Day 1 & 2 – Flying to the Philippines

On December 26th, 2014, a group of students from the Toronto Catholic District School Board, in partnership with Adventure Learning Experiences and ANCOP, embarked on a service and leadership trip to Manila, Philippines.

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Student leaders meet at YYZ at 10:15 am with one luggage for their clothes, and one luggage full of donations (toys, toiletries, school supplies, clothes)
Time to say bye to parents and enter the gate
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We have 1 hour before we board the plan. Look how fancy the waiting area is at YYZ Terminal 3 (ipads at every table)
Who needs ipads when you can play cards?!
Student leaders give thanks for the amazing opportunity and pray for a safe journey
Leadership Team 1 leads the “Prayer for Safe Travels” as well as one “Our Father”


One last group pic before boarding the plane
Right after take off we are served our first meal
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Here’s what’s on the menu – hit the spot!
Time for some shut eye. Some of us decided to watch movies instead.
View from window. Gorgeous.
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Time for a second meal. Options: Chicken with potatoes or sweet and sour pork. Yum!
We arrive in Hong Kong after a 15 hour flight and immediately board our next plane.
We have a less than 2hr flight from Hong Kong to PH. Luckily we have some in-flight entertainment.
We land in PH safe, sound and on schedule. Time to get our luggage.
Our luggage was easy to spot since we all tied a fancy dotted piece of fabric on all our suitcases
The Tagalog term for welcome is MABUHAY!
Michael’s dad greets us at the airport. Easy to spot him with his Canada flag.
“Stay together, follow the flag”
With luggage in hand, we await for our ride (so much hotter than Toronto)
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We will be riding in style!
Late night eats at Jollibee, the largest fast food chain in the Philippines
It’s past 1am in the morning, but Jollibee has us covered
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Hmmmm, what to order. Much different menu than McDonalds.
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Our first meal together in the Philippines
The meal includes: Hamburger in mushroom sauce and rice
Sweet spaghetti (really sweet)
Fried chicken and rice
Some of us opt for pancakes
Mashed potatoes


Fancy drinks
And of course, more rice (wrapped like a burger)
And for dessert, mango peach pie for the bus ride to the hotel
We arrive at our hotel: Eleganza Apartelle
IMG_8878 (1)
We end the day in prayer, thanking the Lord for our safe travels.
It’s 3:30 am in the Philippines but 2:30 pm in Toronto. Many of us can’t sleep so we decide to play UNO.

Bus picks us up at 6:45am for our Tagaytay adventure.

Please write us your comments below.

Thanks for following our travels.








31 thoughts on “Day 1 & 2 – Flying to the Philippines

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  1. Thank you for taking the time to take and post so many pictures ~ it looks like you are all off to a great start!

  2. It was a long travel, but well worth it! Feeling good to be reunited and bonding with the PH family. Time for some much needed rest 🙂

  3. Urghhh. What a long flight. All I really did was sleep and although that seemed good at the time, I got no sleep at night…tired for day twooo… Aside from the long flight and not being very comfortable, arriving at Manila was pretty cool, different than I expected, and we got to visit the infamous Jolibee – and I got to try a bunch of new stuff which was pretty cool. Soo far so good…just tired.

  4. Glad to see so many pictures of your adventure to reach your destination. Looking forward to more, our love and blessing to all of you.

  5. So happy to be finally reunited with the PH gang tonight! It’s been very long since I’ve seen them all. Can’t wait to get started on the hard work that the Philippines has prepared for us😉!

  6. It was indeed a looooong flight but worth it! Arrived safe and sound with our luggages in sight, so that was good. Also, jollibee had great chicken at 1am in the morning. Overall, Exhausting but good start!!

  7. Such a great day, so excited to finally be in the Philippines. All nighter was great until the next morning, still worth it though!

  8. It was sweet how as we left the Hong Kong plane a tenant said, ‘Oh so you’re the ukelele girl!’ Passing the time by singing with Adrian and John was amazing. Landing in the Phillipines and then staying up just to jam was also sweet. Many more amazing memories to come!

  9. Looks like a long flight. So glad you all made it safe. Have fun and Tina I hope you find more than pancakes to eat.

  10. That flight was WAY TOO LONG. But totally worth it when we will experience the amazing sights and opportunity the Philippines will bring us. Cant Wait!

  11. And so we finally embark for our most awaited journey! The plane ride was a bit tough but with the team around me it definitely made the 16 hours of flying a lot more bearable! No words can explain how happy and touching it is for me to be back to the country I grew up in, the country I miss SO bad. The nostalgia of everything just took over right when we landed in Manila. The homesickness when I was back in Canada was REAL. Being surrounded by my own culture again made me realize that yes, the Philippines is where my heart is. ♥

  12. Wow, it’s great to see what you are doing on a daily basis, such an amazing opportunity for you all. Have fun!

  13. Gaaaaaaaa, I can’t believe we spent pretty much an entire day in either the airport or a plane! And of all the hours flying how did I manage to only sleep 2 hours……..? Oh well, at least now we’re in the Philippines and our adventures can begin!

  14. I wouldn’t say that I was excited at the airport, but I did feel pumped up when I got the hotel. I didn’t feel tired until the end of the next day. The flight, although very long, was entertaining enough. I managed by watching movies and listening to music. I found a new love for Michael Buble. His song “Everything” became my theme song for this trip.

  15. Having not been on a plane since I can remember was a little nerve-wracking during take off. The view was spectacular though and the food and movies were comforting. I didn’t know what to expect on my trip, so I just sat tight and waited. Obviously I would endure another flight to go back 🙂

  16. Sitting for that long was definitely not my cup of tea. Although, having seen the views from the plane, the good food, and great movie choices did make the plane ride much more manageable. Felt amazing to finally land in the Philippines. Worth having the endure the long hours of boredom 🙂

  17. Coming to the airport I honestly didn’t know what to expect from this trip I was a little nervous to leave.
    This was such a long flight! I found it pretty hard to sleep on the plane so I just watched a lot of movies!
    When we landed all that was going through my was jeez I’m in the Philippines right now! But I was so excited to get to know everyone on the team better and to give my all in what ever we were doing.

  18. That first flight from Toronto was soooo long! Luckily, I was so tired from my Christmas party the day before that I just slept through most of it aha… The movies, view, games and company also helped too 🙂 omg looking through this blog again is going to make me miss the Phil sooo much </3

  19. THROWBACK! OMG! I remember the flight being superrrr long but it was fun! (shoutout to Geerthan for making the flight super entertaining! haha!) When we got out of the airport in the Philippines, it was hot, and the air we breathed was mucky! AND I was wearing sweats and my thick SJCS sweater! :// but overall, I was excited and anxious to see my parent’s culture and experience a different lifestyle outside of North America. 🙂 🙂

  20. The first day! I was so exited to fly because I absolutely love airplanes but after like 17 hours of flying…. I’d had enough. But it was fun, the plan had so many things to watch to chose from and there was more than enough time to watch like 9 different movies. I watched the Maze Runner for the first time, and it was soo good! Almost as good as the book. When we Finally landed we went to Jollibee! But Tina and I found it hard to find anything with out meat…Good Day all in all though! ❤

  21. Clearly an experience of a lifetime for one all.

    Peace, Joy, Hope, Charity, Appreciation and Humility, Steve De Quintal Teacher, St. Mary Catholic Academy, 66 Dufferin Park Ave. Toronto, Ontario M6H-1J6. 416-393-5528 ext. 84293 “that they may have life and have it to the full.” ***You can always email but a call or a visit will get a quicker response*** ________________________________

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