On June 21, 2023, Cebu Pacific issued a comprehensive statement addressing the recent flight disruptions plaguing their operations. A culmination of industry-wide issues such as a global grounding of Pratt and Whitney-powered Airbus aircraft, combined with unique environmental factors, have challenged the airline’s service delivery.
In the statement, the airline candidly acknowledged the difficulties and frustrations faced by passengers due to these circumstances. Cebu Pacific is deploying measures to minimize the impact on its customers and restore its usual high standard of service.
The airline outlined a series of initiatives including enhancements in customer care, adjusted flight schedules, and increased standby aircraft to navigate this period of global aviation turmoil. The measures are designed to ensure minimal inconvenience for passengers and a swift return to regular flight schedules.
Here is the full statement issued by Cebu Pacific:
Cebu Pacific acknowledges the difficulties and frustrations that our passengers have been experiencing lately. This is primarily driven by fleet availability issues affecting the global aviation industry along with specific environmental factors.
We empathize with our passengers, and we sincerely regret the inconvenience that we have caused.
To address these concerns, we have put in place initiatives to mitigate the situation:
- HEIGHTENED CUSTOMER CARE & RECOVERY – We have established a disruption management team to augment our ground staff and help passengers during unexpected events. Additionally, Cebu Pacific has expanded its customer service capabilities by increasing the number of live agents who can assist our customers around the clock.
We also refined our policies to give our customers more options beyond what is required by the Air Passenger Bill of Rights.
- REDUCED SCHEDULED FLIGHTS – Given the sudden unprecedented number of grounded aircraft, some of which will be out of service for a considerable amount of time, we have reduced our flight schedule to account for the long-term unserviceable aircraft and enabling more standby aircraft on the day.
- INCREASE STANDBY AIRCRAFT — We have increased our standby aircraft from three to four and will increase this to six by year-end. These aircraft can be used immediately should uncontrollable events happen on the day of flight. On top of this, we are leasing additional aircraft to further enhance our operational resilience.
We understand that these mitigating actions may still seem insufficient for our affected passengers. We assure you that we are actively managing the situation and determining how we can assist affected passengers.
For context, here are some of the events that led us to this point.
There is a global problem affecting the airline industry with over 120 grounded Pratt and Whitney-powered Airbus aircraft around the world. While CEB provisioned double the level of recommended spare engines as early as last year, we were advised in March 2023 that we would no longer receive the spare engines support that Pratt and Whitney had previously indicated.
Immediately upon receiving such advice, we sought to adjust our flight schedule accordingly to minimize the impact. A number of flights, which were scheduled and sold months in advance, inevitably had to be disrupted.
Meanwhile CEB experienced a number of incidents such as ground damage from runway debris that created additional long-term grounded aircraft.
In total we have three aircraft grounded due to Pratt and Whitney and five aircraft long-term grounded due to the other incidents. We will recover the five aircraft in the months ahead but the impact of the Pratt and Whitney engine shortage is something we have to plan for a longer time period.
Apart from these fleet related matters, we have also entered the rainy season and have seen much higher occurrence of Red Lightning Alerts. This requires the suspension of all flight and ground activities at the airport. From April to June alone there have been a total of 78 Red Lightning Alerts raised, some lasting for more than two hours.
We understand that it is our responsibility as a public service to manage these external issues and deliver on our promise to provide access to affordable and reliable flights. Unfortunately, the unprecedented issues we face have made it difficult to deliver on the customer promise and for this, we are deeply sorry.
- For concerns on your Cebu Pacific bookings, our team will assist you in our official customer service channels:
- To ask FAQs from Charlie or to chat with our live agents, available 24/7, visit Facebook Messenger: https://m.me/cebupacificair
- For the step-by-step guides for the website and mobile app, go to CEB Help Center: https://help.cebupacificair.com/
- To Manage Booking on the Cebu Pacific website, go to: https://www.cebupacificair.com/manage-booking
- To check the status of your flights, go to: https://www.cebupacificair.com/flight-status
- To send your feedback: https://www.cebupacificair.com/about/talk-to-us/guest-feedback-form