Recently I came across with one problem. I have several domestic flights in the Philippines, but after checking with the ferry's company I cannot make it to one of the legs. So I have 2 options, take a flight later that day, flight from a different island.

So I went to their website cebupacificair.com and looked at the Fees' section because that's the only reference I could check.

  • 800PHP for changes
  • 900PHP for cancelations

Seems fair, so I tried to change my booking online and I discovered that far from true, the fees were much more expensive.

To change the flight from a different City they charge:

  • 800PHP for changing + 900PHP for changing city (That's changing again?) + 600PHP fare difference (The fare was the same)

To change the flight from the same city but flying just few hours later - 800PHP + 1000PHP (I don't know where this came from)

So I decided to cancel the flight and get the refund 2500PHP (The ammount I paid per person) - 900PHP = 1600PHP. That's far from true.. it turns out I have to pay 900PHP they don't talk about refunds ( I checked and the promo fares have no refund, but mine was not promo).. how is that possible?

I cannot see any reason on their website, their call center is just useless and the customer service hanged up the phone every time I called.

Does anyone experience a similiar problem? Also I'm not talking about a single refund 1600PHP (around 23£ or 37$) but we are a group of 15 people.. which now it's a considerable amount of money.

  • One more thing, Hidden Fees in any company reflects a corrupted management. A decent management would use decent ways to make money. May 22, 2012 at 16:47
  • @HaLaBi you're totally right.. further more.. I was checking an offer on their website... I called them to arrange the group booking and suddenly they told me the offer was no longer available.. I refreshed their website and it was gone! in 5 minutes!!
    – SERPRO
    May 22, 2012 at 16:48
  • 2
    @SERPRO: Have you read and understood Cebu Pacific's "Travel Regulations" and "General Terms and Conditions"? You probably accepted them when ordering the tickets. Granted that IANAL and the texts are non-ambiguous, but they seem to answer many of your questions. May 22, 2012 at 19:56
  • 1
    @Tor-EinarJarnbjo you mean this? cebupacificair.com/aboutus/terms-and-conditions.html (404 page) That with the fees page I posted are the only links they provide on the ticket and reservation page
    – SERPRO
    May 22, 2012 at 20:10
  • 1
    sounds like normal airline fee practices. Never seen an airline website (especially a "discount" or low cost carrier) that doesn't do that, anywhere in the world.
    – jwenting
    May 23, 2012 at 9:06

2 Answers 2


Sorry, but this kind of stuff is standard for low-cost carriers and is the price you pay for cheap tickets. Cebu is particularly bad, there was a bit of a flap in Singapore a few years back when Cebu cancelled a bunch of flights and stonewalled passengers who wanted their money back for months on end.

So. The 800 PHP change fee applies only if you change to another flight at precisely the same fare. However, since the LCC model is that prices go up as the date approaches, you're never going to see that same fare again and you have to pay a random fare differential in addition to the change fee.

And yes, of course you're being charged an additional 900 PHP to change cities, because there is no such thing as a "city change" in the LCC world. I presume the fare is quoted as the cancellation of the original itinerary plus the booking of an entirely new fare to the new city.

Finally, LCCs often do not allow "real" refunds at all, the best they will do is give you credit towards future flights, minus the cancellation fee. Your story is a little unclear here, and I'm not sure what Cebu's policy is, but it sounds like this is what they are offering you as well.

I wish I had some useful advice for you, but there just isn't all that much you can do. Keep pestering the call centre, or go to a Cebu office in person if you can, and try to get a clear accounting of how they are calculating those costs and/or refusing to refund.

  • Hi, Thanks for your answer.. It's not that I was looking for the cheapest flight but for the airline that will suit best for all our connections in the islands.. anyway.. I hope the Customer service will answer the phone soon. :)
    – SERPRO
    May 24, 2012 at 11:00

Try contacting them through their Facebook site and / or email address. A friend of mine shared how Cebu Pacific mishandled his baggage, and it caused a lot of uproar on Facebook, resulting in Cebu Pacific emailing him an apology and a promise to help.

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