Source = e-Travel Blackboard: G.A According to Mr Miller product improvements have resulted in enhanced yield for PR, particularly with business travellers taking advantage of the “exceptional value for money service in the Philippines”.“Overall, through the year we’ve seen an improvement over last year,” he said.PAL claim a 60 per cent share of all flights from Australia to the Philippines and a 65 per cent chare of all direct flights between the destinations. Posting a record winter of Australian sales, Philippine Airlines (PR) announced double digit passenger traffic growth between May and July of this year compared to 2009.PR chief commercial advisor Richard Miller attributed the growth to this year’s launch of PR’s new Boeing 777-300ER, along with both an intensive marketing campaign to grow interest in the Philippines and new wholesale programmes and preferred agreements. The national carrier, which is not beholden to fifth and sixth freedom traffic given the almost guaranteed travel of ‘balikbayan’ customers (Filipinos living overseas who return home to visit friends and relatives), has taken active steps to boost traffic from Australia.“We’ve increased capacity by 50 per cent, which is significant considering where the market was last year,” PR Country Manager Arnul Pan said. The carrier also introduced services between Brisbane and Manila in March and debuted its new Boeing 777-300ER on its flights between Sydney and Melbourne and Manila.“We’ve done a lot of advertising and PR to…get the word out about how easy and comfortable it is to fly to Manila with us, while at the same time raising awareness about the appeal and value of the Philippines as a holiday destination,” PR’s Australian general sales agent, RAKSO, General Manager Brett McDougall said“We’re agent friendly,” Mr McDougall told e-Travel Blackboard. “We offer five per cent commission to agents and all rates on our website are gross.” Speaking during this week’s Destination Philippines Showcase for travel agents, Mr Miller waxed lyrical about his experience of living and travelling through the Philippines over the last eighteen months.“The Philippines is without a doubt the most stunning place to visit… there’s not a place you would not recommend,” he gushed.“The job for us is to convince Australians to get there; we’ve just got to crack the unknown factor.”“But we’re certainly getting there.” PR’s Arnul Pan and Brett McDougall with Philippines Department of Tourism’s Benito Bengson and Vicente Romano, PR’s RichardMiller and Consuelo Garcia Jones (also with DoT).