The skies just ain’t friendly anymore, since flying became a contact sport. You take off your coat, your belt, your shoes, but that’s not all they make you lose. The skies just ain’t friendly anymore.
Once every 16 months the Philippines requires all non citizens without a permanent visa to leave the country. You can immediately return (subject to checking in with immigration every two months), but regardless, once every 16 months you must depart Philippine soil for at least a day.
Unlike the USA where there are land borders there are only two ways in and out of the 7,000 plus islands that make up the Republic of the Philippines. By air or by sea. It is a little over 600 miles from Manila to Hong Kong and the fastest way to get there is to fly . . . the other option being a slow boat to China.
Since it is an international flight it requires checking in a minimum of two hours before departure. The flight is shorter than the check in time required at Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA). Additionally, traffic in Manila is insane (even at 2:00AM which is the time I must leave for the airport). It is about a two-hour taxi ride for me to NAIA. All combined it will take more than twice as long to leave home and take off than it will to actually fly to the Chinese free port of Hong Kong.
Spending a few nights in Hong Kong is pretty easy on the mind and eyes, but a little hard on the wallet. I went to one of my favorite travel sites and clicked on deals and discovered I could save over $700 USD at the Hullet House. Only $916.12 USD a night plus 10% service charge and tax. Only two rooms left. This is a bargain? I think not. Still two rooms left.
I have been to Hong Kong numerous times. I decide I will stick with some places I have experienced. The Mira Moon is a nice place and it was reasonably priced last time I was there. I check the rate. $179.48 plus 10% service charge and taxes. Better, but still a lot to pay for a non essential trip I would rather not be taking.
I stayed at the Panda Hotel in 2011 and really liked it. The Panda decor was unique and fun. The staff was friendly and the location is good, but not right in the middle of everything which makes it more economical. Let’s see what kind of deal I can find at the Panda. $98.97 USD plus 10% service charge and taxes. Well, I must be realistic. I know I am not going to find a selection of decent Hong Kong hotels for under $100 USD so the Panda Hotel now has one less room available on the nights I must travel.
What a hassle it is to travel today. It is expensive and in this case unnecessary except if I don’t want to be deported..
There is still the return trip and . . . “the skies just ain’t friendly anymore.”