Unless you have Philippine Diving or a Travel Agent make the arrangement to pick you up with a car and driver, you will have to handle the transfer from the international airport to the domestic airport, South Harbour, or your hotel, by taxi.
If your arriving flight is with any airline EXCEPT Philippine Airlines you will arrive at what is called the "Old International Airport Terminal". When you exit the international terminal building you are on the second level which is ARRIVALS. You can't get a cheap taxi on this level. There are coupon taxi's available for transfer to Manila hotels with a minimum charge of about $10. For these taxis you put your name on a list and wait for the list manager to call your name.
To find a cheap taxi you have to go up one level to the Departure Area or down one level to the street. Going upstairs one level is faster. Go outside the doors of the arrival area on the second level at the international airport and turn to the right walking down the sidewalk. DO NOT CROSS THE ROAD and go down to ground level unless someone is meeting you. If someone is meeting you, the meeting area at ground level is divided by the last letter of your family name. The person meeting you will have to remain on the opposite side of the street from you so be plainly visible and look carefully for them. If possible tell the person meeting you to have a sign with your last name on it.
If you want an inexpensive taxi ($2 to $3), turn right when you exit the terminal building and follow the sidewalk almost to the end of the building looking towards the building on your right. Near the end of the building you will see a set of stairs between the sidewalk and the building. Go upstairs to the departure area on the third level to get a taxi that will use its' meter or agree to accept 250 pesos.
There are public buses available on the 2nd level at the end of the sidewalk. You just ask the people if they are waiting for the bus. The orange buses of California Bus Lines and some others will pass in front of the Domestic Terminal and then go all the way to the LRT station on EDSA. This mode of transport should be used only by hardened travelers, traveling lightly.
If your arriving flight is Philippine Airlines:
You will arrive at what is called "The Centennial Terminal", built for the Philippines Centennial Celebration in 1998. When you come out of this terminal you continue straight ahead (the old terminal is on your left) until you get to the first intersection where it is possible to turn right. The Shell gasoline station is on the opposite corner right side. After you turn right you go straight ahead until you pass Pacific Air, pass Cebu Pacific, and then look for the Asian Spirit and Seair offices in the departure building at the end of the parking lot.
Asian Spirit flights depart from the old domestic terminal departure building. Asian Spirit's ticket office is located at the end of the building which is the old domestic terminal, 300 meters on the right side after you pass Pacific Air. Look for a very small parking area behind a fence. The ticket office is about 15 meters from the street. Asian Spirit has a cargo office on the corner of this building which is clearly marked. Continue beyond the cargo office, past the Seair ticket office, and Asian Spirit's ticket office is almost at the end of the building. If you drive as far as a new Asian Spirit office under construction you have gone too far.
Seair's ticket office is located on the corner of the old domestic departure building. You will depart through a door facing the parking lot side of the building. This side of the building has a lot of yellow paint on it and is hard to miss.