Cebu Pacific Air (5J, Manila Ninoy Aquino International) is planning to park ten A320neo Family aircraft in January 2024 when it begins mandatory inspections of its Pratt & Whitney PW1100G engines. The low-cost carrier expects the number of grounded aircraft to grow to as many as 20 throughout the course of 2024.

The Filipino airline is currently in talks with Bulgaria Air (FB, Sofia) about a wet-lease contract to mitigate the impact of the unavoidable groundings. Chief Executive Michael Szucs confirmed to ch-aviation that the LCC would wet-lease two aircraft between January and April 2024.

The ch-aviation fleets module shows that Cebu Pacific's fleet currently comprises fifteen A320-200Ns and twelve A321-200NX. The carrier also operates twenty A320-200s, seven A321-200s, and five A330-900s. It has a further six A320-200Ns, twelve A321-200NX, and ten A321-200NY(XLR)s on orders from the manufacturer and plans to lease another three A320-200Ns shortly. Szucs told ch-aviation earlier this year that the PW1100 engine issues were already a problem for the airline which prompted it to seek second-hand A320-200s as an interim solution.

Despite the challenges, Cebu Pacific aims to exceed its pre-pandemic capacity by the end of 2023 and grow by a further 5-8% in terms of total seat capacity in 2024. Its domestic network is already above 2019 levels, while international services are currently at 93% of pre-COVID capacity.

Szucs said the airline expects to receive offers from manufacturers in response to its recent RFP for 100-150 new narrowbodies by the end of the year.