Philippines AirAsia Returns to Hong Kong and Singapore

The low-cost carrier is banking on a surge of demand for travel ahead of the Christmas holidays.

Photo: Philippines AirAsia

Ending a nearly two-year hiatus on international flights due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Philippines AirAsia has now restarted regular services from Manila to Hong Kong and Singapore. Both routes are operated on a weekly basis aboard Airbus A320-200 aircraft, catering to overseas Filipino workers returning home as well as those traveling on essential business.

Taking about two hours and 20 minutes each way, the services to Hong Kong are operated every Sunday, with Flight Z2 1264 pushing back from NAIA Terminal 3 to take off at 8:35 a.m. before touching down at Hong Kong International Airport at 10:55 a.m. After a quick turnaround time, return flight Z2 1265 will depart at 11:45 a.m. and return to Manila at 2 p.m.

Meanwhile, passengers on the Manila–Singapore route can expect a journey time of three hours and 40 minutes on both legs. Every Saturday, Philippines AirAsia Flight Z2 825 will depart at 8:00 a.m. and arrive in Changi at 11:40 a.m.; Flight Z2 826 is then scheduled to leave Singapore at 12:25 p.m. to land back in Manila at 4:05 p.m.

The resumption of the flights to international destinations like Hong Kong and Singapore comes as demand for inbound flights to the Philippines is expected to rise ahead of the holiday season, with 150,000 to 180,000 Filipinos working overseas forecast to return to the country by year’s end.

Due to the emergence of the Omicron variant, the Philippines has postponed plans to reopen its borders for quarantine-free travel for those coming in from low-risk countries. All fully vaccinated travelers arriving in Manila from green and yellow-list places, including Hong Kong and Singapore, are required to present a negative result from a PCR test taken within 72 hours of departure. They will then be taken to a designated quarantine hotel where they must undergo a further PCR test on their fifth day of self-isolation. If the test result is negative, returning travelers will be allowed to quarantine at home for the next 14 days.

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