Philippine Airlines (PAL) has joined forces with Traveloka, a leading travel platform in Southeast Asia, in a strategic move to strengthen tourism growth in the Philippines and the region.
The partnership was formalized through a memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed on February 28, 2023, with the aim of fortifying PAL’s connections with the global market and providing new travel options for its customers.
Captain Stanley K. Ng, president and COO of PAL, said the collaboration would help the airline sustain and develop direct air links to countries in the region and beyond.
“Our intent is for the partnership to unlock new travel options for our customers to fly with Philippine Airlines to various wonderful destinations all around the Philippines, and to diverse international destinations as well,” he said.
The tourism sector in the Philippines, as in many parts of the world, was severely impacted by the pandemic. In 2020, the number of Southeast Asian tourists visiting the Philippines dropped dramatically from over 526,000 in 2019 to around 83,000 due to global border restrictions.
However, by the end of 2022, the number of Southeast Asian visitors heading to the Philippines had more than doubled to 188,000.
According to Iko Putera, chief executive of Transport Traveloka, the post-pandemic period has seen a surge in enthusiasm for business and tourism travel, driven by the high rate of vaccinations and the re-opening of international borders.
This has also been reflected in Traveloka’s internal data, with the number of visitors coming to the Philippines from Southeast Asian countries where Traveloka is operating increasing by eight times from 2021 to 2022.
Meanwhile, the number of passengers using the flight network of Philippine Airlines to various international destinations has almost doubled.
“Collaboration between Traveloka and Philippine Airlines provides a variety of choices and flexibility for travelers to be able to enjoy and explore destinations in the Philippines in a more personalized and unique way,” Iko said.