Flight chronicles of the backpacker Tutubi, with travelogues, pictures/photos/videos, travel guides, independent and honest reviews, affordable, recommended resorts and hotels (including inns, guesthouses, pension houses, lodges, hostels, condotels, bed and breakfast and other cheap accommodations), commuting guides, routes (sometimes street maps and GPS coordinates/waypoints) and driving directions to answer "how to get there" questions, information and tips on tourism, budget travel and living in Philippines, Exotic Asia and beyond!
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Small Planes of SEAIR: Canceled Flights During Bad Weather/Typhoons
For the information of jetsetters and what Tutubi observed in his years of travel, the small planes of SEAIR and the turboprop airplanes of Cebu Pacific servicing the Manila to Caticlan route are always the first flights to be cancelled whenever a weather disturbance occurs to spoil vacationers' trips.
At the height of typhoon Frank sometime ago when Tutubi was in Cebu, he noticed the first flight cancellations were those from SEAIR when it was announced from Mactan-Cebu International Airport's public address system.
A few minutes later cancellations of Cebu Pacific flights were announced with their flights using single-aisle Airbus A319/A320.
Tutubi's flight from Cebu to Manila, using double aisle larger Boeing aircraft of Philippine Airlines (PAL), only suffered an hour flight delay due to the wait of a lull in Frank's fury. He got back to Manila with the howling winds of Frank trailing him.
PAL uses the large airplanes for it's Manila to Cebu and Manila to Davao routes and vice-versa but not for other destinations due to economies of scale. Smaller aircraft are used for less traffic routes.
From an Inquirer, the Seair canceled flights are 401 and 402 bound for Rodriguez, northern Palawan; and 313, 314 and 463, 464 going to/from Tablas Island and El Nido, Palawan.
Tutubi was able take SEAIR round-trip flights to Busuanga to explore Coron a few years ago. There he can sense with his stomach when the plane suddenly lose altitude due to an downdraft/air pocket and when it's banking. Seair flights though fly at lower altitudes, against the usual 33000 feet of jetliners, affording you clearer views of the ground (or sea) below if you also like flying window side like Tutubi.
The canceled flights of Cebu Pacific: 5J 891, 5J 893, 5J 909, 5J 915, 5J 919, 5J 895, 5J 896, and 5J 913. All of these cancelled flights ply the Manila to Caticlan route using turborprop since Caticlan Airport cannot handle large jets but mostly propeller planes that Cebu Pacific uses to service airports with short runways.
Airphil Express canceled flights 2P 039 Manila to Naga City (and the return flight 2P 040) and also flight 2P 045 bound for Caticlan (and the return flight 2P 046) again using small aircraft to the Boracay gateway airport.
Flight cancelations during bad weather are done for the safety of passengers. In the end, it's better to miss a flight, be delayed rather than risk your life and limb just to travel.
As always, this is not a paid advertorial of Philippine Airlines (hey, Airphil Express is also owned by Lucio Tan) but a warning to plan for unexpected flight cancellations in case of storms, typhoons, bad weather, low pressure areas and inter-tropical convergence zones (ITCZ) always included in PAGASA weather reports that can only be read as bad news by travelers.