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I previously wrote about what shops and restaurants were open or closed at NAIA Terminal 3. This time, I am sharing photos of the arrival level of T3.
Exiting the baggage claim area, we come upon what looks like the same scenes at the arrival level before the pandemic – lots of people walking around, shops and banks/money changers open for business.
The crowd density was not really the same as pre-pandemic levels but perhaps this was also because we arrived during a relatively off-peak period in airport operations. There were no international flights that arrived at about the same time we landed. Otherwise, there will be a lot of well-wishers or people fetching (“sundo”) arriving passengers.
The exchange rate when we arrived hovered just above 56 pesos : 1 USD.
Most people are wearing masks, which is a good thing considering we are not yet over with the Covid-19 pandemic. I can only imagine how it was when the airports were just reopening and people were also required to wear face shields. And only those who were really traveling were allowed in the terminal.
Most shops and restaurants at the arrival level were open and many people who were mostly waiting for arriving passengers were there to have a meal or snacks.
Walking towards the covered parking areas of Terminal 3, we see familiar fast-food Jollibee and Chowking with their typical patrons/customers.
Still closed is the large Duty Free Philippines shop at the arrival level of T3.
I promised to post more photos about NAIA Terminal 3 yesterday. Prior to entering the pre-departure area, we decided to have our breakfast at the 3rd level of the terminal where most of the stores and restaurants are located. Prior to the pandemic, we ate at the area shared by Chowking, Tapa King and Army Navy Burgers. We also wanted to see which stores and restaurants were open as most of us were traveling via Terminal 3 for the first time since February 2020 (almost 2.5 years ago). Here are photos taken yesterday at the 3rd level. The scenes remind me of how friends described Haneda, Narita and Hong Kong, which also have a lot of shops, stores and restaurants still closed.
The Victoria’s Secret shop is open. So is the Bath & Body Works store across from it.
Some of the
Many of the small stores have closed. One wonders if these will eventually reopen or they will just be replaced by other stores once things get back to ‘normal’.
These used to be stores selling sports and outdoor wear including an Adidas store and a swimwear shop
What used to be a WHSmith convenience store is now boarded up. I assume there are still some items inside unlike the other closed stores where only the shelves remain.
McDonald’s is open and attracts a lot of people looking for that familiar meal.
Some stores selling chocolates and donuts are open. I saw that there are two other Krispy Kreme stores at the pre-departure area of the terminal. One is just after the final security check and the other is at the ground level near Gates 132 and 133.
Max’s is closed. Hopefully, it will reopen once the demand returns.
Chowking and Tapa King are closed. That means your options for no frills, inexpensive meals (particularly all-day breakfasts) are limited at the terminal.
Chinese restaurant Mongkok is also closed.
Army Navy is also closed at this area. They are open at the ground floor pre-departure area.
Even the kiosks are closed.
Ka Tunying’s Cafe, which was also a popular breakfast place, is closed.
Ramen Nagi is open.
What remains open is Mary Grace where you can get really good meals. However, if you’re on a budget, look elsewhere for food. Breakfast here can set you back 500+ pesos, which can cover the meals of 3 people elsewhere.
Kenny Roger’s Roasters is open along with the Jollibee at the same level.
The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf (CBTL) cafe is open as well as the Wendy’s beside it.
I have yet to see which stores and restaurants at the ground floor (arrival area) are still or already open. I hope I can take some photos when we return later this week.
Here’s some lighter stuff after the heavy rains that inundated much of Metro Manila and the surrounding provinces. I was at NAIA Terminal 3 recently to fetch a friend arriving from Bacolod. I braved the rains and the potential flooding along my way to and from the airport as it was an early flight she was arriving on. I arrived early to discover the flight arrival was delayed so I decided to go around the terminal to see if there was something new. There was, and that’s the expansion of what was a small (compared to other international airports) duty free shop at NAIA’s largest of 4 terminals.
A peek at the expansion of the duty free shop at Terminal 3 shows people still working on the stocks and display for liquor/wines and cigarettes/tobacco.
Here’s a view from the Lacoste shop looking towards the corridor leading to/from the multi-level parking facility
The shop space now looks quite spacious though I’m not sure if it will attract as many people as other airports’ duty free shops as well as the larger Duty Free Philippines standalone store near Terminal 1. It is very convenient though for the usual p
I took the first flight out of Iloilo back to Manila during a recent trip to the city. I also took an opportunity to take some pictures of the terminal including the part when we lined up to enter the terminal. Security was strict (as is necessary for such facilities) so there was a single line to control the inflow of passengers. There’s nothing really new for departures except a few new cafes inside the pre-departure area. The shops prior to the final security check were still closed at the time so I could not do some final pasalubong shopping. I can only imagine that passengers directly bound for international destinations would need to pass through the immigration booths at the terminal.
