As if Filipino travelers were not filled enough with travel woes when flying abroad, here’s another one: dealing with excruciatingly long lines at the immigration area.
A photo of a long queue of passengers at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 3 – seemingly for departures – made the rounds on social media. On Reddit, user u/This_Plastic_6265 captioned the image with, “PH immigration at its finest.”
“Filipinos are so fond of overcomplicating what should be very simple processes,” one user commented.
“I hope they all brought their yearbooks,” another chimed in — referencing the case where a Filipina was held back from her flight after an immigration officer requested her yearbook.
“That is normal here. Convenience is not key here,” one said.
“Don’t they realize how incompetent this makes them look?” a user questioned.
“Does it make them look incompetent though, outside of the Reddit bubble? I fly a lot internationally for work and I’ve experienced this bullshit many times. You would not believe how many idiots are standing in this line, saying ‘Don’t complain, it’s super normal, same in other countries’. In my experience, most people do not see that this is caused by incompetence but rather assume it’s normal,” another shot back.
The problem seems to have stemmed from the recent terminal reassignments, where airlines have been relocated across the three NAIA hubs.
From being an exclusive terminal for Philippine Airlines flights, Terminal 2 is being eyed as an all-domestic hub, while Terminals 1 and 3 share the bulk of international flights across various airlines.
On Sunday, airport officials confirmed that NAIA Terminal 3 was saddled with immigration lines that were longer than usual especially during peak hours, as the gateway handles 143 departure and 144 arrival flights each day.