MASwings has suspended its thrice-weekly flights between Kota Kinabalu and Puerto Princesa effective September 1 as part of its route rationalization program.
MASwings tells Travel Update Philippines that the route “is no longer commercially viable to be maintained in the market” but “this is just a temporary suspension until further notice. The return of the flights will depend on the demand and business potential, which will be monitored and reviewed.”
In a statement released on August 27, management revealed that the network rationalization has been made to “enable it to focus on growing its domestic routes in the near future.”
“MASwings plays an important role to contribute to the local economic growth of Sabah and Sarawak by allowing linkages between villages in the interior to major towns and from there, connectivity to Peninsular Malaysia and internationally. There is much potential for MASwings to tap domestically and contribute to. We have optimize our resources and focus on our domestic market for now”, said Captain Ritzerwan Rashid, CEO of MASwings.
The move will directly impact foreign arrivals in Palawan, since the airline offered the only regular service to a foreign country. In response, Aileen Amurao, tourism officer of Puerto Princesa, reveals that the city government is negotiating with a local carrier to support the traffic abandoned by MASwings.