I want to find out information about accomodations during the month of December.
I'm planning to travel in the Philippines for 3 months: this coming December, January and February.
I have heard that it is difficult to find accomodations during the month of December and that they are also much more expensive than they are in the off season (assuming December, January and February are high season).
I'm assuming that this mainly applies to the big cities like Manila and Cebu City.
To what extent should I be concerned about this? Right now, I'm setting a budget of around 1,000 pesos per day for accomodation and don't want to pay more than that
Also, I'm flying into Manila and will stay there for 3 nights, but after that I'm not really sure where to go. I'm open to suggestions; basically I want to avoid places where the hotel prices are going to be jacked up
Hoping someone can shed some light...
Can't shed any light at minute, but we have the same worries, for the xmas new year period mostly. In Khatmandu at the minute and are gonna take a day out tomorrow to try to book something. If I remember, and if we manage to book something, I'll post here again soon. Watch this space....
The Christmas season is a busy season for hotels in the Philippines, especially the Manila area. Because Filipinos are mostly Christian they flock home by the millions to visit families over the holidays. Christmas decorations go up in many malls in October. Many Filipinos work overseas to get some decent money in and they like to return home during the holiday season.
For 1000 pesos you have to expect less for your room. I wouldn't worry too much over food prices, worry about a decent place to sleep at. There are lots of supermarkets, Seven Eleven type stores and little places to eat at plus food courts in malls - food less of a problem! Even McDonalds and Jollibees are available at normal (Filipino) prices.
Here are a few places in the Ermita area:
In the Ermita area there are restaurants, nightlife, Robinson Mall, casinos, you can walk to the MRT and lots of Seven Eleven type stores. Short drive from the airport. Meter taxis cheap if you use the meter only. Jeepneys loud and agressive but cheap. (Especially loud at night if you have the windows open!)
I have used the Stone House a few times at 1000 baht per night for a small room with air, hot water, TV and private toilet/shower. No hooks to hang stuff with. The cockroaches were free! Little restaurant at this place was cheap but limited. Beer not that expensive either. Staff friendly enough. I am too old to take places without air, I like my windows shut to keep out noise and stray lights from blinking lights or advertising. Also, with an air conditioned room your windows are shut to keep out "invaders" either 2 legged or those who fly in! Your money - your choice!
I think you can get some places out in the sticks that are cheaper than 1000 pesos even during this time.
If you have been to Thailand before I find the hotels in Manila to be more expensive for the same quality or if they are the same price a hotel in Bangkok will be better and offer more. Tours and transportation are better organized in Thailand too!
One thing you have to nail down first is how to stay in the Philippines for 3 months. Sort your visa requirements out first before you fly there. How long you can stay in the P.I. depends on the passport you travel under and country you are from.
Thank you for your response.
I'm not too worried about my visa. At the moment I have a 59-day visa, so I'm clear to stay for that long and then I'm told I will have to go into Philippine immigration (either in Manila or Cebu) to get an extension on my 59-day visa which will take me through to 3 months. (I'm American by the way.)
My biggest concerns right now are 1.) my budget and 2.) safety.
Let me ask this: since I will be travelling for a long time (3 months) I have to bring a lot of money with me. I already know from experience travelling in the Philippines before that bringing U.S. dollars are the easiest form of currency to exchange, but they are also the riskiest (if they get stolen). On the other hand, traveller's checks are safe but extremely inconvenient (I'm told I can only cash large denomination checks in Manila and Cebu City). I don't have a credit card.
Is there a workable solution to this riddle? I really don't want to make myself vulnerable to theft/mugging by carrying my entire wad around with me in dollars; on the other hand, I don't want to be hampered, limited and confined to the vicinity of Manila and Cebu if I carry traveller's checks.
To me the question comes down to security. I need to find a secure place to deposit my money, preferably in a bank. I know that some hotels have safe deposit boxes which are great but they tend to be only in the more expensive accomodations, which brings me back to my other concern, budget; I can't afford to stay in the more expensive hotels.
Any and all suggestions are welcome and most appreciated because I'm very concerned about this.
Ah, lucked out on the resort on North Pandan Island, fully booked. Looked so amazing too...
Gone and joined the crowds for new year, booked some place on Boracay. Wouldn't normally go there but as it's new year. 1200 pesos a night for a 2 bed room. Seems alright for time of year.
Anyone got any tips for a place/island to stay on for xmas period? Reasonably close to Manila/Borocay type area. Quiet, relaxing, beautiful, not too expensive!
i think your question has been comprehensively answered but i just wanted to ask where your from? im out in the philippines at the moment, and i wish id looked at exchange rates before i came over, if your from the uk,only get a small amount of PHP before you come, the exchange rate for £'s is the highest of all the currencies and youl do far better by bringing a stash of english money with you and changing it while your here, the best rate ive seen so far is 67.70 php to the £...when i changed up at thomas cook before i came i only got 59 to the £.
Euros and £'s have the highest exchange rates out here 😊 if that helps..just wish someone had told me before i came out lol!
scott and danny..check out ocean breeze inn in Boracay, they have their own website..i stayed there for a couple of nights recently, only 2 mins away from the beach and the owners are the friendliest ive come across on my travels so far! they are on hostelbookers etc but its cheaper to contact them directly but a few hundered PHP.
