Aquino says ‘worst airport’ now looking much better

Agence France-Presse
‘It’s like I have entered a completely different airport,’ President Benigno Aquino III tells reporters as he inspects the 34-year-old NAIA 1, which is undergoing rehabilitation

LOOKING BETTER. President Benigno S. Aquino III personally inspects the operations and
security set-up at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 1 in
Pasay City on Wednesday, April 1, 2015, making sure that all security preparations were in place to ensure safe travel during the Holy Week. Photo by Ryan Lim / Malacañang Photo Bureau MANILA, Philippines – President Benigno S. Aquino III on Wednesday, April 1, hailed the renovations to the Philippines’ main international airport, expressing optimism it would soon shake off its ranking on one website as the world’s worst airport.

Almost a year after he personally apologized for the failure of air-conditioning at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 1, Aquino said the facility appeared to be completely different.

“It’s like I have entered a completely different airport,” he told reporters as he inspected the 34-year-old terminal.

Asked by reporters if the terminal would no longer be called the world’s worst, Aquino told reporters: “That’s up to you, but they even raised the ceiling.”

NAIA – named after the President’s father who was assassinated there in 1983 – topped the list of worst airports on the travel website “The Guide to Sleeping in Airports” from 2011 to 2013.

Travellers have long criticized its “dilapidated facilities,” dishonest airport workers, rude officials, and long waiting times, the website said.

However in its 2014 survey, Manila terminal improved its standing to only the 4th worst airport in the world, after Islamabad, Jeddah, and Kathmandu airports.

Speaking from the sidelines of the Turkish Airlines’ Istanbul-Manila maiden, direct flight on March 30, Manila International Airport Authority General Manager Jose Angel Honrado said that the NAIA 1 rehabilitation is eyed to be completed May this year. –