45 takeoffs and landing are scheduled per hour at Ninoy Aquino International Airport, although the airport’s ideal capacity is only 26. Local airlines are bracing for the effect of the reductions, which are expected to start in July. – Rappler.com