Dates of Travel: May 7 and May 9
Our transfers in our trip to Boracay were handled by Island Star Express. They are the partner of Patio Pacific Boracay in delivering their guests from the airport to the resort and vice versa. Since we took a package from Patio Pacific, I am not aware of the fees Island Star Express charges for transfers. Please check their website for fees.
The reservations team of Patio Pacific gave me instructions prior to our flight for our transfers. When we landed at Godofredo Ramos Airport in Caticlan, my name was being flashed by an officer of Island Star Express. They helped us with our baggage and directed us to a coaster waiting. Each one of us was given a sticker to post on our clothes to indicate we are their guests. We thought that we would fill the coach but got surprised that aside from my family, a woman and her child were the only passengers of Island Star Express for that trip.
The coaster headed to Jetty Port in Caticlan. Our transfers did not include the terminal and environmental fees being collected at the Jetty Port. We handed out Php100 per pax for our fees to the Island Star Express personnel and they paid the fees on our behalf. Our son is only a year old and did not have any fees to pay.
We boarded the boat filled with Filipinos and foreigners and headed to Catigban port. It was a short 10-15 minute banca ride from the Jetty Port to Catigban port. During the trip, my son was getting the attention of Russian gentlemen who were with us in the boat. They were smiling and saying “hi” to him.
At Catigban port, another team of Island Star Express greeted us. We boarded a multicab and were brought to our resorts. Again, we were the only passengers of the vehicle. There were several checkpoints that we stopped – checkpoints of Island Star Express.
Going back to Manila
We bought tickets from Zest Air for a Kalibo-Manila flight. Since our flight from Kalibo is at 1:45PM, the front desk of Patio Pacific informed us that our transfers will pick us up from the resort at 9AM.
Just a few minutes after 9, our shuttle picked us up from Patio Pacific. We had two more stops along the way to pick up other guests from La Carmela before we headed to Catigban port. Again, we gave our terminal fees to the Island Star Express officer. The terminal fee for Catigban port is cheaper than that at the Jetty port. I could not remember though how much it was, sorry.
We boarded a boat from Catigban port to Jetty port. When we got to Jetty Port, we were informed that our bus will come at 10AM. The people of Island Star Express directed us to wait inside the Jetty Port. When we saw the people who were with us at the shuttle leaving the area, we followed them. We found out that our bus was ready for boarding. We had to wait about 20 minutes more to have other guests come in before we leave for Kalibo. The bus was more than half full of passengers.
At first the bus air-conditioning was poor. You can feel the warmth of the sun as we traverse the road to Kalibo. The temperature got better after a few minutes. The road to Kalibo reminded me of the zigzag roads to Baguio – though this is worst! I felt sick to my tummy and was literally counting down the kilometers more remaining before we get to Kalibo. After more than an hour, we were dropped off in front of Kalibo International Airport.
Overall, the service of Island Star Express would differ if your batch travelling is a small group from a big one. On our transfers from Caticlan airport to the resort, we were accommodated very well. We got enough assistance we needed. However when we left the airport for Kalibo and joined a bigger group, the assistance was lessened. I felt like I was part of Amazing Race because we had to walk fast to follow the ISE coordinator at Catigban port and at the Jetty Port. Also, the coordinator only spoke to one of the groups with us about the next steps. Our names were not even called at the Jetty Port when the bus was ready for boarding. We should have been well accounted for. It felt like we had to keep up with them – it was just a good thing that Hubby and I are both good observers and were able to know where we should go, when, and how we should do it.
Overall, I will give Island Star Express 5 stars out of 10 because of poor service on our way to Kalibo.
To know about my reviews for Patio Pacific Boracay, please click here
Island Star Express