Philippines Airlines (PAL) have announced that nearly one third of employees will lose their jobs by mid March as a direct result of Coronavirus. The job cuts will be made through voluntary and involuntary redundancies.

Philippines Airlines Struggle

The decision was made as the part of the airline’s overall recovery scheme amid the ongoing pandemic that has affected the airline industry globally. Currently PAL is operating less than 30% of its pre-pandemic weekly flights due to restrictions and lowered travel demand around the world.

Philippine Airlines planes on tarmac
Philippine Airlines are operating less than 30% of pre-pandemic flights. © M.Oertle

Philippines Airlines President Gilbert F. Santa Maria said: “This has been an extremely difficult and painful decision. For our colleagues who are leaving, rest assured that we are committed to support you through this transition. We extend to you our deepest gratitude for your years of hard work and dedicated service, and we will always cherish the ties you have established with the PAL family.”

The Future of Philippines Airlines

Since March 2020, PAL has suspended capital expenditures, reduced management salaries, deferred lease payments and cut non-essential expenses.

Despite this PAL have assured customers they will continue to gradually increase international and domestic flights as demand recovers.

Philippine Airline planes all lined up along the tarmac.
Philippines Airlines © Pinoy Photographer

Staff were first made aware of the the company-wide workforce reduction programme as early as October last year. Prior to this decision, PAL implemented temporary furlough and flexible working arrangements to hold off job cuts for as long as possible.

Whilst scheduled flights are less frequent as usual, the airline continues to operate special repatriation flights to help bring home stranded Filipinos from the Middle East, Europe, North America and all over Asia.

Philippines Airlines have also announced that they will be supporting the transportation of COVID-19 vaccines, once available.

Philippines is not the first airline to announce drastic job cuts. What do you think about these decisions and the future for these airlines? Let us know down below. 

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