PAL Chairman Lucio Tan stated at a media event in Manila on March 15 that PAL Holdings, the parent company of Philippine Airlines (PR, Manila Ninoy Aquino Airport) and PAL Express, expects to bring all of its aircraft out of storage and back in the air by the end of 2023.
The remaining grounded aircraft should resume service between now and the fourth quarter of 2023, according to Tan. “We are expecting a continuing robust market recovery,” Tan added. Three Philippines Airlines aircraft, comprising one A320-200, one A320-200N, and one A321-200N, as well as two PAL Express DHC-8-Q400s, one A321-200, and two A320-200s, are still parked, according to ch-aviation fleets advanced data.
The Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila is home to all of the aircraft. The same data indicate that PAL Express has 20 active aircraft and Philippines Airlines has 45 active aircraft at this time. Also, a number of aircraft from both fleets are now being serviced for maintenance.
The pace of the airline’s re-entry into service would rely on the availability of parts, some of which would potentially be delayed by issues with the global supply chain, according to Philippine Airlines CEO Stanley Ng at the event to celebrate the airline’s 82nd birthday.
The grounded aircraft required to be renovated before being put back into service, he noted. Most of the aircraft that are going back into service will be placed on routes into and out of China.
One of the main issues is the supply chain. As a result, he continued, “if we were to operate our aircraft, we would also need the suppliers of engines and other spare parts. It’s a big year for Philippine Airlines this year. The primary goal right now is to make sure we are trustworthy and consistent.
Ng stated that he intended to increase the PAL Holdings fleet to approximately 100 aircraft by 2027, which would be comparable to the pre-pandemic numbers. “There are a ton of opportunities, especially as we move forward. We cannot stay this way; we must change.”
While the Boeing orderbook indicates no active orders from the airline, Airbus order data suggests that Philippines Airlines has seven A321-200s, thirteen A321-200Ns, and thirteen A330-300s on order there.