Travelers out of NAIA in 25 minutes? DOT misses the point in less!

Perhaps as an attempt by the Department of Tourism (DOT) to start off the 2013 tourism campaign on the right note, Tourism Assistant Secretary Benito Bengzon Jr. reportedly claimed that it takes passengers arriving at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) – dig this – only 25 minutes to complete the airport process-from disembarkation to clearing immigration and customs to getting a cab or meeting the welcome wagon outside the airport. This claim is being made amid the NAIA being branded as one of the world’s worst airports for 2011 and 2012.

“The advantage of NAIA is that in about three to four minutes, from the time the plane touches down, it is already at the bridge or tube … taxi time is shorter at Naia compared with bigger international airports abroad,” Bengzon told reporters before Christmas.

“You try to check your watch when you travel to a large airport. Taxiing after landing really takes time and sometimes you have to go through a bus gate so you will still have to be shuttled to the terminal,” he said.

manila_airport_queueFurthermore, according to the article, that “advantage”, if effectively marketed, could supposedly attract more tourists to the Philippines.

It remains to be seen if this claim is actually an advantage in the first place.

So what if it supposedly takes only 25 minutes? And where exactly did they get the figure of 25 minutes from? Did they conduct a time study of that airport process, or did they just throw a random figure in minutes and hoped people would be awed?

One can cast doubt on this “advantage” being claimed by the DOT in one simple phrase: Quantity does not necessarily mean quality.

Sure, you can have passengers out in 25 minutes, but that time period can seem such an eternity if going through an aging, derelict, and poorly maintained excuse for a building that the Philippine government and the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) call an airport. If you have substandard bathrooms, unfriendly and corrupt staff, insufficient seating, and rampant bribery scams going on, the 25 minutes can be the worst period in the traveler’s journey. What are the MIAA, the NAIA officials, and the DOT doing to address these real and tangible concerns? By the way, these are the complaints that commentators on the website “The Guide to Sleeping in Airports” actually mentioned.

Obviously, delays and queues are bound to happen in many places in the arrival process. From taxiing of the aircraft to the queues of getting through immigration and customs, and especially waiting for one’s baggage to arrive, these are all possible delay spots. What is more important than forcing the entire process to stick to a particular time is to make sure that the each step in the process flows smoothly and comfortably for the arriving passengers in the first place. The improvement in processing times will come naturally once the process is smoothed out.

As a side note, the article also mentions that MIAA officials have yet to separate arrival figures of tourists from returning overseas Filipinos. So why exactly are they doing that? It doesn’t matter to me whether the arrival is a foreign tourist or a returning overseas Filipino; the arrival process should be made smoother and better for all.

It doesn’t take Assistant Secretary Bengzon 25 minutes to completely miss the point, does it?

Perhaps, as Bengzon claimed, this is a little-known “advantage”, but that may be so simply because it is not even an advantage at all. If Bengzon and other like-minded officials think they can sweep all the dirt of the NAIA under the rug by claiming a fast “passing-through time” then they better think again. The commentators on that very same article seem to think so, too.

Why did I emphasize that quantity and quality are not the same? Let’s use, as an example, one of the best airports in the world, Singapore’s Changi Airport, one which I’ve been to a few times. It is a marvel in design, and the passenger going through this airport has multitudes of options to go through while waiting for their ride into the city. They have comfortable seats, lounges, and the airport terminal is generally clean and bright, maaliwalas, as we would say in the Filipino language. If one wants to talk about the airport process, which Bengzon mentioned, what matters more than a time standard is the smoothness of the flow of the process, and Changi Airport’s design is a great example of it.

I’ve limited the discussion here to the process of going through the airport. Getting a taxi, if you don’t have a car, and getting around the city are entirely separate experiences. They could be horror stories, depending if the taxi operator tries to scam you for an exorbitant fixed rate, or if he purposefully takes the longer route because you don’t know any better, or if your living accommodations are a dump, etc. Manila was a dump, so wrote a blogger back in 2011. Unfortunately, it still is.

The DOT shoots itself in the foot again. The inanity and stupidity of the Department of Tourism – more fun in the Philippines, indeed.

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About FallenAngel

А вы, друзья, как ни садитесь, все в музыканты не годитесь. – But you, my friends, however you sit, not all as musicians fit.

