Cebu Pacific Restores 88% of Pre-Pandemic Capacity & Ramps Up Services

A Cebu Pacific Airbus A321 on approach.
John Andrei Policarpio, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

LONDON – Earlier this month, the Philippine’s largest low-cost carrier Cebu Pacific (CEB) announced restoration of 88% of its pre-pandemic capacity, following the steady ramp up of international and domestic services.

The airline is now flying an average of 340 flights a day, covering 34 domestic and 18 international destinations. This is equivalent to roughly 64,000 seats offered each day.

Resumption of international operations

Last week the carrier resumed direct flights to Seoul, South Korea, marking the official re-start of international operations outside the Philippines.

This direct flight enables passengers from 21 other domestic destinations to fly to Seoul, South Korea, connecting via Cebu.

To celebrate the resumption of its first Cebu-Seoul flight, Cebu Pacific awarded the first passenger to check-in online with a free roundtrip flight from Cebu to Seoul, valid for 1 year.

To continue spurring travel Cebu then announced a range of discounted fares for passengers travelling from September 1 2022, until January 31 2023.

This includes flights to popular overseas destinations, including South Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taipei, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, Bangkok, among others.

“We are pleased to see more people confidently flying again, not just within the Philippines but even abroad, said Xander Lao, Chief Commercial Officer at Cebu Pacific.

“This positive development has not only allowed us to carry more passengers, but also boosted our cargo service.”

 “We remain committed to offering the lowest fares across our network and we are encouraged by past seat sale success rates so we will continue to stimulate travel through our promo fares,” he added.

Expanding domestic services

Whilst Cebu’s international scheduling has only just restarted, the carrier’s domestic services have remained relatively strong.

The airline has restored 100% of its pre-pandemic domestic capacity in April this year. It has already surpassed its December 2019 level for domestic capacity, as it marks 109% restoration in July 2022.

Building on its domestic strength, Cebu have just announced an expansion of their national services with increased flights to 2 regional destinations – Iloilo and Tacloban.

Commencing August 5, Cebu – Iloilo, and Cebu – Tacloban flights will have two additional weekly flights as the airline continues to ramp-up its hubs outside Metro Manila.

For the Cebu – Iloilo route, weekly flight frequency will increase from 7x to 9x weekly as it flies twice daily on Fridays and Sundays. This provides Cebuanos and Ilonggos more options to fly between the two destinations for weekend trips or quick family visits.

The Cebu – Tacloban route will increase from 14x to 16x weekly, making its Monday and Friday schedules twice daily.

“We are pleased to keep enabling every Juan to easily fly across our widest domestic network as we continue to boost our network in the Visayas and Mindanao.”

“We have seen consistent demand for these routes, and we hope to keep expanding our footprint as more people confidently fly again,” said Xander Lao, Cebu Pacific’s Chief Commercial Officer.

Cebu Air are one of the airlines who managed to avoid bankruptcy through the extended pandemic period, and the recent news, including the growth of its domestic market to beyond pre-pandemic levels is a healthy sign for the region.

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