Emirates A380 made a one-off service to Clark International Airport on Wednesday, becoming the first commercial flight, utilizing the aircraft, to operate to the Luzon-based airport
An Emirates Airbus A380 made a one-off service to Clark International Airport in March, becoming the first commercial fligh utilising the aircraft to operate to the Luzon-based airport. This behemoth of the sky typically seats more than 600 passengers. Image Credit: Emirates / Supplied

Manila: A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to enhance aviation ties will pave the way for Airbus A380 double-deckers to fly from the UAE to key Philippine destinations and vice-versa.

The MoU was signed after a round of talks on September 19-20, 2023, the official news agency WAM reported. The deal is a significant development that could reshape the travel landscape between these two nations.

Notably, the MOU stipulates a huge rise in national carriers’ flights, increasing air cargo from 200 to 600 tonnes per week for every national carrier.

The agreement, signed after talks in Cebu, in central Philippines, also paves the way for several key advancements in air travel — including the operation of A380 superjumbo jets to connect the two nations.

By increasing national carriers' flights and tripling air cargo weekly capacity, the MoU not only facilitates smoother trade and travel between the two countries but also underscores the UAE's role as a global aviation hub.

The introduction of Airbus A380s — offering an incredible capacity of 615 seats — and also known for their spacious and luxurious interiors, heralds a new era of comfort and convenience for travelers on this route.

Travel rebound

With Emirates and Etihad operating these double-decker superjumbos, passengers can look forward to an elevated flying experience.

Amid the post-pandemic travel rebound, Philippine-registered carriers PAL, Cebu Pacific, among others, are also boosting their fleets.

In June, PAL finalised in Le Bourget, France a purchase agreement with Airbus for the firm order of nine A350-1000 long range aircraft; Cebu Pacific, has also increased its aircraft deliveries for 2023 to a record high of 21 from 15 to further improve its operations amid growing demand for air travel.

The MOU was signed by Omar bin Ghalib, Deputy Director-General of the GCAA and Head of the UAE Delegation, and Carmelo L. Arcilla, Executive Director of the Philippines’s Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB).

“The vision of the UAE’s leadership has led to adopting an open skies policy, which has boosted its competitiveness, openness, and economic flexibility, as well as its regional and global leadership,” Saif Mohammed Al Suwaidi, Director-General of the GCAA was quoted as saying.

The new deal is anticipated to further improve connectivity, increased trade opportunities, and facilitate a more seamless travel experience for all passengers between the two partners.