Saturday, December 19, 2015

How Not to Miss Your Flight

Here are four simple steps to follow to avoid missing your flight:

It's common practice for airlines to send updates via email if there have been unexpected changes on your flight (do check your inbox from time to time), but it's always better to confirm your flight schedule by calling them within 24 hours before your flight is scheduled to depart. So in case your flight gets delayed or canceled, at least you can rebook and reserve another flight from the comfort of your own home.

Majority of the airlines now allow their passengers to check-in online before their scheduled departing time. This enables travellers to print their boarding pass and even select their preferred seats inside the plane. If they still have bags to check-in, all they have to do is drop off their bags at the baggage counter and go to the boarding gate. Otherwise, they can simply skip the queue at the airport and avoid the stress altogether.

If you are traveling during the holidays, I suggest you to hit the road extra early otherwise you'll be stuck in December traffic. Remember that you need to be at the airport hours before your departure time. If you're going on an international flight, make sure that you arrive at the airport 3-4 hours before departure and 2-3 hours for domestic flights.

Make sure you are at the right gate in time for boarding and at least 30 mins prior to departure. Gates change from time to time so do not rely on your ticket alone! Don't ignore the announcements and always check on the real-time flight tracking information at the airport.

Safe travels everyone!

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Throwback Thursday: My First Time Seeing Snow

I was born in the Philippines and lived here my whole life so it was only when I was 21 and vacationing in Turkey that I saw snow for the first time. I was on a train to Konya to visit a friend and it stopped at a station where the ground was absolutely filled with snow. This made me so happy. As soon as the train doors opened, I went outside and got one of my legs stuck in deep snow.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Travel Hack #3: Use Incognito Mode to Book the Cheapest Flight Available

Most of us are unaware of this very useful travel hack. It will save travellers from booking overpriced flights. In this post, I will explain to you why one should make it a practice enabling private browsing when purchasing tickets online.

Travel booking websites often track your visits to store data related to your search. This is for them to see how often you've visited their page and what particular route you've been checking out. With this data on hand, they can scare you into booking the flight quickly by simply raising the prices the next time you visit. That is because you allowed them to look into your travel plans after repeatedly searching for the same ticket again and again.

This is why one should make it a habit of searching flights in incognito mode. By using the private browsing option of your browser, travel websites will not be able to store any data or information related to your search and hence you will be able to book the cheapest flight available or see the lowest prices. Don't be sucked into buying that ticket. Better start with a clean slate for each flight search by using the incognito option of your browser.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Culinary Journeys: The Farm Organics

I've been struggling towards my goal of a healthier lifestyle especially in the food department, and the limited number of selection of organic products here in my city doesn't really help my case. So when I heard about The Farm Organics and learned that they have certified organic steak and burgers in their menu, I was thrilled. I finally have healthier meal alternatives to fast food.

The Farm Organics is the real farm-to-table experience.
They have a farm in Masbate and it is the first certified organic cattle farm in the Philippines. Since 1977, the farm has been managed by Randy Favis, who expanded it in 2003 with his wife, Maria. They use natural processes in raising their cattle. It was due to the lack of healthier food choices in Manila that made Tom (son of Randy) and Tanya spoke to Randy about turning the ranch into the first organic livestock farm in the country. It was certified in 2011.

Friday, December 4, 2015

5 Things to Pack in Your Carry-on Bag

Whether you are flying short haul or long, all valuables must be packed in your carry-on bag. With flight and luggage delays now becoming a common occurrence, you need to come prepared. Here are the things you will need to survive if your checked bag didn't make it to your destination with you. Some things on this list might be obvious, but they are worth mentioning.

Passport and boarding pass (or a copy of your itinerary) should always be the first two things that should go inside your bag. They are the most important documents after all. You won't go far without them. Don't forget to bring government-issued IDs to serve as extra proof of your identity. Also, make digital copies of your travel documents. So if you ever lose your passport, you will have an easier time getting a replacement. You can read more about this in my Travel Hack series.

Cash, bank cards or anything else of monetary value should never ever be packed in your checked bag as they can be easily be tampered with. With a standard office pen, a thief can open your zipped luggage in seconds without you ever knowing. Don't believe me? You better watch this. Not only that, you risk losing your money when the airline misplaces your luggage. Once it's gone, so will your money.

Any medications that you might need to take daily, bring them with you in their original packaging along with a doctor's prescription. This should help you avoid problems taking restricted meds on the plane, but don't just take my word for it. You should do your own homework and check the policies of the country you're off to.

Any time you put any gadgets into your checked bag, you run the risk of losing them. Unfortunately, there are a few people out there with bad intentions so if your luggage ever falls into their hands, there's a high possibility that someone will break into your luggage and go through your belongings. Furthermore, baggage handlers are not exactly known for being gentle with luggage. This is the reason why others sometimes end up with a broken suitcase.

Having an essential toiletries kit in your carry-on bag is always handy. It should hold things that will make you feel and look less gross after long hours on the plane. Items like sanitizing wipes which you can use to wipe down dirty trays (it is said to be the dirtiest part of the plane) and tissues to clean up messes or snotty noses.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

How to Get Your Turkish e-Visa Online

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One of the things I am thankful for: Electronic visas. They make life easier. They save us from the hassle of having to go through the trouble of applying for a proper sticker visa. When I heard Turkey finally moved its visa process online, I was ecstatic! I got one and was able to use during my recent trip to Turkey.

The e-Visa is an alternative to visas issued at Turkish Embassies and at the ports of entry. It is an official document you can obtain electronically and print in the comfort of your own home that permits you to entry the country. It will contain all the details of your visa, including expiry dates and travel conditions.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Throwback Thursday: Flying Solo in Kuala Lumpur

Here's a throwback to the first time I ventured on a solo trip 3 years ago. I had just been through a breakup and was ready to move forward. I badly needed a distraction to keep my mind off of things. Taking this trip to Malaysia exactly did that. It took me outside the post-breakup rut. It was the most refreshing experiences I have ever encountered in my life. It made me realize that I can enjoy my own company and not rely on someone else for my happiness.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Cool Japan Shop Opens its First Branch in Manila

Stumbled upon this Japan speciality store while walking around Festival mall a few weeks ago and ended up walking out of the place with a shopping bag on my hand. And just like that, my love for all things Japanese was reaffirmed.

It has a different vibe from the other Japanese stores I've been to around Manila. The place is a bit more upscale and the quality and variety of their merchandise is well thought out. I spent half an hour checking the place out and I've noticed they feature a lot of popular brands from Japan.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

SK-II Auractivator CC Cream Review

Whenever I want to go for the no-makeup look, I always gravitate towards CC or BB creams instead of foundations. They look more natural on my face yet still provide enough coverage without looking too heavily made-up.

I recently got my hands on SK-II's first ever CC cream called the Auractivator. They formulated it with Day Soft Aura White (SK-II’s unique whitening complex composed of UME extract, Niacinamide and concentrated Pitera) to give you glowing, radiant skin. Of course, your home girl was quick to test it out.  It usually takes me months to put up a review on beauty products (some don't even get published), but I really was intrigued by its benefits.
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