Thursday, 12 October 2017

Philippines 2017

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Day 01.

The traffic to Ålesund Airport Vigra (AES) was not too bad since it was so late in the afternoon, there was not much traffic in the tunnels either so it doesn’t take too long to get to the airport.

The same at the airport not too many people so it was not taking to long to check in my suitcase and go to the security check, I don't know what happened there but they have some paranoia about cameras so you need to take them out and have them in a container like you do whit laptops. and they have begin to check carry on bags much more then they have done before, it's no problem for me personally but I see there was some people whit small kids that was checked more then usual both them and baby food if they had that whit them.
I don't know if it's for there contract is soon over and they need to look busy so they can renew or what it is but hope it's not the new standard on Ålesund airport Vigra.

After I was finish in the security check I take a trip over to Upper crust to get something to eat.
I eat a prawn sandwich and drink some Coca cola as I wait for the flight, it's still a little while before they begin to board so it's no stress, just sit here and look at people and the time. There was not too many that was going on the flight to Oslo this evening.
 Map to Alesund Airport Vigra

Not many people standing at the gate and that’s good since the queue there is not to long and to faster we can board the plane and get on the way to Oslo. Here are some families that are travelling on the same flight and some business men it’s looks like are travelling on the same flight. It will be fare from full if it’s just the people in the terminal that are travelling on the same flight.

Aalesund Airport Vigra is not a big airport so it's not much to do here beside sit and wait for the flight to OSL.
I start my trip from Aalesund to Oslo on SAS flight SK 1327.
Aircraft type Boeing 737-800. Company Scandinavian Airlines.
Ålesund Airport Vigra (AES)

The weather in Aalesund today the 10.10.2017 is. A shower in spots in the morning followed by occasional rain and drizzle in the afternoon

Temperature: 10°C
Real Feel: 7°C
Dew Point: 3°C
Rain: 1 mm
Wind: 16 km/h
Visibility: 10.0 kilometres
Humidity: 73 %
UV: 4 out of 12

Flight status on the 10.10.2017 No weather delay

The flight from AES to OSL was very good not too many pax on the plane and we was on time. There was some turbulence on the 45 min flight but not more than normal for this time of the year, and some tail wind when we were on the final approach on OSL that was a little shaky but beside that it was an ok fight.

Just a siden note: 
I see SAS have got there new uniforms and it's good they renew something in that airline to.

I will be staying at the Best Western Oslo Airport Hotell over night to take the flight from Oslo to Bangkok. 14:15 (2:15 pm) in the afternoon, this is an overnight flight so we will be landing in Bangkok early in the morning. Then we have 1,5 hours in BKK before the flight to Manila.

The room is OK it's a little expensive from 742 NOK pr night, but since it's just a 5 min bus ride to the airport I think it's not too bad, anyway what you save on another hotel in the aria is not so much plus you need to get a taxi to the airport the day you fly out from OSL.

Radisson Blu hotel Gardermoen still have some redicurlus prices for a room and I will not pay 1,355 NOK for one night just for it's 3 min walk from the airport, since I am in no hurry to get to my flight. 

I will use the time in Gardermoen to relax and get ready for my flight tomorrow. It's not too much to take pictures of since it's quite dark in the time I arrive in Gardermoen and here is not much that happens around here. 

Beside maybe take the bus over to the Airport and sit there and look at the people that travelling to and from Oslo for a while and maybe eat some junk food.

But I guess I will see much of travelling people the next days since I will have almost 2 days of travelling before I am in Tacloban.

Day 02.

Woke up early today and since I never eat breakfast I begin to get ready for my 11 hour flight to Bangkok, I check out of the hotel around 11:00 (11:00 am), and take the short bus ride to the airport to check in my suitcase and get my tickets to Bangkok and Manila. There was a little queue at the check in counter but it was not to long so I don't have to wait to long since I was very early and most of the passengers coming a little later in the day, it's still some hours to the flight take off.

The weather in Oslo today the 11.10.2017 is Moderate rain (total 18mm), heaviest on Wed night. Very mild (max 12°C on Fri night, min 2°C on Wed morning). Winds increasing (calm on Wed morning, fresh winds from the NNW by Thu afternoon).

Temperature: 2°C
Real Feel: 2°C
Dew Point: 1°C
Rain: 2 mm
Wind: 11 km/h
Visibility: 3 kilometres
Humidity: 93 %
UV: 0 out of 12

Flight status on the 11.10.2017. Possible weather delay due to rain

Yesterday I used most of the evening to watch TV and check out different places to visit in the Philippines, plus look at different hotel and resort prices and things like that.
And try to find a place to stay that is not in the middle of nowhere, so it takes too long to get to the shops if it's something we need.

Beside that is was not time to do so much else so I was staying at the hotel the whole evening and did other things then walk around the airport in the evening.

I had calculated some time in the security check since the queues there can be very long and slow going, but it was not too bad. I guess I was there so early that I was going clear the worst rush of pax that was going to the international pier at the airport.

After I clear the security check I take a walk around the airport to see what's new here since here have been an major rebuilding in the terminal and it beginning to look better then it was last time I was here.

They have made some more gates since the traffic on the airport is a lot bigger now then is was the day they open the it, but the fact is that the airport was too small already when it was new in 1998.

The security check at Oslo Airport have been taken over by Nokas Security and is looks like they have the same paranoia as Vigra airport have since i need to take out everything in my PC bag and show them and they swipe it for drugs to. 

It's not any problem for me but it's little bit annoying since it take much longer time to pass the security check.

And so long everyone knows who the big grey elephant in the room is when it come to international terror and planning of terror against buildings and airlines around the world so is it them they need to set their focus on not everybody else.
If you want to complain about the security personnel at OSL so is the address here, Contact Oslo Airport

I am walking around the airport terminal for a while to look in the shops to see if there are anything interesting, but it was not much I need there or that was of any interest since most of it is overpriced. 

