Antique Governor Rhodora Cadiao on Monday announced that Philippine Airlines (PAL) has taken interest to service the province, opening its Antique-Clark maiden flight on October 28.
Cadiao said Senator Loren Legarda told her of the news during the latter’s visit to the province last week.
The governor will go to Manila in the next few days and visit the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) and the Department of Transportation (DOTr).
Cadiao said Legarda informed her that the management of PAL has already given its go-signal to fly the Antique-Clark and vice versa route.
She said the final schedule of PAL’s maiden flight will be known after her meeting with DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade and CAAP officials.
Cadiao said she previously talked with Tugade over the phone and asked the DOTr chief to defer for a month the maiden flight because they still have to do ground servicing and put some personnel at the Evelio B. Javier Airport in San Jose de Buenavista.
“We’ll just have to prepare for the October 28 maiden flight or if not before Christmas time,” she said.
Cadiao said PAL might start to service Antique to Clark twice weekly and subsequently increase it to four flights per week with its new 86-seater Bombardier Q400 NG aircraft.
The airport in Antique has not been in operation for several years already due to the lack of passengers flying Antique to Manila. The last one was during the time of former governor Salvacion Zaldivar-Perez.
Meanwhile, Cadiao said she is also going to meet with the owner of Montenegro Lines in Manila to talk about the possibility of opening operations from the Lipata Port to Batangas and vice versa.
Antiquenos travel through roll-on/roll-off (RORO) ships in Caticlan Port in Aklan province to Batangas.
“The operation of the airline and RORO could be big things to dream for Antique but we have to prepare for it,” Cadiao said. PNA