• How to master the art of traveling this holiday season

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    CARLA BIANCA RAVANES-HIGHAM

    CARLA BIANCA RAVANES-HIGHAM

    ‘Tis the season to be jolly.

    That is until you come across numerous deadlines, a to-do list that never seems to cut itself short, and stresses that can only be associated with the holiday season.

    For most of us, the holiday season is a chance to unwind, be with our families, and receive gifts. However, with the traffic in the metro and the crazy schedule we haphazardly set up for ourselves, the season can be quite overwhelming.

    Personally, 2016 has been a tough year. It has been a year of beginnings, endings, and everything else in between. Being a newlywed with a new job can be quite a daunting (and sometimes, a hugely insane) task and it took all of my inner reserves to not call it quits on life midway. To make it to December is a victory in itself but I knew that I, just like most of you, needed some alone time to recharge and get ready for 2017.

    What I needed was a quick staycation to get my mind ready for the New Year and to reflect on my own personal goals as I move forward in life. I knew that it would be next to impossible to disappear for more than a day so I decided on a quick staycation in a hotel close to home.

    Azumi Boutique Hotel is located at the heart of the South, which has been my home for over ten years now. Azumi was the convenient choice because all I needed really was 24 hours and didn’t have the budget to go all out.

    The serene Azumi Boutique Hotel pool

    The serene Azumi Boutique Hotel pool

    What made the short staycation easy to manage and relatively cheap despite my busy schedule was the help of travel app, Traveloka. You see, I’ve always been a traditionalist when it came to planning my travels and still relied on old school travel agencies to get everything working for me. However, since the nature of my trip was short and quick, I needed to be independent enough to do it on my own. I stumbled upon Traveloka online and was happy with my little discovery.

    In less than an hour, I found the best prices for my little staycation (and a flight for later in 2017) in an extremely convenient way. I was able to book my hotel room at face value (no hidden charges on this one!) and a future flight in less than an hour. And since I was an online newbie, the fact that I was allowed to pay over the counter was a major plus.

    As I reflected during my few hours of solace, my mindset shifted from extremely stressed to grateful. I was grateful that Filipinos are now given the opportunity to travel or even indulge in life’s little pleasures such as a quick staycation in the metro. As a seeker of stories of champions, I have always sought out those who made a difference in the lives of our fellow Filipinos. Most of the time, they are our very own but often, they can be from neighboring countries, such as the founder of Traveloka, who gives opportunities to everyone to relax, travel, and see the world.

    Cheers to the last three weeks of December, may you get all of your dreams come true.

    * * *

    To know more, visit www.traveloka.com.
    www.carlabiancaravanes.com

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