I going to buy some boxes whit snus and some chocolate in the tax-free since the Pinoy people love chocolate for some reason, but beside that here is not much of interest as I can see, and I don't want to carry to much around in the airports.

So I will get some breakfast as I waiting to board the flight to Bangkok. Since it's not every time they have food that are so good on the flight sometimes they have some food that is just for especially interested people. 
And since I have no time to get something to eat in Bangkok I need to eat something.

My next big meal will be in Tacloban in about 17 hour’s time beside some airline food if it's something that I can eat since airline food can go both ways.
Just a warning to the people that are flying in or out of Oslo Airport the food there is very expensive and to be honest it doesn’t taste too good either.
If you read Norwegian can you read some reviews here.

But since I have plenty of time here I have nothing else to do. And Oslo Airport is a really boring airport to wait in. Here is nothing to do what so ever so the time goes very slow. 

On the plus side so are Oslo Airport very easy to navigate in since you have all the gates on one floor and they are very easy to find. 
The same if you are in transit there, its a little distance to walk but it's very easy to find the international gates.

Sitting now in the waiting aria outside gate 20 (this is the old gate 50) in the international terminal and waiting for the boarding to begin, and looking at passing flights on the tarmac, or flights that standing on the apron and people that pass by here.

Mostly business men but also ordinary people that are travelling some place in the world, I see here are some families that are going to Thailand on holiday so they will be on the same flight maybe some are going on the same flight as me all the way to Philippines?.

After a while it come some people I think they are from Thai Air and say we need to go out for they need to check our ticket and passport, so then everybody need to stand in line outside gate 20 (this is the old gate 50) and wait to they have checked all tickets and passports. 

This is the same thing we did last year and we was almost 1 hour behind and I almost lost my flight in Bangkok I had around 15 min to get from my flight and get to the gate to the Manila flight.
And since I have taken that trip many times before so was that no problem but I need to run most of the way.

I have to see if some of them are going to the same gate as I do in BKK and board the plane to Manila. I guess we will be transported whit a bus this year to, to the other side of the airport in BKK to board the plane to MNL.

My flight plan to Philippines look like this

Airports: AES, OSL, BKK, MNL, TAC

10 November 2017

Aalesund Int Airport (IATA: AES) - Oslo Int Airport (IATA: OSL)

Flight: SK 1327
Departure time: 18:30 (6:30 pm). Arrival time 19:25 (7:25 pm)
Flight time: 45 min
Gate: 01
Terminal: 1 (domestic)
Seat nr: 14 A
Flight Ticket: Economy (SAS go)
Aircraft: Boeing 737-800
Passenger Capacity: 162 Pax
Range: 5.463 km.
Boeing 737-800 Scandinavian Airlines. AES-OSL

11 November 2017

Oslo Int Airport  (IATA: OSL) – Bangkok Int Airport  (IATA: BKK)

Flight: TG 955
Departure time: 14:15 (2:15 pm). Arrival time 06:15 (6:15 am) .
Flight time: 11 hours
Gate: 20 (50)
Terminal: 1 (international)
Concourse: F
Seat nr: 43 E
Flight Ticket: Economy
Aircraft: Boeing 777-300
Passenger Capacity: 364 Pax
Range: 11.140 km. 
Thai Airways International Boeing 777-300. OSL-BKK

Layover at Bangkok Airport Suvarnabhumi (BKK): 1 hour 25 min. 

12 November 2017

Bangkok Int Airport (IATA: BKK) - Manila Int Airport (IATA: MNL)

Flight: TG 620
Departure time: 07:40 (7:40 am). Arrival time 11:55 (11:55 am)
Flight time: 3 hours. 15 min
Gate: C2
Concourse: C
Seat nr: 38 E
Flight Ticket: Economy
Aircraft: Boeing 777-200
Passenger Capacity: 309 Pax
Range: 9.695 km.
Thai Airways International Boeing 777-200. BKK-MNL

Manila Int Airport (IATA: MNL)Tacloban Airport (IATA: TAC)

Flight: Z213:
Departure time: 16:10 (4:10 pm). Arrival time 17:40 (5:40 pm)
Flight time: 1 h 30 min
Gate: 5
Terminal: 4
Seatnr: 22A
Flight Ticket: Economy
Aircraft: Airbus A320-200
Passenger Capacity: 180 pax
Range: 6.100 km
AirAsia Zest Airbus A320-200. MNL-TAC

Total flight time from AES to TAC will be around 21 hours 25 min
Total flight distance from AES to TAC is 11,810 km (7,339 miles) 

Day 03.

The flight from Oslo to Bangkok was 30 min delayed in Oslo since they had to check our ticket and passport again for some reason. They can begin this check little before so they can take off in time.

Just hope we are on time in Bangkok so I don't need to run again it's not the best place to do that since there are other pax in the way all over the place.
Here are many pax whit kids on the flight, from 1 month to 2 years old. And I really hope they not going to cry the whole 11 hours to Bangkok for that is very stressing after a while.

And as I see it, need the airlines to do something about that like set the lowest age for long haul flights to 5 years. For it's not good to sit for so many hours and hear all that crying in fact it’s very annoying.

The food on the flight was not to bad little cold but ok, I guess it tasted like airline food do not to much taste and it’s little food, so if you have not eaten anything before can it be that you are still hungry after your dinner.

We landed in Bangkok 15 min after schedule since we was delayed out from Oslo. And it was no problem to get on the flight to Manila in time since the plane parked on a parking place away from the terminal, so we needed to take a shuttle bus to the terminal, and luckily they stop at the D terminal so it was not to much walking I had to do. I guess most of the pax was headed for the D terminal and it was the reason that they let us off there.

There was not much people waiting in the security check think it was just our flight and one other that was in the security at the time so it was fast to pass that.
We are boarding from gate C2 this time so it's little closer then D1 A as we usually board from. Not many people here so early in the morning so it was not much way thing in the security and that is good. 
And since I fly economy we was the last one to board the plane.

The boarding was on time and that is not often it happens, and we need to use a bus out to the flight again as we have done every time i travelling from this gate. It’s a bus trip that takes us half around the airport to a plane that stands on a parking ground on the tarmac.

