I need to price tickets for my next trip here and do some research so I will spend a few day in the big city of Manila. I need this information for my next trip here for 2-6 months.
WHAT ROUTE SHOULD I TAKE?
Thursday September 9, 2004 6:55 AM
Which direction should I choose?
This has been a question for me for years and I have approached the question in many ways. I have made multiple pages on these subjects. In fact, my whole site is designed to help me to make this decision.
I have 150 categories that are topics or questions that I need answered to go to anywhere in the world.
However, in the end the simple answer is I need
1. Transportation there.
2. A Hotel when I arrive.
Then I need to go do something fun.
The bad part is after I arrive in a location what may look like fun in the guidebook or what I think is fun is not fun. I am here in the Philippines for a reconnaissance mission. I want to collect information so I can return and enjoy.
This country is absolutely in need a route.
Someone needs to explain to me a path, or I need to learn a path.
I need to have enough Visa time and a way to enter or leave the country with transportation. Transportation is the problem on coming to the Philippines. I purchased a round trip ticket into the country for 30 days or less at about 240 round trip.
This is a good price, but I should have purchased a ticket for 3 months. But what I really needed to purchase was a round trip ticket from the Philippines but I want it…
I want to be able to leave when I want anywhere in the next year,
I want to stay as long as I wish and leave.
I usually buy a one-way ticket but I normally have a way out of the country by land, I have to fly out of this country, I suppose I could take a boat but I have no idea on boats to Vietnam or Hong Kong, but that is possible I suppose.
I did not purchase a one-way ticket here because I was afraid of the cost to get off the island. Yesterday I went to a travel agents office and maybe I have been guaranteed I am correct. I only have gone to one office, but they wanted me to pay 350 for a one-way ticket to Bangkok. That means if I want to say here I need to pay 350 dollars, but this is also a lie or misrepresentation. They have that silly round trip tickets are cheaper thing, so I can purchase a ticket for 250 round trip more or less to Bangkok. But I do not want to come back.
IF I could purchase a ticket for 150 dollars I would think that is good deal, and I could have purchased a one-way ticket here and leave when I wish. So the Philippines become extremely costly in comparison to the rest of Southeast Asia to enter and leave.
21 DAY VISA IS CRAZY
A 21-Day visit to the Philippines is ridiculous; I can barely find the place. I need two months minimum to see this place, and really, you need 3-6 months.
I am going back to Manila to see about plane tickets so I can come back and see this place again. As it sits, it would be better use of my money to fly back to Bangkok now and buy another ticket from Mr. Joe. I need to check with him how much it cost to buy an open ticket to the Philippines.
But I am trying to find a path or a route to take. I am trying to plan my itinerary for this country. 7000 islands does not make this easy, so I need to either do so much research I go crazy before I enter or just wing it and pay a lot. But I am also in the business of figuring out the problems and solving them for my readers.
So far the Philippines is priced right for
Hotels inside the country are cheap enough. 3-7 dollars per night possible.
Transportation inside the country is cheap enough. Around 7 dollars per 12 hour jump, 20 dollars to get to an island by boat.
Visa renewable for about 40 dollars for 38 days, I can renew it here for 2500 Pesos here in Duo or Angeles, I am not sure if this is legal or not, but Manila is in the center of this place and I can return there easily and naturally after any 38 day stint.
I need a PATH to follow on each bigger island area.
Luzon, Palawan, Cebu, Samar, and maybe if you are brave Mindanao where the crazies are doing the Islamic thing.
There are probably many areas but I do not know and that is what I am trying to discover.
I have not found the center of the backpacker universe for this place, and really have not found anyone that knows much of anything. I can probably find people that know where the girl areas are.
But centers are hard to determine. I would say the Maleta area is more or less the center in Manila.
But my big problem is still the plane to and from the island. I can just pay through the nose and come one time or I can find a path that is cheap and come again and again. Or pay a lot and come again and again.
I will write my friend Mr. Joe in Thailand and find out how much for a ticket round trip with an open end for 3 months to 12 months, which will help me make my future trips.
I am planning to make a tip in the next newsletter on how to do reconnaissance of a country. All my writing is always a work in progress and I learn and discover as I go or afterwards. Sometimes I need to collect information for year, and even visit multiple continents before I would feel the least bit confident that I am correct.