Friday, August 31, 2012

Singapore 2012: The Return to the Red Dot Island!

08.31.2012 – The return to Singapore was a bit a bumpy one with a lot of challenges. This time I travelled with my friend RG via Tiger Airways. It was great to be back but not with minor bumps on the road prior to our boarding the plane.

The challenges started when we got off the Domestic Terminal where originally advised by the same people who processed out tickets last July upon paying our reservation.

The staff based here at Tiger Airways office in Makati should clarify that international travelling is at the NAIA Terminal 1.

It was a indeed a hassle but its good the cab we took from the Domestic Airport was fast enough to bring us to NAIA Terminal 1 on time.

By the time we arrived Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 1 we immediately lined up to pay our immigration fee which is worth PhP 550.00 pesos but what Tiger Airways failed to advise us again is the Travel Tax that we need to pay which is about PhP 1620.00 pesos.

We thought we’re all clear about these as we previously asked those who process our tickets twice with these issues that they failed to reiterate which gives Tiger Airways the lack of customer service proficiency. They just failed to indicate the exact terminal we should go and remind us about the travel taxes that should been included in the billing.

But none the less it’s already there we just go about our not-so surprising experience with these minor mishaps. By the time it’s already 5AM and everyone has occupied the gate 12 lounge area. Preparing for this trip did not give us any sleep time.

The good part of this is we don’t need to stand in line since we have booked a month early that we have the “Board Me First” pass as a priority. The next thing we know we’re already 40,000 feet and leaving Manila we saw the Taal Volcano in our window. Travel time from Manila to Singapore is 3 hours and I spent mostly sleeping through while a collection album on my iTunes kept on playing.

Touching down to Singapore did not sink in and we were on a VERY tight schedule by 10:30PM. It was that familiar feeling from three years ago which brings me back when I finally stepped in the Budget Terminal. I’m no longer the lost lone traveller but someone in a rush to get to Marina Bay Sands to attend the STGCC 2012 Media Preview.

The cab driver called to our attention after getting out of the far end part of Changi Budget Terminal. Basically my perspective about this trip has changed entirely with a clear objective besides the upcoming STGCC 2012 this weekend.

The Singapore skies was quite grey and it was raining all morning based on what the Public Relations accountants from Ni9Mer has mentioned and traffic here is not like back home which is horrible.

No longer as ecstatic as I used to be unlike as an overwhelmed fan but now going to this event as part of the Media Team who would represent in reporting the news about the Philippine representatives for this convention.

The Media Preview is at the third floor of the Marina Bay Sands Convention Centre and it was a VERY long escalator going up and walking through a VERY wide hallway the size of three car lanes of Edsa.

It was also a very long walk getting to the far end of the hotel room where I finally met our contacts that I can’t picture in my email until now. Then I finally met a long-time friend who blogs for Red Dot Diva arriving late fifteen minute later.

There were three artists and two Japanese cosplayers who attended the Media Preview which started at 11AM just in time for the press launch. The program ended at 2PM getting to know some more online friends I only spoke online like the guys from the counterpart of GeekMatic.

After the Media Preview three of our Singaporean friends invited us for a late lunch since finger food won’t consider as a full meal which was served during the press conference.

We all end up at a hawker place in Lau Pa Sat which was featured in CB Cebulki’s food blog. So now we’re finally home at Le Peranakan Hotel suggested by my good friend Denis who was featured at his wife’s blog post regarding this quiet place.

Our first day in Singapore does not end as we take a break from the whirlwind adventure upon our arrival and this must be something to look forward to… And yeah Eat Bulaga is currently airing here.

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