Post Author: FallenAngel

А вы, друзья, как ни садитесь, все в музыканты не годитесь. – But you, my friends, however you sit, not all as musicians fit.

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102 Comments on "Travelers out of NAIA in 25 minutes? DOT misses the point in less!"

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joeld
Guest

It is that kind of press release which the average pinoy would gladly soak up and still say “proud to be pinoy!!”

Empty kaldero, lots of noise, nothing inside.

domo
Guest

That stupid propaganda by that naia maggot is so ridiculous. Every time my father comes home via an international carrier, he always comes out of naia1 in 1 hour (or even more) after the plane he rode arrives and connects in one of the airport’s tubes. Even one of my cousins also has the same story.

domo
Guest

*That stupid propaganda by that tourism assistant secretary maggot*
Fixed

ChinoF
Member

The important thing is not so much the time spent at the airport, but the comfort of the passenger as they go through it. 45 minutes in an airport with great-smelling and regularly working facilities like a 5-star hotel, instead of 25 minutes in a chaotic terminal that smells like hell, is much better.

Johnny Derp
Member

I’d rather be in a better airport terminal like NAIA 3 than waste my time in a shithole terminal like NAIA 1. As a matter of fact, everytime me and my dad go on a business trip, we always take our flights at terminal 3 since its better than that old shithole terminal 1.

domo
Member

It’s just too bad that if you’ll be flying on international airlines, you’ll be forced to naia1 instead since all of them operate there unless you’ll be flying with All Nippon Airways.

trackback

[…] It remains to be seen if this claim is actually an advantage in the first place. […]

Miauw Ming
Guest

25 min because it’s an airport you want to run away from as soon as possible.

Robert Haighton
Guest

I only have one experience with NAIA / Ninoy (or make that two, I also have to leave the country). It took me about 1.5 hrs (90 mins)to get out of T1 (Nov 2011), then taking a free taxi-van going to T3. T3 was really heaven compared to T1.

Going from T3 to T1 with a taxi-van (PHP 20 or so) gave me a short insight at Manila (by day light). On the way back there was a large big queuee for the check-in at T1. The rest was going okay and smoothly.

Arriving at Ninoy was worse than departing from Ninoy.

Robert Haighton
Guest

To add:
JFK and LAX are far worse compared to Ninoy. To get by customs and immigration takes much longer at JFK and LAX than Ninoy.
Smaller airports like Mactan-Cebu is heaven. That is similar to smaller European airports. The smaller the faster, is my personal experiences.

MidwayHaven
Guest

I believe that major cities like Manila have the responsibility of improving the quality of entry and exit points, especially through air travel. Manila, being one of the densest cities in the world, deserves an international airport that not only can accommodate more than its current capacity, but one that at the very least TRIES not to present Manila as an urban shithole.

Robert Haighton
Guest
@MidwayHeaven, I do agree with you. But I am also thinking about who are the owners of the airport (who owns the shares) or is it public “property” (owned by the national or city government for 100%?). I dont know who owns Amsterdam Schiphol Airport but I am sure the dutch national government owns a “golden share” as well as the city government on which soil the airport has been built. Why do I think that both national and city government own a share? Bec they dont want to get the airport end up in “foreign hands”. Depending on how… Read more »
Amir Al Bahr
Guest

“Manila, being one of the densest cities in the world…”

I just have to say, that’s true in more ways than one.

sendonggirl
Guest

if its true that the whole process can be done in 25 minutes then the claim was factual. it is the author who assigned motives and made up a story where there was none. the title saying “misses the point” assumes that there’s a point. but thats just the author’s assumption hehehehehehe you wanna talk tourism theres a lot of places i can show you here in mindanao, but youre more interested in feeling superior and i cant help you there

az_121490
Guest

…and your point is?

scarletpro
Guest

translation- obviously i am another moron who didnt read the article…

domo
Member

And here you are again dumkopf attacking the author with your twisting nonsense even if the facts are very clear. You’re a female version of jon-asshole you know: isa ring dakilang mangongontra. Have you or any of your relatives ever experienced to come out of naia1 in just 25 minutes or less from one of the airport’s tubes?

Johnny Derp
Member

Sendon”girl” isn’t a girl but a Guy In Real Life.

