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Friday, February 26, 2021

Philippines airline PAL announces new direct Doha-Manila service

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A Philippine Airline A330. Credit: lkarasawa

Starting March 26, Philippine Airline (PAL) will launch its first direct flight from Manila to Doha.

The service will operate four times a week, on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday on the A330.

PR684 will leave Manila at 1:30pm and arrive in Doha at 6pm local time. And PR685 will depart Doha at 8pm and arrive in Manila at 10am.

Ninoy Aquino International Airport. Credit: Wikimedia

Tickets range from QR885 to QR2,745 in economy, and include WiFi and meal service. A business class option could be rolled out this summer.

The moves come a year after the carrier introduced its first service to Doha, though that route currently stops in Abu Dhabi.

PAL will continue to fly that route to Doha on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, Gulf Times reports.

But the non-stop service will make Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport one of the few destinations connected directly to Doha by three airlines.

It also heats up competition on the route, as Qatar Airways also flies to Manila direct. So does low-cost carrier Cebu Pacific Air, which launched its service to Doha in 2015.

Growing community

Qatar is home to a large Filipino population, which now numbers over 200,000 people.

That’s the third largest expat group in the country, behind the local Indian and Nepali communities.

Photo for illustrative purposes only. Credit: 3dom/Flickr

According to the Qatar Tribune, PAL President and COO Jaime Bautista said:

“The non-stop service will give us a better product to offer to some 230,000 Filipino workers in Qatar.

Aside from the convenience of this direct service, passengers can experience in-flight service with the ‘heart of the Filipino’, marked by warmth, care and hospitality.”

The newspaper added that passengers get two pieces of checked luggage as part of their tickets, and each piece must not exceed 23kg.

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