PAL resumes visa waiver program with US
MANILA — Philippine Airlines (PAL) can again accept eligible passengers under the visa waiver program (VWP) of the United States.
In a statement on Friday, PAL said that it had received confirmation from the US Customs and Border Protection. Thus the program that was put on hold for a few days can now proceed.
Under the US VWP, most citizens of 40 participating countries can visit the United States for 90 days or less without securing a visa. Travelers, however, must have a valid electronic system for travel authorization approval and meet the requirements, including citizenship in the participating countries.
In return, these participating countries must also allow US citizens and nationals to visit their countries for 90 days even without a visa.
In Asia, countries included in the VWP are Brunei, Japan, Singapore and South Korea. Australia, Belgium, Brunei, Greece, France, Italy, Monaco, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal and Switzerland, among others, are also part of the program.
PAL offers direct flights to the United States, including Los Angeles, San Francisco and Honolulu.
The flag carrier recently inked a purchase deal for nine A350-1000s with Airbus, which will be used for long-haul services from Manila to the East Coast of the United States and Canada.
The airline’s passenger volume rose by 89 percent to 7 million in the first half, booking average passenger load factor of 81.6 percent. The number of operated flights climbed by 56 percent to 50,400 during the period.