Ultimate Guide to Mactan-Cebu International Airport

Mactan Cebu International Airport (MCIA) is one of the busiest travel hubs in the country. Aside from the travel-worthy tourist spots in Cebu, it also serves as a jump-off point to its neighboring islands. A lot of international flights also arrive and depart from MCIA which makes it more accessible to a lot of travelers. If you want to know more about it, here’s your ultimate guide to Cebu-Mactan International Airport.

Related Read: How to Plan Your Trip to the Philippines: The Best Guide

How to get to Mactan Cebu International Airport?

If you are staying in Cebu City, you can catch a MyBus from SM City Cebu to Mactan Airport every day from 6 AM to 9 PM. It also has several access points along the way to the airport. On the other hand, if you are traveling from Mactan Airport to Cebu City, you can board the bus at MCIA Terminal 1 (Arrival level) and MCIA Terminal 2 (Arrival level). Bus fare costs PHP 50 ($1) for a one-way ticket. 

Aside from that, you can also hail a taxi for door-to-door service from Mactan Airport to your Cebu City hotel. This is also faster than the bus which will only approximately take half an hour to an hour to get to the city center. However, it is also more costly most especially now that there are already premium taxis (black taxis) operating from the airport to the city which is more expensive than the white ones. 

The third option you can take is applicable most especially when you are planning to go straight to the top beaches in Cebu. If so, you can take a van from the airport to Moalboal or Maya Port (jump-off port to Malapascua Island). Rent a van here.

Transport typeDurationCost 
Taxi30 mins to 1 hourUp to PHP 400Not available online
Bus1 hourPHP 50Not available online
Van4-6 hoursPHP 850Book here

If you need to use mobile data to conveniently book a ride online, you can also buy a sim card that already comes with free mobile data. Book your sim card here and pick it up at the airport upon arrival.

On the other hand, if you live and work outside the Philippines, Globe Telecom can also give you a free traveler sim card. Simply present the following at the Globe booth in the Arrival Hall of the airport:

  • Foreign passport
  • Foreign resident card
  • Seaman’s book
  • OFW E-Card

For more information about this sim card, visit this link.

Arrival and Departure in Mactan Airport

Mactan Cebu International airport has two terminals that serve thousands of passengers every day. In the Cebu airport map, Mactan Cebu International Airport Terminal 1 is designated for domestic flights while Mactan Cebu International Airport Terminal 2, which was opened in 2018, serves international flights. This new terminal is famous for its interior and exterior design which is heavily influenced by the Cebuano culture. From floor to ceiling, you will be able to identify the Cebuano and Visayan references. Aside from that, Mactan Cebu International Airport Terminal 2 also has state-of-the-art facilities that will definitely make every passenger feel at home once they arrive in Cebu. 

Each terminal has its own Duty Free and other shops for your last-minute shopping fix. You can also find a prayer room and massage services on these terminals. There is also a shuttle bus service to transfer passengers from one terminal to another. It leaves every 15 minutes.

 Mactan Cebu International Airport Terminal 1 and Mactan Cebu International Airport Terminal 2 also has a MyBus pickup point for passengers arriving in Cebu.

The New Normal Mactan Cebu Airport Arrival Procedure

Just like other major travel points in the country, Cebu Airport also has precautionary measures for the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Arrival procedure for domestic passengers

Arriving domestic passengers are expected to comply with the local regulations and protocols of their final destination: Cebu City, Cebu Province, Lapu-Lapu City, and Mandaue City. Please check with your local government units for the list of requirements needed for arriving domestic passengers.

Arrival procedure for international passengers

In summary, arriving passenger from international flights are required to do the following:

Pre-arrival requirements for international passenger

  1. Complete the MCIA Passenger Arrival Registration Form.
  2. Adhere to the mandatory RT-PCR swab testing on the 5th day from the arrival date at MCIA.
  3. For non-OFW and foreign nationals, a confirmation of a hotel booking on accredited hotels.

Related Read: 10 Best Hotels in Cebu Near Mactan International Airport.

