Transport execs laud NAIA delisting from worst airports list

MANILA — Transport officials welcomed Ninoy Aquino International Airport’s (NAIA) exclusion from the list of the worst airports in the world.

“Work, work, work lang. While it is good that we are not listed among the worst, let us work even harder to be included amongst the best,” Transportation Secretary Tugade said in a statement Wednesday.

“We should be careful that we do not backslide. The show must go on — and better!” he added.

Tugade said this development is just the beginning of more improvements as he reminded DOTr employees not to be complacent as there are many things yet to be done and improved at the NAIA.

Meanwhile, Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) General Manager Ed Monreal said such feat is a “fruit of their hard work.”

In a survey released by “The Guide To Sleeping in Airports” in October 2016, NAIA placed 5th in the list of the world’s worst airports.

Prior to this, NAIA earned the ‘world’s worst airport’ title from 2011 to 2013. In 2014, it landed in the 4th place. It was not included in the top 10 worst airports in the world in 2015, but landed 8th worst airport in Asia.

This was attributed to the issue of “laglag-bala”, which was among the main complaints of travelers especially by OFWs, but was addressed during the first 100 days of the Duterte administration.

Meanwhile, four Philippine airports again joined the list of the top 25 best airports in Asia for this year, 2017. These are the Iloilo International Airport, Mactan-Cebu International Airport, Clark International Airport, and Davao International Airport.

Among the reforms implemented in the NAIA during the Duterte Administration were the restriction on general aviation to prioritize commercial flights and reduce flight delays; the imposition of the five-minute rule [where pilots who declare they are ready to take off must depart within the prescribed time or they would be put back at the back of the queue] to reduce flight delays and instill discipline among airlines; the construction of Rapid Exit Taxiways to allow an aircraft to leave the runway at higher speed and increase flight movements; provision of cleaner toilets additional seats, free Wi-Fi, and Well-Wishers’ Area.

Regular taxis were also allowed to queue and pick-up passengers at designated points in NAIA terminals to address shortage of taxi units servicing passengers.

Since the start of the Duterte administration, there has been no single incident of a passenger missing a flight for possessing a bullet.

“We are now focusing on how to eliminate pilferage made by some unscrupulous airport workers and soon we will arrest them and put them behind bars,” Monreal added. Otto Osorio/