Following the recent posting about the virgin flight from the Philippines to Fujairah, here is an article with news of the approval of two carriers to fly to the Middle East—the Spirit of Manila and Trans-Global Airways. It contains some new details that were not included in previous reports:
The Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB) on Wednesday approved the application of two Philippine carriers to fly commercially to the Middle East.
The decision was announced by CAB deputy executive director Carmelo Arcilla during a hearing by the House Committee on Overseas Workers' Affairs.
"We have not really slept on this," Arcilla told abs-cbnNEWS.com, referring to the problem of lack of airline seats for OFWs going to the Middle East.
Although he identified the carriers as Spirit of Manila and Trans-Global Airways, he did not specify the actual routes they would be servicing. He said it was the airlines’ operational matter.
The approval came just before Trans-Global's maiden trip to Fujairah in the United Arab Emirates last Friday.
Arcilla added that Trans-Global will initially be using MD-83 aircraft that has a capacity of 160 passengers. They also have plans to acquire a 767 airplane which seats 250 people.
The new airlines are both Filipino owned with foreign partners, Arcilla said.
He also added that CAB was expecting more airlines to come forward and apply for licenses. Definitely, though, he said, "new entrants who are capable would be preferable (to an old airline executing) a code sharing agreement (with another airline."
The code sharing agreement is a means by which an airline sells tickets to passengers for a flight on another airline. It does not actually fly a plane into the place specified.
Source: CAB Update Allows Two New Airlines to Fly to Middle East, ABS-CBN News Online, 11 June 2008.
Is there another international airport that is closer to the main street than the Fujairah International Airport? Fujairah International Airport is only seconds away from the centre of Fujairah.
There will be lots of happy Fujairah residents when flights to major international routes depart and arrive through Fujairah.
Dr. Geoff Pound
Image: Fujairah International Airport.(interior)