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Texas Trip – Day 1, Part 2

Texas Trip – Day 1, Part 2


[smartads] If you recall I left off letting you know that we ran into a big problem when we got to the Cebu Pacific counter in Tacloban.  The problem was that we bought a one way ticket instead of a round trip ticket.  The airline was looking for a return trip ticket or a follow on flight and we don’t have one.  Of course since the Space A is not scheduled or even a guarantee, we can’t have one.  A young lady was checking into it for us.  She said that they have never encountered a problem like this before and her main concern was that they would not allow us to leave when we got to Manila without having that additional ticket.  It’s a good thing that our flight from here was delayed for about an hour or we would not have made it.

At 6:40pm, after about an hour and a half of waiting for things to work out, we finally got our boarding passes.  They had copies of our passports and military IDs now so I guess that ended up being enough to satisfy them.  To make sure we did not have a problem in Manila, they also gave us our boarding passes for the Manila to Seoul portion of the trip.  That’s good for me, one less thing to have to worry about.

Around about 7:00pm we boarded the plane.  We had seats 31E and 31F.  They were, supposedly, the only seats in that row, but that wasn’t true.  It was seats D, E and F.  As it turns out, that was good.  I guess they didn’t know there were 3 seats so they never assigned anyone to that seat.  That means that Lita got to lay down during the flight.  It was only about an hour and 15 minute flight to Manila, but she laid down anyway.  Something else I noticed pretty quickly was that the seat belt on the plane now fit me, without having to get out the belt extension like the last couple of times.

Sports Desktop Wallpaper

I’m going to have to talk to someone, somewhere about finding a way to avoid the problem we had in Tacloban.  I know I will be sure to print out any e-mail I receive from the AMC terminal and bring that along with us.  Of course I’ll have to get a printer first.  Has anyone else living here in the Philippines encountered this problem?  I believe that it does not exactly say that a follow on or return ticket is necessary in the by-laws of the airline,  but it is interpreted that way.  I have read that by-law once and will do so again.  When I get my printer, I will print it out and be sure to bring a copy of it with me when I travel, along with the e-mails from any AMC terminals, just in case.  I want to try to be covered from all angles.

We made it to Manila alive and had to wait until about 10:30pm to check in for the next flight.  Actually all we needed to know was the gate number since we already had our boarding passes.  While we waited, Lita had some Japanese spaghetti that I bought her (P210), she said she really liked it.  I ate a weird ham sandwich with lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers and lemon (P190).  It was good, but I will not order it again because it was too messy.

Later I asked and was told to head to gate 112 to await further instructions, because they have not determined the arrival gate number yet.  Before we got there, they had a place for everyone to weigh there carry on baggage.  The limit is 7 kilos and 1 of our 2 bags was right at 7 kilos.  The other was 11 kilos.  They asked us to check  the larger bag, but we didn’t really want to have to do that.  Lita took a few items of clothing from the larger bag, put it in the smaller bag and took her purse out of the larger bag too.  She was using a pouch for her purse and she could strap it around her waist.  When we weighed in the larger bag this time, it was still 9 kilos, but the supervisor was there and he decided that was close enough and let us go through.

The next stop was paying the terminal fee.  I was hoping to get to avoid this step, but I should have known better than them losing out on money.  The terminal fee is now P550 each.  That is down from P700.  I guess the recent airport problems have caused them to bring the fee down.

The next stop was customs.  The asked for our passports, boarding passes and a little sheet of paper with our flight information on it.  We didn’t have that.  The people that weighed out bags were suppose to give it to us, but I guess with all the weight problems with the bags, they forgot.  As I was returning to get one, they met me about 1/2 way and handed it to me.  Fortunately it was not busy at customs and after I filled out the simple form, we walked right up to the agent.

The next stop is security.  We put our bags on the belt and we had to take our shoes off.  I’m glad I was till wearing my flip flops.  We made it through security without incident, which was nice because we seemed to be having problems everywhere.

