Saturday, June 16, 2012

Travel Essentials: Get LUCKY To Fund Your Wanderlust!

by: Mhe-anne L. Ojeda

If wanderlust or the strong desire or impulse to wander or  travel and explore the world is a crime (glad it's not!) and my friends file charges against me, I would have to plead guilty during arraignment and will surely be convicted as charged! ! lol. Traveling is my passion, my lifestyle, a lifetime pursuit and one of the 2001 Things To Do before I hit the twig!
And since my wanderlust has already brought this 30 - something me to 660 cities in 27 countries, allowing me to score a high travel credit on Geckogo and getting that A-traveler badge in Lakbayan for travel in the Philippinesthe presumption (and allegation!) is that I am rich and has money to burn
As echoed by my friend Chat Catada Kent in her FB chats "sarap talaga ng dalagang abogada at maraming pera, gala lang ng gala. me business ka ba ng travel agency?" (so good to be a single female lawyer with lots of money, you can just roam around (the world!). do you have a travel agency?) I was laughing at the end of her comments!
Ok. Let's digress a little bit to see if she referring to me. Single? check. Lawyer? check. (see I told you "I'm smart that's why I'm single" haha). With lots of money? Eh, where??? With travel agency? None. (I wish!!).  So how could you afford to jet set around countries (almost monthly), spending long winter and  loong summer around the globe from A to Z she asked on cross-examination. Oh my! I'm on a hot pink seat. haha!
How do I fund my wanderlust? My reply was spelled out in my really old blog entry - I just get LUCKY! How is that for a tip?  That's right! It may sound funny, silly or even nonsense if you see LUCK as something that connotes an unpredictable attribute, something beyond your control to change or reverse. But that's not what I meant.
I mean LUCK as defined in the book “How to Attract Good Luck” by A.H.Z Carr The book differentiates “chance” and “luck” – words we often used interchangeably- but are only distant cousins according to Mr. Carr. “Chance” is defined as the “unknown, or unidentified, cause of events not subject to calculation” while “luck” is the effect of “chance” in our lives. Simply said, chance is not the only element in luck. Another factor is obviously involved - ourselves!
As I learned the true nature of luck, I made good luck a constant factor in any project I wish to bring to fruition - be it feeding my wanderlust by scoring free plane tickets, accommodations and travel expenses from generous boyfriend, best friend, client, boss, prospective client, friend, friend of friends, scholarships, and miles saved up from airline memberships; to landing a good job that pays well and allows me to be location independent, or something else. I constantly take positive steps to attract, recognize and strengthen luck in my life. 
qualities that ATTRACT lucky chances  
So as not to bore you to death, I will only focus on being ZESTFUL as one of the two qualities that attract lucky chances during my recent trip last May 29 - June 12, 2012, staying 10 days in New Zealand (around Auckland, Hamilton, and New Plymouth), 3D/2N in Singapore and an overnight stay in Batam, Indonesia and how I saved my bucks (without consciously doing it!) to afford, maybe, another trip next month.
*Expose Yourself to Strangers or "friends we haven't metand when you do you'll definitely gain a "friend" who can even be your "best friend"overtime. That was how I  met Jenny, a nurse from Siem Reap (Cambodia) who has been in New Zealand for about 5 years and my seatmate on Jetstar flight last May 30, 2012 from Singapore to Auckland, New Zealand! I do not remember how we started the conversation but I knew we both  felt like we have known each other for a long time! 
         When she leaned that I wanted to see Auckland for a day and not having booked a hotel yet, she offered me a room in their house! How trusting and how grateful I was! Offered accepted, which also came with a free ride from the airport courtesy of her boyfriend Frank
          I did not end up staying at their house that night  since I was picked up by Lynn, my host in Hamilton but Jenny & Frank offered to host me when I get back to Auckland. Again that didn't happen since my former office mate Nilo Penales and his family was very kind to host me. (see the series of lucky chances? how to recognize them is in this pic!). 
        Anyway, I was able to meet Jenny again and visited museum together when I was in Auckland! We are keeping in touch via Facebook now and who knows we might meet each other in Siem Reap next time (wedding bells wink* wink*!!). 
Don’t Be Shy or you lose a chance! - Pinoy travelers are quite timid. But if you are traveling solo, you will never be able to take photos or stretch your hard-earned bucks if you are shy. Alright you can set your camera on self-timer mode and find a trash bin to set it and pose (i did it many times!), but that isn't always possible like when I was touring around Merlion Park in Singapore. So I approached other solitary strangers (remember they are "friends" we haven't met!)  and asked them to take my picture(s) and then offered to take theirs in return. It saved me the cost of a tripod (lol).
        Timidity also has no place if you want to save some bucks! Don't be shy to ask for doggy bag for your left -over meals at a resto (unless you are in France where this practice is frowned upon). I did it in Chinatown, Singapore after being served fried rice and hot sour soup (good for 4!). It supplemented the hostel's free breakfast of toasted bread  and saved me some money! 
Try Something New, you'll be glad you do. I haven't stayed in a dorm-type room in a hostel before, but when I saw Beary Best! by Beary Good Hostel in Chinatown, Singapore with all the teddy bears around I knew I just have to try the place. Glad I did coz it did not only save me $ SGD 144 (Php 4,791.00) on hotel fee (since Marina By The Sands offered on discount by client would cost me $ SGD176 compared to the $SGD 32 by the homey hostel) but it
      also allowed me to learn how to wash my own dishes, prepare my own food and to be considerate of others since I have shared the room with 3 other girls the first night. On my return stay there I met another friend, Shyan Ung from Malaysia who came to Singapore for a job interview as a make up artist. That night I have someone to talk to, than just the empty walls or tv offered by five-star hotel! Shyan even gave me face masks she bought.
Find a Center of Interest.Since I am always itching to travel and to explore a new place, I surround myself with those others whose center of interest is constantly feeding their wanderlust. This is one sure way to save some bucks - either by getting tips where to buy cheap tickets to a destination, getting a free ride or being offered a free tour! 
When I was invited to the J. Reuben Clark Asia Pacific Conference as one of the panelists, I immediately noticed the tour to Hobbiton movie set of Lord of the Rings!  I knew I needed to be there to see middle earth and achieved my Pacific Triangle Dream sans the expense for the 3-day accommodation, food and tour! It was Rain Amantiad of PTB who tipped me about  Jetstar Airlines - where I  scored a $521 round trip ticket from Singapore to Auckland! And for the Waitomo Caves?Oh that again was checked off my bucket list through my friend LDS lawyer Helen Black from  Adelaide, Australia. She rented a car for 10 days and she offered me a ride to my cousin/uncle in New Plymouth, which allowed us to visit Hamilton Gardens and oh! Waitomo Caves!!! 
Expand Your Ideas. I chose Batam, Indonesia over its allegedly more exciting neighbor island of Bintan, after being able to read a blog post from another PTB blog Cheap Travel For Women. The ideas in the blog assured me that Batam is safe, cheap and doable for an overnight stay. I listed  down the things she did and places visited. But when I reached the place I put on the "Whatever Attitude" (literally.check my shirt!). I talked to the driver and other locals for their suggestions and added them to the list! I was able to enjoy Waterfront City, Ocarina Park and the food for so much less!!!         

