Philippine Airlines returns to the Middle East starting with Abu Dhabi using its new Airbus A330-300 aircraft starting this month
In a statement, PAL said the 414-seater new generation A330-300 is equipped with more powerful Rolls Royce Trent engines and bigger fuel tanks, allowing the airplane to carry more passengers and cargo than the current A330 model in the PAL fleet.
PAL's first brand-new A330-300 arrived in Manila September 28, direct from the Airbus manufacturing plant in Toulouse, France. Four more will be delivered before the year ends.
Since March 2012, PAL has taken delivery of 17 airplanes—from the ultra-modern B777-300ER and the long-range A340-300, to the single-aisle A320-200 and its latest derivative model, the A321-231.
The PAL fleet, which now consists of 44 jets, will further expand with more than 60 aircraft deliveries expected until 2019.
“The return of PAL to the Middle East will not only offer Filipino workers the most direct link to the Philippines but also provide travelers convenient connections with PAL’s extensive international and domestic route network from our hub in Manila,” said PAL president Ramon S. Ang.
PAL will first fly to Abu Dhabi five times a week, departing Manila at 4:25 pm and arriving 9:45 pm at Abu Dhabi International Airport – rated by Skytrax as 2013 best airport in the Middle East – which is 38 kilometers southeast of the United Arab Emirates capital.
The return flight will arrive in Manila 12:25 noon every Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
Four other cities in three Gulf countries will be linked by PAL and its affiliate PAL Express to Manila before the year ends – Dubai (United Arab Emirates), Doha (Qatar) in November, and Riyadh and Dammam (both in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia) in December.
With PAL and Qatar Airways on code-share cooperation, Doha will be served by both airlines.
Meanwhile, PAL Express will operate its first long-haul flight to Dubai on Nov. 6, 2013. PAL Express will also use the new A330-300 on a five-times-a-week service to Dubai.
PAL flies to three points in Luzon (Laoag, Legaspi, Puerto Princesa); eight in the Visayas (Bacolod, Cebu, Dumaguete, Iloilo, Kalibo, Roxas, Tacloban, Tagbilaran); and eight in Mindanao (Butuan, Cagayan de Oro, Cotabato, Davao, Dipolog, General Santos, Ozamiz, Zamboanga).
For bookings and inquiries, customers are advised to visit www.philippineairlines.com or call PAL Reservations at (02) 855-8888 in Manila, (032) 340-0191 in Cebu and (082) 221-5513 in Davao. (PNA/FPV/RTA)