At  gate 112 we were told basically the same thing … standby.

It’s almost midnight and we’ve been traveling and waiting all day and we are still in the Philippines.  I definitely need to better organize our traveling.  If I would get the tickets when I  want to and not when someone else wants me to, then it would be better organized, with less waiting.  Our flight is scheduled to leave at 0115 and at 0020 they finally announced that we would be at gate #110.  Only 2 gates away, so that’s not too bad.

Of course before we left, it just had to happen one more time.  I should have known it would.  It’s in typical Filipino fashion.  What is it that happened?  Well you will have to wait until the next post to find that out.

Salamat Y’all

Interesting Knowledge

In her 1985 autobiography, Elvis and Me, Priscilla Presley recalled the lack of dining etiquette of Elvis’s buddies when she was his teenage bride: “Elvis’s father, Vernon, resented the regulars acting as if Graceland was their personal club. They’d go into the kitchen at any hour and order anything they wanted. Naturally, everyone ordered something different. The cooks worked night and day keeping them happy…. What was really outrageous was that the regulars were ordering sirloin steaks or prime ribs while Elvis usually ate hamburgers or peanut butter and banana sandwiches. I wasn’t too popular around Graceland when I started reorganizing the kitchen. I set down a policy of having one menu per meal, and anyone who didn’t like what was on it could go to a local restaurant!


  1. I don’t under stead what you guys are talking about return trips or tickets. Sounds to me like the Filipino air lines has figured out how to screw the public and make it legal. When my son worked for Northwest Airlines I would fly to Philippines with my wife as standby with no return ticket to show. When we wanted to leave we just checked in at the terminal and ask if we could get on flight. We had to wait at gate to see if seat was open. If not they would take us back through security and tell us to come back and try again. We had are passports stamped several times as leaving before we got out.

    • How long ago was that George? Maybe it had something to do with you son working for Northwest. I agree we are getting screwed, but the ticket doesn’t have to be with a Philippine airline at all, just any ticket departing the Philippines. However from what I understand, that is not exactly whatn it says in their regualtions. I need to get and print a copy of what it actually says and carry it around with me when I travel if they are contradicting themselves. Besides that, it sounds like you could use up a lot of passport pages doing it that way.

  2. Hi John,I am back in the seattle area and have caught up on your travels.Sure sounds like you didnt have a boreing trip,but at least you made it there safe and sound.I am wondering are you glad to be back in Texas or cant wait to get back to calbayog.
    You talked about having return tickets that same thing happened to
    me on a trip to Thailand i didnt know i needed my return ticket from the PI to the USA so had to get cheap ticket on return to the PI,i was told the reason for this the philippines dosnt want people stuck there.
    well i hope you and Lita are enjoying your selves and everthing is going as planned.

    • Well Wayne you’re right, our trip sure wasn’t boring. It was something adventurous almost all the way. We were always wondering if we would be able to make it. I’ll have to admit that we got lucky and didn’t have to spend too much money. It made us more aware of how Space A travel can be, so we will be better prepared next time.
      I know why they wanted the return or follow on ticket, but in our case it wasn’t feasible to get one. There must be a way to get around that easier when someone is going to be using Space A.
      We are kind of torn between whether it’s better to be here or back in Calbayog. The prices here have certainly increased, so that isn’t helpful. I think that if we had more money to enjoy ourselves better, we’d like it back here more, but since we don’t, I believe we will be happy when we return. I miss being able to do the blog everyday and it seems my rating is being affected too because I do not have constant updates. My ads don’t seem to be getting much attention either even though they are supposedly in ideal positions now. Living with others (my parents in this case) is not something we like to do either, so overall I think we will be happy when we return to Calbayog.

  3. Where did “trip” come from? Correction on the first correction: sub “PART” for “trip.” 🙁 I do hope I’ve got that straight now.

