Philippine Airlines is planning to expand its operations in the United States. Philippines’ national carrier is seeking a partnership with leading U.S. carrier Delta Air Lines by entering into codeshare agreement. The airline sees the U.S. as a lucrative market.
Jaime Bautista, President of Philippine Airlines, said, “The Philippine flag carrier wants to leverage its U.S. operations and has approached Delta Air Lines for a partnership. The airline wants to operate nonstop flights from Manila and want to use Delta’s extensive domestic network. I also firmly believe that Delta officials are also open to the idea.”
Media reports said that Philippine Airlines has formulated a strategy to strengthen its footprint in the United States, which it considers to be among the most profitable markets, and is therefore seeking a codeshare pact with Delta Air Lines. Moreover, the airline is also looking forward to route expansion in a big way and is planning to attain the status of a “Five-Star” carrier by the year 2020.
Philippine Airlines had in early November this year acquired its seventh Boeing 777-300ER aircraft, which it is planning to deploy for conducting flights from Manila to San Francisco and Los Angeles. The delivery of the aircraft has come as a boon to the airline, particularly during this time when the travel demand in Christmas holiday season is fast picking up. The airline is also planning to acquire its eighth Boeing 777-300ER aircraft in December this year.
Travel experts said that Philippine Airlines wants to make a major dent and gain a large share in the number of flights being conducted between the Philippines and the United States, along with the rest of the region. Currently, Philippine Airlines is the only airline offering nonstop flights services between the U.S. West Coast and Manila. It may also be noted that the United States is presently home to nearly four million Filipino-Americans and Filipinos. The North American destinations being served by the airline include New York and Vancouver.