Airlines deal with Davao airport closure
MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) - Local carriers Cebu Pacific, Philippine Ailrlines, PAL Express, and AirAsia Philippines are dealing with the closure of the Davao airport by rerouting flights and continuously seeking for "kind understanding" of affected passengers.
An aircraft of budget carrier Cebu Pacific overshot the runway during a heavy downpour on Sunday, June 2, causing the temporary shutdown of the Davao International Airport, one of the countries busiest gateways.
Gokongwei-led Cebu Pacific cancelled 20 roundtrip flights to and from Davao, while legacy carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) and its unit PAL express canceled 9 and 2 flights, respectively.
In separate statements on Monday, June 3, Cebu Pacific and PAL said they will re-route flights to General Santos airport, which is at least two hours away.
To accommodate affected passengers, Cebu Pacific said it has arranged the following extra round trips:
- 10 for Manila-General Santos
- 4 Cebu-General Santos
- 1 Iloilo-General Santos
- 1 Zamboanga-General Santos
PAL said it has "upgraded to a wide-bodied aircraft for its General Santos - Manila flight this afternoon at 4:00 pm, in order to accommodate passengers from Davao who are willing to be re-routed to General Santos."
Both airlines said they will provide land transfer, food and drinks, and, if necessary, accommodation to affected passengers. They will also waive rebooking fees.
In a separate advisory, AirAsia Philippines said it is suspending its two Clark-Davao flights (PQ7023 and PQ7024) this June 3. Affected guests are advised to contact AirAsia's call center (02-742-2742) or submit an e-form at http://www.airasia.com/ph/en/e-form.page for assistance.
Cebu Pacific said "It is doing its best to assist all passengers, and facilitate the removal of the runway obstruction."
PAL, citing an advisory from the Civil Aviation Authority, the Francisco Bangoy International Airport or Davao International Airport is scheduled to re-open at 8:00 pm Monday, "at which time PAL
flights to Davao will resume."
Based on CAAP's 2012 data, the following airlines operate in Davao International Airport, also known as Francisco Bangoy International Airport:
- International: Silk Air, Tiger Airways, Wings Air
- Domestic: PAL, Cebu Pacific, Air Philippines, Zest Air, Mid Sea Express, AirAsia, Seair
The Davao airport is the main gateway to Mindanao. It is also the Philippines' 3rd busiest airport, according to CAAP data:
|Airport name||Location||Passenger movement in 2012|
|Ninoy Aquino International Airport||Manila||33,889,532|
|Mactan-Cebu International Airport||Cebu||6,712,293|
|Francisco Bangoy International Airport||Davao||2,963,243|
|Diosdado Macapagal International Airport||Clark||1,312,979|
Davao airport's runway has a length of at least 3,000 meters, with an extra or emergency 120-meter space. - with research from Lean Santos/Rappler.com