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CebuPac wants more seats for S’pore, Bangkok

MANILA, Philippines - Budget airline Cebu Air Inc. (Cebu Pacific) is seeking more seat entitlements for flights to Singapore and Thailand as it pursues a $4-billion refleeting program.

In separate petitions filed before the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB), Cebu Pacific is seeking the reallocation of additional entitlements to Singapore of 540 seats unutilized by PAL Express.

Likewise, the low cost carrier is also applying for the reallocation of additional entitlements Bangkok of another 540 seats allocated previously but unutilized by PAL Express.

Cebu Pacific currently flies three times a day to Singapore an almost two times a day to Bangkok.

The Philippines signed air agreements with Singapore just last February and with Thailand in November 2012

The low cost carrier has embarked on a $4-billion refleeting program aimed at acquiring close to 50 aircraft between 2013 and 2021. It now operates a fleet of 51 Airbus aircraft composed of 30 Airbus A320, 10 A319, three Airbus A330 and eight ATR-72 500.

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Cebu Pacific is slated to take delivery of 12 more brand-new A320, 30 A321neo and three A330 aircraft from 2014 to 2021.

The airline is spending $15 million to acquire 100 percent of Tiger Airways Philippines that operates a five-aircraft fleet in the country.

Cebu Pacific currently operates over 2,200 flights per week with 51 aircraft to 24 international and 33 Philippine cities in its network while Tigerair Philippines currently operates about 118 flights per week with five aircraft to 11 domestic and international destinations from its bases in Manila and Clark .

It is now in the process of seeking Congressional approval after getting the nod of the CAB for the $15-million transaction for the 100-percent acquisition of Tigerair Philippines that was closed last March 22.

The combined network of Cebu Pacific and Tigerair Philippines expect to fly 17 million passengers this year. Cebu Pacific flew 3.74 million passengers in the first quarter of the year from 3.533 million in the same period last year.

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