PAL's Story
An airline with a proud history and a promising future

August 13, 1990

PAL mounted 30 flights to evacuate 10,000 Filipino workers and their families from the Gulf region after Kuwait was invaded by Iraq. These included 19 flights using the Boeing 747 for maximum airlift. The missions continued until September 24.


January to March 1992

Back in private hands.  The Philippine Government privatized PAL, reverting Asia's oldest flag carrier to the private sector. After a bidding for the airline held on January 30, 1992, local consortium PR Holdings acquired a 67% stake on March 25, 1992.


November 14, 1992

PAL introduced the "Fiesta Service" in the Economy section of international flights, offering enhanced meals, amenities and services.


March 04, 1992

PAL President (and future Philippine House Speaker) Feliciano Belmonte led the ground-breaking for a 450 square-meter, two-story building to house PAL’s USD 12M Boeing 737 simulator.


March 25, 1992

PR Holdings, Inc. acquired 67% of PAL's capital stock from the Government on the basis of the bidding held on January 30, 1992.


September 1992

PAL confirmed an order for six Airbus A340 jets worth $628 million, with options for four more A340s.  The orders for the 4-engine long-range jetliner represented the biggest acquisition of a single type of widebody aircraft in PAL's history. Deliveries were to start in May 1994.


March 1, 1993

Resolution of a representation issue with PR Holdings resulted in the election of former Secretary of Agriculture Carlos G. Dominguez as PAL chairman and president.


November 8, 1993

PAL opened a new City Check-In service at the Roxas Boulevard and Makati Ticket Offices in Metro Manila, allowing First Class and Mabuhay Class passengers, as well as Mabuhay Club members, to check-in conveniently as early as 24 hours before flight departure time.  


November 24, 1993

PAL's first Boeing 747-400 arrived in the Philippines after delivery from Boeing, landing at Subic International Airport with Philippine President Fidel V. Ramos on board. The President had been on a state visit to the US. The longer-range B747-400s would inaugurate the era of nonstop Philippines-U.S. flights, a game-changer for transpacific services and a boost to the Philippines’ competitiveness as a tourist destination.


March 20, 1994

PAL inaugurated the "Laoag Express" to provide passengers from Honolulu and Mainland US with convenient and immediate connections to Laoag in Northern Luzon. 


October 30, 1994

PAL launched services to Osaka, with five weekly flights serving the new Kansai International Airport.


January 1995

Dr. Lucio C. Tan, majority stockholder of PR Holdings, was elected Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Philippine Airlines, positions he would hold for the next 27 years and counting.


September 18, 1996

PAL launched its first Canada flight to Vancouver and its first foray to the US East Coast with flights to New York, serving Newark airport in New Jersey. The four weekly Manila-Vancouver-Newark flights used the McDonnell Douglas MD-11 trijet aircraft. The Vancouver service was operated in partnership with Canadian Airlines International. 


May 30, 1997

PAL took delivery of its first all-new Airbus A340-300 from Airbus’ factory in Toulouse, France. Replacing a stopgap fleet of A340s wet leased from Gulf Air, the A340 was part of a landmark USD 3.2 billion dollar re-fleeting program which also included brand new A330 and A320 aircraft. PAL was the first airline in the world to have all three Airbus types in its fleet.


September 23, 1998

1997-1998 financial crisis. After the debilitating effect of the Asian economic crisis, PAL’s temporarily closed its operations at midnight after 57 years of uninterrupted service. The airline operated its last flight out of Manila for Los Angeles and from Cebu to Manila.


October 07, 1998

PAL Reborn. PAL roared to life when PR123 took off from Manila at 4:30 AM with 31 passengers onboard. There were 19 regular flight schedules connecting 14 domestic destinations out of Manila that day. 


August 09, 1999

PAL moved into the new Centennial Terminal 2 at Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport. For the first time, PAL’s international and domestic operations were consolidated under one roof.