AIRASIA PHILIPPINES is optimistic that it will have better performance in 2022 amid the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

The low-cost airline said in a statement on Tuesday that its multi-layered safety protocols, 100% vaccination of its crew, the presence of High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters in its aircraft, and the shared culture of safety and vigilance provides for “optimum performance” in 2022.

AirAsia added that it is highly optimistic that more Filipinos will be enticed to travel again following the country’s stronger vaccination program and improved synergies between the national and local governments.

“There is strong pent-up demand for travel and Filipinos are ready to get back in the air. And compared to the previous two years, all stakeholders — airlines, government units and customers — are now much more conscious of the key strategies and measures needed to properly approach traveling amid the pandemic,” AirAsia said.

According to the airline, it has three main priorities for 2022, which include cash availability and cash management to support recovery strategies towards profitability; sustainable cost management and rationalization to operate commercial flights; and expansion of its domestic presence and exploring regional opportunities in the Middle East, United States, and Australia.

Meanwhile, AirAsia said it had grown its domestic market share to 19% in 2021 from 15.5% in 2019.

“The low-cost airline has also peaked at 95% load factor over the course of the recent holiday period, while ending December at 88% — both record high figures over the past 1.5 years. AirAsia Philippines ranked third most popular airline in terms of flight bookings among AirAsia territories, following Malaysia and Thailand,” the airline said.

“AirAsia Philippines has also recorded a 15 to 20% increase in bookings for near-term travel within 30-60 days over recent times. AirAsia has also resumed its flight operations to Hong Kong, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, servicing overseas Filipino workers and business travelers in these countries,” it added. — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave