The northern Philippine city of Baguio (BAG), is soon to be connected by air once again to Cebu (CEB). Philippine Airlines (PAL) has today announced the resumption of services to the northern Luzon province.
Philippine Airlines last served the airport over 82 years ago, and Baguio’s Loakan Airport also happens to be the first destination in 1941 the newly incorporated airline PAL visited. Departing from Manila’s then Nelson Airport to the city of now over 360,000.
Second chance for the airport
Travelers from Baguio will rejoice to be reconnected once again, given that the airport currently offers no scheduled services, and the airport was in discussion with beer giant San Miguel to operate and manage the airport prior to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, it hadn’t looked promising for the airports future. Prior to the revitalization of the port with the newly announced connection, the airport was solely used by the Philippine Air Force and its Presidential chopper.
Baguio’s Loakan Airport landings and takeoffs won’t be for the light-hearted pilot, given that the airport is known for its common low visibility, short runway, paired with multiple deep ravines located at each end of the runway.
The city can be reached by a four-hour drive from the countries the capital Manila, however having a direct link to the southern hub of Cebu will be perfect for those looking to explore other destinations in the southern Philippine Airlines route map.
Philippine Airlines plans to service the airport 4 times a week between Mactan Cebu Airport and Baguio Loakan Airport operating Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday.
Flights are to be scheduled to operate the below schedule:
PR2230 Departing from Cebu (CEB) at 08:50 and arriving in Baguio (BAG) at 10:50.
PR2231 Departing from Baguio (BAG) at 11:10 and arriving in Cebu (CEB) at 13:00.
The route will be operated by the airline’s Dash 8-400 aircraft.
Philippine Airlines has 11 Dash-8-400 in their fleet, which are perfect for the island hopping, given the country has over 7,640 islands on its map. With the dash’s having an average age of 6 years, and 86 seats, these are ideal for these unique routes.
Quite the turn around for Philippine Airlines
Given the airline industry was devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic, Philippine Airlines entered Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last year, however in August reported for the first time in six year, two profitable quarters in a row.
The airline reported $1.1 billion in revenue this year for January to June, an increase of 258% compared to 2021. Paired with an increase of cargo revenue being up 31%. Even every 7 in 10 seats are securing paid passengers onboard.
Post pandemic the airline has gone from strength to strength, reintroducing multiple international and domestic destinations, such as bustling Doha (DOH) and Dubai (DXB), which home a large number of expats, and no doubt will be hoping to cash in with Doha for the upcoming Football World Cup.
Sources: Travel News Asia, Philippine News Agency