Express Week

‘Oplan Lakbay Pasko 2015’ to ensure hassle-free flights

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The Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) is coordinating with airline companies, a private company and government agencies operating at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia) to ensure smooth and “hassle-free” operations during the holidays.

The MIAA is set to launch its proactive operation plan “Oplan Lakbay Pasko 2015” next week in anticipation of the surge of passengers this Christmas season.

Under the plan, MIAA, in cooperation with different airlines, will deploy additional airline personnel, particularly at check-in counters in all terminals, to accommodate passengers from Dec. 15 to Jan. 5.

Government agencies operating at the airport, including the Office for Transportation Security and the Bureaus of Customs, Immigration and Quarantine have also been directed to deploy more personnel, MIAA senior assistant manager Vicente Guerzon Jr. told the Inquirer in a phone interview.

Road traffic which is expected to worsen later this month, will also be one of MIAA’s priorities, he said.

According to Guerzon, they are coordinating with DMCI Holdings Inc., the contractor of the 7-kilometer Naia Expressway, to implement measures to reduce traffic on roads leading to the terminal, in coordination with the Airport Police Department, the Aviation Security Group of the Philippine National Police, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and the local governments of Parañaque and Pasay cities.

“DMCI promised to clear up the construction site near the terminal as soon as possible. However, the construction of the expressway shall still continue,” he said.

The MMDA, for its part, will station traffic enforcers along major roads leading to the terminals to direct vehicle flow, particularly around Terminal 3, where traffic has been heavy due to the construction of the expressway.

Should passengers be unable to reach their assigned terminal due to heavy traffic, they should go to the nearest terminal and take the airport shuttle bus which will transport them to their assigned terminals.

Meanwhile, MIAA General Manager Jose Angel Honrado said that they were expecting an increase in passengers by roughly 10 percent compared to last year. He stressed, however, that they “have prepared accordingly to make sure that traveling will be as hassle-free as possible.”

In December 2014, passenger arrivals reached 1,668,326 while departures totaled 1,469,362, according to MIAA records.

Airport authorities have also posted tarpaulins and distributed flyers reminding passengers not to bring prohibited items such as firearms or bullets.

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