MANILA, Philippines – Budget carrier Cebu Air Incorporated (Cebu Pacific) of taipan John Gokongwei has received its third brand new Airbus A330 this year as part of its $4-billion refleeting program.
On board the aircraft are 2.4 tons of donations – new clothes and shoes for children and infants, teddy bears, pens, school books, blankets, and small medical supplies – to be forwarded to communities affected by severe flooding and typhoons in the Philippines.
Cebu Pacific partnered with Airbus Corporate Foundation and Aviation Sans Frontières for the transport of the donations through the A330 flight to Manila from Toulouse, France, Wednesday, March 11.
The donations were collected by Aviation Sans Frontières for World Vision, an international non-governmental organization and its development foundation.
Aviation Sans Frontières has been a regular partner of the Airbus Foundation since 2008 for flights from Toulouse. The non-governmental organization supports Airbus humanitarian flights from France to countries in need or struck by natural disasters.
“We are honored to be working with the Airbus Foundation and Aviation Sans Frontières on our second humanitarian delivery flight. Our acceptance of Cebu Air’s sixth Airbus A330 is made more meaningful as we transport much needed relief goods to the Philippines,” said Alex Reyes, Cebu Pacific’s general manager for long-haul division.
“Delivery flights of new aircraft are a perfect way to help deserving causes in our customers’ countries,” said Airbus Chief Executive Officer Fabrice Brégier, who also thanked Cebu Pacific and Aviation Sans Frontières for their logistics support.
Brégier added, “Without their tireless efforts, this new mission would not have been possible.”
To date, Cebu Pacific now has 6 Airbus A330.
With the latest delivery, the Gokongwei-led airline now operates a fleet of 55 aircraft comprised of 10 Airbus A319, 31 Airbus A320, 6 Airbus A330, and 8 ATR 72-500 aircraft.
Cebu Pacific is also scheduled to get 7 more A320 and 30 A321neo aircraft between 2015 and 2021 as part of its ongoing $4 billion fleet renewal program.
The airline also signed an agreement with Nasdaq-listed Allegiant Travel for the sale of 6 A319 to Las Vegas-based Allegiant Air.
Low cost carriers have increased capacity in Southeast Asia to 8-fold over the last 10 years – from about 25 million seats in 2004, to nearly 200 million in 2014, the Center for Asia-Pacific Aviation said in its 2015 outlook released in February.
Cebu Pacific and sister airline Tiger Airways Philippines flew 16.87 million passengers in 2014, short of the 17 million passenger volume goal by the carriers.
A higher load factor of 83.9% from 81.9% was reported by the carriers. That translated to a 17.5% increase compared to 14.35 million passengers flown in 2013. – Rappler.com
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