How PAL Transformed its A330 into a Cargo Aircraft Carrying 25,000kg of Medical Supplies

We are used to seeing Philippine Airlines' Airbus A330 aircraft loaded with passengers, especially during this summer season and as the country prepares for the long weekend, or Holy Week. It is during these times when passenger demand are at peak and airlines are working double time to transport these vacationing passengers. However, it's different this year.
Photo credits: Cielo Villaluna

Due to the Coronavirus CoviD-19 crisis, countries have closed their borders and travel bans were imposed in order to stop the spread of the virus. Demand for passenger flights plummeted causing many airlines to slash passenger capacity more than 90%. However, cargo operations continue, especially when it comes to essential products and medical supplies.
Photo credits: Cielo Villaluna

Last April 3, a PAL Airbus A330-300 was transformed into a full-cargo aircraft carrying 25,000 kg worth of medical supplies from Xiamen to Manila. Both the cargo hold and cabin were utilized, transforming this 363-seater aircraft into a freighter.

First, 21,573 kg of cargo containing masks and other medical essentials were placed in the cargo hold of the aircraft. Then 3,350 kg of the same were placed in the aircraft cabin, fully secured. Seats were covered in plastic.
Photo credits: Cielo Villaluna

Cargo nets were also used in the cabin to secure all items, ensuring that they do not fall out of position brought by the movement of the aircraft during flight.

Ground handlers in full personal protective equipment (PPE) to load and unload the cargo from the aircraft, after which both cabin and cargo hold of the A330 will be undergoing mandatory disinfection procedures.

While passengers may not be able to travel for the mean time, PAL is able to utilize their widebody A330 and narrowbody A320 fleet for all-cargo fleet, turning their aircraft into a temporary P2F or "Passenger to Freighter" aircraft, transporting cargo and items needed to fight the CoviD-19 and to protect all frontliners.

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