Airlines Scale Back Flights As Boracay Set To Close
Airlines serving Philippines leisure destination Boracay will scale back flights to the two airports serving the tourist hotspot after the country’s president ordered a six month closure of the holiday island.
President Duterte said Boracay will be closed to tourists between April 26 and October 27 to allow a clean up of the once pristine island that now sees two million visitors each year.
Cebu Pacific cancelled 14 daily flights to the two airports, including eight between the capital Manila and Caticlan, and one on the Manila-Kalibo route. The airline said it is contacting passengers affected by the cancellations and will offer either a full refund, rebooking to another destination, or future travel with the airline.
Flag carrier Philippine Airlines said it has adjusted its operations and will operate nine weekly flights between Manila and Kalibo and a daily service between Manila and Caticlan. It said all other Caticlan and Kalibo flights from Manila will be suspended from April 20 to October 27. PAL said it will redeploy aircraft onto other leisure routes during the closure.
PAL’s president Jaime Bautista said the airline supports “the government's intention to make Boracay fully safe and environmentally friendly. Sustainable development is of critical concern, and we are one with the laudable goal to revert the island to a balanced eco-tourism paradise.”
The airlines will maintain limited services to the island to allow residents to travel.