The bus trip out to the plane was ok used the time to look around on the different planes and people that work here at the airport.
There was many people that going to Philippines it looks like most of them are from Asia probably either Thai or Pinay I don't see so many European pax on the flight.

So most of the old people that fly whit me from Oslo was going to Thailand for the winter it looks like or have taken other flights to some other destinations but again it's a big plane so it can be some of them are here some place.

The weather in Bangkok today 12.10.2017 is as i can see out the window here in the airport and see on the online weather forecast the following: Clearing skies late. Low 24C.

Temperature: 28.6°C
Real Feel: 32°C
Rain: 0 mm
Visibility: 10.0 kilometers
Android Weather Forecast by

Flight status on the 12.10.2017 No weather delay

The flight from Bangkok Airport Suvarnabhumi to Manila Ninoy Aquino International Airport was ok.
There was no problem on the flight not much turbulence or anything that was out of the ordinary. Just a quiet flight there most of the pax was sleeping.
It looks like Asian people can sleep more or less anywhere.

The plane was one of the oldest Boeing 777-200 I guess they have in the fleet since it was quite noisy everything rattles onboard when we take off and it was about the same feeling you will have if you sit on a big lump of jelly, they had an onboard cam there so we can see the runway and for a moment after we landed in Manila it looked like we was driving of the runway but I think it was just looking like that on the cam since we come inn a little side ways.

I have a terminal change in Manila where I have to go from terminal 1 (the outhouse) to terminal 4 that is not much better. So it's an around 15 min bus trip between the terminals.
NAIA terminal 1 is a little better than last year, but it's still an outhouse and it's still too small and everything here is from when they open in April, 1982, the line at the immigration desks are still long and it take some time to pass them but I am in no hurry so that's fine.

I have 3 hours 35 min to get from Terminal 1 to terminal 4 and find my gate, and that will go just fine since it's not a long bus trip between the terminals. And is not the first time I take a flight from terminal 4. It's the oldest terminal at the airport and it's just low coast airlines that operate from that terminal.
This is the following airlines Tigerair Philippines, AirAsia Zest, Skyjet Airlines so there is some traffic but most of the pax go to either terminal 2 or 3, but since I get a very good price on the ticket whit AirAsia so I use them this time the plan was to use Philippine Air but the ticket was twice as high so it was not any good reason to use them on this trip, since it's just a 1,5 hour flight from Manila to Tacloban.

After I clear the passport and custom aria and come out to the arrival hall I need to find an ATM to take out some Peso and get over to NAIA Terminal 4.

When I come out of the terminal building I see there still are 100's of taxi drivers that offer overpriced trips as usual.
But since I going to take the shuttle bus, that is just 20 peso so can I just walk past them and find the shuttle bus. I still have plenty of time before my plane to Tacloban take off at NAIA terminal 4.

The bus trip was no problem I got there in good time before I needed to board the flight to Tacloban Daniel Z. Romualdez Airport .
The airport shuttle buses are supposed to run every fifteen minutes, but come in roughly around every 20-30 minutes and sometimes not at all. Official times of operation are 3:30am-1:30am and the cost is PHP 20. Shuttle drivers may try and charge more or offer to take off sooner for a bribe.
The shuttle stops are as follows:
  • NAIA 1 to the far right when coming out of the arrivals hall
  • NAIA 2 On the arrivals level outside the international section
  • NAIA 3 Across the road on the right side from arrivals hall
  • NAIA 4 Outside departure level on left hand side
Passengers on PAL and PAL express (Phillipine Airlines) can make use of their own private shuttle service between NAIA 2 and NAIA 3 terminals. Simply follow the signs.
Map bus route to terminal 4.

The weather in Manila today the 12.10.2016 is: Rain: 2-4 mm; higher amounts in thunderstorms

Temperature: 25°C
Real Feel: 26°C
Rain: 6 mm
Visibility: 10.0 kilometres
Flight status on the 12.10.2017 Possible weather delay due to thunderstorms

Now it's official AirAsia sucks we are now 30 min over time on our boarding and no one have give us any message about why and this is not acceptable at all.
The flight from Manila to Tacloban was ok we was almost on time and there was just a small delay out of Manila so we landed in Tac around 18:00 (6:00 PM and that's not to bad.
After I get my bag and was going out of the terminal there was the same show whit 100 of taxi drivers that was yelling at you to use there taxi. I take one whit a more quiet and not so desperate driver that was little more in the background.

The drive to the hotel was ok not to much traffic and no major incidents on the way

Day 04

woken up around 4 in the morning here of some priest was singing I guess it was an early mess or something.
They have begin Christmas here it looks like here are Xmas songs and decorations everywhere. The shops and malls are full of Xmas songs and trees.

Day 05

Nothing much happened today had a relaxing day since I still have some jet lag here

Day 06

Check out of Go hotels today and take an taxi to the Tacloban bus terminal to take a van to Sogod. When we get there we had to wait around 3 hours in the car and that was some really boring hours. So van companies I can't say I like it and you need to change this routine.

The Corfu siren sounded 22:00 (10:00 pm) so that is still in force here in Leyte what happens if you are out after this time I have no clue about but there is not much to do outside after 10 pm anyway.
Had a frog here jumping around in the room today and that was crawling up the walls if it's not geckos so is it frogs but I get it out so it was no harm done.

Day 07

Nothing much happened had a relaxing day since it was raining cats and dogs the most of the day.

Day 08

Check out of Catalina Hotel and resort today and headed to the bus terminal to take an van to Ormoc, and from there take a fast ferry to Cebu.
This time we don't have to wait to long before the wan was going since it was almost full when we come. So it was more or less just to set us in the car and drive. There was an annoying beggar at the terminal that try to play me something on some type of gitar it sound like shit and he was standing outside the car door and playing and when I was paying for the van he was standing and say you give me money. I told him to get a job.

