The city government plans to reduce the frequency of special flights to Puerto Princesa City to only three a week, instead of daily flights of five a week.
This, according to city officials, is to allow the city’s frontline health services to adequately cope with the volume of incoming stranded passengers who need to be checked and processed for mandatory quarantining.
“We have limited personnel and quarantine facilities to systematically manage the influx of arriving LSIs and OFW,” Palanca Dr. Dean Palanca, city incident commander and assistant City Health Officer (CHO), stated in a letter sent to the airlines’ management.
The planned new flight schedules will be Mondays for Cebu Pacific, Wednesdays for Philippine Airlines, and Fridays for Air Asia.
Palanca also sought to limit the carrying capacity to only 120 passengers per flight. The urgent request manifested an effectivity date set on June 19.
“This initiative is crucial to support our measures to contain and mitigate the spread of the pandemic in our locality,” Palanca added.
A total of 2,006 returnees were being expected by the city government, based on an earlier report from the City Tourism Office (CTO). Some 526 returnees and repatriates have arrived in the City as of Monday (June 15) from Metro Manila, Cebu, and Davao.
The airline managements have yet to issue a statement responding to the request.