With the threat of an extra-hot Philippine summer looming on the horizon, there's no better time to trade in a few days in the humid, smoggy city for the fresh air of the provinces or the cooler climes abroad.
And with the myriad of gorgeous destinations for all budgets at your fingertips, you practically have no excuse to stay holed up at home all throughout this season. But once you push through with your vacation plans, here’s what you’ll have to deal with a.k.a. the things only Pinoy travelers can relate to:
That lecture you'll get from the people around you when you announce your travel plans
There's no escaping the slightly disapproving inquest you'll get from your folks and your boss once you say you're planning to go on an adventure. "Saan ka na naman maglalakwatsa?," your dad will ask. "Sino kasama mo?," inquires your nosy officemate. "Bakit hindi ka na lang mag-ipon?" your mom will say. And don’t forget the incredulous "mag-li-leave ka na naman?" from your boss!
Saving every last one of your meager leaves for your much-awaited bakasyon engrande
That means combining your VLs and SLs and scheduling your trips around holidays. How else can you maximize that Japan trip you've saved up for since two years ago?
The adrenaline rush an airline seat sale brings
You'd willingly park yourself in front of your laptop at the ungodly hour of 2:00 a.m. to score round-trip tickets to your next destination on piso fare. And even if you’re normally a very impatient person, you have absolutely no problem joining the mad crowds at travel expos. Because admit it: There's no way you'd pay full price for plane fare.
The visa struggle...
Going to the USA, Canada, Europe, or any first-world civilization entails being interrogated by a bunch of scary folks who wholeheartedly believe that you'll end up being another TNT. Ah, the pitfalls of a third world visa...
...and the airport struggle
As if getting a visa wasn’t difficult enough, you also have to endure our airports, where you'll be peppered with questions by grouchy airport and immigration staff, some of whom are more than eager to rip you off. And if you’re lucky, you might even magically find a bullet or two in your luggage! And don't get us started on those airport taxi fares...
Having the whole family see you off when you leave and welcome you when you get back
The way the entire barangay insists on seeing you off (complete with a going-away party), you’d think you’d be gone for two years rather than two weeks. And you find yourself holding back tears when the whole family shows up at the airport to fetch you...only to find out that they just want first dibs on whatever you bought for them. Seriously, this fact showcases one thing: We're one tight-knit community, and damn proud of it.
The pressure to buy pasalubong for everyone you know
Wherever you go, there’s just no escaping the gift requests from the whole gang. A pretty trinket for Mama, chocolates for your siblings, keychains for the whole barkada, chocolates for the entire office... Good thing is, we've got loads of different kinds of souvenirs, many of which are legit convo-starters like these.
You can spot fellow Filipinos immediately when you're abroad
It’s like we have a built-in radar that homes in on our fellow Pinoys. Just one glance, and you can say with confidence, "Ah, Pinoy 'yan." We’d like to think it has something to do with our innate warmth and hospitality. Or maybe it’s all those weird gestures we are known for.
Taking lots of pictures everywhere
It’s very "Pinoy" to pose at all the tourist spots and to take pictures with all the people you encounter. And nope, you’re not gonna stop taking selfies until you get the perfect profile pic shot!
All the smiles we encounter along the way
At the end of the day, we Filipinos are a happy bunch. Proof positive are all the happy smiles we encounter on our local travels—may it be from those kids playing in the barrio or from that old but happy lady selling sweets in the town square. One of the often overlooked but ultimately rewarding perks of being not a stranger in your own country.