THE Bohol-Panglao International Airport can now start accommodating flights at night, according to the Department of Transportation (DoTr).
In a statement yesterday, the department said the Bohol gateway began operating flights up to 10 p.m. on Sept. 1. This comes after the DoTr upgraded the airport’s navigational equipment to allow it to handle planes landing at night.
The airport’s operating hours have been extended to 16 hours (6 a.m. to 10 p.m.) from 12 hours (6 a.m. to 6 p.m.), allowing the gateway to handle more flights.
“The more flights we can accommodate, the more benefits we can offer to our air passengers. This has always been the focal guidance of Secretary Art Tugade — to enhance the connectivity, mobility and comfort of the Filipino people,” Jim C. Sydiongco, director general of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines, said in the statement.
Having more flights at the airport is also seen to help bring down airfares, making Bohol a more attractive tourist destination for travelers.
“The improvements we made here at (the Bohol-Panglao International Airport) will ultimately impact on regional economic growth and development. That is what our President meant when he told us to give Filipinos a comfortable life,” Transportation Secretary Arthur P. Tugade said.
The Bohol-Panglao International Airport was opened in November and is now the main gateway to the Bohol island, replacing Tagbilaran Airport. It is designed to handle 2 million passengers annually.
The private sector is seeking to take over the operations and maintenance of the gateway, with Aboitiz InfraCapital, Inc. having an unsolicited proposal being reviewed by the National Economic and Development Authority. — Denise A. Valdez