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Voyager39

Housing Recon Trip Itinerary

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Voyager39

I am posting to get recommendations for a housing recon trip itinerary.  It would be beneficial to address the following issues:

(1) which cities to visit on this housing recon trip, and what to check out while there.

(2) whether to attempt to arrange everything in advance, or to "fix" only the main flight arrival and departures dates and improvise for the rest; and

(3) how much travel to conduct within the recon trip, and how much travel should wait until the big move  to the P.I. is complete before continuing the search.

 At this point I regard the purpose of trip to be to pick a city to begin my retirement in, after which I expect to explore the P.I.  Further, I expect to select a housing type, rather than place deposit on a specific property, and hopefully to gain an understanding of the lifestyles available in different regions.

Regarding (2) above,  I find that the trip planning is hard enough without trying to figure out exactly how many days I'll need in each of Cebu, Dumaguete, Puerto Princesa etc.  What I don't know is how easy or difficult it is to make these arrangements on short notice once I'm in the P.I.

Thanks for any input the board can provide.

 

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Ozepete

Mate, from your post you are obviously a very organised person which may work back in Washington State but try the same level of organisation here and you will end up in a straight jacket, literally. 

My suggestion is to simply book a hotel on line, arrive and chill out for a bit. Then after that just wing it, because 'organised' doesn't work very well in the Phils, chaos is all the go!

Cheers and good luck. 

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Enuff

Many things to consider.

1st and foremost is health. If you require to be close to better facilities you will need to stay in the city. If you can go 1 hour away then maybe Talisay or Liloan. 2 hrs away Danao, Carcar or even Bohol.

From there deciding which is best will be all about personal preferences and toleration limits.

Good luck.

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Jawny

You are likely inving disaster if you try to organize a trip here with precision.  If not disaster, at least disappointment. There are so many variables in a trip that you describe that micromanaging is difficult if not impossible.  Just the weather alone can wreak havoc as you arrange for travels.

Have you had any travel experience in the Philippines previously?  For example, using ferries or long distance bus trips?  

Id suggest you make the major travel plans with a list of cities you want to go to.  Once here, make the decision where to go next.

I have limited experience with cities, so can only offer advice for rural living in Leyte. 

im not sure if I understood your post, but you wanted to evaluate housing types (condo, single family home, apartment) that sort of thing? There’s a pretty wide range of choices to be made.  Housing styles and sizes are different than what you may expect.  For example, you may have a single family home described, but when you see it, the lot is small, the "garden" is not worthy of the title, etc.  Of course, a different subdivision will have larger places, but noisier neighbors etc.  

How about just taking a vacation and dispense with the retirement planning?  As you enjoy the amenities of vacationing, you can get a feel for lifestyle in each city.

I spent several days in Manila years ago, and decided to let a sales rep take me to a subdivision to see a fairly typical single family home.  After an hour of travel in heavy traffic, got to the place and was quite surprised to see the cookie cutter style homes.  Just one visit, and I’m sure there would be others much nicer.  

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Enuff

Unless you have already family then stay a week in a few different places. Many are where they are because their family is from that place.

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smokey

Nice place to look 4 housing temp.    RENTPAD

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Aerosick
2 hours ago, Voyager39 said:

Regarding (2) above,  I find that the trip planning is hard enough without trying to figure out exactly how many days I'll need in each of Cebu, Dumaguete, Puerto Princesa etc.  What I don't know is how easy or difficult it is to make these arrangements on short notice once I'm in the P.I.

Which of the above have you been to? Out of the places you've been to, do you have a favorite yet?

I will arrive there this week. When will you go? I've been to several Islands there. If I can be of help in Cebu, just send me a PM and we'll go from there!

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Jester

My first trip to Asia I bought a one way ticket to Thailand.  My thought was if I do not like it I will go somewhere else.

The others are right,   Asia is closer to chaos than orginized, can drive one to distraction at times.  

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Voyager39
Which of the above have you been to? Out of the places you've been to, do you have a favorite yet?
I will arrive there this week. When will you go? I've been to several Islands there. If I can be of help in Cebu, just send me a PM and we'll go from there!
I have only visited the PI once, long ago, in 1985-86. Thus, my preferences on that trip are likely not that relevant now. On that trip, I visited Manila, Los Baños, and Cebu. I liked Cebu the best, at that time.
I am tentatively planning to visit this April, but admit that my planning is being held up by uncertainty about how to conduct the trip.
Based on the responses in this thread, I may feel freer to arrange only the arrival and departure dates (should I even fix the departure date?), and ad lib the rest.

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Aerosick
1 minute ago, Voyager39 said:

Based on the responses in this thread, I may feel freer to arrange only the arrival and departure dates (should I even fix the departure date?), and ad lib the rest.

I think you'll find the airline tickets are cheaper with a return date. Happy hunting!!!

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Jawny
3 hours ago, Voyager39 said:

 

Regarding (2) above,  I find that the trip planning is hard enough without trying to figure out exactly how many days I'll need in each of Cebu, Dumaguete, Puerto Princesa etc.  What I don't know is how easy or difficult it is to make these arrangements on short notice once I'm in the P.I.

