How not to starve in NAIA

After last month’s siomai horror story in NAIA, I made a plan not to starve while waiting in the airport.
Jeroen and I had a 12:25 noon flight to Hong Kong. Which means we would have to leave the house at 10 AM.
Since I don’t eat breakfast and I don’t eat in the plane, I knew I should eat before boarding the plane.
We all know there are no decent food choices in NAIA, so I made a quick decision to sneak in Jollibee inside my bag.
I got the idea from a Japanese tourist, who my sister and I saw hand-carrying a bag of Max’s fried chicken in NAIA in 2011.

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Drawing: Ana Zamora

We passed by a Jollibee drive-thru near the airport—so near there was no time left to eat it in the car.
So I snuck it in my bag. It passed through all the X-rays.
Thirty minutes later, I was sitting in a secluded corner of the Cathay Pacific first class lounge (less tao).

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I transfered the contents to normal plates and threw out all evidence of Jollibee packaging.
Thank God nobody saw and nobody cared.

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Unfortunately no regular Coke in the lounge, so I had to step out and buy one.
I found some young Korean tourists looking around in the pathetic siomai booth and felt sorry and embarrassed for them.
When oh when will NAIA have decent food?
P.S. This is not a sponsored post by Jollibee. Next time I will probably sneak in McDonald’s.

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  • http://twitter.com/Megushtah Meg Bagadion

    I had a flight to catch in NAIA Terminal 1 in 2009. It was a 2AM flight so I was really in need of a midnight snack at the airport. I bought this really sad cheesedog sandwich with few grated cheese and mayonnaise. That was the last thing I ate before i got seriously food poisoned for a week. I had to go to the toilet every 30 minutes. It ruined my whole trip. I hated NAIA for selling those sandwiches and have never trusted any airport cafe here ever since. :(

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  • http://profile.yahoo.com/WZ5MZ56TNGB5ZQ7ZHTELCOV7QE Marita C.

    cecile how can you say that the food in cathay pacific lounge is not edible.
    we love the assortment of sandwiches (tuna my daughters fave)
    the nuts, they have diff kind of sodas, beer, and the lugaw taste great.
    sanay ka kasi sa fast food e.
        

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    CVS Reply:

    here in manila?

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003518807529 Chichi YS

    Parusa talaga ang NAIA 1!
    Puro instant noodles ang tinda!

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  • http://twitter.com/mmkho Marvy Kho

     no decent place to eat @ naia2 also

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  • gus mako

    If and when they finish NAIA3, some of the larger airlines like CP may finally move there.

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  • gus mako

    It is ironic because Filipino food is really quite delicious
    when made and presented right. There should be a variety of recognisable fast
    food outlets in the airport for convenience and familiarity (for the outbound
    tourists). But it is also a great opportunity to present Filipino foods to the
    tourists on their way home to remember their visit by, as well as giving
    outbound Filipinos their last Filipino meal before departing for foreign lands.

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  • Kaie Gan

    NAIA 1 for some strange reason has the least appetizing food choices available. :P
    Kung may CafeFrance, Ya Kun Kaya Toast, or even a 7-11 (which now sells fruit, salads, etc–even balut/penoy ;) maybe it would be a bit more bearable (food wise) and those old-timey concessionaires will be forced to up their game and improve their food.

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  • MICHELLE MUNOZ

    i remember, dati meron roaming jollibee crew sa check-in area, puwede ka mag-order ta’s dedeliver nila.  that was 7 years ago.  i guess wala na yun ngayon.

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    theicecrumbs Reply:

    Meron pa rin. :)

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  • MICHELLE MUNOZ

    :p

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=545961919 Anette Aas

    Kulit! lol :) We did almost the same thing recently. Me and my boyfriend are eating healthier now so we bring brown rice and leave the white rice behind.

