This Airport Guide describes the arrival experience for passengers landing at Boracay Airport (also known as Caticlan Airport), the main domestic gateway for the eponymous resort island in the central Philippines.
Post last updated from first-hand experience : 03 October 2022 (based on a 10 September 2022 arrival)
Post last updated using other information : 03 October 2022
NOTE: This Airport Guide should only be used for general planning and reference purposes. Details may change at any moment and without prior notice.
In this post, we’ll go through the arrival process at Boracay Airport (IATA code: MPH) – also known as Caticlan Airport or (far less commonly) Godofredo P. Ramos Airport.
The departure process is covered in two separate Airport Guides. The first part covers check-in to outbound security, whilst the second part describes the terminal’s passenger amenities and the boarding process.
- Step 0: Enjoy the view as you land
- Step 1: Disembark from the plane
- Step 2: Proceed to baggage reclaim
- Step 3: Leave the terminal
- Appendix: Pandemic-related measures
STEP 0: ENJOY THE VIEW AS YOU LAND
STEP 1: DISEMBARK FROM THE PLANE
MPH currently operates out of two separate terminals: one exclusively for arrivals (featured in this post) and another for departures. This was meant to be a temporary arrangement until the completion of a single, consolidated terminal building. However, the project’s been put on hold and it’s likely that the split operations will continue for the foreseeable future.
After landing, your aircraft will taxi towards the apron at the eastern end of the runway.
You will disembark by way of a moveable ramp and/or mobile stairs. Both can be seen in the following image (ramp at the forward door, stairs at the aft door).
Passengers will proceed on foot to the arrivals terminal a short distance away. The route across the apron is unsheltered, but your airline should have a supply of umbrellas close to hand in case of rain or extreme heat.
Over to your right, behind a steel fence, stands the unfinished hulk of what was meant to be the new, permanent terminal. No progress has been made on construction for quite some time (as evidenced by the rusting steel frame), and it’s not clear when – or even if – work will resume.
The arrivals terminal is a small, low-ceilinged, metal-clad structure that evidently wasn’t designed for long-term or high-capacity use.
There are plans to re-designate MPH as an international airport once the stalled expansion programme is completed. For the time being, the terminal is exclusively domestic so you won’t see a border control checkpoint as you enter.
STEP 2: PROCEED TO BAGGAGE RECLAIM
A staff member will direct you towards your flight’s assigned baggage reclaim area (of which there are two in the building).
The arrivals terminal isn’t fitted with luggage belts. Instead, baggage is returned to passengers through an open window.
As a domestic passenger, you won’t undergo any customs formalities after collecting your luggage.
STEP 3: LEAVE THE TERMINAL
There are telecom service booths and a cash machine (ATM) in one corner of the terminal lobby. You’ll find the toilets in the opposite corner.
The transportation counters – which are shared between two different service providers – are just to the right of the toilets. Two counters (on the left) are for passengers who have pre-booked transfers with the companies in question, whilst the remaining four counters are for those without prior arrangements.
If you’ve booked a private transfer directly with your hotel or resort, be sure to follow the instructions they’ll provide. They may send a staff member to stand in the lobby with a card bearing the hotel name. In the case of the Henann Group – who operate multiple resorts on Boracay Island and use their own fleet of vans and boats – there should be a transport coordinator stationed at the terminal whom you can approach for assistance.
APPENDIX: PANDEMIC-RELATED MEASURES
The wearing of face masks remains mandatory on all forms of public transport (whether by land, sea, or air) throughout the Philippines. Executive Order No. 7 (dated 28 October 2022) sets out the current requirements in respect of public health protocols throughout the Philippines. Do note that whilst mask wearing is no longer obligatory in a legal sense – except in public transport and other settings as specified in the Executive Order – the vast majority of locals still don masks both indoors and outdoors. Private establishments might also impose stricter requirements within their own premises and ask all patrons to put on a mask before entering.
Physical distancing (or “social distancing”) remains recommended, but is not rigorously enforced in practice.