Time for another GERBIL ADVENTURE!

In a few days, I’ll be heading back to Europa, Europaaaaa to visit my family and friends..and I’ll be making my way to my 28th country too! I can’t wait to tell you all about it soon 🙂 Please pray that I survive with my limited funds..especially since I’ll be flashpacking on my own!:)

So, What is flashpacking?
Just because you have a backpack, this doesn’t make you a backpacker. By definition, backpacking is more than just stuffing everything into one North Face pack. It’s a travel philosophy, it’s a lifestyle. It’s sleeping in a random train station, hitching a ride with a stranger, and planning to have no plans. If you booked your flight at least 1 month ahead, arranged your accommodations online, and carry a samsonite with wheels…then my friend, you are not a true backpacker. Aww, sorry to burst your backpacking bubble. I suggest you ask someone who’s cool and legit like my buddy, Paula Peralejo! She’s the all around traveler who knows her shizzz.

As much as I admire hardcore backpackers, sadly, I’ve never been one. There are two major reasons why I can’t do backpacking: 1)I’m OC and I love staying organized and planning ahead, I find that by planning ahead..you save a whole lot of money and STRESS. My being OC is both an advantage and a disease, really.  2)I am a neat freak..hygiene is always an issue for me, so I can’t share toilets with random strangers. I don’t mind roughing it up and going all out cowboy.. I just dont like sharing private things with people I dont know! I’d rather sleep in the middle of a rainforest than share a bed with some weirdo in a hostel! I’ve gone camping in the desert in Egypt and in the mountains of Nepal..but I always had my own sleeping bag..and also my own jingle bag! I’m too clean and I’m sure a pain in the arse because of it. So this is why I never ever posed as a backpacker..because by definition, I am not. 

I’ve always been an “independent budget-traveler” with a plan. Now that I’m getting older, I’m leaning towards becoming a bonafide “flashpacker”. Flashpacking is the more “grown up” backpacking..it shares the same independent travel philosophy, but this time, allows you to enjoy a few more luxuries here and there..in my case, a clean toilet. Hehehe. Here’s an interesting read on flashpacking.

Because I have that 1 issue with toilets, this has caused me to be much more discerning when it comes to accommodations. And trust me, it’s so HARD! If you’re rich with standards, it’s acceptable..but poor, with standards?!? Asa ka pa!! Ang feeling ko noh?! Haha! I spend hours researching for decent digs each and every time I plan a trip. I’ve probably googled “Cheap and Clean Accommodations” a thousand times! But I always surprise myself, I always find cheap and clean accommodations..I havent been disappointed, yet. A tip I could share with you is to check out travel forums and not the actual hotel websites. Hotel websites will always fancy it up by ten levels..their pictures are meant to deceive. If you check out legitimate traveler forums like Trip Advisor, Agoda or Lonely Planet, you will see actual photos and comments that will help you decide better. Travel forums will also give you helpful info like other hotel options nearby, public transportation routes, promos, etc.

I always book my flights months and months ahead and explore a multitude of options before clicking BOOK. Booking ahead means better promo rates..and the biggest bonus for me: ample time to save up for the trip! You don’t need to have a LOT, you should just have ENOUGH. Limited funds is VERY different from NO funds. It’s best to be a responsible traveler and to take a trip only if you can afford it..it’s not wise to be in a strange and foreign place with no plan and no money. I won’t lie to you, traveling is costly…but it actually costs much less than what most people think! I’ve met people who spend 3x more for a trip to HK than my trip to Europe! No joke. That’s why it pays to be patient, do some research and make creative alternatives. Take all the time you need to save, don’t pressure yourself to travel just for the sake of traveling. The beauty about travel is that it can be adjusted to suit your personal taste and budget. It’s something that’s dependent on you. Unlike buying a car, a brand new Honda Civic will cost the same in Makati and Alabang..the price is fixed and you’ll just have to come up with the money to pay for it. Travel can cater to you, there’s a myriad of choices out there just waiting to be discovered!

Besides, you dont have to physically travel to “travel”…reading a book alone will take you to far and distant lands! Your dream destination will be there waiting for you patiently,  a year or even a whole decade from now, andyan pa rin siya..so don’t stress yourself out 🙂 In God’s perfect time, you and your dream country shall meet..and it will be magical! Naks!:) Hahaha! Here’s to more adventures 🙂 CHEERS!

13 Responses to Time for another GERBIL ADVENTURE!

  1. You inspire me a lot ate Patty with all your posts especially your posts like these. I have always wanted to travel to places especially to Europe AND I surely know where to go if ever I travel soon 😀 and it’s all because of your awesome posts!

  2. “don’t pressure yourself to travel just for the sake of traveling…”
    exactly my mantra!

    flashpacking/flashpacker… never thought that there’s such a word that fits towards my attitude on traveling. thanks, Patty!

  3. Yes, I agree! Pictures posted in the hotel sites are deceiving so I really rely on Trip Advisor for tips and true feedback:) I also book tickets super ahead of time. Minsan one year ahead. That means, super research at todo ipon ang ganap haha!

    Ms. Patty, you can check this site for tips for a Journeywoman. She has this link 101 Travel Tips: http://www.journeywoman.com/travel101/JWTwitterTipsoftheDay.htm

    I am so excited for your trip, Ms. Patty and of course, pictures!!! Enjoy and Have fun! 🙂

  4. Learned something new today. I guess I’m a flashpacker too! (naks! Magamit lang ang term eh!)

    Ms. Patty, one tip when checking hotel sites… please don’t trust the reviews posted in agoda ‘coz they only post the good stuff. I wrote several reviews already but they edited my comments on certain hotels and removed the nega stuff. Check other sites for the hotel reviews. However, they do have competitive hotel rates so I still end up booking thru their site (sayang eh!) or sometimes thru booking.com 😛

    Anyway, happy trip! Looking forward to hear your travel story 🙂

  5. Hi everyone! Thanks for all your comments. it’s great to know that most of you were encouraged by this post!

    Well, with my experience with Agoda..Ive seen both good and not so good comments. But yes, youre free to browse any website you prefer 🙂

    Happy travels!!!

  6. hi patty…i’m from cag de oro and i’m a huge fan of ur blogs…im a trying hard traveller/ flashpacker too… i say trying hard bcoz i lack funds most of the time… asian countries are all i can afford for now… i hope to make my dream EUROPEAN adventure come true.. reading ur blogs has inspired me… keep writing patty… reading ur blogspot is like traveling na rin =)

  7. Hi Patty!! Been reading your old blog since 2009 and got hooked. Was able to get a lot of travel tips from it as well. I’m a mom with a 12 yr old son who doesn’t enjoy traveling like I do. We travel a lot and like you with your parents before , our pictures with him showed frowning and grumpy faces. I hope he will grow up like , learning to appreciate the privilege of being able to travel and find joy in it. We live here in London for 10 yrs now and he hates it!!He wants to go back to Pinas!!

  8. may i know which airline/s you utilized for your budget flights to europe? Thanks! – rosa

  9. I love travelling too!yes,true sometimes other people spend money in hk which same cost in europe.i did my 27th bday to paris france alone on a very cheap expense!

    Thanks for sharing patty!Maybe next time you sharr what brand of clothes you buy,i love your clothings -wore in europe