BUSINESS

PH budget airlines scrambling to get flights to Macau

TAGs: airlines, gambling, Macau, Philippines

philippines-to-macauIf the Philippines is looking into meeting its tourism targets in the next coming years, and specifically bring in more Chinese gamblers to the country, then the first thing it has to do is have flights available to and from Macau that’s fast, cheap, and convenient.

That’s likely the reason then that budget airlines from the Philippines have applied to increase the allocation of seat entitlements to Macau. The request was disclosed in documents from the Civil Aeronautics Board with four airlines requesting to add specific number of seat allotments to their scheduled flights going to Macau and back to the Philippines.

In those documents, it was bared that Tiger Airways was seeking 1,260 seats per week with Zest Airways (820 seats), Cebu Pacific (440 seats), and PAL Express (900 seats) also joining in on the request. The two countries already have agreed to unlimited seats between Macau and all international airports in the Philippines except Manila in accordance with Philippine president Benigno Aquino’s issuance of Executive Order No. 29 that opens international airports in the Philippines that’s not NAIA to more foreign traffic.

It’s no secret to anyone that Macau is one of the most important markets the Philippines is looking to tap into. Not only does the destination provide easy access to Hong Kong and China, but it’s also the place where high-roller gamblers frequently flock. That’s precisely the specific demographic the Philippines is looking to tap into to come and play at country’s rising Entertainment City leisure and gaming complex.

Last month, the Philippines and Macau signed a new air service agreement that would raise seat entitlements between the two¬†destinations from 3,500 seats to 4,500 seats. The two countries already have agreed to unlimited seats between Macau and all international airports in the Philippines except Manila in accordance with Philippine president Benigno Aquino’s issuance of Executive Order No. 29 that opens international airports in the Philippines that’s not NAIA to more foreign traffic.

But with the Philippine government aiming to generate six million tourists by 2016, having more seats available for flights flying out of Manila’s NAIA its becoming more and more important, allowing tourists’ easy access to the Philippines’ premier gambling destinations.

Despite being a small market, Macau’s critical VIP market is a priority for the Philippines, hence the scrambling from these four budget airlines to seek more flights going to and from the gambling mecca of the world.

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