naia.5th.worst

Malacañang agrees NAIA needs rehabilitation: “NAIA has been around for 30 years...there is only so much you can do in the sense of rehabilitation,” it says.


MANILA — The Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 1 topped the list of the world’s worst airports for 2011 on “The Guide to Sleeping in Airports,” a site that annually assesses the quality of the world’s airports.

NAIA-1’s ratings rose from the site’s 2010 assessment that it was the world’s 5th worst airport and the worst only in Asia.

“Why? You will not be allowed to enter the terminal until three hours prior to your flight,” the site said, adding that NAIA-1 “is in bad shape.”

“Earlier this year, some bad press regarding the state of the airport made airport officials promise to clean its Terminal 1 toilets and provide running water and soap. Imagine...they actually had to ‘promise’ to offer this!” the site said.

“The Guide to Sleeping in Airports” also pointed out problems that recently plagued NAIA-1, including the collapse of its Bay 7 ceiling in May.

The woes of NAIA-1 go beyond poor facilities, the site pointed out.

“Forget about sleeping in this airport! You will not want to even close your eyes here! Bribery and theft exist,” said the online guide, whose suggestion for budget travelers is to sleep in airports.

“Airport taxes are collected,” the site explained, “but the money does not seem to go towards the betterment of the airport.

Document holders have been told their papers are not correct, but a fee of x amount should clear up the matter.”

It noted, however, that tourists “have better luck” in terms of facilities at Terminal 3.

But the site also cautioned that NAIA-3 “has been deemed structurally flawed.”

It did not elaborate.

NAIA’s poor ranking received media attention at a time when a blog calling Manila “a dump” was going viral in the Philippines.

The negative review of Manila came from Englishman Geoffrey James Quartermain Bastin, who claimed he has worked “on-and-off” in the Philippines since 1991 and tagged Manila as the “disgrace of Southeast Asia.”

The effects of such negative publicity on Philippine tourism remain to be seen, amid Tourism Secretary Ramon Jimenez’s campaign for Filipinos to sell the Philippine brand through social media.

Earlier, Jimenez said the Philippines is not difficult to sell.

“This is the most beautiful country in the world. One of the ten most beautiful countries in the world. There is no reason we won’t succeed,” he noted.

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