Will Cebu Pacific offer 'piso' fares to US, Europe?

Posted at 04/11/14 12:47 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Will Cebu Pacific offer its special promo fares for its planned flights to Europe and the United States?

This was the question on many people's minds now that the Gokongwei-led budget carrier is now cleared to fly to the United States and Europe.

Cebu Pacific president Lance Gokongwei said it will offer promo fares to the US and Europe, but at $1 (around P44) and 1 euro (around P61).

"We certainly are looking forward to offering our special $1 fare to the US and 1 euro fare to Europe at some point in the future," Cebu Pacific president Lance Gokongwei told ANC's Coco Alcuaz.

Cebu Pacific is known for offering discounted fares for its domestic and international routes, particularly the "piso fare" where travelers pay only P1 for the base fare but still pay for the fuel surcharge, tax and other fees.

On Thursday, the European Union lifted the ban on Cebu Pacific flights. The US FAA also lifted the 6-year ban on new flights by Philippine carriers to the US, which paves the way for the Gokongwei-led carrier and Philippine Airlines to expand their operations.

Gokongwei said the airline is eyeing flights to Guam and Saipan in the next few months, before starting flights to Europe.

"Given our fleet composition consisting of Airbus A330s and A320s, I think the most likely initial routes would be Guam or Saipan, some place closer. Our A330s are more suited for routes for Dubai, Australia, Middle East. Potentially Hawaii is somewhere our A330s can fly to as well. We don't have any aircraft that can reach the West Coast right now direct," he said.

"I think subject to regulatory approvals from US and Philippines, we're looking at a few months, within the year," Gokongwei added.

Cebu Pacific flies to more than 20 international destinations such as Tokyo, Bali, Bangkok, Beijing, Dubai, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, Hong Kong, Seoul, Shanghai and Singapore. It also operates the most extensive network in the Philippines with destinations such as Boracay, Palawan and Coron.