Passenger arrivals at the Clark International Airport (CRK) reached more than a million from January to March this year, the airport’s highest number in quarterly passenger traffic.
Jaime Melo, president of the Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC), said the CRK tallied a total of 1,019,671 passengers during the first quarter from both international and domestic flights.
“Six years ago, it was a record number if you hit the one million passenger mark in a year. CRK had 1.3 million and 1.2 million passengers in 2012 and 2013, respectively. Now, we broke that mark in just three months, so far the highest quarterly figure in the airport’s 24-year history,” Melo said.
Last January, there was a total of 364,171 passengers who traveled via Clark, the highest count of passengers in one month.
“More travelers choose Clark because of congestion in Metro Manila. There are also improvements of terminal facilities here (at CRK) and a more focused and precise operational direction from CIAC management,” he said.
The CIAC executive likewise said that revenues have also increased commensurately, a huge improvement from three to five years ago with more airlines signifying to mount flights.
Melo attributed the surge in CRK numbers to the support of the Duterte administration and the leadership of Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade, who, in 2016, led officials in urging local carriers to move some of their operations to Clark.
The airport chief said the current CRK terminal’s capacity is at 4.2 million passengers.
“With a monthly average of 340,000 travelers, CIAC will be able to breach the four-million passenger mark by the year’s end,” he added.
A new terminal building will be operational by 2020 and will be able to accommodate an additional 8 million passengers per year.
CRK’s international destinations include Doha and Dubai in the Middle East, South Korea, Osaka, Hong Kong, Macau, Taipei, Singapore and soon, Narita, while negotiations are ongoing for airlines to mount Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur flights, among others.
The airport is also connected to major domestic destinations, among them Cebu, Boracay, Bacolod, Davao, and Palawan.
The average daily passenger volume at the CRK is 11,500, served by a total of 734 weekly flights – 246 international and 488 domestic. (PNA)
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