The trip to Ormoc was ok we see 2 traffic accidents on the way but we get there in time to get on the boat to Cebu.
The boat trip was ok nothing happened there beside that we had some rain in the middle of the 2 hour boat trip.

Day 09

Don't do much today since here have been raining most of the day so we take a trip to the SM city mall just to walk around and look what they have there.

Day 10

Had a relaxing day here we change hotel to Summit circle since it a better hotel and it's more or less in the same place.

Day 11

Last day in Cebu for this time and we prepare to take an trip back to Tacloban since we will take a flight later to Manila. Was not much we did this day just get up late and relax.

Day 12

Leave Cebu for this year and going back to Tacloban we will have a stop in Ormoc so it's not to much stress. We take a 13:30 bloat out of Cebu. It was little windy and some waves when we come out in open sea but nothing that was of any major problem. The trip was little longer then it normally are but we got to Ormoc around 16:30 in the afternoon.

After we had checked in at the Don Felipe Hotel we take an trip around Ormoc and look around. Nothing much to see really but it's a ok little place to spend some time.

Day 13

Checking out of Don Felipe Hotel around 9 in the morning and heading to Tacloban to check in at Gohotels and we will be there for 2 days before we have a trip to Manila. And will be there an while before it's time to head home to Norway.

Day 14

Was raining cats and dogs today but it was clearing up in the evening. Had a relaxing day at the hotel and packing so that was finish since we check out tomorrow and have a flight to Manila.

Was a false fire alarm at the hotel in the evening and all the guests was running around in the hall and was not quite sure what was going on there, I don't take it so hard since the hotel is a concrete bunker so the best thing is to stay inside the room if there had been a fire. And a fire had not been in other place then there it was burning, the smoke can be a problem but beside that nothing to worry about.

The staff come after 5 min to inform that it was a false alarm and it was nothing to worry about. But it was little funny to see the panic over nothing.

Day 15

Checking out of GoHotels today and take a taxi to the airport for our flight to Manila. All was good to they say there was a 30 min delay on the inbound flight. And that is very normal here on domestic flights, can't remember one flight I have taken domestic here that have been on time.
When we landed in Manila terminal 3 so was it already dark and we had used almost 5 hours on a 1.5 hour flight so we was little behind but since we don't had any connecting flight so was that no problem.

We get a taxi and was heading for our hotel that was in the poorest part of Manila, and the hotel was crap read my review about the hotel.
Beside that is was not much that happened that day.

Day 16

Checking out of Leez inn hotel one day before out time since the hotel is more or less crap and we get a room at Asian Mansion II in Makati so we are little closer to the civilized people and where we have shops and so on around us.

Day 17

Was not much happened today had an relaxing day walking around at the Glorietta mall and relaxing.

Day 18

Had the plan to take a trip to Star city today since we had nothing else to do but when we come there it was so many people that was waiting to get in that we just left it was not that important so we was going to a near by SM mall that is one of the biggest in Manila.

Day 19

Checking out of Asian Mansion and take a taxi to the bus terminal in Makati and take a bus to Tagaytay for 2 days since it's close and it's good to see something else then just shopping malls and traffic.
The bus trip was ok it take around 4 hours from Manila to Tagaytay city. So most of that day was going to travelling but that's ok.

Day 20

Had a trip to the People's Park In The Sky today since we have already been to Picnic Grove, but the 2 places is more or less the same just some run down parks whit overpriced vendors that try to get you to spend your money there.
Just as a example we was offered an horse back ride that was around 100 meters and for that they demanded 50 php.
We was there for a little while before we was going back to our hotel for there was nothing to see really.

Day 21

We are leaving Tagaytay and head back to Makati and Prince Plaza for a while.
The bus trip from Tagaytay to Pasay was ok little boring since nothing happened out of the ordinary.
When we get to the terminal and was getting a taxi was there some action since one of the old taxi drivers think that it was his trip so there was some fighting between them and one of the taxi drivers was getting a iron rod so it was little tense there for a min but nothing much happened after that.

Tagaytay I believe have the most expensive tricycle rides in the country they are between 80 and 200 php. For trips inside the city it's 80 php and that is it not worth in any way since the tricycles there are so small that if you are not around 120 cm so is it problems to get in to the sidecar on them.

Day 22

Nothing much happened was rainig most of the day so we had an day at the mall beside us here in Makati.

Day 23

Same rainy day nothing to do beside relax.

Day 24

Had a trip to the Manila zoo since it was a day whit good weather and a nice temperature. The zoo is not to far from Makati so it's a ok trip to go there around 150 php from Greenbelt to the zoo whit taxi.
The interference fee is 100 php for non Manila residence but that's OK not so much money we talking about here anyway.

Day 25

Was one hot day today, nothing much happened in the day was a trip around greenbelt and was relaxing for a while on Starbucks.
When we was going a trip out in the evening there was a shit load of police outside the hotel, it looks like some motorbikes had crashed whit a jeepney or something. Don't look to be to serious since there looks like all of them was standing on there feet when we was passing them.

Day 26

Was raining cats and dogs today so it was not so much to do beside walk around in the shopping malls here in Makati.

Day 27

Used much of the day at Starbucks and just looking at passing people since it was a relaxing day here and quite hot and sunny. See they have begin to hang up xmas light all over greenbelt park so I guess they will light it up soon. They also cover the trees and stones whit something that look like knitted sweaters in different colours for some reason.

Day 28

A very hot day here today so we was most at the hotel room since it was to hot to be outside in the day time.

Day 29

Same as yesterday had a trip around the mall and was relaxing since it's to hot here to do anything really.

Day 30

Jelith was going back to Saint Bernard today on a flight 11:30 so I have the day here alone and that's ok since I need to begin to get ready for my flight tomorrow back to Norway. So I will have a early night today and pack my bag and relax since it will be a long day.

