helping people maximize their travel experience
Where Should I Travel? That is the question.
People have always asked me for advice on vacation options as well as instructions on what to do in certain destinations. In the course of my giving answers to such queries, as a habit, I don’t immediately answer the person asking. Rather, I find myself probing about so many things about the person and the intended trip. This includes personalities, likes, dislikes, traveling alone or in a group, budget, and so many other things.
Knowing specific information helps me give better advice to people. When I give advice, I dont offer things based on how I travel. Rather, I make suggestions based on personality and desire. Remember, not all travelers are made to be the same. The reason I travel my be very different from the reason you do.
Heres are Three Questions to Ask on how to get the best vacation suggesions.
Ask Yourself: When I Travel..
1. What activities do I find myself doing?
I love traveling to places where there is evidence of cultural differences. Knowing what I like lets me choose a destination, it also helps me narrow down my travel activities in an area. I also like adventure and activities that gives me a certain adrenalin rush. Surfing grabs my attention. In fact there was a time when Id go to the beach every weekend, 5 hours away, for just a full day of surfing. You will trnd to favor destination where you can do the usual things in a totally new location.
2. What Is My Mood?
There was a time in my travel photography career that I absolutely felt I didnt want to take photos. I felt I had to discover something and wanted to do a solo adventure trip to an island.. without a camera. Because of my mood, I was able to decide to go to places where interacting with locals instead of capturing picturesque sceneries was a better activity choice. And it was my mood that made me decide to do something uncommon.
3. What Do I Want to Achieve When I Travel?
Believe it or not, you should have a goal when you travel. Whether its to eat the best food or climb the highest peak, a goal is necessary for you to determine what type of activities fit your profile. When I visited Singapore with my wife. I had two travel goals for that trip – discover and enjoy Singaporean Cuisine, and get to attend service at a church my wife and I really wanted to see. So our itinerary and destination list were prepared to make sure it fit those important goals into our schedule. We found ourselves dedicating half a day for the service, and plotting best food choices on Hawker places on our iPad. The rest of the activities were incidental and we went home really happy, satisfied, and refreshed.
And so the next time you would like to take a vacation, create a clear picture in your mind on what kind of travel experince you would like to have. Be guided by the three questions. And of course, don’t forget to have fun in the process.
Whenever I’m in Bacolod, my stomach is happy. In fact it’s so happy that the mere mention of Bacolod reminds me that I haven’t had breakfast.
I made this list a year ago and has been kept secret for some time, not because I don’t want to share but because I had it on my wedding page which wasn’t available for everyone to see. I specifically prepared it for my guests coming to Bacolod for the first time.
How do I know so much you ask? My wife is from there and I absolutely crave for a food trip whenever im there.
If youre having a trip there soon, here’s a little list for you to follow. Do this at your own convenience. Try all of them for best results! This list is in no particular order. Read the rest of this entry »
It was in 2005 that I decided to shift from corporate employment into the world of freelancing. As I fully embraced photography for the first time in Jan 2006, I discovered a whole new world with a relatively new digital concept. The first entry level DSLRs were being introduced and I was among the few early adapters of this wave.
I believe the tipping point to the late majority has already passed and having a DSLR has become a norm. As some dream of shifting into a photography career, I find myself contemplating for a comeback.
As I end this photography hiatus which started in 2011, allowing myself to rediscover what I am truly called to do, I look into great spaces, a digital canvass filled with promise and a hope that I would someday again breakthrough in the field of professional photography. Even during this break, I didnt find my talents idle as I have taken tourism and some editorial jobs into play. But indeed, it is time to go back.
My walk begins with a book project. I cannot say how excited I am, but the promise of a great future is ahead of me. I am however not looking for fame or creating masterpieces. My goal is to change the world one project at a time with the message of hope.
We’re in the middle of summertime and many are still hitting the beach with the city heat getting more uncomfortable. The last time I was on the water was during my honeymoon with Kim last May in Boracay.
Since my wife and I don’t like going to bars and have a different idea of what parties and hangouts are supposed to look like, Boracay was simply a beautiful haven for us, filled with white sand, clear waters, and a place for food trippin’.
Boracay hosts thousands upon thousands of hungry stomach a year as people from all walks of life visit this island for a week or so of semi-pure beach bliss – part beach, part everything else.
boracay white beach 2012
Creating a top must try food list will be difficult to create since Boracay island has hundreds of establishments that serve food. From hotel buffets to restaurants, to food kiosks, and street stalls along the beach.
If you know me, Id do some research before traveling.. Ok I don’t do some, I do a lot. sometimes I overdo things maybe. So I searched for what seems to be the best deals and thats what we tried out. Some of course will be spur-of-the-moment, I-am-too-hungry-to-walk-any-further occasions that made us choose a certain place. In any case, what we share with you today are some of our faves.
