From LAX to HKIA

SURPRISE! I actually went to the Philippines in July for a very quick 10-day family business trip. I wasn’t able to do a lot of sightseeing, but I was able to stuff myself with good food! This trip marked my first time home since moving eleven years ago – it was great being back in the motherland and I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t bittersweet when I left yet again.

For this trip, it was just me, my aunt and my youngest brother. We departed LAX at one in the morning; we actually ended up checking in earlier and spent an hour waiting for our flight. How long is it from Los Angeles to the Philippines? A good 15 hours. Thirteen to get to Hong Kong International Airport and another two hours from HKIA to Manila. My hometown is on the island of Cebu but we had business to attend to in Manila, which was where we spent majority of this trip.

I packed really light for this trip – my carry-on consisted only of my Kanken backpack, which had my laptop, utility jacket, my Midori notebook, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (which I didn’t even know I had chucked into my backpack until I sat in the hotel terminal) and all of my chargers. My suitcase consisted mostly of leggings, lightweight shirts, pajamas, and of course, the essentials. Word of advice for international travel? Stash that laptop in that check-in baggage because it will be a hassle.

On the plane, in an effort to avoid jet lag (Philippines is ahead of US time!), I spent almost my entire flight sleeping. I did watch some in-flight entertainment – Tomb Raider (3/5 stars) and Unsane (1.5/5 stars). My aunt also woke me up when it was time for meals on the plane – we may not have sat in business class but premium economy wasn’t too bad.

We arrived at HKIA at seven in the morning; our next flight wasn’t until nine so we strolled the airport for a bit and grabbed some food.

I honestly don’t remember HKIA being this nice! In hindsight, this airport may have been a blur since the last time I set foot in it, I was moving away from the country I had spent the first 15 years of my life in. Besides that, ASIAN FOOD IN ACTUAL ASIA. We ate at Saboten and I got their tonkatsu and holy cow, food tastes so much better in Asia.

Did I mention how much cheaper food is in Asia compared to getting it here in Los Angeles? After eating, we stopped by those airport souvenir shops and got shirts – definitely the biggest tourist move, but hey the shirts were so cute! Also, buy 3 get 1 free? WHY NOT! We boarded our plane to Manila shortly after.


  • Nancy
    September 9, 2018 at 5:31 PM

    Girl, you fly well when you’re out and about!! Oh man, hope your ride was comfy because 13 hours just to Hong Kong is a loooong time!! Wow, you don’t play around with packing light. At Cathay Pacific, the food is great no matter what. I wonder if my former coworker’s girlfriend served you guys!! She’s a flight attendant there and does a lot of LA to HK services. Airport food in HK isn’t bad at all! Glad you enjoyed your time out in HKIA!

    Nancy ♥

  • Annie
    September 9, 2018 at 10:32 PM

    Aw, what a lovely post! Sleeping is basically all I do when I fly. I’m not the best traveler. That meal you got looks so good! That’s so true! Food is Asia is always so cheap. It’s great!

  • Bexa
    September 10, 2018 at 1:08 AM

    The food looks so tasty!! I love Asian dishes. I went to Thailand a few years ago and couldn’t believe how cheap it was and tasty too! Hope you had a great trip Eena, and getting a free cute shirt is an offer too good to miss! <3 xx

    Bexa |

  • Mariya Zafirova
    September 10, 2018 at 2:00 AM

    I spent 12 hours from Germany to Osaka in economy and it wasn’t bad, not at all but it is a looong flight without moving!

    Mariya |

  • Megan
    September 10, 2018 at 3:49 AM

    Seems like a pretty smooth airport trip all things considered. 13 hours on a plane is no joke, but I’m sure it was worth it! Ngl I found this a really fun post just because I love airports… think it’s the travel obsessed part of me haha

  • Favour
    September 10, 2018 at 4:52 AM

    Ugh! Lovely pictures. I haven’t been to Hong Kong but hoping to spend some vacations there someday.

  • Alex
    September 10, 2018 at 9:01 AM

    I sleep on most of my flights, short and long! So glad you managed to eat a ton of good food and had didn’t run into any complications.

  • Amie Cadwallader
    September 10, 2018 at 9:10 AM

    That is such a long journey, but it looks like you had the best time my lovely!

