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PAL, Cebu Pacific eye direct flights between Iloilo, Korea


ILOILO CITY, Philippines—Direct flights between Iloilo and Korea are being eyed by airlines in the country, according to the Department of Tourism.

DOT Western Visayas director Helen Catalbas said the Philippine Airlines and Cebu Pacific have been conducting market studies on flights between Incheon in South Korea and Iloilo.

“This is a feasible venture because of the significant volume of Koreans and Filipinos traveling between the two destinations,” Catalbas told the Philippine Daily Inquirer on Tuesday.

DOT records showed that about 209,000 Koreans went to Western Visayas including 9,497 to Iloilo in 2012 alone. Chartered flights from Korea to Bacolod City brought 37,736 Korean tourists.

Catalbas said direct regular flights between Korea and Iloilo could cater to both inbound and outbound travelers not only for Western Visayas but destinations with flights to and from Iloilo. These include the cities of Tacloban, Puerto Princesa, Davao and General Santos.

Most of the Koreans traveling to Iloilo are students, families and businessmen.

The Iloilo airport opened to direct international flights in November last year with the start of direct flights between Iloilo and Hong Kong and between Iloilo and Singapore.

The DOT in Western Visayas has recorded increasing tourist arrivals on the direct flights.

Visitor arrivals on direct flights from Singapore and Hong Kong in January reached 2,255, including 1,905 Filipinos and a total of 1,991, including 1,575 Filipinos, in February.

These followed the 1,510 arrivals, including 1,296 Filipinos, in November and 3,219, including 2,837 Filipinos, in December last year, according to DOT data.

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  • TV

    Iloilo has massive potential to be a formidable cultural destination, which complements the natural attractions in Boracay, Guimaras and even Antique. Region 6 DOT should double their efforts in promoting these places. And PLEASE STOP DEMOLISHING THOSE HISTORICAL BUILDINGS ON CALLE REAL – THEY REPRESENT THE HEART OF THE CITY’S CULTURAL SOUL. Redevelop and revitalize the area with restaurants, shops, boutiques, etc. to ensure economic viability and attract more business.

  • Wapogwapo

    Chartered flights from Korea to Bacolod City brought 37,736 Korean tourists. This data is erroneous. Bacolod had a few limited chartered flights. 1 plane atmost can have 160-170 passengers. The numbers does not much. If you divide 37736 tourist to 170 capacity of a chartered plane. Thats 221 flights. Bacolod doesnt have that number of chartered flights. Please verify the numbers.

    • Wapogwapo

      markquicksilver Wapogwapo • 7 hours ago
      i dont know where you are, but maybe you doesnt know that bacolod have an international airport to hold that 221 flights or more. the bacolod-silay airport on average have 147 flights from manila weekly.
      I am referring to the chartered flights between Bacolod and Korea as the sentence says, “Chartered flights from Korea to Bacolod City brought 37,736 Korean tourists”. How can a few chartered flights bring in so many Koreans directly to Bacolod? The chartered flights between Korea-Bacolod did not reach 221 flights. You can’t have that 37,736 tourist with just 4 chartered flights from Korea. Even assuming that the chartered plane is to its maximum capacity of 170 persons. This is not even about Bacolod-Manila flights. @markquicksilver. Please enroll again in reading comprehension class. And to note, Bacolod-Silay Airport is not yet classified as an international airport because it does not have a regualar international flight. It is a domestic airport with international standards or a domestic airport capable of handling international flights.

  • regd

    Any airlines but not Cebu Pacific please. Good job Iloilo.

  • Friendly_Skies

    Ayus at capable ba ang Iloilo airport? ura ba…??? We all hope so

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