Of the benefits of being extremely OC (Vietnam-Cambodia-Thailand itinerary and investment)

When I started really getting serious with this blog a few months ago, I promised myself most of the posts here should have value to someone else other than me. I did not want this to just be a self-serving venue. Well, once in a while, the narcissistic posts come in, but I think most of the times I’ve been true to this principle.

In keeping with this vow, I’ve decided to do something very much like what I did after the KK trip in the hopes of helping out would-be travelers. Below are estimates of the money we invested for the memories that we made on that trip, with the corresponding itinerary that we sort of followed.

DISCLAIMER: Monetary values below are rounded-off based from the expense tally sheet during the time of my trip. For obvious reasons, this could change. My goal is to give everyone a rough idea of how much they should allocate for trips of the same nature. If for some reason you find that values quoted below must not be made available to the public (i.e. hotel rates, discounted packages, etc.), please do not hesitate to contact me so I may act accordingly.

Obviously, you can get way cheaper pa than that. Benchmark lang! :)

Ours was a perfect mix of planned (Cu Chi Tunnel and Angkor Wat) and spontaneous (Hello Gems International!) activities. I find that itineraries like this trumps those that are 100% mapped out and/or those that are unplanned at all. :D

1. For this one I took out all the discretionary costs like food and pasalubong. Adjust your budget accordingly to factor that in. In general, Vietnam has the cheapest cost of living, followed by Cambodia, then finally Thailand.

2. When in Vietnam, carry their local currency, the Vietnam Dong. (Millionaire for a day!) When in Cambodia, bring US Dollars. When in Thailand, have your money exchanged to Thai Baht. We found that with this set-up, transactions were a breeze. Oh, don’t forget your credit card too for unexpected expenses! We didn’t know the airport at Phnom Penh charged a terminal fee, so the CCs definitely helped.

3. Tip, tip, and tip. We’ve been fortunate to have at least one good tour guide experience per country so we didn’t hesitate on voluntarily giving an amount more than what was agreed upon. Think of it as you paying it forward. :)

4. Travel light! Woohoo! This was one of my accomplishments for this vacation. One backpack and a belt bag for five days and three countries? Ako na!

My best friends: TnF and Wenger. :D

I hope this helps! Read though the earlier posts if you want more details. (Bawal tamad, ok?) Also, don’t hesitate to sound off in the comments if you have any questions.

Postscript:

This post is dedicated to those who’ve been bugging me for this trip’s itinerary. Yes, that’s you Cha I., Cherry and Kuya Vin. Enjoy! :D

Of the benefits of being extremely OC (Kota Kinabalu itinerary and investment)

I’ve always insisted with close friends that I’m more a listener than a storyteller. You, my dear reader, will find that hard to believe if you base it on this blog but that is the truth. In person, I’d rather be on the receiving end of the conversation than the one dishing out the details – especially if it’s personal. (I’m no quiet guy, though. I’m still madaldal, mostly due to me reacting to what has been said. Hehe. Evasive lang pala kapag personal matters. :-p) Surprisingly, the storyteller in me comes out when I write.

What was my point again?

Oh, I remember now. It never fails that whenever I go out on a trip, or discover something new, friends ask the same questions: Where’d you go? What did you eat? How did you get there? How much did it cost you?

Hence this post and posts like these in the future.

Does this mean I just don’t want to be bugged? Nah. I just thought it might be useful to someone one way or another, now or in a time yet to come.

DISCLAIMER: Monetary values below are rounded-off based from the expense tally sheet during the time of my trip. For obvious reasons, this could change. My goal is to give everyone a rough idea of how much they should allocate for trips of the same nature. If for some reason you find that values quoted below must not be made available to the public (i.e. hotel rates, discounted packages, etc.), please do not hesitate to contact me so I may act accordingly.

So here’s how much I invested for the trip. (I don’t want to refer to it as “damages”.)

Well worth it. :)

The usual tips apply:

1. Take advantage of seat sales. (Regular fares to and fro KK costs twice of how much we paid. Sweet!)
2. Ask for group discounts. (Downbelow offers discounted rates for groups of five and above. Don’t be afraid to ask!)
3. Splurge on items that count. (That’s the snorkelling package and Hyatt Regency Kinabalu for us. And food pala. Hehe.)
4. agoda.com. (Enough said.)

As for the itinerary, plan ahead and be spontaneous at the same time! That definitely worked for us. (Just read the earlier posts for details of each day. Info a-plenty!)

I really hope this is of value. I was actually meaning to upload the entire Excel sheet, but eventually deemed that would be a bad idea. That and because I don’t know how to. :) If you have questions, you know how to reach me. Hint: comments.

Postscript:

This post is dedicated to fellow OC travellers: Tricia (Idol!!!), Jan and Alen. Cheers! :)

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