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Manny Piñol is a budget traveler: No first-class plane ticket, no fancy hotels

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Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol has probably earned many miles for his frequent foreign trips but he has guaranteed that these travels were all work-related, and not excessive or expensive.

“I had many official foreign travels and one personal trip to the US last December to visit a dying friend,” Piñol said in a Facebook post.

“All of my official travels were all related to my job as Secretary of Agriculture and approved by the Office of the President,” he said.

He said many of his foreign trips were made as part of the President’s official delegation to various state visits. “Hindi ako nagbulakbol,” he said.

He said his last official travel was to Buenos Aires as Co-Head Of Delegation to the World Trade Organization (WTO) negotiations.

In his foreign trips, Piñol said he makes sure his travel expenses are within budget, avoiding first-class plane ticket and expensive hotel accomodations.

“I never travelled First Class, always Economy Class,” he said.

“I never stayed in 5-Star Hotels, except when the Presidential Management Staff makes a prior booking for us Cabinet Secretaries to stay in the same hotel with the President,” he said.

He said he travels with one or two staff members during his trips abroad. “You don’t really expect me to travel alone and carry documents all by myself?” he said.