Day 31

Day 32

09 November 2017

Manila Int Airport (IATA: MNL -Bangkok Int Airport (IATA: BKK)

Departure time: 20:20 (8:20 pm). Arrival time 22:35 (10:35 pm).
Seat nr:
Flight Ticket: Economy
Flying time: 3 hours. 15 min
Aircraft: Boeing 777-200
Passenger Capacity: 375 Pax
Range: 9.695 km.
Thai Airways International Boeing 777-200
Layover at Bangkok Airport Suvarnabhumi (BKK): 2 hour 45 min.

10 November 2017

Bangkok Int Airport (IATA: BKK) - Oslo Airport (IATA: OSL)

Flight: TG 954
Departure time: 00:20 (12:20 pm). Arrival time 06:50 (6:50 am)
Seat nr:
Flight Ticket: Economy
Flying time: 12 hours.10 min
Aircraft: Boeing 777-300
Passenger Capacity: 368.
Range: 11.140 km.
Thai Airways International Boeing 777-300

10 November 2017

Oslo Airport (IATA: OSL) - Alesund Airport (IATA: AES) 

Flight: SK 1322
Departure time: 15:10 (3:10 pm). Arrival time 16:05 (4:05 pm).
Seat nr:
Flight Ticket: Economy
Flying time: 45 min
Aircraft: Boeing 737-800
Passenger Capacity: 120.
Range: 5.463 km .
Boeing 737-800 Scandinavian Airlines (SAS)

First of all will I point out that this is my personal experience when I  travel around in Philippines others can have other experiences on there trips.
But all in all it's not a bad place to spend your holiday 

It's still much that need to be done here in Philippines before the tourists will begin to come in the same numbers like Thailand, Hong Kong, Malaysia and so on.

The first thing and this is as I see it the priority number one and that is to do something whit the taxi scams especially in and around the airports for it's not the best commercial for the tourist business that the first thing you meet as a tourist when you land in one of the Philippines airports and coming out from the terminal is a bunch of criminal taxi drivers that take a huge overprice for a taxi trip so always use metered taxies.

The taxi driver usually try to explain this whit some lame excuse that they have a bigger car or it's for your safety and so on but all is just BS this is hard core scammers and criminals of the worst kind some even what I will call scum of the earth.
And in worst case can they rob you, rape you or even kill you so stay away from the unmarked taxis.

What this criminals show for most Tourists is that this is the first and last trip to the Philippines and as I see it so is that to bad since it's a very nice country to spend your holiday in.

So this is something both airport authority and the police and the government need to address very fast and they need to use the iron fist on this scamming criminals so they stay away from the airport permanently. 
Some of this criminal taxi drivers will also try to sell you drugs, and hook you up whit some brothel, I guess they get some commission from the place for every costumer they bring in.

The airport authority also need to address the other scams that go on especially in Manila airport both in terminal 1,2,3,4 this involve security personnel, luggage handlers and the leadership in the airport. As it is today so is there to much crime in and around the airport terminals. Here is a list of some of the scams in Manila Airport terminal 1-2-3-4

I will recommend to get some outside company that is not on the take to clean up this mess if the Philippines government don't have the idea how to do this, or is so corrupted that they don't see the need to clean this mess up. 
There are many serious incidents that will hurt the tourist industry in the country very bad and over long time.

And since Philippines try to take more tourists from other tourist destinations in Asia so is this not any good commercial that the first thing the tourists meet when they come to Philippines is some of the world highest taxi prices or some criminal airport employee that try to scam you every way they can. 
So always use metered taxis that is the cheapest ones, yes it can be that they to try to rip you off but it's not so common as it is whit non metered taxis.

They say it's more fun in the Philippines well it can be more expensive to. So always have small change in your pocket if you take a taxi, for no taxi driver have any “Money change” if you give them 500 or 1000 peso don't expect to get any money back. You will hear ohh sorry sir/mam I have no change, so always have 300-400 peso in the pocket for things like this.

I usually begin and end my trip in Makati since it's close to the airport. And just as an example when I take the taxi from the airport (terminal 1) to Makati the price is now from 300 to 500 php it depends on where you are heading in Makati and the traffic. The taxi fare is around 800 to 1.400 php if you take an coupon taxi it depends on what terminal you going from. 

You have 2 types of metered taxi at Manila airport the white and the yellow they stand a little away from the exit door but they are easy to see when you get past all the other overpriced coupon taxis and scammer taxi that almost attack you on the way out.

The 2 types of taxi that you are looking for, look like this you see under here.

White metered taxi
Yello metered airport taxi

My taxi trip is a 7,3 km trip. From Ninoy Aquino International Airport T 1, Andrews Ave, Pasay. To Prince Plaza II Condotel, 101 Dela Rosa Street, Makati.

Here are some useful links that can help you a little on the way to a good taxi trip in Manila and Philippines.

One other thing to remember when it come to Taxi drivers is that some ask you if this is your first time in Philippines, if they ask you this just say no it’s my 2-3 time here. 
This is to reduce the chance that the taxi driver will try to scam you. Since you have been here before there is a big chance that you know how things is there.

Taxis and their drivers

Taxis may only be found in cities. This means any town with the suffix "-City" like Cebu-City, Iloilo-City and so on. The reason is that tricycles are not allowed on main roads within cities. They are confined in the outskirts and adjacent barangays. With this rule city-mayors try to reduce the traffic congestions caused by the slow and fuming tricycles and motorelas.

Taxis can be found waiting at airports, sea ports and bus terminals. They can also be called in any spot in town by simply waving your hand.
More often you will be recognized as a tourist and each empty taxi approaches you, the driver honking like a madman.
Taxis are from "dealer new" Toyotas with a few 100 km of life to old, rusty Chryslers hold together with a lot of rusty wire and tape. On most taxis you can read "aircon".
This doesn't mean that the taxi is air-condtionned. It is a law in the Philippines to paint "AIRCON" on taxis. If not doing so, the owner is fined with PHP 750.

One other thing they need to think about is the overpriced run down hotels that is so common in Philippines. You can say that you pay much more then you get, many of the hotels and resorts have basic standard whit no hot water in the shower and small rooms.
I have been staining in some hotels there now and well 99% of them need to be renovated since they are beginning to show there age and the paint in falling off the walls. You find My Hotel and Resort Review here if you are interested in that.

