Saturday, August 15, 2009

Philippine Airline Passenger Traffic Continue To Rise

The first half of 2009 showed an increase of 31% in passenger traffic. This brings a total of 7.59 million passengers vs. 5.82 million for the same period last year. According to CAB, Cebu Pacific carried 3.61M passengers vs. 2.57M a year ago for the first 6 months of the year. This validates their claim that they are now the biggest domestic airline with PAL reporting only 3.21M this year vs. 2.25M for the same period.

Zest Air (the airline formerly known as "Asian Spirit") has continued to grow despite its several airline accidents -- ex. overshooting the runway. It flew 433,000 passengers vs. only 250,000 for the same period last year. Another low-cost carrier PAL Express (the airline formerly known as "Air Philippines") had a surprising dip to 254,000 from 623,000 last year. SEAIR also suffered a significant decline from 138,000 last year to 83,000 this year. So the main conclusion that can be drawn here is Cebu Pacific has really been eating up the market of these smaller budget airlines.

CEB is targeting 9M passengers for the whole year. That means they still have to make up for 5.4M the second half of 2009. That's a pretty tall order. Majority of CEB bookings are now done online -- possibly as much as 70%. This despite high fraud in the airline industry. They must be working just on sheer numbers to cancel out those fraud payments.

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