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Philippine Airlines fires back at the United Airlines’ complaint on new Seattle flights

Philippines stood up over its proposed service to Seattle, firing back at the United Airlines’ appeal that the service must be delayed until the U.S carrier lands additional slots in Manila.

Philippine Airlines, the Manila-based carrier oppose that the United Airlines’ slot request is deemed inappropriate in what Philippine Airlines claims is a standard route authority proceeding. Besides, according to the treaty that governs the flights between the Philippines and the United States, if the latter failed to timely grant Philippine Airlines’ application, it would be equivalent to a violation of the bilateral air transport agreement.

Amidst the said dispute, Philippine Airlines proposed three times weekly service between Manila and Seattle. It will make use of its Airbus A350. The given flights would be the only nonstop route between the two cities and these are allowed under the two countries’ air services agreement.

However, United Airlines sees it differently. This airline company argued that despite its repeated efforts to add a second daily flight between its Guam hub and Manila, the local authorities in the Philippines rejected it but the Philippine Airlines has expanded to the United States. As the statement released by United Airlines, they explain that it depends on the public interest to grant the Philippine Airlines’ application for additional authority and its expansion. It will only be possible if United Airlines is also able to expand its services as well.

In line with that statement released by United Airlines, Philippine Airlines replied by pointing out that slots in Manila airport are being handled by a third-party firm which is based in Australia and not solely by the Philippine government. Also, there’s an existing separate treaty that moderates for the international slot disputes.

To give you an overview, the Philippines Airlines was able to grow its capacity to the United States by about 29% year over year in 2019, this is according to the data released based on the Cirium schedule data.

Until now, there’s no timeline on when the Department of Tourism will rule on the Philippine Airlines proposed expansion at Seattle. Still, Seattle airport officials have noted that it is unlikely to launch in May.

This Manila-based carrier also released a statement on how the novel coronavirus outbreak has impacted its international expansion plans and proceedings. It suspended all flights to mainland China, and Hong Kong through March 28.