“It was sopas talaga. I wish I could’ve stayed longer.”
Prep time: 30 days (must reserve tickets going up Macchu Picchu in advance)
Budget: P170,000 ($3,555 +/-)
Duration: 26 days
- 1 fresh passport preferred over nearly expiring ones
- 2 bundles of photocopies of your passport, e-tickets with embassy addresses.
- 2 cups of optimism for the times you get lost and can’t find your way
- A pinch or courage with a slight hint of insanity. Pagbili pa lang ng ticket, nakakabaliw na. I remember carrying money bills stacked like a block of butter.
- About $200 emergency pocket money. You can use ATMs abroad anyway, for a fee.
- 55 liter backpack
- 4 days worth of interchangeable layers of clothes
- 1 pair of Comfortable, convenient, and reliable gym shoes
- 1 sturdy jacket with good insulation and lots of pockets. Until this jacket comes out
- 2 Sunglasses, just in case you lose 1
- 1 decent watch that doesn’t breakdown cause you’ll be adjusting time a lot
- 1 pen and a small notebook. Even if the pen is empty, you can use it for self defense. The notebook, you can use the useless pages to wrap bubble gum. Or wipe your butt.
- 1 middle range smart phone that takes great photos.
- 1 state of the art flashlight phone dedicated for just calls and text messaging.
- 1 Powerbank at least 16000ma (up to 3 full charges)
- 1 Emergency credit card with at least P 50,000 ($1,000+/-) credit limit
- a handful of Barok sign language skills insert photo of sarah talking to lost Japanese
- Repacked toiletries. (Yes! Magagamit na yung mga sabon galing sa hotel!)
- Student IDs for getting international student discounts
- 1 Spanish and Portuguese dictionary and a map
- 1 Philippine flag (Para F na F ang photos! haha)
- Optional: A tablet or laptop and an HD to back up your photos, videos, and important documents. ( I lost 3 days of photos in Brazil due to a system crash on my phone. BACK UP EVERYDAY IF YOU CAN!)
- Preheat the idea of visiting the other side of the world. Magmuni-muni at magsoul search. Ask yourself difficult questions like “Are you out of your mind? Will your savings be enough? Are you sure you wouldn’t rather invest in a car or a condo?, at, handa ka bang mamulubi pagkatapos nito?!” If you’re answers are all “HELL, YEAH!” then proceed to step 2.
- Don’t mince words when asking permission from your parents; your boss or your clients at work; and significant other, if any. Only these people matter, forget the rest. Tell them simply that you want to do it now. Period.
- Once you decide, make sure to book your tickets to Machu Picchu immediately, because those can sell out as fast as Miss Universe tickets sold at a Gay Pride Festival. Book it at least a month advanced.
- Peel those eyes! Or keep your eyes peeled, rather, for those travel fairs and plane ticket hunting sites like skyscanner.com and www.expedia.com. It can save you P20,000 ($400+/-) if you time your searches perfectly.
- Buy that ticket! It’s the hardest part of the journey, but believe me it’s going to be worth it. If your credit card has a zero installment plan, good for you. If you don’t have savings, you can avail of other payment schemes like cash advances with much lower interest rates. You’ll figure it out. I opted to pay half in cash and used Citibank’s Call for Cash
- Pack your things three days before your flight. Don’t get over excited, or else you’ll keep on rethinking and repacking your luggage. Do the rethinking only once.
- Secure all your important documents and turn them over to your mother or closest relative. Give them all your passwords to your gadgets, social media accounts, email, even ATM pins. Cause you never know…
- Get on the plane. Enjoy. (Seriously, 33 hours?)
Best experienced with:
Up next we’ll be cooking up something from Southeast Asia. Let me know what you think or ask me anything in the ‘he said she said’ section or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you want to see my past travels already, follow me on Instagram: thirdworldtourist.
PS-The guy on the cover is Octavio. Our substitute tour guide/driver all through out the Salar de Uyuni Desert Tour. He chewed Coca leaves and didn’t speak a word of english except “breakfast” and “lunch”.