Im currently staying at Roys Renezvous resort and bungalows..which is cheapers than ocean breeze..with fan bungalows and aircon rooms..but then again high season is going to be pretty expensive and busy all round i guess. good luck youl have a wonderful time out here >_<
Thailand is the same way as the Philippines, you get a better exchange rate once you arrive at those countries. When you change your pounds or dollars back home you also pay a commission fee which eats into that exchange rate. Exchange rates do change every working day, sometimes up a little bit or down a little bit. What you get one day will be a hair different on another day - up or down.
In the Philippines they seem to be a little more fussy with US $100 bills. I have been unable to cash a few at banks because of wear marks on them. In the Ermita area I found the Robinson Mall money changer fussier than some of the banks. Easiest place I cashed used currency at is at the casino on United Nations Avenue, Ermita, near McDonalds. But you do have to put some long pants on and a real shirt just to get into the casino!
Hey Redshoes, the place we booked on Boracay is the Ocean Breeze!! I'm glad to hear it sounds so good. Little expensive but for New Years I guess not too bad. Wanted to stay on North Pandan for xmas but place fully booked (got it for a week earlier though as it sounds so amazing). What I'm looking for is a quiet island within travelling distance from Pandan and Borocay for six days at xmas. Any ideas?
i did the math and it doesn't matter if you use the british pound or the dollar because in the end it all equals out, basically. also, i seriously doubt the british pound is accepted as widely as the dollar in the philippines. you're at boracay right? so they probably accept a wider array of currencies there because its such an international tourist destination
thanks for the plentiful information. so your answer to my dilemma was to get a debit card. i will look into this possibility, but i'm concerned about banking fees which might rob me in another way. right now i live in south korea and have a u.s. dollar account. i have been watching the daily exchange rates and am waiting for the most opportune moment to transfer all of my won into dollars
i also think i will take some traveller's checks with me
i have been doing some reading and thinking for the past couple of days and pretty much decided that some of the places i would like to see while in the philippines include taal volcano (sounds pretty cool), banaue rice terraces (though it's a painful 9-hour bus ride one way from manila), as well as some sightseeing in manila. since all of these places are all more or less geographically concentrated, i'll make them part of the first leg of my trip, to be done within the first month.
i have a vague idea of going south in the second month to cebu and checking out the beaches there as well as going to bohol to see the chocolate hills.
and no idea about the third month. i've heard mindinao is beautiful, but i don't want to take the risk. it might be nice to go back to boracay (i've been there before), but only if the hotel rates go down
well, that's all for now. i'll post more as things develop
thanks to everyone for their input~
Even though you pay an ATM fee for using a debit card their value is not having a whole pile of cash on your person or in your hotel. Same with a travelers check, although you pay a fee to cash one their value is that they will be replaced if stolen or lost.
U.S. dollars work but be fussy when you get the currency. Don't bring any older series, older $100 bills have smaller Ben Franklin heads than newer series. When you hold a new US hundred dollar bill to a bright light you will see a security strip. On that strip you should be able to read the value of the note. Some counterfeiters bleach out 5 dollar bills and print over it with the hundred dollar design, that is why the strip is also printed with the amount.
My credit union pays for some of my ATM charges, even overseas. Since you do pay a fee to use an ATM take out the most you can so you don't waste fees on small amounts. Record the serial numbers of the larger currency you bring with you in email form then send that email to yourself and save it. If the currency or TC's are stolen just pull up that email and give the info to the police.
There is not much you can do when you travel far away from home. You usually use cash, debit cards or even travelers checks for some places. Some travelers use mostly credit cards and when they get home they are often surprised when they see all of the fees, not to mention some charges they did not make.
where are you from matchstickj??
I am from California and planning to visit philippines next month
will be renting a 2 bedroom Condo apartment there..
i was actually looking for some people who want to travel there in philippines
Arrived in Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Philippines on 24th December 2008 and found plenty of budget accommodation available same day
crisis23: i will be arriving in december; first destination is manila. if you want to hook up that sounds fine to me
edvallance: you went to palawan?? what was it like there?? was it worth the visit??
a question to anyone who feels like answering: it looks like i will be in manila for a while and i'm wondering what the outstanding sites to see are there
"....a question to anyone who feels like answering: it looks like i will be in manila for a while and i'm wondering what the outstanding sites to see are there.........."
For Manila my recommendation is to stay in the Ermita area. In this area you will find hotels in all price ranges. You will find restaurants, travel agencies for tours, nightlife, casinos and only a short walk to the MRT. Also in this area you will find the Robinson Mall. Although older than the big Mall of Asia on Roxas Boulevard, the Robinson Mall has lots of places to shop at and eat at.
Google up "what to see and do in Manila" and you will get many links. One place I liked was is the "Light and Sound" show for Corregidor.
One pub I like eating at and where they have daily food and drink specials is the G Point Bar.
i did the math and it doesn't matter if you use the british pound or the dollar because in the end it all equals out, basically. also, i seriously doubt the british pound is accepted as widely as the dollar in the philippines. you're at boracay right?
Hi i didnt mean to use it as currency, i meant to take british money out there with you to exchange into PHP when you get there, because you get a far, far better exchange rate than you would at home..and its the strongest currency out there.
You may also want to visit Baguio City
, known as the Summer Capital of the Philippines
You will love the weather especially during the Christmas seasons, and not to mention numerous hotels and inn available in the city!
Second option might be Tagaytay City
, weather is as cold as Baguio City. If you want some to visit historical and cultural places, visit Vigan City
. For hotel accommodations, please see below:
Check the following links: