Cebu Pacific, the Philippines’ leading carrier, recently received a brand-new A320neo (New Engine Option) from Airbus, the eighth of 15 expected aircraft deliveries this year, as part of its efforts to address the growing demand for air travel and to achieve its goal of carbon neutrality by 2050. It is the third new NEO aircraft delivered out of the 10 ordered from the French aircraft manufacturer.
On June 30, 2023, CEB’s newest A320neo flew to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila from Airbus’ Final Assembly Line (FAL) in Tianjin, China, using a 41% blend of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) – the highest percentage blend ever used by CEB – marking another significant advancement in the airline's sustainable aviation initiatives.
“We are thrilled to welcome this delivery, which is a major milestone for both Airbus and Cebu Pacific. This is in line with our fleet plan which aims to support our overall growth ambitions as travel demand continues to recover,” said CEB CEO Michael Szucs.
Having ramped up its recovery efforts, CEB posted a remarkable improvement in total passengers flown in 2022, carrying 14.8 million passengers (domestic and international), versus the previous year’s 3.4 million passengers. In 2023, it is projected to reach 22.8 million, which is higher than its pre-pandemic record of 22.5 million, achieved in 2019.
Aiming to improve its operational resilience and to fulfill its commitment of enabling “Every Juan to Fly” by providing accessible and reliable air transport solutions, CEB is adding 15 aircraft to its fleet in 2023. Supporting the airline’s objective to transition to a more fuel-efficient, all-NEO fleet by 2028, it has 10 brand-new Airbus NEO aircraft scheduled for delivery in 2023. On top of this, the airline is also receiving five additional aircraft via long-term lease.
Commenting on the airline’s latest delivery, Alex Reyes, CEB Chief Strategy Officer, said, “Cebu Pacific has been the Philippine leader in propelling decarbonization in the aviation industry. This aircraft delivery, powered by SAF, demonstrates our commitment to providing safe, convenient, and reliable travel for our customers, while building a greener and more sustainable future.”
SAF is a drop-in fuel, with similar characteristics as conventional jet fuels. It does not require any adaptation to the aircraft or engines, and does not have any negative impact on performance. The use of SAF can result in a reduction of up to 80% in carbon emissions across the fuel’s lifecycle.
CEB’s growing use of SAF further builds on the many strengths of its newly delivered aircraft. One of the key features of the A320neo is its significant improvement in fuel efficiency compared to its predecessor, the A320ceo (Current Engine Option). Being up to 20% more efficient than the previous generation, the aircraft consumes as little as 2.46 kilograms of fuel per seat per 100 kilometers. The new engine technology has also reduced carbon emissions, making the aircraft a greener choice for sustainability-oriented airlines.
In terms of reliability, the A320neo incorporates advanced technology to improve overall performance and safety. It features the latest fly-by-wire control system, which enhances flight control precision and stability. Additionally, the aircraft is equipped with modern avionics and systems, including large LCD cockpit displays and advanced communication capabilities.
Another significant aspect of the A320neo is the flexibility it gives airlines on the design of their interior layout set-ups. CEB’s newest A320neo follows a single-aisle configuration and has been outfitted with 188 seats made by the world-renowned seat manufacturer Recaro, providing passengers with more comfort with its slim and ergonomic design. In addition, the aircraft offers larger overhead bins (carrying up to eight bags), improved lighting systems, quieter cabins, and redesigned window bezels for better outside views.
Since 1996, CEB has flown over 200 million passengers and has developed the most extensive domestic network in the Philippines. Covering 35 domestic and 23 international destinations, it currently operates 106 routes with an average of 2,300 flights each week. In 2022, CEB was named Environmental Sustainability Airline of the Year by CAPA – Centre of Aviation, highlighting the airline’s effective stewardship of its people, communities, and the environment.
For more information on Cebu Pacific, visit cebupacificair.com