Starting October 2015, the NAIA Terminal Fee of Php 550 will now be integrated to your airline tickets upon purchase. This means, no more lining up at the airport during your international flights to pay for the terminal fee. But what about OFWs who are exempt from paying the terminal fee?
The terminal fee or the international passenger service charge (IPSC) of Php 550 is used in airport operations. 71% or Php 390 goes to maintenance, 18% or Php 100 goes to the national government and 11% or Php 60 goes to aviation security.
According to Republic Act 8042 or the Migrant Workers’ Act of 1995 or as amended Republic Act 10022 or the Amended Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act of 1995, Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) are exempt from paying travel tax and airport terminal fees. Other existing laws also exempt Muslim pilgrims, national athletes and individuals approved by the Office of the President.
To avoid violating this law, the MIAA or Manila International Airport Authority has set up refund counters for those who are exempted from the payment. These counters are set up at the airports just after the immigration counters.
In order to get your refund, exempted travelers will have to present the following to the counters:
- Exemption Ceritificate (Airport Copy)
- For OFWs – Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC)
- For Pilgrims, Athletes and Others – MIAA Exemption Certificate (MEC)
- Any of the following documents clearly showing payment of terminal fee (LI International)
- Itinerary / E-receipt
- Official Receipt
- Presentation of Boarding Pass
In 2015, the Senate and House of Representatives passed resolutions asking the MIAA to temporarily stop the merging of terminal fees in airline tickets because many problems arose due to this Memorandum Circular enacted by MIAA which established the refund system for OFWs.
The refund counter has proved to be an injustice for OFWs because many of them are either not aware of the refund or decide to forego their refund for fear of missing their flights as the refund requires them to line up at the airport and collect it.
Since MIAA’s jurisdiction is only under NAIA Terminals, OFWs departing from Cebu, Davao, Clark or other international airports in the Philippines have no office to go and claim or secure their refunds from. This is according to Senator Blas Ople who has received many complaints from OFWs in his Ople Center.
Refund of Terminal Fees for OFWs | BayanMallOpen modal