AFTER more than two years of not traveling, I was finally able to ride an airplane again. My first flight after a long time was both exciting and nerve-racking.
Entering the Davao International Airport was quite surreal. For a second, I thought I had forgotten how to "airport."
Anyway, I love seeing the busyness of the airport again -- whether it is lining up at the check-in counter or going through security.
Pre-departure did not take long for me. I only spent around 20 minutes on the pre-departure process -- bag drop and security check.
After waiting for several more minutes, the boarding announcement was made. I find it funny telling myself that I am now about to ride a plane again.
Walking into the jet bridge was another surreal experience. There was both a sense of excitement and nervousness. Excited to fly again and nervous because I am a very nervous flier.
As we entered the A320 aircraft, the lovely flight attendants of Cebu Pacific greeted us. And it felt good to see their smiling faces again. During the pandemic, they were among those who were greatly affected by the Covid-19 restrictions. And it was nice seeing them back in the skies and welcoming us again.
Looking around my seat, I noticed the lack of the airline's Smile magazine. That was sad to see. I love their magazine but understand why they may have stopped or limited its publication. The magazine has been a friend to the nervous flier to keep his mind off turbulence.
Minutes later, I heard the "thud" of the plane's door. Everyone is already on board, and we are ready to go. By the way, the flight to Bohol was quite full.
The flight attendants positioned themselves along the aisle for the safety demonstration. For me, the safety demonstration spiel of the flight attendants is somewhat music to my ears.
After their demonstration, they go around the cabin for some final checks. Everyone is now fastened on their seats as the plane's engines begin to rev up. Listening to the engines just gives me goosebumps. And despite being a nervous flier, I miss how the engine roars before taking off.
Seconds later, our plane was flying. The plane steadily banked to the left as it made its way to Bohol.
I had butterflies in my stomach while the plane climbed to its cruising altitude.
There was some light shaking during the early part of the 45-minute flight. And it got on my nerves a bit. I am still not a fan of turbulence despite being normal when flying. So, the nervous flier was nervous.
Just around 15 minutes into the flight, the cabin crew brought food to our seats. Thank you, Cebu Pacific!
Anyway, we had a Deluxe Egg Sandwich for our light breakfast on the flight. It was a filling meal for a short trip.
Around 10 minutes later, the pilot came over the PA system to tell us that we are now on our initial descent to Bohol.
It was a smooth landing in Bohol. While the plane taxied towards its assigned jet bridge, I was reminded that we will be seeing the new Bohol Panglao International Airport.
From the plane, the airport looked really nice. It somehow reminded me of Bali.
Anyway, we were warmly met by the team from the Department of Tourism-Central Visayas at the arrivals area.
Bohol to Davao
Our flight back to Davao City was on a Sunday.
The check-in process was smooth, and we were inside the departures area within minutes.
(Note: Make sure your kalamay is checked in because it is not allowed for hand carry. There was a lot of kalamay at the security before the departure area).
The departures have two areas -- there was the spacious first floor and the smaller ones on the second floor. I waited for our flight on the first floor because there were a lot of people on the second.
While the Bohol Airport looks nice, it is in dire need of food establishments. I don't know during the pre-pandemic days if there were a lot of options but when we were here, we only had two options -- one is an ordinary food establishment serving hotdogs, instant noodles, and siopao, while the other is owned by Bellevue Resort.
Surprisingly, the food here is cheaper compared to other airports. For less than P200, you are already full.
Our 9:30 a.m. flight was delayed. So, we ordered brunch at Bellevue Resort's stall. The food here was surprisingly good. I had the meatballs and it was tasty. Cebu Pacific also provided lunch for its passengers bound for Davao City.
At around 11 a.m., we are boarding our flight to Davao City. Like the flight coming here, the flight was quite full too.
An Airbus A320 NEO will be flying for this flight. This is my first time riding Cebu Pacific's A320 NEO. Being only around three years old, I can still feel the "newness" of the plane.
I also find the plane's engine to be quieter compared to its predecessors.
For this flight, our inflight meal was Lechon Manok Burrito, which was really good.
It was a bit cloudy when the plane was on its final descent to the Davao International Airport. It was a shaky landing path for the plane with a very turbulent one just a few minutes before it made a touchdown.
The touchdown was a bit hard, and the plane bounced,
After spending the weekend in Bohol, I am now back in Davao City. I'll be writing more about our trip to Bohol in the coming weeks. I am excited to share about our trip there, especially the food.
Thank you, Cebu Pacific, for having us! The airline flies Davao-Bohol-Davao thrice a week. Book your flights at cebupacificair.com.