    I do agree that food at NAIA is trully disappointing. No decent food anywhere and it’s so pricey as well. O_o

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  • http://twitter.com/yanguardino Yan Guardino

    oh my siomai horror storry? explain pls

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  • http://monique-ignacio.blogspot.com/ Girlgolfing

    I too wish there was decent food in NAIA.   Fortunately, the airlines i take have pretty decent food so i normally can wait it out until after take off. :-)

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  • Eshra Capery

    When you’re starving try watching this: http://www.wheniescape.net/2013/01/goodbye-gossip-girl.html :)

    You won’t get bored with it. :)

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1634203402 Carmen Watkins

    cool:)!!!!! sneaking in jollibee…no decent food at NAIA—well obviously not so cool:(
    when will they ever do something about this?

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  • http://profile.yahoo.com/WIPYZT7QTKPKCSWJNALWI3JL5E Rico

    Naaliw ako sa post na to Miss C! Pak na Pak ang chicken!!!! 

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  • http://twitter.com/celeryaganon celery aganon

    Ang tanong ko, may food ba sa lounge ng Cathay? :) 

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    CVS Reply:

    hindi edible

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  • http://www.mommyroxi.com Roxi Santiago

    Oh I didn’t know you could bring in food from outside (except if it’s for a baby) for consumption while waiting for your flight. Next time nga I’ll bring na lang. Ridiculously priced ang food sa NAIA. The iced coffee I bought the last time we traveled was pretty bad too. Jollibee or McDonald’s should really put up shop inside the terminal. Bakit sa waiting area ng arrivals meron, sa loob wala.

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  • http://www.pinkmagaline.com/ Mrs. Kolca

    Panalo ang chicken joy! :)

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  • Kalo Kacious

    Nagutom tuloy ako at nagcrave ng Jollibee. I wish we have Jollibee in Sydney. 

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  • Joey Melliza

    it’s a shame kasi manila has a lot of good eating options

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  • Ana Maria Zamora

    LOL!!! I LOVETT!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  • http://profile.yahoo.com/LZM2TCRHTQVWTFNK6GOO7N4EIA luz

    yeah even the sandwiches at Bo’s coffee inside the naia1 look tired and aging. lol. i only order americano that time. And i sneaked in my pulvoron and macaroons from outside to whilst away my hunger. Such is life inside the Naia 1 ..All  foreigners are looking for something decent to eat. Not even an outlet for charging your cellphones, you should provide your own connecting outlet.anobayan!

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  • marniii

    Ano ba yan what junk is this, is this how you eat and teach/show your kids how to eat? Jollibee fried chicken and rice, what nutritional value do you get from that? No wonder some kids don’t know how to eat, because they simply follow what their own parents eat.

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    Expat Mommy Reply:

    judgmental much?  clearly this food wasn’t served at home. This was the food CVS preferred given the circumstances. What do you expect pakbet? And have you never ever tried jollibee in your entire life?

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    marniii Reply:

    Come on, it’s not really the ONLY food available or the ONLY place to get food. You can make your own or buy somewhere else. Convenience and whatever excuses you have is not enough to convince me to feed myself with this junk. Clearly this was a choice by the author and as the old adage goes, you are what you eat.  We have choices and we can educate ourselves some more about what we shove in our mouths, where it came from, what’s it really made of. Or you can simply just not care. Take your pick. This could be a good start just my 2 cents – http://thechalkboardmag.com/category/food-nutrition/superfood-spotlights

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    neutralistic Reply:

    So you eat healthy all the time, in whatever circumstance. You don’t have to rub it in our faces. We have the capacity and capability to eat healthy too, you know. Don’t have a fit over it. :) Smile and continue to eat healthy!

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    Expat Mommy Reply:

    nobody is trying to convince you of anything. live and let live :)

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    LaceMonster Reply:

    You choose not to eat “junk” as you put it, we respect that. At the same time, I think it’s not your place to stand on a soapbox and berate everyone who doesn’t live up to your super healthy lifestyle. You may not agree with others’ decisions to eat fast-food or anything else that is unhealthy, but again this is not your choice to make unless you are the one feeding them. Just because CVS eats at Jollibee doesn’t mean that’s the only stuff she eats.

