Airline optimistic about recovery

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    AirAsia Philippines is targeting to recover up to 60 percent of its pre-pandemic level in passenger traffic by the fourth quarter this year.

    The Philippine unit of AirAsia Berhad registered a 99- percent decline in the number of passengers carried in the second quarter as the airline hibernated its fleet from March 20 to June 4.

    “For the fourth quarter this year, AirAsia Philippines is targeting a recovery of domestic capacity up to 60 percent of pre-COVID-19 (new coronavirus disease 2019) levels,” AirAsia Berhad said in a statement.

    The airline carried 29,111 passengers in April to June this year, down from 2.2 million passengers carried in the same period last year, as both domestic and international operations were suspended due to the community quarantine.

    The airline ended the second quarter with 19 percent of capacity market with the resumption of six routes.

    Last year, the low-cost carrier reported a 24-percent increase in passengers flown to 7.8 million, from 6.3 million passengers carried in 2018.

    The airline’s operation at Ninoy Aquino International Airport was suspended anew from August 4 to August 19.

    AirAsia announced the resumption of operation in 12 domestic routes as Manila reverts to a general community quarantine.

    The airline urged guests to check the latest travel restrictions and advice of respective local and national governments before traveling, as policies may change frequently.

    Those with existing flight bookings departing from March 23 to August 31, 2020, which were cancelled by the airline can now choose between a credit account with a two-year validity period or unlimited flight changes until October 31, 2020.

    AirAsia said refunds are also available for flights canceled due to the recent modified enhanced community quarantine imposed by the government.

    Guests can expect enhanced safety measures throughout the entire journey, including pre-flight, in-flight and arrival processes, it added. These include the mandatory wearing of face masks to be permitted to travel, among others.

    The airline also advised guests to check and comply with measures implemented by local airport authorities for a smooth travel experience.