DBM, PAL sign deal on discounted fares for gov't employees

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — Government personnel will now be able to fly much cheaper when they go on the flag carrier for their official trips.

The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) and Philippine Airlines (PAL) have inked a deal, which is estimated to save the government about P1.3 billion pesos on airfare each year.

Under the agreement signed on Tuesday (April 26), all official domestic trips of government personnel would be given an 8% discount for economy class tickets and a 10% discount for business class tickets, the DBM said in a statement.

They will be given additional baggage allowance, while the processing fees and first rebooking fees will also be waived.

For now, the deal will cover 23 national government agencies.

The government would spend some P10.3 billion this year for domestic travel, the DBM said. The ticket discounts will cull about P831 million in savings, while the waived fees will save roughly P520 million.

The new arrangement will be implemented by the DBM's Procurement Service through the Philippine Government Electronic Payment System (PhilGEPS).

All government agencies are now mandated to use PhilGEPS for their procurement. They must advertise all their bid opportunities online, and publish the winners and contract amounts as well.

Plane tickets remained as one of the most commonly purchased items by government agencies, said Jose Tomas Syquia, DBM's Procurement Service head.

"Our partnership with Philippine Airlines will greatly impact government transactions for domestic airline travel. As part of the government’s common requirement which we will aggregate, we can purchase domestic airline tickets faster and easier," he said.