So for 3 countries in 2 weeks, with 2 stuffed toys, 
5 shirts, boxes of chocolates as pasalubong,
 tons of new friends and priceless memories, 
I only spent $400 cash and 
used $77 on credit card 
for cashless transactions! How? 
I just get LUCKY!
I hope you do too!

This is my entry to the June 2012 Pinoy Travel Blog Carnival with the theme "How To Fund Your Wanderlust" being hosted by The Explorer James Betia a.k.a. Journeying James.

For previous Blog Carnival topics please The Visualizer Estan Cabigas' Langyaw.


  1. I smile while I read this...well, I look for a job that will take me to places. LOL! And why not? of course hindi ko puwedeng ibandera yun. I wanted to join this blog carnival, pero propriety dictates...alam mo na. Hehe.

    1. Ding that was quick! Thanks and glad my post made you smile. I'm sure the opportunities for jobs that'll take you to places are for grabs to people who has so much talent in photography and writing like you! And so for my tips just get LUCKY by attracting, recognizing and strengthening the favorable chances that comes your way. Oh,looking forward to your entry pa naman. di puedeng ilimit within proper bounds? haha

  2. I agree that there are soo many ways you can get lucky in traveling. I was, in a sense, but you are too, in that you have a very nice job that allows you to go places. The bottom line is that yes, we make our own luck, and don't just leave things to chance. We set a goal, and work hard towards it, and that includes fulfilling our wanderlust!

    1. well said Aleah! whatever we want to achieve, the universe will conspire to give it to us if we know how to attract it, recognize and strengthen our luck potential so the favorable chance will not slip us by! you are one of those who have not only articulated the true essence of "luck" but have lived it to fulfill your wanderlust!

  3. you really are my idol when it comes to travelling , youre so lucky , , i also wanted to be as lucky as you but im from the province and married and travelling is just a weekend adventure due to so many factors.. if youre really single you can do whatever you want..

    1. hello there - thanks for dropping by and leaving nice comments.i agree that being single affords more flexibility on traveling since we can leave at a whim's notice. but being married and with kids, while a huge consideration, do not have to put a toll on traveling.i know of lots of married couples who travel with their kids in tow and they have an enjoyable trips, one that a single person like me will not be able to feel yet.traveling on a weekend is a good start and a great way to feed your wanderlust!

  4. Now I have to keep these reminders in mind! for less than 500usd for 2weeks thats awesome! plainly awesome! I admire you!

    1. thanks for dropping by Wander Shugah.yea priceless memories for 2 weeks in 3 countries for less when we get out of our shell and be attract good luck. Be Lucky!!

  5. Cool formula up there! These are really nice and unique points you've made that are also crucial in making a dream adventure come true. Cheers to more adventures!

    1. Thanks for dropping by and leaving comments.Reading the book of A.H.Carr made it concrete for me why there are favorable chances that came my way - and it is indeed cool and unique to know that was/is because i have invited, recognized and strengthen LUCK in my life! See you on the road and happy travels to you as well!!

  6. I write because I am alone and move through the world alone. No one will know what has passed through me... I write because there are stories that people have forgotten to tell, because I am a woman trying to stand up in my life... I write out of hurt and how to make hurt okay; how to make myself strong and come home, and it may be the only real home I'll ever have. Cheap Flights to Auckland | Flights to Auckland

  7. Very inspiring! This post taught me two basic things, and that's to take risks and never be shy...THANKS!

    1. Thanks Toto Albin for dropping by. We really have to get out of our shell and be more of a risk taker and out going! good luck with your travels!!


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