Manila: Local Travel Info
A bustling city with a laid-back, casual nature
Internal Flights and Major International Airports in Manila
Manila is serviced by Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) for most international and internal flights. Aquino Airport has one domestic and two international terminals and is located on the border of Parañaque and Pasay cities, 7km from Manila proper and a short drive from Makati City. Diosdado Macapagal International Airport (DMIA), commonly known as Clark Airport, also serves Metro Manila and is located in Angeles city, some 85 km from Ninoy Aquino Airport. Clark is being developed as the premier gateway airport of the Philippines and is already popular for low cost/budget and regional air travel.
Getting to and from the Airport in Manila
Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAINA) is accessible by taxi from all parts of Metro Manila, via the Manila Light Rail Transit System (plus a two minute taxi ride) as well as bus and jeepney routes connecting directly to the airport. Many Manila hotels will offer taxi or private car services to NAINA. Taxis, buses and shuttle services operate from DMIA/Clark Airport to various points in Metro Manila and an Airport Railway Line is currently under construction with completion projected for 2010.
Renting Cars in Manila
It is possible to rent a car in Manila to drive for oneself, but it is also common to hire a private driver for the day (10 hours) or for short trips. Hiring a driver may be more desirable for those unused to driving in Southeast Asia. Self-drive car rental rates begin at around 30 € per day (sometimes drivers are included for a nominal fee, but do be prepared to tip them!)
To book car rental in Manila online, view our Car Hire section for Manila . We offer Ok Alpha users the latest special offers and best rates available for car hire in Manila . We advise you book your Manila hire car in advance so you can pick it up and drop it off directly at the airport.
Drivers License Requirements in Manila
Driving in Manila can be an adventure, but there are no special requirements for tourists other than possession of a valid driving license from your home country or country of residence. A Philippine driving license is required for stays of over 90 days and is easily convertible from that of another country (provided that they have an embassy in the Philippines) for a nominal fee of about 4€. The legal minimum driving age in the Philippines is 17 (16 for students with valid student ID) and traffic is on the right side of the road. Traffic in Manila can be chaotic so caution is advised, and although road signs are usually in English and regulations are similar to those in Europe and America, rules are often ignored or not enforced.
Manila by Bus
Bus service in Manila includes air-conditioned buses, cheaper non air-conditioned bus lines and the most popular and distinctive variety of bus, the jeepneys; colorful, customized vehicles originally converted from old American military jeeps. Jeepneys serve just about everywhere in Metro Manila, make frequent stops and prices start at about 0.10€ for the first 4 kilometers.
Manila by Taxi
Taxis rides in Manila are generally inexpensive and comfortable, but as with most large cities, travel times and therefore fares can vary greatly depending on traffic. Manila taxis are registered and regulated by the government, which requires that all taxicabs be white. Manila taxis are everywhere, but you may have to wait if it is raining or if you are exiting a crowded shopping mall. Keep small peso notes (50PHP) so you do not have to worry about the taxi driver not having change. Most taxis in Manila are air-conditioned, which is a welcome relief from the heat and pollution of the city. Do not get into a taxi which is not white, not metered or if there is already another passenger in the taxi. As always, exercise good judgment and caution.
Water Transport in Manila
Manila water transport consists of the Pasig River Ferry service, which operates on the Pasig River between Intramuros and Pasig City, and the Marikina Line, operating on the Marikina River between Marikina City and Makati City. The ferries are run by a private company and ticket prices range from 0.40 – 0.70€ per journey. Cabins are large, air-conditioned and feature restrooms, music and high definition television screens. Each boat holds up to 150 passengers. Water transport in Manila offers a modern, secure and interesting alternative to Manila’s often heavy road traffic.