LOCAL CARRIER Royal Air Philippines is seeking to mount charter flights from China and Cambodia to key cities in the country.

The Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB) scheduled an Aug. 7 hearing on Royal Air’s petitions for designations to the two countries.

Royal Air Philippines Chief Executive Officer Eduardo C. Novillas told BusinessWorld in a text message the plan is for the charter flights from China and Cambodia to fly to Manila, Clark, Kalibo and Puerto Princesa.

“We have a lot of requests from local travel agents and partners in China for charter to our country,” he said.

Mr. Novillas said if the CAB applications go as planned, the flights will be launched in October. There are plans for twice weekly flights for Cambodia, three times weekly flights to Nanning and twice weekly flights to Zhangjiajie.

In its application to the CAB dated Jul. 22, Royal Air said its application for designations to China is for 1,050 weekly seats.

“In line with its commitment to adding domestic and international routes to become the country’s fast-growing airline with the intention to connect the Philippines to more destinations and its medium-to-long term plan to connect passengers to international destinations, Royal Air most respectfully requests for entitlements to the People’s Republic of China,” it said.

It also said it entered into an agreement with Chinese budget carrier Lanmei Airlines Co., Ltd. to lease a unit of 150-seater Airbus 319-132 to beef up operations. An order to lease one more unit is also under way.

Established as an air charter service in 2002, Royal Air entered commercial operations in 2018 with the launch of Clark-Caticlan flights. — Denise A. Valdez