Dubai-based carrier Emirates Airline is requesting Philippine government to add at least three more flights a week from Manila.
Emirates Country Manager for the Philippines Sathish Sethi said aside from increased flights, they are negotiating with the Civil Aeronautics Board to shift from Boeing 777 with 440 seat capacity, to Airbus A380 which with 615 seats.
The Emirates currently services 25 flights in the country, 18 of which depart from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA). The rest are circular flights from Cebu and Clark.
In a media roundtable discussion last Thursday in Taguig, Sethi said Emirates carried more than one million passengers in and out of the Philippines in 2018 alone, 15% higher year on year.
Sethi added seat load factor, referring to the number of passengers on a flight divided by the number of available seats, is already around mid-90%.
“Our immediate request is for more frequencies. Our loads are pretty high. Our seat factors are running in mid-90s, a year-round average, which means little room for growth,” Sethi was quoted by Business World as saying.
According to Sethi, the growth in 2018 mostly came from the number of flights going to Dubai due to the population of overseas Filipino workers in the area.
Emirates also noted growth in the number of passengers travelling to European destinations such as Portugal, Spain, and Italy via Dubai international airport.