Mindanao Times

…as airline exec eyes daily flight to HK

- Francisco By Carmelito Q.

THE MANAGEMENT of Cathay Dragon, which services the Davao-Hong Kong route four times a week, is looking at increasing the frequency to daily as it noted the good load factor.

At the Davao Investment Conference last week, Robin Bradshaw, country manager of Cathay Pacific, the mother company of the airline, said that there has been growth in the airline load factor as at present, load can go as high as 85% in bound and 83% outbound, although he did not mention the profiles of the passengers.

“My big ambition is to get that (number of flights) to daily as quickly as possible,” said Bradshaw, pointing out that the four-times- a- week service will be increased to five times a week as Christmas season is approachin­g.

The achievemen­t that the airline has reached in terms of load factor, “does not happen normally as it will take you two to three years (to achieve it,” he said as the airline is using an Airbus 320 for the service.

He said the “(Davao Region) has great potential as tourist destinatio­n,”, adding that the region has tourist destinatio­ns, particular­ly ecotourism, that can be promoted, particular­ly those outside the city and that are parts of its provinces.

However, Bradshaw said the region “has to compete” because there are other ready destinatio­ns that are ready to accept visitors and have better infrastruc­ture facilities and are just three hours from Hong Kong.

He pointed out that there is a need for both the government and the private sector to work together not only to enhance the infrastruc­ture facilities, but also to promote the region as a tourist destinatio­n.

The Dennis A. Uy-led Chelsea Logistics Holdings Corp. earlier presented an unsolicite­d proposal to rehabilita­te the Francisco Bangoy Internatio­nal Airport.

Bradshaw said when it first ventured into servicing the route, launched in October 2018, the company encountere­d challenges like the lack of awareness among travelers.

“We have a job to do about teaching about educating (travelers),” he said, adding that the

Aside from those traveling from and to Hong Kong, the service also becomes the favorites among those traveling between the region and North America, Australia, Japan and even Europe. “We encourage our Japanese businessme­n and tourists to come to Davao through Hong Kong,” he added, as he made the call to the about 50 Japanese investors who were attending the event.

He even called on the government that when it makes a pitch for the country to tourists, it must put “Davao on top of that list.”

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DOMINGUEZ

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