Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Arriving At Tacloban Airport, Getting Worse

As with the previous topic (on departures), we are not talking here about how it is in the building, for indeed, there has not been quite a significant change, ever since this terminal was put in place, during the age and time of our grandparents. The topic here are the idiotic ways and means outside the building.

So let us do arrivals? Here we go!

If you were the rich, the politician and the corrupt (am not sure now if those words are actually synonyms!), there is not much of an issue. You just step out of the arrival area, do about 10 to 15 steps, and ride your waiting vehicle. Off you go!

But if you were the not so moneyed resident of Leyte or Samar; or if you were just a visitor going for business or a go-see of the islands (like I am now), then you are in for a long walk! How?

First you walk out the building ("G" in the pictures) and embark on a hike of more than 200 meters to the waiting jeeps ("C") that ply the route of 'Airport/San Jose to city center'. Those are the jeeps where your fare is a mere thirteen pesos as it should be! These jeeps wait until they are full with passengers and baggage cramped inside like sardines!

But if you want to catch a jeep going the same way, with the same fare rate, where you do not have to wait that long, and you do not have to cramp with other people and baggage, you walk just some 60 or 70 meters more to that area marked “D” in the pictures. These jeeps are the same legit jeeps going downtown but they are not allowed to wait like those at “C” because they they do not want to pay P30 as “lagay” to the employees guarding the area (guarding daw o)!

If you were traveling with old people, if you had a lot of baggage, if you were traveling with little children, or if you just dont wanna walk that far… then you pretend to be rich by spending more via the unmetered 'Lhuiller Taxi' or those colorum vans right outside the arrival area!

Again, this only shows that the procedures in this airport are discriminatory against the normal-spending traveling public. Ang iniisip lang ng CAAP management ay yung mga politician bosses nya na lagi namang meron sundo either using their own expensive vehicles or those red-plated ones kasama na ang ambulance!

So why am I and other passengers wailing about this long walk? BECAUSE! It was not like so in the past. If it was convenient then, why make it inconvenient now? No ifs, no buts. Kung hindi mo kayang solusyunan yan, go away! Di ba?! Don’t let the public suffer just because you have the brain of an insect! Should I use another simple analogy? Here is one: if water is so strong every time you open the faucet at tumatalsik sa damit mo, ano, di ka na lang iinom at di ka na lang maghuhugas? Para di mabasa ang damit mo? Bobo!

If those jeep drivers are indeed causing chaos at the airport (granting, without accepting, sabi nga ng mga lawyers), hindi solusyon ang ilayo sila dahil natural maglalakad ang mga pasahero ng malayo! Kung di mo kaya pag-isipan yan, go away and tell your boss to put someone who has a brain – even that of a grade 5 pupil, pwede na yun! For in fact, magulo ba noon when those jeeps were waiting right outside of the arrivals area? No! Ang magulo (and actually frightening) are those mugger-like sloppy-dressed guys who have colorum vehicles claiming they are accredited by the airport management. If you say it is not true, then why are they there? Kasalanan naming mga mere travelers? Ha?

Sino ang magulo at nakakagulo?
1) The policemen and all other uniformed people with airport IDs who keep standing or roaming around the arrival hall to fetch their politician bosses. Kung hindi pa kayo nakakita nyan, you must be blind on two eyes!

2) Yung mga sanggano-looking drivers of colorum vans and vehicles who keep following passengers saying “taxi sir”. They say they have the right to be there and do so since they pay the airport a “membership/accreditation fee”! Now am I surprised why the jeeps are being pushed away? Teka lang... Di ba a vehicle has to be registered with LTO if it were to be used to carry passengers for a fee? Why are those vans green-plated? So CAAP has a different power? Over LTO? And why are the rates of those vans (P300 or kung ano mapagkasunduan) do not seem to have been at least legislated by the city government of Tacloban? CAAP has that power too? I'm curious, if a passenger was wronged by these colorum van drivers, will the CAAP be able to help resolve the problem? Accredited nila di ba?

3) There are other men. Same descriptions as above, but these are tricycle drivers who charge you P200 gong downtown though it can be P150 if you haggle! CAAP also accredits them? If not, why are they all over the place where jeeps are off-limits?

4) The Lhuiller Taxi drivers (who at least have uniforms), but just the same, they follow you too, saying “taxi sir”; and just the same, rates are ridiculously overpriced starting at P300 (if you were a local who knows how to frown and reason out) but can fetch to as high as P1000 or more, even just to the city’s transport terminal. That happened to a lady passenger who was traveling with her European husband. I know this because I was there "eavesdropping"!

5) Are the parking areas cramped? No, those are more than enough at any given time, even if there were simultaneous arrivals BECAUSE NGA, the majority of passengers who fly into Tacloban do not have private vehicles to fetch them. If the CAAP management still find that “masamok”, why don’t he start checking who owns those vehicles perennially parked all over the place? Di ba sa mga empleyado, kasama na siya?! Your being an employee at an airport does not give you the authority to use what otherwise should be used by the riding public – in case you don’t have the delicadeza. Maghanap kayo ng sarili nyong employee parking area. Kung talaga nga bang magulo, that is!

Sino nga ba ang magulo? I wonder where this CAAP management is looking?! Subukan nya kaya mag-commute to and from the airport as passenger? He should do that to see for himself how things go after he has implemented his idiotic procedures!

Okay, so you are the mere “public” who will ride the jeeps so you only pay thirteen pesos going downtown. Paano kung mainit ang araw, paano kung umuulan? Aba hoy, paki-alam ng airport management sa iyo! As far as he is concerned naka-aircon ang office nya! He does not probably even think that he sits in an office for the people and of the people.

My personal opinion… hindi naman bobo lang… GAGO!
Equal sign. Meaning end of my story! Hehe, ginawang programming code, ano?!

PS: And both islands of Leyte and Samar (plus Biliran) are shouting all over the world they have very good (potential) tourist destinations? True, but I’d rather herd my visiting friends elsewhere. Airport pa lang nakakahiya na eh!

NB: The Puerto Princesa Airport Terminal is about the same size, shape and type. They’re almost the same kind. But is it that chaotic for passengers who arrive there? NO! And to think most of the transport facilities there are just tricycles. Mr. Haggedorn, please go and teach Tacloban how to do it, please?!


  1. I think they need an urban planner or maybe an investigator. That ia a bad layout of the airport!

  2. you should give this to the mayor or Pnoy. very good analysis