Pages Navigation Menu

SAMAR - Once you visit, you'll want SAMORE

A Ticket to Ride – Part 2

A Ticket to Ride – Part 2



So continuing from Part 1, we have decided that Guam is our best option, instead of Korea, since we don’t want to take a chance of not getting out at all.  So know my focus is on getting us from here to Guam the easiest, most economical way.

At first we were going to take a bus to Manila, then a taxi to the airport for a flight to Guam from there.  However, Lita changed her mind and wanted to just take a Grand Tour van to the Tacloban airport (Daniel_Z._Romualdez_Airport) and then a flight to Manila.  Okay so some of y’all familiar with the area are probably wondering why not just take a flight straight from Calbayog to Manila instead?  Actually there are a few reasons.  First of all I didn’t even think about it because you have to use Philippine Airlines and I already had Cebu Pacific on my mind, but that is no real excuse.  Also because the planes out of Calbayog to Manila are the very small planes and Lita doesn’t like traveling in those.  The biggest reason, and only real legit one, is that for our flight from Manila to Guam, and getting the tickets so late, there were only a few days left that had the lower prices.  There were no flights leaving Calbayog to Manila that we could take and not have to wait for over a day at the airport or get a hotel room.  I’ve done that before and I don’t like it.  It’s bad enough that the flight I did get we have to wait almost 7 hours, but as I said, we had to buy the tickets late and we could not be so picky.  But I got what I thought was best for us.


Sky Horizon ticket agent


So our flight from Tacloban leaves at 1345 (1:45pm) and arrives in Manila at 1455 (2:55pm), so we need to be at the airport around noon.  The trip from here to Tacloban is about 5 hours and we plan to leave here around 5am.  That should give us plenty of time.  Sometimes, if there are enough people going, the Grand Tour van will make a special stop at the Tacloban airport.  Even though that would mean we have to hang around the airport an extra couple of hours, we would want to do that.  At this time I’m not sure what we would do for those 2 hours if the van does not go to the airport.  Most likely if the van is not going there, we will make our way to the airport somehow, probably a tricycle, although I think a jeepney would be less expensive, and just hang around there anyway.  At least we’d be there.  I will get the phone numbers for the relatives in Tacloban put in my phone before we go, just in case.  Of course that means I’d also have to get a rare load for the phone, just in case.   I’ll use part of that load to test back here to Calbayog when we get to Tacloban and Manila.

Our flight from Manila to Guam via United Airlines, leaves at 2145 (9:45pm) and arrives at 0535 (5:35am) 23 Aug Guam time.  It’s only a 4 hour flight, but it’s going to take us 5 hours and 50 minutes.  Buying the tickets late limited our options and the only flight for the lower fare left was this one.  It’s okay though because I’ll be able to say that I was in Koror Palau.  We have a 50 minutes stop over there.  I had to look the place up to know where it was.  Since Palau is out of the way a bit, south, Google map of Palau in relation to The Philippines and Guam, it adds the extra hour in there.


 Sky Horizon next door shop


Once we get to Guam, things are still not completely clear as to what we will do at this time.  I’ve been trying to get lodging reservations on base, but all my e-mails come back undeliverable, using both Yahoo and Google.  I contacted the Guam RAO and they said that they have the same e-mail address as I do, but will call them to see if there is another or what else I can try.  I tried using the DOD Lodging website, but it doesn’t let me select for room availability.  I also asked them about the best way to get from the airport to the base.  I’m hoping there is a shuttle.  I hear that the taxis are pretty expensive. 

I suppose it’s all part of the adventure, but when you can’t afford to waste the money, you should still try to save as much as possible.  Less expensive is usually good, but you have to take into account the convenience or inconvenience.  Sometimes I don’t mind paying ‘a little’ more for convenience, but I’ll put up with the inconvenience if it’s too much more.


I have some more links that I think should be spread around.  These are for all the military people (active, retired and dependents).  Thanks George Bowdler for bringing the first one to my attention:

Also: (for making lodging reservations on Andersen AFB Guam)

Salamat Y’all




  1. Guam is a lovely island and I am sure you will enjoy it. A bit cumbersome though, like most of the states public transportation is kind of sparse, if you don’t have a car your screwed. And yes Taxis are not cheap because they cater to the Japanese tourists. They have a really, I mean really nice USO but its downtown and not walking distance from the airport. I did not see a USO at the airport though. The bases are really nice, but as you can see from the map one is at each end of the island and the airport is smack in the middle lolol. And when the speed limit on the whole island is only 35 MPH it takes awhile to get around.

    UJ, when are you going to travel again? I have a niece who works at the Guam airport and I can ask her about bus schedules and if there are military shuttle buses etc. Also, have you tried the Navy lodge web page? I believe that they have an online booking thingy. I know you are Air Force but you might have to lower yourself lolol ;).

    • Howdy Scott. I hope we do enjoy Guam, we will be there for at least a weekend, maybe longer depending on Space A. That USO is apparently next to or maybe even in a hotel there. I think the name of the hotel is Royal Orchard. I’ve looked at so many hotels there recently it’s hard to remember. I did notice the bad setup of the bases and the airport. Why they don’t have hotels closer to the base I guess I’ll find out when I get there.
      We are leaving here on 22 Aug and arriving via United Airlines flight UA192T on 23 Aug at 0535. I would love for you to find out that information for me. It’s something that I’ve been trying to do through the internet and e-mails, but I’m not having any good luck with it. It would sure make things with my wife go smoother. She is so worried we will run out of money with the expensive hotels and transportation.
      As for staying in Navy lodging, well I have lowered myself to doing that before and don’t mind doing it again. I have tried to get information through the DOD website, but it does not work for Guam correctly, at least not from here. If you could impose on your niece to find out if she can try to make a reservation for us, that would be super outstanding, but maybe too much trouble. If she knows of a better e-mail then the DOD one or the 36th Services Sq e-mail (it didn’t work either), then that would be something I could try to get done before we leave. I would much rather stay on a base, especially if there is a shuttle between the 2 bases.
      Thanks for the offer Scott, it sure would be greatly appreciated.

      • Maybe I should just try to rent a car while there? Maybe rent it on base since the last place we plan to be before we leave is on base anyway. Something to think about.

        • UJ,

          I’m your fellow Texan who lives off and on in Baybay. Has the Tocloban airport recovered completely from the typhoon? To be honest I always found the Tocloban airport a very dull place , but I guess they weren’t trying to please me. lol

          BTW one of the bloodiest battles in wwii was fought at Palau. Hope you enjoy your trip and your stay in Texas. If you get to Houston send me an e-mail. Take care.


          • Rickey. I don’t know if it has recovered “completely”, but I’m told they are having flights out of there again. That’s another reason why we are going through Tacloban, so we can see how things are coming along. Personally I have not been down that way since the typhoon, so this trip should be a real eye opener to me.
            I doubt we will get anywhere near Houston, but you never know.
            P.S. I’m glad that battle is over, I don’t want to get in the middle of it.

Texan in the Philippines