EFFECTIVE December 1, several Philippine Airlines (PAL) international flights will be transferred from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 2 to Terminal 1 due to congestion, the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) announced on Friday.
PAL flights that will be affected by the transfer are those coming from and going to the United States, Canada and the Middle East, MIAA Senior Assistant General Manager Bryan Co said during the Laging Handa public briefing.
The flights include those to and from Dammam, Doha, Dubai, Riyadh, Toronto, Vancouver, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Honolulu and Guam.
The reason for the transfer, said Co, was to "balance the capacity of the airport terminals."
"Currently, NAIA Terminal 2 is quite congested due to the number of Philippine Airlines flights and Terminal 1 still has the capacity to accommodate additional flights," Co said.
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"This is also so that we can improve the experience of our passengers at NAIA," he added.
Co pointed out that based on their assessment, the utilization of Terminal 1 is very low because international travel has not yet fully returned.
He noted that other travel markets abroad are still restricted such as China, including Macao and Hong Kong, and other Northeast Asian destinations such as South Korea and Japan, which are just now opening.
The NAIA Terminal 1 can accommodate around 11,000 to 13,000 passengers daily while Terminal 2 can accommodate roughly 30,000.
"If we are able to balance the capacity, both terminals will be able to accommodate 20,000 passengers per day," said Co.
"With the transfer, Terminal 2 will lose significant congestion especially during peak hours for long-haul flights, particularly during nighttime when most passengers are departing and during daytime, when passengers are usually arriving," he added.
During the peak season, from mid-December to early January the following year, MIAA expects a 13- to 15-percent increase in passengers from the current 100,000 recorded daily departures and arrivals for both domestic and international travelers, Co said.
He added that all available personnel will be on deck to support the anticipated holiday passenger influx.
All domestic flights and the rest of PAL's international routes will continue to operate at the NAIA Terminal 2, the MIAA official said.