Travel Tips: Know Your Terminal (NAIA)

Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Manila has four passenger terminals. It is important to know which terminal your flight departs out of. If you end up in the wrong terminal, it will take considerable time to travel to the correct terminal. When traffic is less congested, it will take less than 20 minutes to travel between Terminals 1 and 3, which are on opposite ends of the complex and the farthest terminals apart.

whats my terminal manila airport
Image Source: Wikimedia
Sterile airside transits at Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila are generally not possible if you need to connect to a flight in a terminal different from the one you arrived in. This means you will need to clear all formalities at the terminal you will arrive at, take a shuttle, and clear all formalities at the terminal you will depart at. The exception is if your flights involve a transfer between PAL or PAL Express flights each located in the different terminals (e.g. you arrive in Terminal 2 on a PAL flight from Tokyo transferring to a PAL Express flight located in Terminal 3). You will still need to claim your hold bags but afterwards just proceed to a transfer desk to be processed further.

It is also vital that you know which carrier will actually operate your flight. Although the number of code share agreements involving Manila is extremely limited, they mostly involve flag-carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL). It might be easy to make the mistake of automatically proceeding to Terminal 2 if you purchase a Philippine Airlines ticket not realizing that your flight is operated by another carrier or from another terminal. The list below is designed to help you identify which terminal you are departing from depending which carrier is operating your flight.

TERMINAL 1 is currently home to all internationally-based airlines, except All Nippon Airways. No domestic flights operate out of here. Although Tigerair has a Philippine arm, its international arm, which has a flight to Singapore, operates from here. Passengers with a PAL flight number (e.g. PRXXX) but whose flight is actually operated by a foreign carrier (i.e. Emirates, Malaysia Airlines, Gulf Air) also need to proceed here. 

worst airport in the world
Image Source: Moodie Report
TERMINAL 2 is home to all international Philippine Airlines and PAL Express flights, and domestic flights to Bacolod, Cebu, Davao, General Santos, Iloilo, Laoag and Tagbilaran operated by Philippine Airlines or PAL Express. 
philippine airlines terminal manila
Image Source: adpi
TERMINAL 3 currently houses all Cebu Pacific flights, All Nippon Airways, and PAL Express flights to Basco, Busuanga, Butuan, Cagayan de Oro, Calbayog, Caticlan, Cotabato, Dipolog, Dumaguete, Kalibo, Legaspi, Masbate, Naga, Ozamiz, Puerto Princesa, Roxas City, Surigao, Tacloban, Tuguegarao and Zamboanga. It also hosts selected flights of AirAsia Zest including some flights bound for destinations in China and South Korea. Delta Airlines, Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines, Emirates, and KLM will move to Terminal 3 in August 2014.

find my terminal manila airport
Image Source: Wikimedia
TERMINAL 4 is home to Tigerair Philippines, SkyJet, Philippines AirAsia, and AirAsia Zest flights with the exception of certain international AirAsia routes that operate from Terminal 3. 

find my terminal ninoy aquino airport
Image Source: Intrepid Wanderer
As carriers con terminals, particularly from Terminal 1 to Terminal 3, keep visiting PFN for updates on terminal reassignments.



  1. This is a very useful commentary because although we have 4 terminals, in varying condition of disrepair, no one in the government thought of connecting the terminals by some means or other.
    Other countries have monorails, trams, underground walkways, or even buses. But the gang of ex-goon military men that inhabit most posts related to aviation in this country can't seem to conceive of making things convenient to passengers.
    When, oh when, will our civilian government learn that military folk are not qualified to run matters concerned with civil aviation???
    And when, oh when, will they put their shoulders to the grindstone and work for those who pay for their existence???
    We're mad. Very mad!

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