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My Cambodian quest for Starbucks Mug and Tumbler.

Starbucks Cambodia, only at Phnom Penh International Airport. (Photo by Ted Nierras)
My recent travel to Cambodia has another story to tell, this is regarding my quest to buy a Starbucks mug and a tumbler in Phnom Penh. Two of my friend commission me to buy their well love collections of mug, however in my arrival in Siem Reap from Manila, I found out that there is no Starbucks store, and the only Starbucks Coffee shop is in Phnom Penh, and upon my research online, the said store is in Cambodia International Airport, but I miss the part that it is only inside the departure lounge, meaning you have to be a passenger in order to buy coffee or the said mugs. Below is my statement chronologically.

Last Feb 17, 2016 I travel all the way from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh via bus, this is after I learn that Starbucks is only located in the Airport of Phnom Penh,  but I was not inform that it is situated inside the international airport. I have list of orders for two of my friends who are Starbucks Mug and tumbler Collector, it is a heaven for them to have mugs with different countries with a brand of Starbucks.

I arrive past eight in the evening in the airport, I hired a Tuktok for $15 for a round trip that lasted 45mins travel one way from my hotel in Phnom Penh City proper, in the departure area I was inform that there is no chance for me to buy the mug if I am not a passenger, and no way either for me to go the store since its located inside departure area lounge.

I tried my very best to appeal to the lady in the Tourism/Information Desk of the Departure area to help me, I am even willing to stay there at the said location if there is somebody willing to buy the mugs and tumbler that I am looking for. But she is not a help at all, she endorse me to some of the guards at the escalator area but I was passed to another guard, to another guard, to the point one of them try to ask money from me saying he is willing to escort me going up to the Starbucks shop, only if I’ll give him money. I told him I don’t have enough money since I am travelling to Vietnam after my tour in Phnom Penh. That time he told me that no help is available no more. I didn’t get the name of the said guard on duty since my focus is to buy the mug I am looking for, and the worry that my the Tuktok I hired is also waiting in vain for me outside the airport.

I go back again to the Lady on the desk, I beg her to let me talk to her manager or supervisor and hopefully understand my situation. She did try calling a certain number, and afterwards she told me that her manager is busy and cannot attend to my request. She said sorry and there’s nothing more she can do to help me, I ask her if there is a Tourism/Information Desk in the Arrival area maybe I can find a help there, she told me that there is but the said desk is already close that time. 

I try to look around the Departure area hoping to find a good Samaritan, trying my luck maybe I can recognize someone or any fellow Filipino, who happen to be a passenger or a crew of any airline or any airport staff that can help me, but I didn’t find any one.
 
The to die for Starbucks mug of Cambodia.
My spirit is so down that moment, I am thinking of how failure I am. But somehow I have the feeling that what if I try my luck at the Arrival area, so I decided to walk a certain mile from the Departure area going to the Arrival area.

At the arrival of the said Information desk, I told right away the kind lady with the name Leng Monirath of what happen and my purpose, without any second thought she stand up to her chair and told me that she will help me, she will go up and buy me the said mug and tumbler, I can almost cry at the moment because of her gesture. She told me to wait there at the said booth, and she will call the phone and talk to me so I can give the instruction to the Starbucks staff that she will look for, and the rest is history and successfully I go back at my hotel feeling fulfilled, because of the help of Ms.Leng. Due to limited money that time, I forgot to give Leng any token or maybe a Starbucks coffee as a sign of  thanking her for the wonder she did for me and my stay in Cambodia unforgettable.

I already emailed the Cambodia International Airport administration about what happen, I ask them to give Ms.Monirath a commendation for the invaluable service she did for me. They already replied to my email lately and was told that they are taking actions in honoring Ms.Leng. 
Emails from Cambodia Airport Authorities. 

Comments

Anonymous said…
hi Mr Evo, I would like to ask if how much it cost you to buy the mug. Thanks
Evo Contrivida said…
Around P700 in our conversion I cant recall the Cambodian price.
Unknown said…
I am in Phnom Penh now and there's a couple of Starbucks store here like 3 or 4? I am also looking for a mug for my sister.

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