The other thing they need to look in to is the terminal fees that they have both in the airport and for boat/ferry terminals. The fee is not the problem but they can begin to have it in the ticket price so it's easier for the travellers when they buy a ticket. And since it's rare they have any Money change for a 500 or 1000 peso so can it be some time to wait before they get the right Money change, so if you don’t have time to wait for it can it be a little expensive so again remember to have some 50 or 100 peso bills in your pocket.
And they have to make it a little more easy to travel in the country for as it is now so is it very difficult and sometimes more like a nightmare to go some place in Philippines.

If you go by land it’s either in small crowded mini vans or in old crowded buses for the most of the bus trips. On long distance they have better buses whit AC and better space for your feet. So if you are over 160 cm high can it be problems whit the space for your feet.

If you go by boat you have over crowded terminals and bad planning when it come to boarding the boat. Plus there is some fees that you need to pay to the people that handle the luggage if you have some. The foot space in the boats are ok and not a big problem.

If you go by air you have over crowded terminals bad planning whit the ticket desk and in security check. Plus in smaller terminals it can be difficult to hear what plane that are boarding since there can be many boarding’s from the same gate to different destinations and many don’t have a screen that tells you what flight is boarding or what gate it is on so in smaller terminals can this be a guessing game. 
There are usually a sign whit the flight number on beside the desk but it's not sure they board in the order the flight numbers are standing on the sign. Plus there are very often delays on especially inbound flights so don't expect to take off in time. The flight time is more a pointer on when the flight take off then the accusal flight time 

When it comes to vendors on the different tourist spots is it one thing that can be a little annoying and that is if you stop more then 10 sec there will be someone that try so sell you something or to sell you a trip some place.

You will see this in like Boracay there they are everywhere and especially if you take a trip on the beach, on Bohol it was ok and no one that bother us and that was really great.
On Puerto Princesa/El nido there is some around the tourist spots but beside that it’s not to bad and you can walk around whit out getting harassed by overpriced vendors everywhere.

Philippines travel tips
  • Dress for the weather – hot! Light clothing is ideal year-round, and absolutely during the hot and dry months from March to May. Temperatures average from 78°F/25°C to 90°F/32°C. Mean humidity is at 77%.
  • Never leave home without your rain gear, umbrella, and heavy clothing during the rainy months from June to October as well as when setting out to the mountainous areas.
  • When shopping in a public market, it is perfectly acceptable to haggle for the cheapest price.
  • English is the most widely spoken next to Filipino/Tagalog, the national language. Learning the basic local phrases may come in handy. Over 111 local dialects are spoken in the country.
  • Comfortable yet sturdy footwear are best, as travelling the islands will often involve some walking.
  • When headed to the remote areas, come prepared with an insect repellant and even your own water in handy containers. Always have the island map with you.
  • Prepare to hop in a jeepney, tricycle, or pedicab – exotic modes of land transport that are the most commonly available for going around. Always bring loose change when taking public transport.
  • Know the transport schedules. Some destinations are only being serviced intermittently, not to mention extreme weather conditions that will affect these schedules.
  • Air-conditioned taxis should cost PhP40 on the meter. An extra PhP2 will be added for every 500 meters.
  • Casual clothing is acceptable inside churches and business offices. Dining establishments and hotels impose no dress code but shorts and slippers are deemed improper.
  • For formal occasions, the traditional Barong Tagalog, the Philippine national costume for men, is just as suitable as the suit-and-tie.
  • When travelling by car, be mindful of the number coding ordinance for vehicles that is being implemented strictly in selected cities.
  • Do not miss visiting during the summer, when there is a concentration of major festivals, celebrations, and events.
  • Adopt to local customs; accept local differences. The Filipinos are divided culturally into regions a total of 16, at present, each with its own distinct traits and traditions.
  • The Philippine monetary unit, the peso, is generally preferred for financial transactions. Money-changing shops are available in key cities and towns.
  • Tipping is expected for many services. The standard amount is 10% of the total bill. Tipping is optional on bills that include a service charge, which is often 10% as well of the total bill.
  • Be sure to sample the endless variety of native delicacies and local cuisine, which differ in every region. The Philippines is made up of 7,107 different flavors that you will want to take home with you.
  • For tourist information and assistance, get in touch with the Department of Tourism and any of its accredited offices nationwide.

Terror risk in Philippines

The terror risk in Philippines is most in and around Mindanao the rest of Philippines is more or less safe, that will not say that there cant be any terror attack but the chance is very small.

There it’s a much higher risk that you will be a victim in other types of crime like robbery, kidnapping, scams and so on then a terror attack outside Mindanao. And if you don’t need to go to Mindanao for some reason so is the best thing you can do is to stay away from the island all together. 

If you need to travel to Mindanao follow the travel advice from your government before you are going since the situation there change very fast, so be on the alert when you are there.

Health risk in Philippines

The most common disease in Philippines for tourists are Diarrhoea since I have mention before so is not food hygiene there biggest priority. So food poisoning can be some of the things you can get here but usually it's just an mild type that last for 2-3 days and then you are fine.

Traveler's diarrhea (TD) is a stomach and intestinal infection. TD is defined as the passage of unformed stool (one or more by some definitions, three or more by others) while travelling. 
It may be accompanied by abdominal cramps, nausea, fever, and bloating. Occasionally bloody diarrhoea may occur. Most travellers recover within four days with little or no treatment. About 10% of people may have symptoms for a week.

Bacteria are responsible for more than half of cases. The bacteria enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) are typically the most common except in South-east Asia, where Campylobacter is more prominent.

About 10% to 20% of cases are due to norovirus. Protozoa such as Giardia may cause longer term disease. The risk is greatest in the first two weeks of travel and among young adults. People affected are more often from the developed world.