 

 

You will see rather quickly the various modes of communication and transportation can be a significant challenge for making plans.  Even in good weather, transportation can be the most important part of estimating times for your activities.  On a single island, vans, busses and planes are the choices, depending upon the island.  Not all of these use online resources.  Schedules are generally reliable, but that doesn’t help much if you show up and the ferry is cancelled for some sort of maintenance. 

Of course, weather often plays an important factor as ferries and planes are cancelled or delayed.

if I plan a trip to Cebu, from Leyte, I rarely make it a day trip.  Starting out at 5:00 am the travel begins to the ferry terminal, then ferry takes 2 1/2 to 3 hours.  If it is not cancelled. To get home at a reasonable hour in the evening, around 10:00 pm. I have to rush my activities. 

As a result, I usually make at least a single overnight stay, but that has inherent risks if hotel reservations are made.  There is a risk with some hotels of losing a single night stay as a condition of the reservation.  

Taxis seem to usually plentiful, but sometimes as the ferry arrives, it is chaos trying to get a taxi.  As well, Friday nights are hopeless for good service at some locations.  Even at some good hotels it is often hard to get a taxi.  

Bus and van rides can be quite a thrill.  Bring a barf bag and keep your accident insurance up to date!

Using the internet for making hotel reservations and such can work, but be aware it can also be a hassle in some locations.  You just need to be aware of the limitations.  

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Enuff
I have only visited the PI once, long ago, in 1985-86. Thus, my preferences on that trip are likely not that relevant now. On that trip, I visited Manila, Los Baños, and Cebu. I liked Cebu the best, at that time.
I am tentatively planning to visit this April, but admit that my planning is being held up by uncertainty about how to conduct the trip.
Based on the responses in this thread, I may feel freer to arrange only the arrival and departure dates (should I even fix the departure date?), and ad lib the rest.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G850A using Tapatalk

Typically each economy fare passenger is allowed 2 - 50lb prices of checked luhgage, a 15lb carry-on plus a laptop bag.

Set up a round trip. If you find a place, go back home leaving as much here as possible and bring another 115lbs of gear on your return.

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SkyMan

My first trip here I had everything planned because I wanted be sure I had a bed waiting for me each night.  I found out that was really unnecessary and I could save a lot of money just going with the flow here.

I would recommend you book direct to Cebu or Davao, not Manila, not even as a layover.  Your stay length starts counting the day after you arrive. (May 1 Arrive - May 31 Depart  - ok)  Up to 30 days is free, up to 59 days is fairly cheap and you can get that on arrival at the airport or pre-purchased by mail at a Philippine Embassy in the US to save a few bucks.  Longer than 59 days requires an extension of 1, 2, or 6 months.

I would book a room for 2-3 days on arrival and easy to get to from the airport just to clear the cobwebs from the trip and that will give you some time to find your next stop.

Research, research, research this site and ask people from the places you're interested in about it and why they are there.

When you're here for a short trip it's easy to get into the tourist mode and stay at resorts and all and that's ok, but if you're planning to live here you need to look at rents and cost of utilities and availability of the things you find important.  Internet? Roads? Where's the nearest grocery?  Hospitals?  Etc.

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Jester
13 hours ago, Voyager39 said:

I have only visited the PI once, long ago, in 1985-86. Thus, my preferences on that trip are likely not that relevant now. On that trip, I visited Manila, Los Baños, and Cebu. I liked Cebu the best, at that time.
I am tentatively planning to visit this April, but admit that my planning is being held up by uncertainty about how to conduct the trip.
Based on the responses in this thread, I may feel freer to arrange only the arrival and departure dates (should I even fix the departure date?), and ad lib the rest.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G850A using Tapatalk
 

I vote for not even fixing the departure date and ad lib the whole thing,  much less stressful.  You have not been there since the 80's.  You may fall in love with it on arrival and hate it 2 weeks later.  You may dislike it on arrival.  More expensive to do it that way but far more comfortable and there are lot's of islands and countries to see if you want. 

Most posting on this forum are happy in the P's and enjoy their lives there.  The ones that took one look and got on a plane and went home don't post here!

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lamoe
3 minutes ago, Jester said:

I vote for not even fixing the departure date and ad lib the whole thing,  much less stressful.  You have not been there since the 80's.  You may fall in love with it on arrival and hate it 2 weeks later.  You may dislike it on arrival.  More expensive to do it that way but far more comfortable and there are lot's of islands and countries to see if you want. 

Most posting on this forum are happy in the P's and enjoy their lives there.  The ones that took one look and got on a plane and went home don't post here!

 That's what I did - 1 way ticket  - no set plans - no one lady to meet -  have said it before - thanks to LINC NO high expectations

1 week in a hotel across from Ayala Mall - looked around - made deal to stay in hotel a month  - with help of  a member found a 3 moth furnished condo rental in 2 weeks

Didn't really look around that much  - settled in and down rather quickly -  didn't expect it to happen that quickly  (4 months) - will be 1 year there in 2 weeks -

Just now starting to get the feeling for different areas

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