To travel is to temporarily bid farewell to the hustle and bustle that is your everyday life. And what better place to lose yourself for a moment than in exploring the beauty of the Philippines? It is one of the best ways to relax. For this reason, many choose to splurge on their Philippine vacation, even taking a year to save up for it. Careful planning is essential to ensure a vacation experience that’s one for the books.
But where do you start?
Do Your Research First ALWAYS
Never plan a trip without knowing how to get around, where to go, and how much money you should have. One of the best — and most affordable — ways to do your research is through crowdsourcing. Talk to friends or acquaintances that have gone to the place you’re planning to visit. After all, nothing beats first-hand stories from trusted people.
Do research on the local currency and price ranges. Having a rough estimate of how much you’ll spend on food, transportation, and other expenses will help when you devise a budget plan. Moreover, check the weather forecast, so you’ll know what clothes to pack. The last thing you want is to pack clothes that are uncomfortable or not weather-appropriate, after all!
Apart from taking the prices and the weather into account, equip yourself with travel apps like Google Maps and Google Translate. They can help you navigate the city confidently.
Plan Your Itinerary
Spontaneous trips can be exciting, but a well-planned vacation spares you from unnecessary expenses. Meticulous planning ensures you know where to go and your estimated budget. So, determine the spots you want to see and plot it out. Your itinerary should also include travel time to certain attractions and activities. Estimate conservatively, so you have a buffer in case of unforeseen circumstances, such as traffic and weather conditions.
Be strategic when planning your itinerary. Plan your trips by distance and geography, so you can avoid doubling back somewhere you’ve already been.
Create a Budget (and Stick to It!)
Vacations are the best times to indulge yourself; after all, you only get a handful of leaves annually. There’s nothing wrong with treating yourself while on vacation — as long as you don’t go broke in the process.
Set a budget for your trip. List your expenses (e.g., accommodations, transportation, and food) and make sure to set aside a little extra for souvenirs. Also, refrain from using your credit card to pay for everything. Cash payments are easier to track and manage compared to credit card transactions. Pay with the card only if you have to.
If you are staying over for a couple of days or weeks, avoid overspending on your first day. Although it’s tempting to buy everything that you see immediately, you still have more days to look around and find better deals somewhere else. Buy your souvenirs on the last day of your trip instead.
Smart Packing is Essential
The old “roll, don’t fold” trick is a rule of thumb when it comes to packing. This smart space-saving hack not only allows you to travel light; it also saves money on check-in luggage. Cut down on space by using packing cubes and Ziploc bags.
Are you planning to go clothes shopping during your trip? Keep yourself from going over the luggage weight limit by storing your clothes in a duffel bag, and then place it inside your luggage. If you go over the limit, you can pull out your duffel bag and place your new purchases inside the luggage.
Travel at Your Own Leisure — Rent a Car
Travelers usually have a limited amount of time to experience all the sights and activities a destination has to offer. As a result, they cut things they want to do out of their itineraries. With the help of car rental services in Manila, however, this shouldn’t be a problem.
Self-drive car rentals give you the time and convenience needed to make the most out of your adventures. It’s a hassle-free form of transportation that gets you around quickly. Also, most car rental companies provide cars with a GPS System, which provides on-the-fly travelers with the perfect opportunity to explore without getting lost.
Explore Like a Local
How do you make the most out of your trip? Simple: think like a local. Dropping by famous spots is well and good, especially if it’s your first time in the place. If you want to maximize your time, however, visit special places only the locals know about, as well.
Get in touch with friends or acquaintances in that area to gain an idea of where you should go. If you don’t know a local, don’t worry. You can get local advice anytime, anywhere on social media. Follow travel bloggers or join forums and travel groups on Facebook to learn about secret tourist spots and must-try meals and activities.
Mobile apps are also helpful. Find the best walking directions based on your preferences with Sidekix’s curated suggestions from locals. Cool Cousin, on the other hand, connects you with a local who can help you navigate your way around the city.
Cap off the local experience by coming home to an actual house instead of a standard hotel room. Today’s travelers are big fans of Airbnb. Apart from being less expensive, this type of accommodation offers unique features and breathtaking views. Airbnb houses also allow travelers to cook their own meals and come with all the amenities necessary to make it feel like a home away from home.
Traveling should help you relax, not stress you out. So, be an informed traveler who immerses themselves in the beauty of the Philippines by following the travel hacks above for a seamless vacation.
RentCarManila.com can make your trip more enjoyable. Hop from one PH location to another with our services. Our car rentals come with a driver who is more than willing to take you anywhere in Metro Manila, as well as any point in Luzon. Get in touch with us today to learn more.
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