Cebu Pacific forecasts surge in passenger traffic

Cebu Pacific Air, the leading low-cost airline in the Philippines, is anticipating a surge in passenger traffic. This comes as the airline enters a strategic alliance with Tigerair Philippines and expands its capacity to serve new destinations.

Photo from Airbus

Lance Gokongwei, CEO of Cebu Pacific Air, informed reporters that the partnership with Tigerair Philippines is projected to boost passenger demand by 18 percent. This increase will enable Cebu Pacific to accommodate 17 million passengers this year. Without the partnership, Cebu Pacific’s growth was estimated to be only 4 percent for the year.

The acquisition of Tigerair Philippines by Cebu Pacific was completed in February 2014, with a purchase price of $15 million.

Cebu Pacific has plans to extend its routes to Europe and the United States. This expansion became possible after the European Union lifted its ban on Cebu Pacific, allowing the airline to operate flights to Europe. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) also upgraded the airline back to Category 1 status, after downgrading it to Category 2 in 2008.

In addition, Cebu Pacific has plans to commence flights to Australia in 2016. However, the airline noted that this would require significant investment and preparation.

Despite plans to expand to the US and Europe, Cebu Pacific stated that ordering long-haul planes is not currently on their agenda.

According to a report from the Philippine Daily Inquirer, Cebu Pacific was the only domestic carrier to report a profit, with a net income of P511.9 million in 2013.

Cebu Pacific boasts a modern, 51-strong fleet, consisting of 10 Airbus A319, 30 Airbus A320, 3 Airbus A330, and 8 ATR-72 500 aircraft. This makes it one of the most up-to-date aircraft fleets globally.