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Philippine Airlines Launches Maiden Manila-Cairns-Auckland Route

Aviation Updates Philippines - Philippine Airlines has launched its Manila-Cairns-Auckland route on December 2, 2015 using its 156-seat Airbus A320-200 aircraft. The flight arrived at the Auckland International Airport at 4:20 pm on Thursday.
Philippine Airlines Flight PR 218, an Airbus A320-216 with the registration RP-C8613, arrives in Auckland for the first time. Photo by YBCS Plane Spotting.
PR 218/219 will have a stopover at Cairns for about an hour to prepare for its five hour flight to Auckland. The Manila-Cairns route flies for 6 hours and 15 minutes. Overall, the entire one-way service operates for 12 hours including its stopover time in Cairns.
The first leg of the return flight, PR219, flying back to Cairns International Airport. After a stopover in Cairns, it will proceed back to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport. Photo by YBCS Plane Spotting.
The national flag carrier operates four weekly flights on its Manila-Cairns-Auckland services.

"We are hoping in two years time this flight will be a direct from Manila to Auckland so that we can have a travel time only of around nine hours," PAL president and chief operating officer Jaime Bautista said.

Bautista joined the entire flight to Auckland coming from Manila for its launch in Cairns.

Auckland Airport said that Philippine Airlines is the first airline to operate flights between the Philippines and New Zealand. However, in 1954, TEAL (now Air New Zealand) operated 17 DC-6 chartered flights flying from Sydney-Darwin-Manila-Iwakuni-Tokyo and vice-versa, between July and October.

Meanwhile, Air New Zealand may introduce non-stop flights between Auckland and Manila soon using a Boeing 767-300 aircraft. The airline recently announced that it will launch flights to a city in Vietnam.


Philippine Airlines Flight 218 receives first water canon salute at Cairns International Airport, Australia. Photo grabbed from video of Cairns Airport - YouTube.

Philippine Airlines flight receives second water canon salute at the Auckland International Airport, New Zealand. Photo grabbed from video of Aviation NLNZ - YouTube.
Source: stuff.co.nz, Travel News Asia, Air Transport World

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