Sunday, July 15, 2018
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PAL’s perennial problems

05:02 AM August 08, 2017

Philippine Airlines is labeled “PALaging” late. The more appropriate label should be “PALpak” due to my recent experiences with the said airline.

My Manila-Cagayan de Oro flight on July 22, 2017, at 3:50 p.m. (PR 2525) was announced as canceled more than an hour after all of us passengers had settled in our assigned seats, with our seat belts already fastened. The reason given: bad weather in Cagayan de Oro.

My brother and I wondered aloud because my two daughters and two granddaughters had at that very same time just landed at the same destination through another airline! It was PAL’s last flight that day for Cagayan de Oro and it was too late for us to try to catch another flight with another airline.


Helpless, we were simply told to rebook for our preferred flight the following day. We booked the first flight at dawn the following day and stayed sleepless and restless overnight at the airport. Imagine our disappointment when we failed to attend a rare clan affair that took months of advanced planning and preparation and early ticket purchases.

Our return flight from Tacloban City to Manila (July 28, 2017, 6 p.m., PR 2988) was delayed by two hours, without any explanation from the ground staff.

When we finally boarded at 8:10 p.m., we observed that the passengers filled only one-third of the aircraft’s seating capacity. My sister who was on that flight became my and my brother’s fellow passenger.

Is it standard operating procedure for this airline to delay and worse, cancel flights every time there are only a few passengers to avoid losses?

What about the interests of hapless passengers? How about our wasted time and precious effort, and our untold disappointments over failed commitments? Airlines charge and do not refund no-show passengers. To play fair, there should be a law charging airlines for both delayed and canceled flights, to be paid directly to confirmed passengers.

Calling the attention of our matino lawmakers! There must be an end to “kaPALpakan.”


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TAGS: Catherine Viacrucis, Inquirer letters, Philippine Airlines
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