Traveling in the Philippines
is inexpensive to begin with, so additional savings feel like the icing on the
cake. Some of the following tips will help you save quite a bit all at once,
while others will add savings when used over time. Whichever strategies you
try, you’re sure to spend less while enjoying an unforgettable trip to the
Consider Making Major Purchases via Groupon and
Group buying sites offer deals on
everything from flights to hotel stays, and it’s often possible to find great
bargains on fun activities. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing massage, scuba
diving instruction or dive trips, sailing, or a guided tour, it’s likely that
you can find savings if you spend a little bit of time digging. Groupon is a great place to begin your
search: The site offers hundreds of deals on hotels and accommodations
worldwide, plus tours and airfare packages designed to help travelers save.
Note that Philippines travel deals might not be available on a daily basis, and
when availability pops up, the number of trips and/or deals available will be
limited. This strategy takes some time and patience to implement, but it can
help you save an impressive amount of money.
Try Hotel Booking Sites or Consider Alternative
If you’d rather not spend time waiting for
a good group deal to pop up, then save both time and money by booking your stay
with a site that specializes in hotel deals. Be sure to spend a little time
comparing deals and reading reviews to determine what’s likely to suit you
best. When choosing a hotel, see if any meals are included. Hotel food tends to
be tasty in the Philippines, and eating items that come with your stay will
help you stretch your dining budget.
If you are interested in meeting locals and
you’re not really into resorts, then you may want to consider an alternative to
traditional hotel / resort stays. Both Couchsurfing and Airbnb have thousands
of registered users in the Philippines, and both sites allow travelers to
provide detailed reviews for others to read. As an added bonus, staying with a
private party will often give you access to kitchen facilities, making it
easier to save money on meals and beverages.
Skip Western Food
Things like burgers and pasta are fine for
enjoying while you’re home, but they’re among the pricier menu items at
restaurants in the Philippines. Why not try some local foods? Wonderful
smoothies, and other delights like Adobo, Tapsilog, and Tocilog are
abundant and inexpensive. Restaurant meals range from ultra-cheap to expensive,
so consider eating where the locals do. If you’re not sure what to try, ask
someone! Filipino people are generally friendly, outgoing, and eager to help
visitors enjoy themselves. Communicating should prove easy – about 90% of the
population speaks English.
of Free Wi-Fi
There’s no shortage of free Wi-Fi in the
Philippines, so take advantage of it as often as you can. In addition to using
the internet for all the usual things, you can use it for international
calling. Besides calling
the Philippines during your travel planning phase, free apps like Viber Out
work together with Wi-Fi, allowing you to stay in touch with people at home or
at destinations you’ll be visiting later. This strategy lets you use your mobile
even when you’re out of your carrier’s range, and it eliminates the need to
purchase a pricey SIM card.
Try Out Some Group Tours
Those visiting the Philippines for a
romantic getaway might want to keep to themselves. If you’re looking for fun
and you don’t mind mingling with fellow travelers though, you may want to give
group tours a try. Your savings will depend on the activity as well as how many
others are along for the ride, but you’ll always spend less than full price.
Whether you’re looking for a land-based bus tour or an over-the-water island
hop, you can usually split the cost with others.
Consider Booking Between June and September
Besides avoiding travel during the
Christmas, New Year, and Easter holidays, traveling during the “low” season is
a great strategy for saving. Lonely Planet estimates that hotel stays cost an
average of 20 to 40 percent less than usual during the months of June through
September. Do be aware that there’s the possibility for rough seas and lots of
rain during these months – as well as the potential for beautiful weather.