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    dontaskmetosmile Reply:

    Likewise, Jollibee isn’t the ONLY food Cecile eats, isn’t the ONLY place she gets her food from. If you had insight to what Cecile eats for every meal, every day, what she feeds to her boys, then go ahead. Judge away. But you’re basing your opinion and harsh judgement on what’s on this post, and maybe on what’s on this blog, her Instagram, and that clearly isn’t enough to say that this is how she “teaches her kids to eat”, and that Jollibee and “junk” is all what her and family’s diet is about.

    “You are what you eat” you say. True. But I say, “You are what you post on comment boards.” So what does that make you?

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    Jude Lopez Mancuyas Reply:

    A grumpy goat. LOL

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    Chinabird Reply:

    Dami mo sinabi!!! BARANGAY THAT WAY ———————->

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    Zarah Hernaez Reply:

    Diyosmio..nobody’s trying to convince you to eat Jollibee..OA. I know a lot of pa healthy people who have high blood pressure because they stress over what they eat and what other people eat..or what simple thing they bring to the airport to tide them over.

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    Treena Reply:

    ganito ba ang nangyayari sa utak kapag masyadong concern sa nutritional value sa bawat pagkain na isusubo?
    wag na lang marniiii. kaw na lang ang magpaka concern sa nutritional value ek mo, may epek sa utak eh! di bale na lang.

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    gus mako Reply:

    Great link by the way.

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    CVS Reply:

    lol again.

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    Ana Maria Zamora Reply:

     Wow, galit ka ‘teh? :-))

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    marniii Reply:

    I’d say disappointed. 

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    neutralistic Reply:

    I’d say…you are papansin.

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    Jude Lopez Mancuyas Reply:

    Wow for the nutritional benefit I get from a Jollibee chicken for a trip from Manila to Hong Kong, I get a dressing down like this? OA, OA, at higit sa lahat, OA.

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    Razielle Ambat-Bayas Reply:

    You can catch more flies with honey than vinegar ;)

    Still, thank you for the link you posted. My body is fueled with junk :))) I’m only trying to eat healthy now. 

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    teadrinker Reply:

    The issue here is about the lack of food choices at NAIA 1, not the lack of nutritional value in her food choice.

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    CVS Reply:

    lol. yes.

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    Anette Aas Reply:

    Does this really matter? She can eat whatever she wanna eat. Besides, you’re way off topic anyways.

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    gus mako Reply:

    I eat very healthy as well but for me it doesn’t need to be
    every meal/365 days a year. Occasionally I allow myself to eat something not so
    healthy simply because it is convenient and just because I want the taste of
    something. I think most people strive to eat healthy but I think it is also
    psychologically healthy to go off the regimented way of eating once in a
    while. 

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    iarra Reply:

    okayyy. kalma naman dyan.

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    Chichi YS Reply:

    Para sumaya ka – eh di magbaon ka ng healthy food mo at pikchuran mo rin! 
    To each his own!
    Next time ako may baon na lechon + Mang Tomas!
    O, walang basagan ng trip! nyehehe!

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    CVS Reply:

    “walang basagan ng trip.” I love that!

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    Allen N Bessie Reply:

    Thanks Ms. Cecile
    I got that from my friend Obbie N.

    eto pa: ” ALELI ”  for maid ( aka ALILA )
    with endearment yan ha, and at least sosyal si Inday! ;-)  
    ChiChi YS

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/NV25ZPWMBDYFXEYR3AWQ43ZS5E Hein S

    NAIA, what a SHAME.

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  • http://twitter.com/peejayreyes PJ Reyes

    since 9-11, airports have disallowed/restricted bringing food from outside eateries/restaurants in to the airport when checking in for a flight, likewise no bringing of food from outside into the aircraft.  you can only purchase from food outlets within the premises of the airport as these have been “cleared” by airport security. same ruling applied when they restricted bottled waters.

    plus, the food outlets inside the airport would lose income if airports allowed it.

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    Hein S Reply:

    Not True.  I always bring food into the airport before a flight.