Trosp
Guest
So sendonggirl “if its true that the whole process can be done in 25 minutes then the claim was factual. it is the author who assigned motives and made up a story where there was none. the title saying “misses the point” assumes that there’s a point. but thats just the author’s assumption hehehehehehe you wanna talk tourism theres a lot of places i can show you here in mindanao, but youre more interested in feeling superior and i cant help you there” A wonder you can also stratify. But I’m not saying you’re correct nor the blog poster. One… Read more »
az_121490
Guest

Twenty-five minutes? Nope, their “damage control” press releases are even too late for their intended purpose.

Hyden Toro
Guest

They mean: “magalagay ka siguro.” It will be less than that; if you grease their palms with foreign currencies…

sendonggirl
Guest

where is the proof for this palm greasing? no proof? thought so

MidwayHaven
Guest
Jack
Guest

25 minutes just to clear immigration on arrival if you’re lucky. More than 25 minutes to pick up luggage at the carousel that spews tons and tons of boxes. Can’t the airport people separate luggage from cargo?

I’ve encountered several “entitled b@sterds” escorted thru all the lines and go thru in less than 25 minutes. They were local politicians, I was told.

Libertas
Guest

I unfortunately have to use naia every month.

Is he saying 25 mins is the mean, median, or a once in a lifetime occurrence. publish the figures/study!!

I have never experienced it.

Maybe rather than focus on blatant lies they should focus on improving what is more akin to the gateway to hell.

desperate marketing tantamount ti sheer deceit.

Robert Haighton
Guest
My sincerest apologies for this next de-tour. This story is so far fetched that I dont believe it but maybe some of you can acknowledge or confirm. July/August 2012 my partner went to Singapore from Mactan-Cebu. Her group of 6-8 mature adult people were delayed eventually for 24 hours. Finally they had to buy new plane tickets with another carrier departing the next day. She blamed (high and low) it was because they had to pay bribes to the customs/immigration officer at Mactan-Cebu. The school experienced the same event (bribe) last year (2011), my partner said. I think the leader… Read more »
domo
Member

FallenAngel since naia is not only very congested but cannot be upgraded anymore because it reached its capacity, what’s your opinion about changing the premier airport of the Philippines to Clark since it has a very huge land to upgrade the airport there even more for millions of passengers every year? Yes it may be far from Manila but so as Narita, Incheon and Chep La Kok which are also far from their capital. All it needs is a high speed underground train to Manila.

FallenAngel
Guest
You know, I used to cringe at the idea because Clark is far away from Manila. But I’ve also been to Kuala Lumpur; the airport is about an hour or so from the main city. Over time I’ve come to the realization that the distance between the airport and main city matters less and less as long as the travel is comfortable. It helps if the sights aren’t ghastly to look at (diba, Claire Danes?) I agree that NAIA is beyond redemption/salvaging. The other two NAIA terminals are such a waste; why don’t they settle the issues surrounding them first,… Read more »
Libertas
Guest

Clark is the key for cojuangco-aquino strategy to develop tarlac as new business/tourist capital. hence, so much focus on arroyo (because of pampanga control), buying airline, land/resorts around subic, road extensions, and of course either hanging on to HL or getting 10 billion which they most probably now prefer.
1st step – remove arroyo influence

domo
Member
Yeah I read that article before and I agree with Ben Kritz. And to think he’s such a great person for being a CEO of Cathay Pacific before and now an IATA CEO, it’s very rubbish of Tony Tyler to say that Clark is not the solution to be the new premier airport for this country only because many foreigners want to visit Manila. The reason most of the foreigners land usually at Manila is obviously because that’s where they’ll take their connecting flights to other places in the Philippines. Most of them especially tourists prefers to go to provinces… Read more »
Ma. Lourdes Cruz
Guest

25 mins. in a dump like NAIA is an eternity

Jetlag807
Guest

Twenty-five minutes my ass! I wait for my luggage longer than that! The claim is completely BOGUS! However, I hope this author (or anyone at GRP) will explore something that was touched on here. The tourist arrival numbers. I have said for years on end that the arrival numbers published by the DOT are misleading since they also include arriving “Balikbayans”. I am sure, if they show ONLY foreign tourist arrivals, the actual number would be reduced by at least 50%.

sendonggirl
Guest

in other news, year to year tourism arrivals increased by 8%. but dont let the truth get in the way of the propaganda

domo
Member

So what if foreign arrivals here grow? Not only you’re being off-topic again, you’re still denying the fact that our country is a basketcase. You’ve done nothing but sugarcoat any negative of this country with that minor news of yours in order to make yourself feel better. Sige banatan mo ulit ako. Iyan naman ang hilig mong gawin di ba tarantadong inutil?