    Must be great to be back in TX again where your favorite BBQs, hot salsa, tender beef, Jalapenos… are never too far away. 🙂

    Yes, I know Tx is just a spit away from the border, that it was known as Mexican Texas between 1821 and 1836, when Tx was an integral part of Mexico. I’m surprised the rest of the state’s population do not speak [Mexican] Spanish as fluently. 🙂

    Have a great time, JJ. Lita might not want to go back to Catbalogan after being with the grandkids again!

    Keep typing!

  4. The way I understand it is when citizens of one country originate in a country other than their destination, airline policy is that they must possess an ongoing or return ticket before they can be processed. The airlines will not be held responsible for dumping anyone off in some country where they may not be able to afford to return or where they can become a burden on that country. Question: Did Lita obtain U.S. Citizenship when living in Texas?

    • That seems to be the policy yes.
      Lita has been a US citizen since 1989 and did obtain it while living in Texas.
      My point is that there needs to be something that can be used by people going to use Space A that the airline will accept. Space A is unpredicatable and buying a return ticket could, and most likely will, result in you having to change your ticket and thus costing you more money.
      Of course if there was a place to start Space A here in the Philippines, this whole thing would not be an issue.

      • Actually, I believe it should not be a mandate for the airlines to practice immigration control. Countries are just putting this off on them like it’s their (the airlines) fault that illegal immigration exists. If I want to fly one way, and my passport allows me to, then so be it. What good is a return ticket to anywhere if the individual(s) violate their stay or just refuse to leave? I see so often where expats (or travelers) are required to purchase a cheap “junk” ticket only to satisfy visa requirements. What if you wanted to just take a row boat to Borneo? The rights of individual choice and responsibility for one’s self have simply disappeared.

        • I’ve tried that argument with the airline before when we first came to the Philippines. They say they are just going by their by-laws. I’m going to read those by-laws because I heard that it doesn’t actually say what they claim it says, but it is ‘safely’ interpreted that way.

      • Hi JJ!

        Where do I find your latest blog? I’ve read trip 2 day 1; any more after that?

        How are you doing in good ole TX? How is Lita now that she’s back in the US of A? Where are you based – staying with which one of your kin?

        Thanks for such a detailed account of your outbound trip. I’m a real who-what-where-why person so that satisfies my inquisitive mind. 🙂

        Can’t wait to read your next blog.

        Keep typing !!! Salamat.

        • Oh great. I meant “Day 2 Trip 1” – is there a Day 2 Trip 2? Family reunions?

          Celsius to Fahrenheit: times 2 plus 30 is a good approximation of the conversion.

          Hasta manana [ma-NIA-na], amigo.
          Hanggan mamaya, kaibigan.
          Later, ‘gator.

          • Howdy Winda. So far I have only done 4 posts since we left. I have Day 1, Part 1 & Part 2 and Day 2, Part 1 & Part 2. I wanted to do another one today, and I probably could, except I left my notes at the flea market yesterday and they will not open again until Saturday, so I’ll have to wait. I could probably do most of it from memory, but I’m sure to forget something and I don’t want to do that. Lita is doing fine and we are getting things done that will help us once we return to the Philippines. We are staying with my parents and just got some news about how long we are able to stay today, but I’m not saying here, you’ll have to wait until I put it in a post.
            The Spanish words you don’t realy have to explain to me, I know a lot of Spanish words, more than I know Tagalog. I don’t speak Spanish, but if they talk slow enough, I get the gist of it, without Spanglish even.
            I figured the extra detail of the trip would help others if they ever had a similar experience and/or were in that part of the world. I’m glad that it “satified at least one inquisitive mind”.
            I’m not getting too many comments on the posts I’ve done since we left, so I hope that people are still reading. I know they tune in for “Philippines”, but “Texan” is still part of me too. Okay gotta go put some dishes away, Lita is too short to reach the cabinet.

Texan in the Philippines