Recommendations for prevention include eating only properly cleaned and cooked food, drinking bottled water, and frequent hand washing. 
The oral cholera vaccine, while effective for cholera, is of questionable use for traveler's diarrhea. Preventative antibiotics are generally discouraged. 

Primary treatment includes drinking lots of fluids and replacing lost salts (oral rehydration therapy). Antibiotics are recommended for significant or persistent symptoms, and can be taken with loperamide to decrease diarrhoea. Hospitalization is required in less than 3% of cases.

Other diseases

Bird flu:  spread  Avian influenza is most often spread by contact between infected and healthy birds, though can also be spread indirectly through contaminated equipment. The virus is found in secretions from the nostrils, mouth, and eyes of infected birds as well as their droppings.  
Cholera:  spread  through consumption of contaminated water and food. More common during floods and after natural disasters, in areas with very poor sanitation and lack of clean drinking water. It would be unusual for travellers to contract cholera if they take basic precautions with food and water and maintain a good standard of hygiene.

Dengue fever:  spread  through the bite of the female mosquito (Aedes aegypti). The mosquito becomes infected when it takes the blood of a person infected with the virus. After about one week, the mosquito can then transmit the virus while biting a healthy person.

Diphtheria spread  person to person through respiratory droplets. Risk is higher if mixing with locals in poor, overcrowded living conditions.

Hepatitis A spread  through consuming contaminated food and water or person to person through the faecal-oral route. Risk is higher where personal hygiene and sanitation are poor.
Hepatitis B:  spread  through infected blood and blood products, contaminated needles and medical instruments and sexual intercourse. Risk is higher for those at occupational risk, long stays or frequent travel, children (exposed through cuts and scratches) and individuals who may need, or request, surgical procedures abroad.

Japanese Encephalitis:  spread  through the bite of an infected mosquito. This mosquito breeds in rice paddies and mainly bites between dusk and dawn. Risk is higher for long stay travellers to rural areas, particularly if unable to avoid mosquito bites.

Rabies:  spread  through the saliva of an infected animal, usually through a bite, scratch or lick on broken skin. Particularly dogs and related species, but also bats. Risk is higher for those going to remote areas (who may not be able to promptly access appropriate treatment in the event of a bite), long stays, those at higher risk of contact with animals and bats, and children. Even when pre-exposure vaccine has been received, urgent medical advice should be sought after any animal or bat bite.

Soil-transmitted helminthiasis spread  (STH) is a type of helminth infection (helminthiasis) caused by different species of roundworms. It is caused specifically by those worms which are transmitted through soil contaminated with faecal matter and are therefore called soil-transmitted helminths.

Tetanus:  spread  through contamination of cuts, burns and wounds with tetanus spores. Spores are found in soil worldwide. A total of 5 doses of tetanus vaccine are recommended for life in the UK. Boosters are usually recommended in a country or situation where the correct treatment of an injury may not be readily available.

Typhoid:  spread  mainly through consumption of contaminated food and drink. Risk is higher where access to adequate sanitation and safe water is limited.
You find more info about it here

Eat and drink safely

Counsel travellers to be diligent about food and water precautions:
  • Avoid cooked food served at room temperature.
  • Avoid raw food, including raw vegetables unless they can be washed thoroughly.
  • Drink only beverages from sealed bottles or cans.
  • Water is safe if it has been boiled or chemically treated.
  • Avoid ice unless made from bottled/disinfected water.

Consider prescribing an antibiotic for self-treatment of travelers’ diarrhea, factoring in resistance issues at the destination.

Weather and Travel in the Philippines

If you are planning a trip to the Philippines, you will probably want to consider the weather. As a tropical country, the Philippines has three distinct seasons, characterized by whether it is rainy or dry and hot or cool. For most of the country, the seasons are roughly as follows:

  • Hot Season (Tag-init) – March to May
  • Rainy Season (Tag-ulan) – June to November
  • Cold Season (Taglamig) – December to February
Some information for especially interested readers.

Using radio communication on the trip

And that work very well. The radio we used was a Baofeng UV 5R and Wouxun KG-UV9D Plus. This radio have a range up to 10 km in open terrain it's normally have a range from 3 to 10 km, It's very easy to carry around and the radio take not to much room in your pocket or you can hang it in your belt or some place else.

This radio can you use inside and outside, and it can be used on short range (up to 3 km) it can reach longer but that depends on where you are, like if you are a place whit many high buildings or out in the country side.
But anyway it's a good way to save money since it's absolutely free to use. And you can have contact in places where there is no phone signal, and you can use so many radios you want so every member of the family can have on

A radio rapport:

I have used this radios for the 29 days I was in Philippines and it worked quite well. Since I don't use it on long distance it was no problem.
I use it mostly on distances from 200 meters to 2 km and to that it's perfect. They have a range between 3 km to 5 km it depends where you are.

The radio works very well inside buildings to since we use UHF radios, it go trough walls very easy. It's not water resistant but it handle a rain shower very well. If the radio getting to wet so turn it off and take out the battery’s and dry the inside of the radio and it will be good as new.

So if you want to save money on short distance communication I can recommend radios like this. The radios are also perfect if you travel many together or in a group, it's then easier to give a message to all at once, and you don't need to call every one of them.

We use it mostly on:
  • Trips and sightings
  • Photo shuts if we are some distance apart so we don't need to yell In airports
  • Shopping malls
  • And to give messages in general.
  • It's free to use and your phone is ready to take incoming calls.
The channel list for the radios can you find on the links below.
Baofeng UV 5R

Baofeng UV 5R
Baofeng UV 5R
Wouxun KG-UV9D Plus
Wouxun KG-UV9D Plus

Wouxun KG-UV9D Plus

Wouxun KG-UV9D Plus

Baofeng UV 5R and Wouxun KG-UV9D Plus

My travel gear.

