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This flight was pretty uneventful. Philippine Airlines used to only use the A340 or for a while the up to date Boeing 77-300ER on Melbourne and Sydney flights.
Timekeeping was good: we departed about 10 minutes late and arrived Manila 15 minutes late after the usual go around due to air traffic congestion.
As usual, the meal was served quickly after boarding: I’d like to have waited until 1300 Melbourne time.
I had a spare seat next to me as the load factor was about 70 per cent.
Flight attendants were pleasant and not grumpy. They willingly fulfilled requests for extra drinks or small snacks.
Overall, quite a reasonable flight although the lack of IFE in economy class on these about 17 year old A330s is bad.
Philippine Airlines is apparently refitting about eight of its A333s with IFE, even in economy. The number of seats is being reduced to about 300, quite a large drop.
FrequentPR – One crucial point never mentioned is that PAL configures Y class nine-across 3-3-3 for an aircraft designed by Airbus for eight-across 2-4-2 seating.
In fact the vast majority of A330 operators still maintain the more spacious 2-4-2 configuration.
The reduction is seating capacity you mention suggests that PAL is reverting to a 2-4-2 layout.
Checking PAL’s seating plan it appears it operates its A330 in either a 363 or 414 seat versions which must be as dense as that of low-cost carrier Air Asia X.
(Note: Although PAL’s website refers to a 363-seat version the link does not work).
This airline with the refurbishment is further improving business class (although it’s already lie flat) with new lie-flat seats. As it’s often got fairly cheap J class fares it could be a very good offering between MNL and MEL from about August 2017.