Asia's first budget airline, Cebu Pacific, posted another record year in 2008 with total passengers reaching 6.7 million, a 23 percent growth from 2007.
“We carried 5.38 million domestic passengers last year, up 20.7 percent from 2007, while international passengers rose by 33 percent, from one million to 1.4 million,” Lance Gokongwei, the local airline's president and chief executive officer, said in a statement.
The growth sprung from increased capacity--it added new 300-plus-seater Aibus planes and 70-plus-seater ATR planes to its fleet--and from more routes, both domestically and regionally.
The airline grew its total number of destinations in 2008 to 42, from 32 in 2007, and its number of routes to 63 from 43. Of these, domestic destinations rose from 20 to 27 while domestic routes increased from 28 to 39.
To fill these additional flights, the airline's marketing and information technology teams launched ultra low fare promotions on several routes, attracting previous bus or ferry riders to fly instead.
The airline expects to fly 9.3 million passengers this year as it takes delivery of six new planes (3 Airbus A320 and 3 ATR 72-500), and expand its route network in the country and in Asia. It currently flies to 15 international cities and 27--32 soon--domestic destinations.
Now on its 14th year, Cebu Pacific is the youngest aircraft fleet in the country with 11 Airbus A320, 10 Airbus A319, and eight ATR 72-500.