How to get to Philippines

By | May 4, 2022


Philippines is a country in Asia according to pharmacylib. Although the Philippines is made up of 7,107 islands with a combined coastline longer than the entire United States coastline, most of the population resides on just 11 islands. The Philippines offers warm waters, coral reefs teeming with tropical fauna and flora, and dramatic underwater drop-offs into the ocean depths. Inland, one can explore the rich history and culture of the Filipino people, stunning scenery and bustling cities. Manila, the vibrant capital of the Philippines and heart and soul of the country, determines the rhythm of life. East and West, tradition and modernity are mixed here, the everyday with the extraordinary. In 2021, the Philippines celebrated the 500th anniversary of Ferdinand Magellan’s discovery.

Getting there

Arriving by plane

There are no non-stop flights from Germany, Austria and Switzerland to the Philippines. The national carrier Philippine Airlines (PR) offers non-stop flights from London to Manila several times a week. Turkish Airlines (TK) has non-stop connections between Istanbul and Manila. Lufthansa (LH) flies from Frankfurt/M. including in cooperation with Singapore Airlines (SQ) via Singapore and with Philippine Airlines (PR) via Hong Kong to Manila. Feeder flights from Vienna to Frankfurt/M. are offered by Austrian Airlines (OS). Swiss (LX) flies from Zurich to Manila in cooperation with Cathay Pacific (CX) via Hong Kong and with Thai Airways (TG) via Bangkok. Thai Airways (TG) offers flight connections from Frankfurt/M., Vienna and Zurich via Bangkok to Manila. Asiana Airlines (OZ) flies from Frankfurt/M. via Seoul to Manila.

Flight times

Frankfurt/M. – Manila: 14 hrs 30 mins; Vienna – Manila: 15 hrs 10 mins; Zurich – Manila: 14 hrs 45 mins (flight times vary depending on length of stopover).

Departure fee

The airport fee is usually included in the flight ticket; however, additional airport fees are often collected locally in cash. International flights: around €10 (PHP 550); payable in cash at departure airport (except Manila) in US$ or local currency; children under the age of 2 and transit passengers are excluded. Domestic flights: around €3.50 (PHP 200).

Arrival by car

Tolls: Luzon’s privately operated expressway system, the Subic Bay-Tarlac four-lane highway, and the Bataan Provincial Expressway all have tolls. Documents: The national driving license is valid for three months.

Arrival by ship

Manila is a major seaport and commercial hub of the Asia Pacific region. Cruise ships from all over the world have the Philippines in their program.

Cruise ships

Hapag Lloyd, MSC and P&O Cruises offer world cruises from various European ports with stopovers in the Philippines.


Traveling by plane

Domestic flights between major cities like Manila, Cebu, Clark and Davao are mainly operated by Air Philippines (2P), Cebu Pacific Air (5J) and Philippines AirAsia (Z2). Various smaller airlines fly to holiday destinations such as Amanpulo in Palawan and further afield. Propeller aircraft are also used.

Air Travel Note

The periods between Good Friday and Easter Monday and between Christmas and New Year (sometimes longer) are popular holiday periods in the Philippines; Flights for these times should be booked well in advance.

Traveling by car/bus

The road network of the islands has a total length of about 160,000 km. On the larger islands, road networks are concentrated in the largest cities; on the smaller islands there are mostly coastal roads that circle the islands. In addition to the national and local road network, the Philippines has expressway networks on Luzon and Mindanao and the Strong Republic Nautical Highway (SRNH) system. The SRNH system is a network of national and provincial roads, bridges and ferries that begins in Laoag (Luzon), runs through the Visayas and ends in Zamboanga City (Mindanao).

Right-hand traffic/left-hand traffic


Condition of the roads

Overall, the quality of the roads varies greatly. In Luzon, for example, there are multi-lane paved expressways; in remote areas in the mountains, on the other hand, only dirt roads that are hardly passable with cars. Major roads are mostly paved and have two lanes; around the cities they are usually multi-lane.

Road classification

In the Philippines, there are expressways around major cities as well as a highway connecting the north and south of the islands.

Car rental

Rental cars are available in Manila and the other major cities both at the airports and in the city. Minimum age for drivers is 25 years, maximum age is often 60 years.


Taxis are available in all major cities and also serve small towns. You should make sure that the taximeter is switched on. Tipping is not customary.


Bicycles, scooters and motorbikes can be rented in the towns.


Regular buses run between all cities. There are also jeep-like jeepneys; colorful large taxis with benches that can carry up to 14 people.


Traffic regulations: – Seatbelts are compulsory. Speed ​​limits: – urban: 30-40 km/h; – extra-urban: 80 km/h.

Roadside Assistance

The ADAC foreign emergency call offers ADAC members and holders of ADAC foreign health and accident insurance comprehensive assistance in the event of vehicle breakdowns, traffic accidents, loss of documents and money, and medical emergencies. The emergency number is available around the clock; in the event of damage to the vehicle: Tel. +49 (0)89 22 22 22, in the event of illness: +49 (0)89 76 76 76. In the event of breakdowns and accidents with the rental car, the car rental company should always be contacted first.


The national driver’s license is sufficient for stays of up to three months.

Traveling in the city

To get around Manila, travelers have a choice of subway, suburban train, bus, jeepney, UV Express, and taxis and rickshaws for short distances.

Locally on the way by train

Philippine National Railways trains run between Manila and Calamba and between Sipocot and Legaspi. The route between Calamba and Sipocot is not currently served.

Traveling by ship

2GO Travel is the largest Philippine ferry operator. 2GO Travel offers regular ferry services between the Luzon, Mindanao and Visayas islands and also between different islands of each archipelago.

How to get to Philippines