Cebu Pacific has been bludgeoning Philippine Airlines with their very low domestic fares. In just a very short period of time, they have without a doubt taken over the reins from PAL as the undisputed domestic airline carrier of the Philippines. So much for seniority huh?
Anyway, being the domestic airline of choice is well and good but this new title brings along with it a lot of complications and unfortunately these complications resulted in really bad service for its customers. Because their fare is so low, most folks now book with Cebu Pacific. I think they have realized their slogan “It’s time every Juan flies” with their offerings. Unfotunately this slogan can also mean “It’s time every Juan suffers in the queue lines”.
I’m not sure how much has changed in a couple of months but the last time I travelled with Cebu Pacific, the queu was horrendous. Sure they’re now in NAIA 3 and there are a lot of generic (no speicifc routes) check in counters to cater to passengers, but still, the lines! Even if you come in really early for your flight, you still have to go through this very long passenger line.
Now we could hem and haw about the really bad service (or so we think) or we can all just RELAX.
Relax because well, there’s no point bursting an artery just because the lines are long. The trick is to be at the airport between 60-90 minutes before your estimated departure time. Anything earlier and you’ll burst an artery. Anything later and you’ll die of nervousness.
I’m not sure if you’ve noticed, but when a plane is due to depart within an hour, the Cebu Pacific people will open a dedicated line for that particular route. All passengers who are in queue and headed for that route are asked to transfer to that line.
This my friends is the window of opportunity.
You don’t have to be frustrated over the really long line, just be there with enough time to spare, you can queue if you like, just make sure that when the Cebu Pacific crew begins calling out for departing passengers bound for blahblah, you haul your behind and go into that line. For sure you’ll be in a very short line and you won’t be left behind by your plane.
What if you’re in the queue outside the airport? Well just tell the guard that your plane is due to depart in an hour, show them your ticket and they’ll allow you to get inside. Look for a Cebu Pacific crew and check if a line has been opened for your route and that’s it. You don’t have to camp out or anything. Just a little common sense and street smarts should do the trick.
Hope this is helpful for you harrassed passengers.