Here is some gear I always have whit me on a trip.
  • 2 way radio for local communication, and disasters. Like typhoons, earthquakes and so on.
  • Flash light for the times the electric is gone or trips in caves, disasters, fire's and so on.
  • Super zoom camera to take pictures. 
  • Action video camera to make movies
  • Mobile phone in case someone outside my aria want to contact me.
We will on this trip use the following channels in the FRS band. What channel will wary little if there is other on the channel we use but we will use channel 4 as a standard channel for us.
When it come to the CTCSS codes we use so will you find them in the channel list for the different radios. 

FRS 462 Frequencies

Channel 01
462.5625 MHz.
Channel 12
467.6625 MHz.
Channel 02
462.5875 MHz.
Channel 13
467.6875 MHz.
Channel 03
462.6125 MHz.
Channel 14
467.7125 MHz.
Channel 04
462.6375 MHz.
Channel 15
462.5500 MHz.
Channel 05
462.6625 MHz
Channel 16
462.5750 MHz.
Channel 06
462.6875 MHz.
Channel 17
462.6000 MHz.
Channel 07
462.7125 MHz.
Channel 18
462.6250 MHz.
Channel 08
467.5625 MHz.
Channel 19
462.6500 MHz.
Channel 09
467.5875 MHz.
Channel 20
462.6750 MHz.
Channel 10
467.6125 MHz.
Channel 21
462.7000 MHz.
Channel 11
467.6375 MHz.
Channel 22
462.7250 MHz.

Flight Radar

Address: Ålesund lufthavn, Vigra, 6040 Vigra
Phone: +47 67 03 21 21
Longitude/Latitude: E 006° 06' 36.59"/ N 62° 33' 37.33"
Airport Type: A – Civil

Runway direction: 06/24
Dimension: 7592 x 148 ft / 2314.0 x 45.1 m
Surface: Asphalt, asphaltic concrete, tar macadam, or bitumen bound macadam.
Elevation: 69 ft / 21.03 m

Airport Information:
Plane Spotting Guide

Ålesund Airport webcam

Airport Communications

Automatic Terminal Information:
128.650 mhz

118.100 mhz
119.850 mhz
121.200 mhz
122.100 mhz
127.725 mhz

Address: Edvard Munchs veg, Gardermoen
Phone: +47 64 81 20 00
Longitude/Latitude: E 011° 06' 01.30"/ N 60° 11' 38.10" 
Airport Type: Civil/Mil

Runway direction: 01 L/19 R
Dimension: 11811 x 148 ft / 3600.0 x 45.1 m
Surface: Asphalt, asphaltic concrete, tar macadam, or bitumen bound macadam.

Runway direction: 01 R/19 L
Dimension: 9678 x 148 ft / 2949.9 x 45.1 m
Surface: Asphalt, asphaltic concrete, tar macadam, or bitumen bound macadam.
Elevation: 681 ft / 207.57 m

Airport Information:

Airport Communications

Approach Control APP:
119.975 mhz
120.450 mhz

Clearance Delivery CLNC DEL:
121.600 mhz

Director Radar/Approach Control:
131.350 mhz

Ground Control:
121.925 mhz
121.675 mhz
121.725 mhz
369.325 mhz

Operations WINGOPS:
131.250 mhz
293.800 mhz

Tower TWR:
118.300 mhz
120.100 mhz
339.875 mhz

Address: 999 หมู่ 1 Nong Prue, Amphoe Bang Phli, Chang Wat Samut Prakan 10540, Thailand
Phone: +66 2 132 1888
Longitude/Latitude: E 100° 44' 51.64"/ N 13° 40' 51.02"
Airport Type: A – Civil

Runway direction: 01 L/19 R
Dimension: 12165 x 200 ft / 3707.9 x 61.0 m
Surface: Asphalt, asphaltic concrete, tar macadam, or bitumen bound macadam.

Runway direction: 01 R/19 L
Dimension: 13130 x 200 ft / 4002.0 x 61.0 m
Surface: Asphalt, asphaltic concrete, tar macadam, or bitumen bound macadam.
Elevation: 5 ft / 1.52 m

Airport Information:

Airport Communications

Bangkok APP CTL:
122.350 mhz
257.600 mhz
124.350 mhz
262.500 mhz
125.200 mhz

Arrival Control ARR:
126.300 mhz
133.600 mhz

Automatic Terminal Information
127.800 mhz
278.600 mhz

Ground Control:
121.650 mhz
275.800 mhz
121.750 mhz
121.950 mhz

118.200 mhz
274.500 mhz
119.000 mhz

Address: Andrews Ave, Pasay, 1300 Metro Manila, Philippines
Phone: +63 2 877 1109
Longitude/Latitude: E 121° 01' 10.49"/ N 14° 30' 31.13"
Airport Type: Civil/Mil

Runway direction: 06/24
Dimension: 12261 x 197 ft / 3737.2 x 60.0 m
Surface: Concrete

Runway direction: 13/31
Dimension: 7408 x 148 ft / 2258.0 x 45.1 m
Surface: Concrete.
Elevation: 75 ft / 22.86 m

Airport Information:

Airport Communications

Approach/Departure Control:
119.700 mhz
121.100 mhz

Area Control Center:
128.300 mhz

126.400 mhz

Clearance Delivery 1:
125.100 mhz

Ground Control:
121.800 mhz

118.100 mhz

Address: Airport Road,Tacloban City 6500,Leyte, Philippines
Phone: +63 53 323 6191
Longitude/Latitude: E 125° 01' 39.93"/ N 11° 13' 39.46" 
Airport Type: A – Civil

Runway direction: 18/36
Dimension: 7014 x 148 ft / 2137.9 x 45.1 m
Surface: Asphalt, asphaltic concrete, tar macadam, or bitumen bound macadam.
Elevation: 10 ft / 3.05 m

Airport Information:

Airport Communications

Approach Control:
120.800 mhz

122.100 mhz
Airport Codes

Ground ATC
Flight Service Station
Airport operations.
Air Traffic Control Tower
Regional Director of Operations
Cloud (met)
Area Control Centre
Air to ground radio
Radar service
Hold Controller
Automatic Terminal Info Service
Southern Oceanic Tranition Aria
Northern Oceanic Tranition Aria