Cebu Pacific to mount flights to Batanes in March

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Cebu Pacific will start flying to Basco, Batanes in March. -- CEBU PACIFIC

CEBU PACIFIC is set to launch direct flights from Manila to Batanes in late March, in time for start of the summer season.

In a statement, the Gokongwei-led budget carrier said subsidiary Cebgo will fly daily to Basco, Batanes starting March 25 to Oct. 27, 2018.

The flight departs from Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 4 in Manila at 6:20 a.m., while the return flight from Basco leaves at 9:15 a.m.

Cebgo will use its ATR aircraft for the Manila-Batanes route.

“What makes this route more special is that netizens were actively engaged in the selection of our new destination — our customers were part of the process,” Cebgo President and CEO Alexander G. Lao was quoted as saying in a statement.

Batanes was the most requested destination in a social media campaign launched last year. Netizens were asked which local destination they would want Cebu Pacific to fly next. Aside from Batanes, other destinations that received votes were Daet, Camarines Norte; Mati, Davao Oriental; Bantayan Island, Cebu; San Vicente, Palawan, and Siquijor.

“The top picks were then assessed in terms of readiness for commercial flights, with criteria that included airport,” the budget airline said.

Cebu Pacific flies to 37 domestic and 25 international destinations. It operates out of seven hubs in the Philippines: Manila, Clark, Cebu, Davao, Cagayan de Oro, Kalibo and Iloilo.