Philippine Airlines is set to retire their last A340-300’s as their brand new A350 aircraft arrive in their fleet.
The carrier has one A340-300 that can be put in use should there be a technical issue with another aircraft, says Jose Perez, vice-president of corporate communications at PAL.
He says that recent unsourced reports that the type has been permanently retired are “close to the truth.”
“We actually made a decision to retire them sooner rather than later,” he says. “We might have an announcement to make at some point. There is one aircraft we can use if [there are] technical difficulties with one of our 777s or A350s.”
“[Utilisation is] very low. It may fly to Los Angeles or San Francisco, and then be parked again. Right now, we’re reviewing that. We might have to make a decision at a certain point to ground all the aircraft.”
Once Philippine Airlines retires their last A340, it will be the end of A340 operations in the Asia-Pacific region
The carrier will receive two additional A350s in 2019 and is considering additional USA services, either to Chicago or Seattle.
On other types, Perez says the carrier’s four new A321neos have performed well, especially to longer-haul destinations such as Sapporo, Brisbane, and Sydney. He says customer feedback has been positive and notes that the A321neo product resembles that of a widebody, with full-flat seats in business class, a good seat pitch in economy, and seatback in-flight entertainment.