sendonggirl
Guest

bat kita babanatan im sorry im not gay. do you get a hardon from me noticing you? i have been ignoring you because personalan style mo and im all about the issues. but you keep on attaching yourself to me and following me around the comments section hehe

domo
Member

Look who’s talking. YOU’RE the one who keeps on attaching yourself to us dumkopf. Marami na ngang hindi sang-ayon sa iyo, pinipilit mo pa rin maging isang dakilang papansin dito sa kakapost mo ng mga walang kwentang post na puro spam lang.

MidwayHaven
Guest

Sendonggirl/jonas, that’s nothing to brag about. Check the ASEAN Tourism Report:

http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_TTCR_ASEAN_Rankings_2012.pdf

The Philippines is 94th in tourism competitiveness, way behind other ASEAN countries such as Singapore (10th), Malaysia (35th), Thailand (41st), Brunei (67th), Indonesia (74th) and even Viet Nam (80th).

Stop bragging about niggling details such as an 8% growth in tourism, when countries with lower GDP growth are found to be more interesting that the Philippines itself.

sendonggirl
Guest

so lets ignore the 8% growth, but by all means discuss about this 25 minutes to exit the airport. who gets to decide which number is niggling? you?

MidwayHaven
Guest

I don’t need to be the messenger of “niggling details” when the statistics speak for themselves.

Now you’re just clutching at straws and being pointless.

sendonggirl
Guest

but ignore a statistic if its inconvenient for your argument? ok.

MidwayHaven
Guest

All right, I’ll humor you. Could YOU present data which contradicts the statistics given?

sendonggirl
Guest

im not contradicting anything im just challenging the notion that 8% growth is negligible

domo
Member

Ask that “growth” of yours to the intellectuals. Oh wait. Anti-intellectual ka pala because you hate to be criticized.
That aside, lemme ask you this question again that you didn’t answer: have you or any of your relatives ever experienced to come out of naia1 in just 25 minutes or less from one of the airport’s tubes? If so how? Is it because you’re a VIP who was given priority?

scarletpro
Guest

apparently, another troll full of mediocrity easily impressed with a mediocre growth. The troll actually take in comfort in the thought her boss did a great job as if that figure was way better than the previous years.

sendonggirl
Guest

which intellectuals? who decides who the intellectuals are? you? hay naku domo il just text when the topic is the latest travails of sarah lahbati so you can contribute.

domo
Member
Hey sendongslut. Borrowing from Glados’s words, see that’s you. That’s how dumb, stupid, malicious and whiny you are. You’ve been wrong and irrelevant about every single rebuttals you’ve ever done to us including your last one. You’re not smart. You have no class. You embrace mediocrity and moronism. You eat pagpag everyday. You’re even pretending to be a girl. You still didn’t answer my question. Oh wait! You’re tired na pala on answering questions. How unfair of you since I already answered your question about strawman game. Where oh where did your life go so wrong? Your parents hated and… Read more »
MidwayHaven
Guest

Five days later, and sendonggirl never came back with the data I asked her to present.

She was all show and no go.

sendonggirl
Guest

my comment was not accepted try again: kris aquino paid 32 million in taxes for one year now are we gonna bitch about some association dues? really? why you talk about businesses when the topic was association dues. you are confused sir

sendonggirl
Guest

wrong hehe

Robert Haighton
Guest
Maybe Benito (DOT) can give us a lay down of his 25 minutes. He didnt even talk about that 25 is an average. A 80 year old will need much more time than a 25 year old disembarking from the plane and walking the distance to Immigration and the luggage belt. Benotio should be able to rub it down in sections for us. – walking from plane to first “obstacle” (Immigration) – walking from Immigration to Customs – walking from Customs to Security check – walking from Security check to luggage belt – from luggage belt to exit and waiting… Read more »
mcalleyboy
Guest

Wonder why there’s no charge or some sort of tax when you arrive I think there’s at least 3 stops when you leave, OFW tax, airport tax, immigrant tax, what happens if your out of money? How many other countries expect you to make all these kinds of payments when the ticket has already been purchased? The air port could improve if they just added the welfare charge to your ticket purchase.

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