Elaa, the dedicated travel management brand of Seera Group, has been appointed as the exclusive General Sales Agent (GSA) for Philippine Airlines in Saudi Arabia.

With effect from 1 September 2021, elaa will lead Philippine Airlines’ sales promotions and marketing activities in Saudi Arabia. For these initiatives, elaa will capitalize on its wealth of experience in travel management locally and internationally.

With a fleet of state-of-the-art Airbus and Boeing aircrafts, Philippine Airlines currently offers regular weekly nonstop flights from Dammam and Riyadh into Manila.  The Filipino flag carrier also flies nonstop from Doha and Dubai to Manila.

Saudi-based travel agents can now access Philippine Airlines’ excellent products and services as well as the airline’s highly competitive fares through elaa. The range of services that will be provided by elaa to Philippine Airlines include general sales, support for MICE activities, airport handling and office set-ups.

According to the recent Saudi Travel Sentiments survey conducted by Seera Group’s flagship consumer travel brand Almosafer, 83 percent of Saudi travellers are planning to fly internationally in 2021. With the PAL GSA partnership, elaa aims to broaden the range of destination offerings, covering the Philippines.

Pre-pandemic, Seera Group saw an annual increase of over 50 per cent of bookings to the Philippines. The statistical report generated by the Group ranked the Philippines under the top 10 revenue generating destinations in 2018 and it moved up to top 5 in 2019. The Group sold over 145,000 inbound and outbound passengers from the Philippines in 2019.

Saudi Arabia’s outbound tourism market is expected to reach over US$ 43 billion by 2025, according to the latest data from Renub Research. While family holidays currently dominate the market, a rising generation of younger solo travellers, who are heavily influenced by the image of a destination – whether it be gastronomy, adventure, culture, or overall unique experiences – are expected to change this trend.

Elaa is focused on strengthening Philippine Airlines’ awareness and revenues, promoting the airline, and connecting nation-wide customers throughout the Philippines.

Abdulrahman Mutrib, EVP of elaa, said: "The Philippines is a growing destination for KSA travellers and as the exclusive GSA for Philippine Airlines, we will focus on promoting the airline and the destination Kingdom-wide. We will not only engage expats who are homebound but also strengthen the appeal of the Philippines as a destination among Saudi nations and other residents, who are exploring new destinations for safe travel. The rise in prominence of emerging destinations for business and leisure travel will further fuel the Saudi Arabian outbound travel market."

Dina May Flores, VP-Sales of Philippine Airlines, said: "With over 1M Filipinos in Saudi Arabia, the Kingdom is a very important market for Philippine Airlines.  We are eager to welcome more Saudi nationals visiting the Philippines to sample the unique sights and the incredible hospitality of the Filipino people, given the continuous economic and infrastructure development in KSA expected post pandemic.  We look forward to Seera, as one of the largest travel companies in the Middle East, playing a big role in the strategic plan to establish Philippine Airlines as a major player in the KSA."

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