The “Pearl of the Orient,” is the nickname the country of the Philippines takes pride in. Like the rest of the Southeast Asian region, the country is a favorite travel destination for many tourists owing to its natural resources and cheaper prices. Traveling on a budget in the Philippines is not only possible but very much doable. Here are a couple of helpful tips.
The Philippines has two major airline companies – the flag carrier is Philippine Airlines and the one preferred by the masses is Cebu Pacific. Both airlines offer promos and discounts but it is Cebu Pacific that regularly offers seat sales a couple of times a year. During these promos, it’s possible to get domestic and international tickets at very low prices. Many consider Cebu Pacific to be the Ryanair of Asia. However, many say despite their low-budget status, the planes of Cebu Pacific are new and well maintained and the staff and crew are friendly and quite accommodating.
As a developing nation, a good portion of the citizens of the Philippines has disposable incomes which mean traveling is not only possible but attainable to the masses. Weekends and special holidays are when airports, ports, and terminals see a rush of travelers. Christmas breaks and Holy Week are times of the year when people go on vacations. Many Filipinos like traveling to local destinations for quick 2- to 3-day trips. Others with more means spend that time abroad. Regardless, if you want a stress-free and budget-friendly time in the country, avoid traveling during peak seasons to avoid crowds and it is also during these times that prices normally go up to capitalize on the stream of travelers.
The likes of Boracay, Palawan, and Cebu are beautiful places to visit in the Philippines but if you are on a budget, it’s best to not stay too long here since they are popular destinations and will naturally have higher prices. The country is home to over 7000 islands and you will without a doubt find a beautiful, peaceful, and cheap gem if you’re willing to venture out of your comfort zone. The island of Bohol boasts stretches of white-sand beaches. Siargao Island is home to world-class surf breaks. And Davao has Sumilon Island.
Being an archipelago, getting around the Philippines will mean being up in the air, by land, or taking the ferry. As mentioned previously, you can snatch cheap flights if you are patient enough but there is another option for getting around the country. If you are not pressed for time, taking the ferry to go from one island to the next is going to be a memorable experience. Buses can offer comfort against the humidity of the country. You get to travel just like how the locals do it and it’s a lot cheaper than even the cheapest plane tickets. There are ferries and buses whose voyages are at night which means you can sleep during the entire journey and wake up refreshed and ready when you get to your destination.