Upon arrival at Mactan-Cebu International Airport

  1. Filled out Health Declaration Form and Immigration Arrival Card
  2. Undergo arrival briefing by the Bureau of Quarantine
  3. Present the following information for validation: Travel Reference Number (TRN), Passport, Boarding Pass, and Health Declaration Form. 
  4. Undergo thermal scanning
  5. Proceed to the immigration clearance
  6. Pay for the swab test at the Arrival Reclaim Hall (for non-OFW passengers and foreign nationals) OFWs on the other hand, can proceed to the OWWA Counter for hotel assignment. (Refer to the Cebu airport map for the location of these counters)
  7. Claim luggage and clear Customs
  8. Transfer to a quarantine facility and wait for the swab test schedule.

Airport Lounges

Airport lounges are safe spaces in the airport that can give passengers peace and serenity while waiting for their flights. Of course, Mactan Cebu International Airport also has these safe spaces you can lounge on whether your flight was canceled, delayed, or a connecting flight. You can find these lounges in Mactan Cebu International Airport Terminal 1 and Mactan Cebu International Airport Terminal 2. 

Mabuhay PAL Lounge

The Mabuhay PAL Lounge is located in both terminals. It is open from the first departure until the last and offers TV, Magazines, newspaper, Wifi, and food to its guests. 

Plaza Premium Lounge

Plaza Premium Lounge, on the other hand, is not difficult to locate on the Cebu airport map. It is located in Mactan Cebu International Airport Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. and opens from 5:00 am to 10:30 pm. It offers premium services for passengers in MCIA at an affordable one-time rate. Who can use this lounge? All passengers with boarding passes can enjoy the lounge features such as bar, lounge bay, charging station, playroom, shower, wifi, and foods. 

Heroes’ Lounge

The Heroes’ Lounge is located in both Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. This lounge is specifically for the Philippine National Police (PNP) and Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

Money and ATM

The currency in the country is Philippine Peso (PHP). You can exchange foreign currencies in the Money Changer in the following locations: Domestic Arrival, International Arrival, and International Pre-departure.

On the other hand, if you want to withdraw from an ATM, here are the following banks and their respective locations:

BankLocation
MetrobankT2 International Arrival
BDO UnibankT1 Domestic South Wing Pre-Terminal, T1 Domestic North Wing Pre-Terminal, T1 Domestic Arrival, T2 International Departure Check-In, T2 International Arrival
Philippine National BankT1 Domestic North Wing Check-In, T2 International Arrival

Bank of the Philippine IslandsT1 Domestic North Wing Pre-Terminal, T2 International Arrival
Security BankT1 Domestic North Wing Pre-Terminal, T2 International Arrival
The Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP)T1 Domestic North Wing Pre-Terminal, T1 Domestic Pre-Departure, T1 Domestic Arrival
China Banking Corporation (China Bank)T1 Domestic South Wing Check-In, T1 Domestic North Wing Check-In, T1 Domestic Pre-Departure
Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC)T1 Domestic Pre-Departure, T1 Domestic Pre-Departure – Bus Holding Gate, T2 International Departure Check-In
United Coconut Planters Bank (UCPB)T1 Domestic North Wing Check-In
Philippine Savings Bank (PS Bank)T1 Domestic Arrival
Union Bank
T2 International Departure Check-In, T2 International Arrival

Restaurants

MCIA also has restaurants you can enjoy while waiting for your flight or catching up with a friend. 

Quick Service restaurants 

Jollibee

Location: T1 Domestic Arrival,T1 Domestic Pre Departure

Tsim Sha Tsui

Location: T1 Domestic Pre Departure

Casual Dining restaurants

RestaurantSpecialtyLocation
Filipino DelightsFilipino mealsT1 Domestic South Wing Pre-Departure
La Bella BistroItalian dishesT1 Domestic North Wing Check-in
La Bella ExpressPizzaT1 Domestic Pre Departure
Lolo Pinoy Lechon de Cebu
Lechon mealsT1 Domestic South Wing Pre-Departure
Nippon RamenJapanese comfort foodT1 Domestic Airport Village (Arrival),T1 Domestic South Wing Pre-Departure,T2 International Pre-Departure
ZubuchonLechonT1 Domestic North Wing Pre – Departure

Best Ways to Get from Mactan Airport to Cebu City

Mactan Airport to Cebu City by Grab Taxi

Grab is the Southeast Asian version of Uber. It’s very popular in Philippines and you can easily download it and use it in Cebu City. Upon arrival at the MCIA, you can use the free WIFI to downloand and register on the app. You can pay via card or cash. The fare is very similar to the local taxis, about 200-250 pesos ($4-$5 USD) to get from MCIA to Cebu City depending on traffic. This is a great option if you want the nicer cars or bigger vehicle option since you can choose how many passengers will be on the car.

