MinDA: Davao-Manado route is on high demand

Aviation Updates Philippines – A report from the Philippine Information Agency cited Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) Deputy Executive Director Asst. Secretary Romeo Montenegro stating that the recently launched Davao-Manadao air route is "doing good business".
DOING GOOD. According to Montenegro, flights from Davao to Manado are doing very well. During launch, flight load was at 40-50 percent. However, during the peak holiday season, flights were fully booked. Photo from Ralph Lawrence Llemit - SunStar Davao.
Just a few months after the flight's inauguration, good news can be heard from government officials as it lauded the improving demand between the two key cities in the Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) region.

“Based on the data we gathered from Garuda and based on actual interviews with visitors we had in the last few days, we validated from them that we had full flights especially Manado to Davao,” Montenegro said in a report from PNA.

He added: “Many were interested in going to Davao and Davao to Manado, a big part of the load came from Luzon who have family or businesses in Manado.”

In a press conference, Montenegro also said that passenger traffic has surged in 2019. Flights from December to January have been fully-booked.

Back in September last year, Garuda Indonesia launched bi-weekly services between Davao and Manado, Indonesia on-board the 70-seat ATR 72-600 aircraft. It flies every Monday and Friday eyeing to cater to locals who are doing business between Indonesia and the Philippines.

The route is a revival of the long ceased air link between the two cities. The last airline to serve the route was Sriwijaya Air back in 2006. Although there have been chartered flights made, none was sustained very well.

On March 29, Philippine Airlines, through its subsidiary PAL Express, is launching thrice-weekly direct flights between Davao to Manado. It will be on-board PAL's 86-seat De Havilland Canada Dash 8 aircraft.

Montenegro revealed that the improving load factor on these flights may cultivate daily flights in the future.

“We could be seeing daily flights between Manado and Davao,” Montenegro said.

The local governments of the closely-tied cities are both working hand-in-hand to offer exclusive all-in packages for travelers to further stimulate tourism.

With reports from the Philippine Information Agency and SunStar Davao