The climate of fear caused by the so-called “laglag-bala” gang lurking at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) have apparently forced some tourists to resort to novel ways to protect themselves and their luggage.
This is based on a photo uploaded by Facebook user Wilfredo Garrido which shows two travelers checking in at NAIA whose backpacks are covered in its entirety by a translucent plastic. “Look (at) how paranoid travelers are in the world’s worst airport,” he wrote as a caption. His photo has received over 60,000 likes and has been shared 30,000 times since it was uploaded October 30.
Based on a report by Coconuts Manila, the protective bags were manufactured by ProtectABag and can be bought at P160 each. According to the company, their luggage wrapping service aims to protect travelers’ belongings against items being inserted, handling damage, as well as accidental or intentional opening.
Reports have circulated in recent weeks about foreigners being nabbed in airports around the country after inspectors found bullets inside their belongings. It has been claimed that the bullets were merely planted by members of an organized syndicate that seeks to extort hapless foreign travelers.
This is because unauthorized carrying of firearms and ammunition is a crime under Philippine law (Republic Act 10591). It is likewise prohibited by the United States Transportation Security Administration.