South East Asian Airlines 2 New Airbuses to be Delivered 1Q of 2009, Goes International
South East Asian Airlines (SEAir) will acquire two new airbuses which are scheduled for delivery in the first quarter of 2009, despite the spiraling fuel prices and incursion of the major carriers.
Avelino Zapanta, SEAir president, said this is the many firsts of SEAir this 2009.
Zapanta said the airline will also go international, noting that with the recent signing of the Association of Southeast Asian Nation (ASEAN) Open Sky Agreement, “it is full speed ahead for South East Asian Airlines as it plans to operate flights for Singapore, Macau, Incheon (South Korea), Bangkok and Kaoshiung (Taiwan).”
All new flights will use the Diosdado Macapagal International Airport (DMIA) in Clark, Pampanga, Zapanta added.
On November 28, 2008, flights from Puerto Princesa to Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia were made available. The total routing of the operation is Clark-Caticlan (Boracay)-Puerto Princesa-Kota Kinabalu.
This is SEAir's first international flight which also serves as its entry point to the Brunei-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East Asia Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) market.
Meanwhile, Patrick Tan, vice president for commercial affairs, said “We believe in tourism as the industry of the future for the Philippines and South East Asian Airlines wishes to continue to contribute in the tradition of its pioneering effort that started 14 years and recently has been manifested in new services to Tablas, Daet, Baler, Basco and Borongan.”
Aviation records show that in January to October last year, more than 35 percent of all flights to Caticlan (Boracay) were via SEAir. There are at least four local carriers flying to the island paradise.
SEAir made 3,511 flights to and from Caticlan. This translates to 635 flights more than the nearest competitor.
To further boost passenger traffic, SEAir recently introduced a state-of-the-art reservation system where passenger may avail of the best online deals such as inexpensive fares for definite travel dates (FlySaver) and VIP tickets for those who require a good deal of flexibility on their itinerary (FlyFlex). All flights start selling at Php35++.
The airline uses a fleet of Dornier 328s and LET410 aircraft. The Dornier 328 is a 32-seater twin engine turboprop aircraft which is also being used by other airlines worldwide such as British Airways, KLM and United Airlines, to name a few.
On the other hand, the 19-seater LET 410 is ideal for small runways and other destinations where bigger planes could not land.
South East Asian Airlines is owned by foreign partnership of Iren Dornier and Nikos Gitsis (40 percent) and the Filipino group of Tomas Lopez, Jr. (60 percent).