I’ve been asked many times whether its best to drive to the airport and leave your car there rather than taking a cab or the trains. There are of course a lot of factors to consider whether to bring your car or not. At times we base things on price. On most occasions, we base things on convenience. Here are my personal reasons that you too may consider:
1. Number of Days – If you’re staying for more than a week. The longer you’ll leave your car will dictate the price of your parking. Normally, a few days away would be fair. On the other hand, if you decide to leave your car at or near the airport for a few weeks or months, make sure your car will still start when you return from your trip.
2. Parking Accessibility – where I live, you can drive yourself right next to the airport at a minimal fee. If you arrive at the wrong time of day, youll end up with no parking space. If your country has online parking searches like Parking4less which allows you the ease of choosing parking options by booking parking slots ahead, whether on airport or off airport parking (and even airport valet services which I think is a brilliant idea), the more inclined you are to choose to drive versus to commute.
3. Ease of Commuting vs Driving – if you’re not used to commuting, then taking your car is an automatic option. But if you’re in countries like Hong Kong or Singapore where they have sophisticated train systems that connect you the airport from anywhere in the metro, then commuting is best. But there are times when trains and cabs are such a hassle that you don’t even have to think whether to drive or not, more so when you’re planning to max out your luggage limit.
airport carpark photo by hunter-desportes
4. Cost Effectivity – where we live, you’ll spend more money paying the cabbie than bringing a car. So check your budget. Its public transport cost vs parking and gas (plus car maintenance costs if you want to consider that). If cost doesn’t get in the way of parking though, then taking your car is the better option given other considerations.
5. Parking Security – if you’re sure that you’ll find your car where you left it then go ahead and drive. That’s also why we pay a premium on reliable parking services rather just just anywhere.
Driving or Commuting won’t always be an automatic option. It all depends on many things and a lot of other factors. Sometimes you may decide to commute but end up busying yourself too much you almost miss your flight. On these occasions, airport valet services seem like great options. I wish we had these at home.
Tablets have spread like mushrooms in the wilderness to provide us with convenience in our daily living. Much like when cellphones came to existence, and for whatever purpose that it may serve you, tablets can aide you in being productive.
For travelers like me, I’ve always found it ideal to use travel apps whenever I take a journey. For me it started with the iPod touch and now with the iPad, it just gets better since a larger screen does wonders for me.
Ive listed 7 must have apps for anyone traveling to an unfamiliar destination. Although there are many other useful apps out there, and Ive probably downloaded them all, these 7 are perhaps what I find the most useful. Having other great apps are good, except if you don’t use them often then they’re not really must haves.
Since the influx of tablets and hand held devices sprawling left and right, it is difficult to ignore those useful apps that anyone can avail of when traveling. As I introduce myself to the world of iPad apps, I’d also like to share with you those useful apps you can have when visiting certain places.
Today it will be those useful apps we got to use in Singapore. Next time ill share our generic travel apps for local and international travel.
It had been quite some time since I’ve flown outside the country. Although our flight is scheduled four hours from now, we’re at the airport early so we won’t have to join the queuing crowd. In fact, we arrived 7 hours early thanks to our friend, Yip, whom we hitched a ride with. He’s leaving his car for 50 pesos a day (and night) at the overnight carpark of NAIA (MNL) Terminal 3 since we had to get to the airport by 3PM because of the number coding afternoon curfew.
Boarding Gate. Manila to Singapore
My wife and I were able to get good seats on my favorite row and without the need to pay extra. I feel stingy saying it but our destination isn’t exactly categorized as a developing country. On the contrary, Singapore’s cost of living allows for more cash out for international travelers, even for those coming from first world countries. So the more hundred pesos we can save, the more Laksa’s we can eat.
Long queue times at the International Flights area. Bypass it by doing Web Check-in ahead of time.
Although we’re attending a conference primarily. We wouldn’t want to miss the frills and thrills of Singapore as it will be a first time visit for me and Kim. To be honest, I didn’t do much homework about Singapore because of the busyness of days prior. I did get to download nice cool travel apps I can use (hopefully) in Singapore.
Its been awhile since my last post but sometimes you need a break from things you enjoy, miss it a little, then come back at it on a whole new level.
As for me, I have no valid excuse. What I do know is that this time, i cant travel alone anymore, and thats a good thing. I got bored doing that. There were fun times being a lonesome traveler, but those days are over for me. This is a totally new adventure, and my wife will be with me every step of the journey
So my blog starts here… Again!
I’d like to finish my old posts though, those saved up from months and months of travel and not a moment to share. But here it is, enjoy!
Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte
Its not the best of times to be in Pagudpud, but it doesn’t mean you cannot get decent photos
photo right outside Kapuluan Resort while a storm comes in (fun shot taken with a Playsport)
same place differnt frame (fun shot taken with a Playsport)
One common question people ask travelers is this: What is the best place you’ve visited? Time and again, I would always give people an “it-depends” answer, because it really depends. We cannot compare each destination from another, because each has its own pros and cons, good things and bad, and the what haves and have nots.
The question we don’t normally encounter is this? What is the best journey you’ve ever had? Sometimes we dont care about focusing on the journey part of our travels.
photo by mikebaird
And so let me enumerate the trips I remember and call it must have travel experiences. Here we go: Read the rest of this entry »