The In Between

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What do travel bloggers do in between trips? They think about traveling. At least I do. Apart from trawling the Internet with all the information I can get about the places I am visiting, I also find myself looking at trips that I can take given the direction I have plotted for my life.

I know I’ve been saying for years now that I will be traveling less in the coming years, and while that is technically true, I can’t seem to stop myself from planning the next one. Take for example 2016: while I have only going on my fifth trip of the year today, and will be going on three more afterwards, I will have only spent four months sleeping in my own bed.

Sayuri at Wat Po

Seven trips in a year isn’t really something to sneeze at, though I have to admit that’s already me reigning myself and traveling less. Wanderlust is really something that hit me hard, and I am starting to feel it’s not something that I can easily shake off. It also doesn’t help that I am always on the Internet, and with so many airline promotions, online booking, and credit cards, it’s very hard to resist the impulse to book a flight.

Today, I took a gander at my flickr account, and got lost in a sea of travel photos I’ve taken through the years. It took me back to the years when I was discovering Southeast Asia, and while I am aiming for Europe in the coming years, I am feeling that tug to revisit some of my favorite places.

Penang 19

I am headed back to Penang in July, which would be my fourth visit to the island, and I can see myself going on another trip back sometime in the future. Bangkok, which is another favorite city, is also high in my list, though mostly owing to the fact that I bought this awesome dried pork jerky at the Or Tor Kor market last October, and I up until now, I am regretting that I only bought one pack. I must go back to buy more.

As much as I love Thailand, I have to admit that I haven’t really explored much of the country. Last October, after my TBEX post-BEX fam trip in the Trat province, I went to Ko Chang and stayed at this amazing resort, Amber Sands Resort, which I really want to go back to because the people are great, the food is really good, and the atmosphere of the resort is just really relaxing.

Into the unknown

Thinking about all these places leaves me itching to make that Malaysia Airlines booking on Traveloka, even if I’m leaving for the airport in less than an hour. With booking fee and various payment methods (plenty of Philippine banks available!), it sure is tempting.

That my friends, is how travel bloggers live in between trips.

How to Apply for a New Zealand Tourist Visa Online

After a few attempts, I finally pushed through and applied for a New Zealand Visa. Since I have a multiple entry visa for Australia, my plan was to utilize it by flying out to New Zealand to visit friends and explore the country, and fly back to Melbourne to get another three month’s stay upon my arrival.

Like Australia, Philippine passport holders can now apply for a New Zealand visa online. However, unlike Australia, they still affix a visa label on your passport, so you would still need to arrange to submit your passport through VFS.

Here’s how I applied for my New Zealand Tourist visa online:
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Review: Ocean Suites Bohol

I normally don’t travel during Philippine holidays, primarily because my work requires me to follow the US holidays, but also because I know everybody will be traveling then, and the prices go up. However, My birthday falls between Thanksgiving and Bonifacio Day this year, so when I chanced upon a Cebu Pacific seat sale, I quickly booked a trip to Bohol with my friends Sunshine and Bea.

Ocean Suites Bohol 00014

Just a couple of days after that, I received an email from Deal Grocer, asking me to choose among their hotel deals for an overnight stay. I was still in Bulusan that time (September), and won’t be back in Manila until the end of October, so I thought, why not use the voucher for a stay on my birthday, during our Bohol trip?
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Dining options at Shangri-La Hotel, Bangkok

Shangri-La Hotel and Resorts are those places you enjoy too much and don’t want to leave, and Shangri-La Bangkok is no exception. Luckily, there’s a number of restaurants in the hotel where you can have a great meal.

Buffet Breakfast at Next2

Next2 Cafe is on the banks of the Chao Phraya River, where guests can have their buffet breakfast. They are also open for lunch and dinner, and an ala carte menu is also available.

Shangri-La Hotel, Bangkok
Cereals, dried fruits, nuts, and cheeses
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Review: Asus Zenfone 2 Laser 5.0

Last May, Asus launched the Zenfone 2 smartphone in the Philippines, and I’ve been fortunate enough to receive a unit to use and review. Though my review was based on just two days of use, I’ve continued using the unit until a couple of weeks when I received the Zenfone 2 Laser to review.

Asus Zenfone 2 Laser 5.0 comparison

To easily differentiate between the two Zenfones in this review, I shall refer to my Zenfone 2 as Miss Satsuki.

First Impressions

I was given another red colored unit, and upon first sight, I thought it was identical to Miss Satsuki. The Laser is just slightly smaller though, measuring at 5 inches. Though I have gotten used to Miss Satsuki’s 5.5 inch screen, I have to admit the Laser is a more comfortable fit for my hands.
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