Citing the growth for travel between Dubai and Manila, Emirates is looking to expand its operations in the country through more flights or larger aircraft.
According to a report from the Philippine Business Mirror, the Dubai-based airline’s Country Manager for the Philippines Satish Sethi during a recent media event cited the needs of the airline but also the obstacles stating: “We need…more capacity in the Philippines, but we know there’s a severe bottleneck here. We’ve been trying to negotiate with the Philippine government to see how we could bring in more tourists to the Philippines and give options to overseas Filipino workers living in Dubai and across our network.”
According to Sethi, the airline has seen a load factor of around 90% on the Dubai-Manila route and is currently looking for more flight frequencies. Emirates currently operates 18 weekly flights between Dubai and Manila using Boeing 777 aircraft. In addition to the 2-3 flights per day to Manila, Emirates also operates a daily Dubai-Cebu-Clark-Dubai run.
The option that the airline is looking into is adding more capacity to the existing flight with Emirates’ Airbus A380s, though Sethi also stated requirements such as the runway specifications and disembarking requirements would have to be addressed. While the airline did a one-time flight to Manila using the A380 in October 2014, the airline has stuck with using the smaller Boeing 777s. To address the potential of bringing the A380s on regularly scheduled flights to Manila, Sethi said: “We proposed that we send our technical team to sit together with civil aviation authorities to see what can be done. We will be going to the next aspect to see if there is a need for an investment or not.”