Mactan Airport to Cebu City by Local Taxis

After picking up your luggage, exit the terminal building and keep walking for about 3-5 minutes. Follow the yellow signs for “Taxi & Bus Bay”. Walk along until you see the queue of white and yellow taxis. (Don’t listen to the touts), just continue walking to the end of the walkway. Both taxis should be metered and they only accept cash, no cards accepted. Local taxis will cost about Php 250 – 300 ($5 to $6) depending on traffic conditions.

Mactan Airport to Cebu City by MyBus

The cheapest option to get from Mactan Cebu International Airport to Cebu City is by taking the shared transportation of MyBus. If you are not in a hurry, the bus runs everyday from 7am to 10pm, once every 20 minutes. It runs between Mactan Cebu AIrpor tto SM City Cebu and takes about 30-40 minutes to get to Cebu City depending on traffic. MyBus fare is 40 pesos(.80 cents USD). You need to buy the ticket before getting on the bus and they only accepts cash.

To get to MyBus terminal at the airport, you need to follow the sign for “Taxi & Bus Bay” and when you see the local taxis, the bus terminal will be on your left side. There should be a sign for MyBus there. When you get to SM Cebu City, you might still need to take another taxi to your hotel. So this isn’t a great option for those who have luggage and don’t want to move on different transports. You can get more info on its Facebook page or their website.

Mactan Airport Contact Number and Information

If you have more questions about Mactan Cebu International Airport, you cant check their website here. You can also call them at customerservice@gmcac.ph or +632 494-7000.

Hotels near Mactan Cebu International Airport

If you are planning to stay a night or two near Mactan Airport or maybe you find traveling from Mactan Airport to Cebu City time-consuming, here are some hotels nearby:

Budget – Midrange hotels

Park Hill Hotel

Location: Matumbo Road, Lapu-Lapu City 6015, Philippines

Park Hill Hotel is a 2-star hotel located near the airport and a good 15-minute walk to Marina Mall and Cebu Yacht Club. It offers basic hotel services for its guests. Considering its price and location, it gives a good value for your money. Couple travelers are most likely to prefer staying in Park Hill Hotel.

Islands Stays Hotels- Mactan

Location: Mactan Island, Lapu-Lapu City, Philippines

Islands Stays Hotels is also one of the hotels close to the airport. In fact, they have a roundtrip airport shuttle service for their guests. The rooms here are not that big but you get what you pay for its price. The location is perfect for those who don’t want to travel from Mactan Airport to Cebu City or vice versa.

RedDoorz @ Bankal Lapulapu

Location: Casia-Bankal, Lapu-Lapu City 6015, Philippines

This hotel, on the other hand, is located near Gaisano Grand Mall Mactan and Mactan Doctor’s Hospital. They have budget-friendly rooms perfect for a one night stay while waiting for your flight.

Halfway House Hostel – Mactan Cebu Airport

Location: 3160 Sangi New Road, Lapu-Lapu City 6015, Philippines

Halfway House Hostel has cozy and budget-friendly rooms perfect for any types of travelers. It has a 24-hour business center, an express check-in and check-out, and a roundtrip airport shuttle for its guests. They also have different types of rooms you can choose from. If you want to explore the island of Mactan, the hotel also offers bicycle rental services.

Luxury hotels near Mactan Cebu International Airport

Waterfront Airport Hotel And Casino

Location: 1 Airport Road Mactan Island, Lapu-Lapu City 6015, Philippines

No doubt, Waterfront Airport Hotel and Casino is the best hotel near the airport if you are looking for luxurious accommodation while in Cebu. The hotel offers state-of-the-art facilities and superior customer service. It also offers a limo/town car service and a complimentary airport shuttle.

Have you ever been to Mactan Cebu International Airport? Let us know what we missed!

Have you got any questions about traveling to the Philippines? Join our Philippines Travel Planning FB Page to get your answers.

Don’t know how to start planning your Philippines trip? You can start here.

Read all our travel planning articles about Cebu here.

Leave a Reply