Cebu Pacific (CEB), the largest low cost carrier from the Philippines, is set to become a new A330 operator, following an announcement that it has selected the aircraft for new long haul services. The carrier plans to acquire up to eight leased aircraft for the new operation, which will begin in the third quarter of 2013.
The long range capability of the A330 will enable CEB to offer direct services from Manila to markets in Australia, the Middle East, and parts of Europe, as well as to the US. The airline will configure the aircraft in single class layout seating just over 400 passengers.
“The A330-300 will give us the lowest cost per seat, allowing us to drive long-haul fares 35% lower than those currently offered by other airlines, and as much as 80% lower when CEB offers promo fares. This aircraft type is very well suited to the kind of network we want to build and the routes we want to launch,” said Lance Gokongwei, CEB President and CEO. “As CEB develops long-haul routes and opens new destinations for a Philippine flag carrier, we will be creating an important enabler for increased trade, tourism and foreign investment.”
CEB is a major customer for the A320 Family, having ordered over 70 aircraft from Airbus. It currently operates 10 A319s and 19 A320s on its existing domestic and regional network, with another 23 A320s and 30 A321neo aircraft on order for future delivery.