Queue of passengers entering the terminal – there was a single file for the initial inspection by airport security. Well-wishers are not allowed inside the airport unless there is prior clearance from the airport authorities.
North wing pre-departure area – the shops were already open early in the morning
A glance back to the center of the terminal where passengers emerge from the final security check.
Passengers catching an NBA post-game interview while waiting for the boarding call.
We were initially assigned to board at Gate 3 of the airport terminal.
Cafe near Gate 3 that is also designated as a smoking area.
Later, we were transferred to Gate 5 at the other end of the terminal.
Waiting passengers seated facing Gate 5. There are also cafes and fast food line along this terminal wing.
Designated enclosed smoking area near Gate 5.
Fellow passengers walking on the bridge towards our aircraft.
The first flight out of Iloilo to Manila is via Cebu Pacific. The second flight is via Philippine Airlines whose plane is shown unloading baggage as it arrived as we were boarding our aircraft.
View inside the tube as we proceeded to board our aircraft.
I had wanted to post about airports again but the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan and the continuing efforts for relief in places affected by the typhoon made me hesitate a bit from doing “business as usual” writing. The past few days though I have seen a demand for information on NAIA Terminal 3 and so I decided to complete an unfinished draft on T3 to add on the information out there on shopping and eating/drinking at T3 once the passengers have passed through the final security check and proceeded towards their respective gates for pre-boarding.
We were at Ninoy Aquino International Airport’s Terminal 3 last month for a flight to Iloilo. I took some new photos to come up with an update to the pictures I’ve posted in the past on T3.
There are many souvenir shops at NAIA T3 including those selling flip flop sandals, shirts, swimwear, electronics, luggage and various accessories.
There seems to be a lot more options for eating or perhaps sipping a hot cup of coffee or tea while waiting for your boarding call.
There’s a shop selling eye wear (sunglasses anyone?), electric razors and watches.
A popular souvenir shop for shirts is Islands Souvenirs. They have shops or stalls all around the country with each basically selling only designs attributed to the city or island where the shop is set-up. That means Cebu shops/stalls basically sell Cebu-themed shirts, Iloilo shops/stalls sell Iloilo-themed merchandise, and so on. The shirts they sell are of very good quality and don’t shrink after you wash them. I have quite a number of shirts (I used to collect them from my travels.) so I can attest to the quality of their products.
“Pondohan” translates into neighborhood “store” or “shop.” It is also more commonly called “sari-sari” store with the term “sari-sari” meaning “variety” and referring to the merchandise being sold at the store.
This stall offers quick meals as well as pasalubong in the form of their take on popular kakanin or rice cakes or puddings. Friends say they also have good coffee.
Colleagues of mine having a quick meal before our morning flight to Iloilo. Beside them are directional and information signs of PAL and Ceb Pac.
We found that there were already other shops and cafes/eateries along the way to the boarding gates at one end of the terminal. I guess with more passengers now using T3, there is also more demand for shops and options for eating at the airport’s pre-boarding areas (i.e., near the gates of this linear terminal building).
NAIA’s Terminal 1 recently reclaimed the unenviable title of worst airport in the world. While I have seen worse airports in the country, NAIA happens to be the country’s main gateway to the world. Thus, there are a lot of expectations regarding the airport including the facilities and most importantly, the quality of services provided to passengers at the terminals. Just this week, NAIA’s radar had to go through maintenance works and it was shut down for a few days. The shutdown meant air traffic had to be managed manually. The result was quite disastrous to airlines schedules and a lot of flights were delayed or cancelled, thereby costing a lot of people a lot of money.
One feature of international airport terminals are the shops. Most major terminals would have the typical duty free shops selling chocolates, alcohol, and luxury brand items. Many terminals would have shops selling specific merchandise or local products that are popular or associated for that country like electronics, jewelry, fabrics and various crafts. Local crafts are stuff that foreign travelers would probably look for in airports especially for last minute souvenir shopping. If the price is reasonable, then I would assume that such products will sell quite decently at airports.
In the case of NAIA, there are more handicrafts stores at Terminal 1, which serves most international airlines flying to Manila. The larger handicrafts stores are located at the end of the corridor in between the entrances to the two main wings of the terminal and are featured in this post.
Arts and handicrafts stores sell mainly local or Philippine-made goods. I say mainly because I’ve seen souvenirs like miniature or toy jeepneys and tricycles that are actually made in China.
Souvenir shops are mostly open early in the morning except a few like this curiously named “Multi-gift” boutique.
I like this shop “Children of Maisog arts and crafts.” I think their products are authentic and of high quality. Also, and perhaps most importantly, the prices are not pang-airport or pang-turista (for tourists). They are comparable to those in the malls or even some trade fairs.