Philippine Airlines (PAL) marked its 70th Anniversary last night in Manila with a lively show of top-notch local performers, promises of providing better customer service and value, a project empowering Filipino entrepreneurship and a new service to New Delhi on March 27, 2011.
Vivienne Tan, its newly appointed executive vice-president, commercial group, announced the team up of the carrier and “Go Negosyo” (On with business) movement). Tan, whose father and PAL owner Lucio Tan earlier addressed the gathering at the Newport City complex, said the hunt was on for 70 SMEs (small and medium enterprises), who would be provided incentives “to expand inernationally”.
Tan observed that only a few local entities, such as the SM group, Jollibee food chain and Oishi snacks, have succeeded on the global brand scene. PAL, she said, wanted “to be the bridge”, enabling more companies to achieve that goal. PAL is also going to team up with the Department of Tourism and leading wireless service provider Smart Communications to produce an MTV of 31 Filipino entertainers extolling the attractions of various destinations around the Philippines.
PAL’s latest network addition, Manila-New Delhi is a six times weekly service – three times weekly non-stop and three times direct via Bangkok. The flights will provide a new vital link between the fast growing subcontinent and Southeast Asia, adding to those already provided by Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines and Thai Airways. Also currently, no Indian airline serves the Philippines.
An Airbus A330 will be utilised on the route. Until September 30, a US$488 round-trip economy class promotional fare is available.
PAL was established by a group of prominent Filipino businessmen on February 16, 1941. On March 15, a Beech Model 18 aircraft carrying five passengers took off from Nielson airfield in Makati (now the Philippines’ Wall Street district) bound for the hill station of Baguio City.
Margie T Logarta