If I could fly for free, where would it be?

The more I travel, the more my bucket list grows. I tick off one place only to add two more. There’s just so much to see in the world, and so little time. But before I explore outside the country, I want to see as much of the Philippines as possible.

The main reason holding me back from going everywhere at once is the cost of travel. Budget travelers need to plan carefully in order to maximize every trip. Flights and accommodations are probably the two most expensive costs of travel. The good thing is that there are budget airlines that offer seat sales and hotel booking apps that offer promos and discounts.

Recently, TravelBook.ph, an online hotel booking service, partnered with GetGo, the official lifestyle rewards program of budget airline Cebu Pacific, giving more chances for travelers to earn points for flights. Members who sign up can earn 1 GetGo Point for every P10.00 spent when booking a hotel. As a special promo, if you book hotel accommodations at www.travelbook/getgo from May 12 to June 12, 2017, you can earn 50 Bonus Points on GetGo, valid for first time bookers.

Promo mechanics:

  • Earn 50 Bonus Points when you book at www.travelbook.ph/getgo from May 12 to June 12, 2017
  • Offfer is valid only on GetGo member’s first booking with TravelBook using www.travelbook.ph/getgo. Only bookings made in GetGo and TravelBook’s co-branded site are qualified for this promo.
  • Enter your GetGo membership number on the booking form in order to earn points.
  • GetGo points will be credited to your account within 2 to 3 weeks upon check-out.

Terms & Conditions:

  • Points are not convertible to cash.
  • Points are not cumulative with other offers.
  • Promo may only be availed via online booking through www.travelbook.ph/getgo
  • Your booking details with Travelbook.ph should match the first and last name in your GetGo account for the points to be credited.
  • Standard Terms and Conditions of GetGo and TravelBook.ph will apply.

Even if you’re just having a staycation in the metro or going to nearby destinations, you have a chance to earn flight points (that don’t expire) for your dream trip. I’m currently saving up my points, but hope to embark on a longer trip soon.

DREAM DESTINATION: PALAWAN

So if I could fly for free in the country, where would it be? There are a lot of places I want to go to in the country, but Palawan is one of the places I’d like to revisit this year.

It’s been seven years since I’ve been to Puerto Princesa and El Nido, and about four years since I last visited Coron and Culion. I have a lot of fond memories from all these trips and I’ve been eager to go back and experience the beautiful laid-back island life again. There’s just something about Palawan that epitomizes paradise with its limestone cliffs, clear waters and stunning beaches. I think it showcases the best of the Philippines. Here are just a few of the things I want to do in Palawan.

Go on a motorcycle road trip around the whole island

Last year for Wrangler’s True Wanderer, I got randomly assigned to explore Cebu by motorcycle, while Art got to go to Palawan. I’m really jealous of his trip there since he got to ride all the way from Puerto Princesa to El Nido. Shipping your own motorcycles here (especially for a short trip) is a major hassle, but rentals are widely available around Puerto Princesa. Since we spent our honeymoon in El Nido, a Palawan road trip is something I would love for the two of us to do together given the chance. I know there’s a place that rents out Royal Enfields there. They even have Urals with sidecars for rent! Aside from riding to the North, I’d love to go all the way down to the South of Palawan, and visit Balabac and Onuk Island as well.

A post shared by Art Fuentes (@art_fuentes) on

Drink craft beer at Palaweno Craft Brewery

I collect beer and it’s a personal mission to sample as many variants of local craft beer  as possible. This includes visiting all the microbreweries around the country. One of the places I’ve been dying to visit is the Palaweno Craft Brewery, which serves the first and only craft beer in Palawan and is the first female-run craft brewery in the country. Though their beers are available in various places around Metro Manila, I still want to visit to take a microbrewery tour in their bar in Puerto Princesa. Nothing beats fresh beer on tap!

Revisit the Underground River

Another long-term sidequest that I’ve been working on is taking photos of Philippine currency at the landmarks featured on the bills. I call this mission “Show me the money.” I’ve only collected 4 out of 6 (Banaue Rice Terraces, Taal Lake, Mayon Volcano in Albay and the Chocolate Hills in Bohol).

I want to return to the Underground River just so that I can snap a similar photo. I’ve actually done the Underground River Tour here, but the last time I visited was when the currency was still old. Getting a new photo is just something I’ve been wanting to do. Weird, I know. It’s just one of the things that I like to collect when I travel and completing that mission would just give me a sense of satisfaction. Tubbataha is a different story though. See my last bucketlist item.

Swim in the clear waters of Linapacan

The clearest water I’ve ever swum and snorkeled in so far is the Crowning Glory Reef in Culion, Palawan. But ever since I saw photos of Linapacan, an island municipality of Palawan, in a list of cleanest waters in the world, I’ve been intrigued by it. I would love to go back and get to swim there someday.

Dive in Tubbataha

On my ultimate bucket-list is diving in Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park, a protected area in the middle of the Sulu Sea. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site and has been recognized as having one of the most remarkable coral reefs on the planet. I don’t know how to dive (yet), but the thought of seeing this beautiful underwater paradise for myself makes me want to learn how to. For now, I can only admire the view of photos of friends and other bloggers who have been lucky enough to dive there.

Those are just five reasons why I want to fly to Palawan. I’m crossing my fingers that I can tick some of these off my list this year. How about you, if you could fly anywhere for free, where would you go?

NOTE: Cebu Pacific flies to Puerto Princesa and Coron (Busuanga) from Manila.

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