    CVS just proved you can.

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    dontaskmetosmile Reply:

    It depends on the food. If it’s liquid or gel-based (like a jar of caramel sauce or a Snack Pack pudding cup) then you won’t be allowed to bring it in under the LAG restrictions. All other foods are allowed, unless of course a certain airport/country has restrictions. I’ve been able to handcarry all kinds of food items from Tita Paring’s Suman Latik to Conti’s cheese puffs to Pierre Herme macarons with no problem at all.

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    jabez Reply:

    I always bring food and had no issues with it. I was able to bring Chef Tony’s popcorn, some Reno liver spread and some chips all in my handcarry luggage.

    And how would these outlets lose income if they are overpriced? I say they are bordering to being gahaman.

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    luz Reply:

    i miss chef tony’s..hayz

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    CVS Reply:

    what’s gahaman?

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    KUMAGCOW Reply:

     Gahaman is greedy in tagalog :))

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    Faith Reply:

    Overly greedy.

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    teddybern Reply:

    gahaman is greedy in tagalog, Ms. C

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    singapoorboy Reply:

    gahaman is greedy. :)

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    manj112 Reply:

    Not true, only food that’s in liquid or gel form will not be cleared by security. I’ve been bringing food in my trips from Manila to Japan, no one’s ever told me to get rid of them.

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  • http://straypusiket.com/ Tin Zablan (straypusiket)

    A lot of decent fast food chains are available in NAIA 3 – Yellow cab,  Shakey’s, Kenny Rogers just to name a few. And some few coffee shops before the boarding area.  Unfortunately, only a few foreigners get to use that airport. Sigh.

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    jabez Reply:

    i actually never knew the reason behind why we cannot move international flights (or even just some if capacity is the issue) to NAIA 3.

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    Eina KHBVSKCNMZ Reply:

    Saw an article dated April 2012 stating that 3 international airlines would be moving to NAIA 3 in 2013, but they’ve been saying stuff like that for years so who knows… Have previously heard that airlines refuse to transfer because the fees are higher at NAIA 3 which is somewhat confusing since Cebu Pacific, which is a budget airline, can afford it, but then again they probably get a better rate.

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    Tin Zablan (straypusiket) Reply:

    That would be Delta Airways, Cathay Pacific and Emirates. Although back in 2010, there have been news reports regarding Cathay Pacific transferring to NAIA 3. Ano kayang nangyari?!?  Sana this time totoo na.

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    CVS Reply:

    i have never stepped inside NAIA 3. when can I ever??? 

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    luz Reply:

    if you book Cebu pac.

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    Tin Zablan (straypusiket) Reply:

     non-passengers are allowed inside NAIA 3. =)
    or… if you have the courage to take smaller planes on your way to HK or SG (or other Asian countries). Hehe.

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    Dianne Ledesma Reply:

    Try flying ANA (Star Alliance) to Japan next time. They are the only foreign airline that currently uses NAIA3. Yes, the food outlets in the pre-departure area are relatively decent compared to  NAIA1. They even have National Bookstore inside. Outside, they have a 7-11 and Jollibee on the second floor.

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    First Wives Club Reply:

    You don’t have to be a passenger flying out of manila to enter NAIA 3. I say, field trip! LOL! I was just there yesterday to see someone off. They actually have more than just fastfood. :) Good concessionaires! Maybe PL can open a branch there? Looks like management is different from that of NAIA 1 and 2.

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    Chichi YS Reply:

    Fly ANA going to Japan. They use NAIA 3.  
     

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  • Gratches

    Ms. C, e di nangamoy bag mo?

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    CVS Reply:

    nope :)

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    Topaz Horizon Reply:

    Whaaaat? Wala ng Langhap Sarap???

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  • http://twitter.com/peejayreyes PJ Reyes

    that’s true! there’s no decent eating place in NAIA T1.

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  • http://twitter.com/lowcarbpinay dee bourret

    Bawal ba ang food sa loob?

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    loladaisydukes Reply:

    Not at all haha

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