What type of traveler are you? I wish I was the thrill seeker type. You know, the hiking, backpacking, diving-into-the-deep-ocean and swimming-with-the-sharks type. But I’m the complete opposite — the no-hassle traveller whose also a bit of an escapist — aka the boring type LOL. Instead of doing exciting and, can I just say, risky (*magingat kayo guys please* / please be careful) activities I’d rather relax beside a pool or on a beach and stay in a nice luxurious hotel. Abroad or locally. Although I have to say I do most of it locally ‘cos its a lot easier and more affordable.
Traveling close to home, or a “staycation” as most kids call it (I felt so old saying that), is currently the trend now. And here are the five reasons why it’s getting more and more popular and why you and I need it in our lives.
ABOVE: This is me pretending to be a light packer
(Rebecca Minkoff bag and Rip Curl beach suitcase)
BELOW: Using my new staycation app Traveloka, and the payment confirmation of my booking
IT’S REALLY EASY TO PLAN
It’s way easier to plan a staycation vs. an actual long-distance vacation. You can pack lightly, go over the weekend, and be back in time for work on Monday. And the hotel booking process is easy. I used the travel app called Traveloka. It’s fairly new in the Philippines but it’s an established online travel agent in South East Asia.
What I like most about Traveloka App is its clean, user-friendly, blue interface. You can go directly into filling up the location and days you’ll be traveling straight from the homepage and the app narrows down your hotel choices for you. The credit card payment process I used was easy (lots of other payment methods listed below). Traveloka will also e-mail and text you a confirmation message after payment is made (this was especially helpful when I needed to access my booking ID and everyone’s internet was slow).
They have a customer service hotline for assistance which i’m happy to report answers quickly (via phone and email) and the agent seemed to be happy to help. It felt like i was in good hands.
YOU’LL SAVE MORE MONEY
In addition to saving money by skipping plane tickets, car rentals, or hefty exchange rates, travel / hotel booking apps like Traveloka offer special deals and discounts for their users. Last time I checked they had a good 50% off discount promo for some hotels. This cuts down your expenses and gives you extra savings — or in my case allows me to book a bigger one bedroom suite at Oakwood Manila.
ABOVE: My stay at Oakwood Hotel and Traveloka’s lists of hotels in Manila
BELOW: Oakwood Manila’s luxury one bedroom suite
DISCOVER GOOD LOCAL
HOTELS WE HAVE
By having a staycation you’re also supporting the local community and appreciating the establishments near you that you might have overlooked. There are tons of scenic hotels to choose from — a few of my faves at the moment are: Bellevue Hotel, Oakwood Hotel, and Taal Vista. All these you can find at Traveloka. The app also makes it easy for you to narrow down your hotel options according to location, date/s of stay, customer ratings, price range, and budget. We stayed in the Oakwood Premiere Joy Hotel in Ortigas. I’m used to the hotels in the south and going to the north was a refreshing experience.
THERE ARE MANY WAYS
TO RELAX IN A HOTEL
There are a lot of relaxing things you can do in a hotel to detach yourself from your busy life. Staying in a luxurious room is even sometimes more than enough especially when you badly need some “me time”. One of my favorite things to do is to hang out in luxurious and ridiculously big bathrooms. I love bubble baths so i always bring with me my favorite Lush bath bombs and bubble bars for a mini pamper session. You can also go to a spa or the hotel bar, swim your heart out in the pool, or go to the buffet. Most bookings include free breakfast buffet so that’s a nice bonus. Or hit the nice and usually quiet hotel gym if you’re like me who finds exercising relaxing or if you’re like my dad who’s into meditation.
DO IT FOR THE
INSTAGRAM WORTHY PHOTOS
As shallow as this may sound to some, staycations at a hotel are like having access to a hundred good backgrounds for Instagram or blog photos under one roof. Most hotels pride themselves in their fancy shmancy interiors and we have to take advantage of that. You can have a mini photoshoot in every corner or every floor, which is what I practically did during my stay there as you may have seen on my Instagram Stories last week. More photos from my Oakwood staycation will be up soon!
Any suggestions on which hotel I should visit next?