Southern Leyte Travel Guide

Travel Nightmares: How to Survive a Delayed Flight in the Philippines

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So you just had an awesome vacation and you are ready to go home. You pack your bags. Already made plans as soon as you land and you arrive at the airport an hour prior to your domestic flight departure.

Then the worst happens. Your flight bumped up to a later time. You ask the airport maintenance what happened. They provide a general answer and ask you to wait.

You wait for an hour, for two hours. Becoming hyper sensitive when the airport announcement chime breaks through the noise of your fellow passengers’ rants and sighs of frustration.

Then you hope they announce the magical words Flight 1234 bound for Cebu is now ready for boarding.

Relatable right? As long as you live on planet earth flight delays are normal and are an extreme test of your sanity.

I was one of those “lucky” passengers whose flight was delayed when a Chinese airplane skidded in the runway of NAIA last August 2018. Check out my blog post here: Manila Solo Travel

Delayed Flight in the Philippines
6 Hour Delay Babeh

The experience in general was not pleasant. I got a total of 6 hour delayed flight.

I however, I was still fortunate. While some waited in the airport for 6 hours or more I only waited for a maximum of 2 hours.

So how did I do it? No – I’m not psychic (well I wish I was). But I followed the tips below which never really became tips up until now…

These are basic checklists for me whenever I travel and I tell you it helped me BIG TIME when it came to that 6 hour delayed flight last month.

Thus sharing with you these recommendations which are pretty easy and expected but hey when you’re preoccupied with your travel itineraries we sometimes forget about these basics.

Surviving a Delayed Flight in the Philippines Tip 1: Register on your airlines’ mobile app.

Now all major airlines already have a mobile platform. For most of us we download the app to ensure we get the best deals on our next destinations most especially when the airlines organize a Promo Fair.

Delayed Flight in the Philippines


However, these mobile apps can not only help you with booking your PISO fair flight it can also notify you of delays and change of flight schedules.

In my recent flight to Manila I was notified whenever there were changes on my flight plan.

I got a message in the app and the email address I linked to the app like 4 times. Yes I unfortunately got reschedule 4 hours from my original schedule and 2 hours when I was already in the airport.

Now I know these airlines are not the best at being consistent with this service but hey it does not hurt to actually download the app and increase the chances of knowing flight delays, right?  

Plus it does not consume too much of your data nor your phone storage .

Surviving a Delayed Flight in the Philippines Tip 2: Check your email 48-24 hours prior to your Departure for any flight changes

Now checking my emails prior to my scheduled flights is a life saver for me. As mentioned in tip # 1 Airlines notify you both in your mobile app and your nominated email.

So it helps to check your email a night before your flight to ensure everything is on schedule.  

Surviving a Delayed Flight in the Philippines Tip 3: Bring Emergency Snacks

For most of us (and don’t even try denying it) Food is LIFE. We eat food when we are happy, sad, depressed, excited… Name an emotion we have a food to pair with it.

I generally am in a good mood when I have food on hand. Thus I always make sure to bring something to munch on whenever I hop on an airplane.

Now I’m not talking about bringing a buffet of food with you. Try to keep it simple and light. Like your favorite cracker, candy, chips or for the health conscious a portion of your salad.

Delayed Flight in the Philippines
Snacking it Up


It not only helps you manage your emotions from a delayed flight. It also saves you from the unnecessary expense of airport food which are a tad expensive.

Surviving a Delayed Flight in the Philippines Tip 4: Research on Establishments Near the Airport

When my flight gets delayed I usually hang out at a coffee shop or the mall nearest to the airport. As a traveler I want to maximize my time in the new place.

Thus I always google the establishments that are near the airport of my chosen destination beforehand. I usually hang out at coffee shops that are unique to the place while waiting for my boarding time.

While waiting for my delayed flight in the philippines
Food Finds in Manila

It gives me additional hours of exploring the place and I don’t have to sit down at an airport bench and people watch (although people watching can be fun sometimes) .

Surviving a Delayed Flight in the Philippines Tip 5: Charge up your Electronic devices

Flight delays can not only drain your energy it will also drain the batteries of your gadget. Thus always make sure to keep them fully charged before heading to the airport.

You would never know how long the flight delay would be. Thus having a gadget to tinker with while waiting for boarding can be a life saver.

Delayed flight in the philippines
Charge that phone

Plus you may never know if you’d bump in to a celebrity while on a delayed flight, so how will you to take a selfie with her / him when your cellphone/ camera battery is 1%. Right, Right?

So there we have it. My 5 tips on surviving a delayed flight in the Philippines. Well the goal is to have an on time flight schedule but hey life has a way of throwing curve balls at us at the most unexpected moments.

I hope everyone a safe, fun and on time flights in the future. But hey when your flight is delayed at least you can now handle the unpleasant experience. 

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Erik James aka Erik the Hungry Traveller is a Human Resource Ninja and at the same time a travel & food blogger. He uses his passion for the arts particularly with painting and photography to add more fun and color to his social media pages. He loves extreme adventures and does not back out on any food challenge. His passion for food and travelling started during his childhood years where he would accompany his parents to business trips around the Philippines. He currently focuses on writing blogs on solo travelling and trying out restaurants that are not your usual run of the mill places. To counter his extreme love for travelling and FOOD he also enjoys swimming and mix martial arts so that he can stay “relatively” fit and healthy. Instagram : Facebook: Email: [email protected]


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    I had this happen to me not once, not twice, but FOUR times! Not in the Philippines but other areas and it SUCKS! I am planning a trip to the Philippines right now and I want to be fully prepared for if this happens to me again. The first time was rough but the third time nearly put me off traveling because I just wasn’t prepared for it. It isn’t something you expect to happen.

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