PAL files billions in losses, returns several planes

Aviation Updates Philippines – After numerous lockdowns that affected the aviation industry and caused a downturn in travel demand, PAL Holdings, the operator of national flag carrier Philippine Airlines, filed P16.6 billion in losses for the first half of 2021.
Photo: Nek Aberia
Due to reduced flights, the airline’s revenue dropped by 51 percent to P18 billion from P36.8 billion during the same six-month period last year. Meanwhile, expenses decreased by more than half from 52.16 billion in 2020 to 26.83 billion in 2021. 

The company also reported a 5.8 percent decrease in its assets, mainly driven by cost-cutting measures, which reduced properties, equipment, and fleet. 

Moreover, PAL also deferred new aircraft deliveries to 2026-2030, as it cut costs and returned planes to its lessors. 

According to its recent filing, the airline already returned two planes, but in recent months they returned two A321s and two A350s. Data from suggests VivaAerobus now uses one ex-PAL A321 in Mexico, and another ex-PAL A350 is undergoing overhaul maintenance checks in Munich for Lufthansa.

The airline is also implementing a restructuring plan to ensure the continuity of its operations. This was complemented with cutting costs, deferral of payments, and carrying out retrenchment programs. 

As the travel demand is not expected to improve due to the resurgence of COVID-19 cases in the Philippines, the aviation industry continues to suffer because of lockdowns and strict travel restrictions domestically and abroad.

However, PAL continues to fulfill its mission as the country’s flag carrier. The airline frontlines in delivering millions of vaccines from international hubs and delivering them to cities and municipalities in the Philippines. PAL also joins the government in mounting repatriation flights for Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) abroad.