When it comes to government institutions, I have learned to be stoic. It doesn’t matter if you complain because nothing will happen. When it comes to NAIA, I try to minimize the pain. I do online check-in so that I can arrive at the closest possible time to departure. For international flights, we get there 2 hours before the flight and with Cathay Pacific, boarding starts 30 minutes before the flight. This 1.5 hour window doesn’t give us much time to hate the facilities or service because you’re just busy going through the motions.
On our last trip out though, I realized why blogger and frequent-traveler Chuvaness really has this advocacy of whipping NAIA up into shape.
So, instead of spewing out complaints, I will just ask questions because I still have a grain of hope left that somehow there is a reason for certain things other than a lack of thorough thinking.
1. Why go through the motions of checking the cars coming in? If you had a bomb-sniffing dog, I would understand but you just have guards opening doors and trunks. It is equivalent to the mall guard with a drumstick unless they have X-Ray vision?
2. Why is there such a long line outside the airport? In all the airports I’ve been to, ours is the only one where there are crowds right outside the doors. I guess they’re trying to prevent the 1 million well-wishers from coming in and clogging the small lobby. Maybe they should ask SM to build a mall right beside the airport so it can be a well-wishers area where they can eat decently and go around before departure. It can be an arrival area as well.
3. Why do you have to pay P1,620 airport tax in the airport, in a separate line? Why don’t they input this in the ticket fee. Won’t this lessen corruption because less cash is handled by personnel?
4. Like No. 3, why do you have to pay P750 terminal fee in the airport? Why not just include it in the ticket price?
5. If you expect a million people to depart at certain times, why are the immigration officers very few?
6. Why are the spaces between immigration counters so small? They can hardly accommodate strollers or pregnant women.
7. Why do we still have to take off our shoes? In the US, Canada, Japan, HK, they don’t take off their shoes anymore.
8. Why do we need 2 X-Ray points? OK, well, for security’s sake, I think I can let this go. But hey, the drugs still get through and get out right?? So are they effective?
9. Why is there a big blue drum in plain sight inside the washroom? Isn’t this a fire hazard? Well, I guess not because it’s full of water.
10. Upon arrival, why does it take so long for the baggage to come out? Is the World War 2 luggage on top of the carousel a sign?
These are all bad enough when you’re traveling alone but when you’re pregnant and have a toddler with you then it gets doubly stressful.
Going back to #2, maybe THE solution is to just move the airport to Mall of Asia!! You have LTO and NBI inside SM already, why not NAIA also? I think it is brilliant. Anyway, we take our tourists to at least 1 SM mall while they’re here anyway. Anyone care to vote with me?
- Naia – Ranked As Worst Airport in Asia; 5th Worst in the World (ricojr2010.wordpress.com)
- NAIA is the 5th worst airport in the world…and the worst in Asia! NAKAKAHIYA!!! (godzillasamaynila.wordpress.com)