    Love, Amie ❤
    The Curvaceous Vegan

  • Aaliyah
    September 10, 2018 at 9:12 AM

    I’ve always wanted to go to the Philippines as it’s so beautiful there and has the most amazing food. The food looks great from those photos makes me hungry! 13 hours is such a long flight! Great post x

  • Susanne
    September 10, 2018 at 9:13 AM

    That is such a long journey 😱 The HKG airport really looks nice and I am glad you arrived safely 🙂

    P.S.: Only 3 out of 5 for Tomb Raider 🙁

  • Sophie Wentworth
    September 10, 2018 at 9:26 AM

    I love a long haul flight but I can never ever manage to fall asleep on the plane. Can’t say I’m surprised the food was cheaper in Asia than LA. 11 years is such a long time! I really hope you had the best time while you were there! x


  • Olliviette
    September 10, 2018 at 9:28 AM

    I’m sitting here drooling over the foooooooooooooooooood!! foooooood. i’m really hungry right now. Also, your post makes me want to book a flight right now. Def exploring your blog some more.

    Olli –

  • Audrey | Brunch at Audrey's
    September 10, 2018 at 5:03 PM

    Woww 11 years is a long time to be away from the motherland! I hope you have a great time! The last time I was in the Philippines was to Manila for a high school swim meet. It was a fun time :3 // I usually spend the majority of my time on planes watching films :3 I usually fly Delta and they usually offer good options! // Food in Asia is sooo gooood and sooo much more affordable. Also LA is an expensive city, so the comparison must be pretty stark! -Audrey | Brunch at Audrey’s

  • Emma
    September 11, 2018 at 8:07 AM

    A lovely post featuring some fab photography! Hope you had a fab time 🙂

    Emma –

  • Cherie
    September 12, 2018 at 8:39 AM

    Omg! That tonkatsu looks amazing hahaha. I was home for two weeks too and man the food was great… My flight is 13 hours and I think that’s crazy so 15 hours would drive me insane!

  • Emily
    September 12, 2018 at 12:24 PM

    Man, that is such a long flight! But sounds like it was totally worth it to spend time with your fam. 🙂


  • Valerie
    September 12, 2018 at 1:46 PM

    Wow, this sounds like such a wonderful trip! I love all the photos! The airport looks really nice and modern…and the food looks amazing!

  • Carla
    September 13, 2018 at 9:24 AM

    This post made me hungry haha! It’s a shame you didn’t get much sightseeing done but I’m glad you had a good time regardless! I feel that laptop tip so much, mine caused me trouble on my flight last week.

    Carla x

  • Jasmine Burke
    September 13, 2018 at 9:34 AM

    The airport looks so fancy omg! Also, I am VERY jealous of the food! I’ve never been anywhere in Asia and hope to go someday.

    Jas xx |

  • Pauline
    September 15, 2018 at 9:47 AM

    Eeek! The Philippines! I’ve been wanting to go back home for a while but just can’t find the time to this year. 😆Next year for sure! The thing that really deters me from going is the travel time. 4 hours of travelling to somewhere in Europe causes me to be a little bit anxious so the thought of 12+ hours stresses me out 😂

    I can’t wait to hear more about your trip (if you’re planning anymore posts!)

  • Kai
    September 15, 2018 at 9:08 PM

    I saw the tweets that you went here in Cebu. My grandmother who stayed for 3 years in Arizona said that foods in the US are way lami, only the chocolates and other sweets are delicious. Nothing compares with Asian foods!

  • Britney
    September 16, 2018 at 10:52 AM

    I’ve only been on a plane for two and a half hours, and that’s long enough for me. lol 15 hours is so long! At least you slept through a good portion of it. That’s what I did when I drove to Florida before. (It’s a 12 hour drive from here straight through, not including the extra time for stops). I remember staying up all night and then sleeping through most of the ride down. 😛

    I would love to try Asian food in Asia. I’ve heard that ethnic food is always Westernized to be more suitable to the Americans. I want to try the real thing.

  • mercy
    September 19, 2018 at 8:50 PM

    This is exciting, I can’t believe you went back to the Philippines finally. It takes about the same time to go from Sydney to LA too. I’m glad you had a good time exploring HK airport, definitely Asian food are much cheaper there and more tasty too.

  • Soph
    September 29, 2018 at 12:29 AM

    Ooh I’d love to visit the Philippines one day and try all of that lovely food! I’m sorry you couldn’t do much site seeing this time, but I hope you had a good time with family nonetheless!

    Soph – x


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