NAIA Terminal Reassignments Imminent

Passengers who have flights departing from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) at the end of August or later may need to double check which terminal they need to proceed to in order to catch their flight as a major reallocation of terminals that carriers use will take place then.

NAIA Terminal 2
Image by hybridace101

NAIA Media Affairs Division Chief Jess Martinez stated that starting August 31, Terminal 1 will be used only by international flights by Philippine Airlines (PAL), Japan Airlines, Etihad, Saudia, and Thai Airways.  PAL and Cebu Pacific's domestic flights will use Terminal 2.  Terminal 3 will host Cebu Pacific and all other foreign carriers, while and Terminal 4 will host all other domestic flights.

Infographic Source: Philippine Information Agency

In order to facilitate the transition of Terminal 2 into a 'purely domestic' terminal, MIAA General Manager Eddie Monreal said that the MIAA has embarked on a renovation valued at ₱600 million (US$11.5 million; £8.2 million; €9.4 million) of the said facility.  Monreal also reiterated that Terminal 2 was originally designed to be a domestic terminal.  However, once the renovation is complete, he said it would increase the terminal's capacity to 12 million passengers.  

For his part, PAL's President Jaime Bautista said he welcomes the move.  He added that having operations across only two terminals is more favourable to the carrier.  For instance, they can save on time and costs to move planes between terminals. 

NAIA Terminal 3
Image by hybridace101
Currently, PAL uses Terminal 2 for the departure of all international flights and some domestic flights, Terminal 1 for the arrival of some of its US and Middle Eastern flights, and Terminal 3 for some domestic flights operated by its subsidiary PAL Express.  Cebu Pacific uses Terminal 3 for all its flights except those operated by subsidiary Cebgo which uses Terminal 4.  Philippines AirAsia uses Terminal 3 for its international flights and Terminal 4 for its domestic flights.

It is unclear how using separate terminals for domestic flights will relieve congestion at NAIA.  However, passengers will have to allow extra time for transfers between their domestic and international flights.  Under the outgoing system, passengers transferring between a domestic and international PAL or Cebu Pacific flight just simply have to walk upstairs to the departure level.  The outgoing system is also widely in use in most other countries where passengers are able to transfer between international and domestic flights as conveniently as possible without necessarily exiting the terminal they would arrive at.  In case PAL passengers need to transfer to another terminal, PAL offers a free shuttle service; all they have to do is to proceed to a transfer desk.    

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