Last year, when it was time to shop for plane tickets for Manila, I was shocked when Judy, my Korean travel agent, quoted me a freakin' W800,000 for a Philippine Airlines ticket! That was W300,000 more expensive than her previous year's price! I have always flown Philippines Airlines (and a few flights on Korean Air and Asiana flight to and from Manila, and both are the priciest!), but that W800,000 (or about US$700) wouldn't work for me.
So, I tried the next option: Cebu Pacific Air! (Sorry, Mr. Bautista, with all the labor strikes and cancelled flights of your Philippine Airlines, I just couldn't take the risk).
I went online and got me Cebu Pacific seats to and from Manila, and it only cost W320,000! And that already included choice seats (I chose the exit row for the leg room!) and a 30-kilo baggage allowance (for all my pasalubongs!). No in-flight meals were included though; that's why it was cheap.
(My actual luggage weight for Incheon-Manila.
Sagad to almost 30 kilos!)
(My luggage weight for Manila-Incheon. I could have
squeezed in 400 grams of chicharon bulaklak!)
Though the plane wasn't that big (it didn't have a business class section), I was comfortable with my exit row seat and satisfied with my own meals: Jamaican beef patties on my flight to Seoul, and Conti's chicken empanada on my flight to Bacolod! Better than any airline meal! (Burp!) I just bought drinks which they sold on the plane. That way, I could have it cold...with ice!
(Jamaican beef patties with home-made tarts from
Cora and iced drinks! Not to mention a very informative and entertaining book by Ambeth Ocampo.
The other passengers could only look and salivate while I laid out the yummiest in-flight meal ever!)
And the verdict on flying Cebu Pacific? I'd definitely fly them again! There wasn't really any big difference between flying PAL and CebuPac. I still arrived in Manila safely (but a little sleepier though). Cebu Pacific's night flight out of Seoul was an hour later, and of course, PAL's stewardesses wore heavier make-up.
I have a big problem with NAIA's Terminal 3 though.
To the NAIA General Manager:
Can somebody repair those broken moving walkways (others call it a travelator or a horizontal escalator)? And can you, for the love of OFWs, provide more trolleys?
Our flight arrived at almost 1AM. And we (mostly Filipinos, Koreans and other international passengers), were already so weary and sleepy, and what welcomed us was a Mabuhay! and a broken moving walkway! A freakin' moving walkway that didn't move! And a Pinay mother with a sleeping baby and a few old people had to walk a long way out!
And why is there not enough trolleys? And even if you find one, it's rickety. Those rusty trolleys could kill you with tetanus, you know.
* * * * *
Perhaps, Cebu Pacific can relay my message to the sensitive people who actually run NAIA. After all, being the tenant, #CebuPacificAir can always complain to its landlord.
Now, as I plan my trip back home in the summer, I'll keep on watching out for those promo fares with a 30-kilo baggage allowance. And exit row seats, of course.
And I look forward to my own in-flight meal, too. I miss those Jamaican beef patties already!
(Passengers boarding for Incheon)
(Where does the NAIA terminal fee of P750 go?)
(It's always a good idea to 'web check-in' a day before.
No hassle-no waiting at the check-in counter.)
And do you have any other interesting prizes on your in-flight games other than those plastic tumblers?
(Arrived safely at Incheon International Airport
and waiting for my Airport Bus No. 6060.)