Saturday, November 9, 2013

Getting My New SSS Card

Look what finally came in the mail today: my new SSS card a.k.a the Unified Multi-Purpose Identification (UMID) Card.

My new UMID Card!
(I hate my photo.)

I almost forgot that I applied for one because it took so long to arrive. They said that it'll be delivered within two to three months. (Yeah, right.) It's been more than five!

Supposed benefits of the UMID Card:
  1. Convenient and faster way of getting SSS benefits and privileges.
  2. Securely stores personal info and SSS data through micro chip.
  3. For SSS pensioners, easier annual confirmation of continued pension entitlement through fingerprint matching facilities at SSS offices. 
  4. Easier and faster SSS transactions. (ex. benefit and loan applications)
  5. Can be used to transact with other gov't agencies such as GSIS, Pag-IBIG, and PhilHealth. 

Still don't have yours? To find out how to apply for one, click here.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Terminal 21: Not Your Usual Mall

BANGKOK, Thailand  Imagine being whisked off to various countries in one afternoon. That's what strolling around Terminal 21 feels like.

The mall is like a huge airport with a different theme per floor: Rome, UK, Tokyo, and Istanbul, to name a few. It's definitely not your usual mall.

Even if you're not into shopping, Terminal 21 is still worth visiting. It's fascinating how much thought and detail went into each theme. Even the bathrooms and uniforms of the maintenance personnel weren't spared.

My favorite floor: UK!
There was a bus inside!

Awesome shirts!

This isn't even a fourth of the mall.

Tokyo! 

Yep. There's a lighthouse inside!

See. It's like an airport!

With the pretty ceiling in the Roman-themed floor. 

Istanbul! The bathroom is worth checking out.

Next time, I'll make it a point to check out the bathroom in all floors!

Happy-tired from all the walking. 

Here's a map going to Terminal 21. It's ideal to ride the train. Depending on where you're coming from, get off at Asok or Sukhumvit Station. Either stations will lead you to the mall.

(Image from parallel-connection.blogspot.com)

Don't Stay in MHC Guesthouse! | Bangkok

MHC Guesthouse
8/4 Sukhumvit 28 Sukhumvit Road

When in Bangkok, don't stay in MHC Guesthouse. I repeat: DON'T stay in MHC Guesthouse. 

Why not?
  1. There's an unpleasant smell inside. Like something old and kulob.
  2. Rooms smelled like sewage! In the middle of the night, the room started to smell. We couldn't sleep! Apparently, the pipes are old and when it rains, it reeks. It was painful to the nose!
  3. Manager refused to return our money. After that unpleasant night, we considered moving hotels. We were booked for another 3 nights and had paid in full. Unfortunately,  the manager refused to refund our money for the remaining nights.
The only reason why we chose to stay there was to be near friends who were checked-in at Emporium, which was a few streets away.

I wouldn't recommend this to anyone. Sorry!

Eating Creepy Crawlers in Khao San Road

Scorpion Nights (and a cockroach)
(Image from instagram.com/aliamistad)
BANGKOK, Thailand — What's something I finally crossed off my #YOLO bucket list?

Eat creepy crawlers!

I chickened out during my first trip here, which left me semi-regretful. But this time, with a little help from my friends, I did it.

By the end of the night, we were munching on scorpions, cockroaches, and beetles.

Surprisingly, it doesn't taste as gross. It's crunchy, which bursts of soy-sauce-like juices.

You just have to overcome that fear that it'll crawl back to life inside your mouth!

Eating a scorpion with a little help from my friend, Andrew.




We ended our day here in Khao San RoadBangkok's famous backpacker area. Everything is way cheaper here, including accommodations. Security may be a bit loose, though.

The stretch is full of life at night. Tons of people are on the street. Music from the resto-bars are on full blast. Vendors are everywhere selling souvenirs, balloons, and foodcreepy crawlers included!

The vibe reminds me of the Maskara festival in Bacolod.



Khao San is also perfect for people watching. Foreigners are everywhere and they're smokin' hot.

Here were are letting loose and enjoying the night.


Khao San!!!

BKK 4D/3N Itinerary - For Those Who Have Been There Before

BANGKOK, Thailand — First time abroad with college block-mates! Yeyyy!

This has got to be the most chill and laid-back adventure ever. Since most of us have been to Bangkok at one point or another, we didn't do touristy stuff anymore like visit temples.

We ended up shopping most of the time because of the rain.

Block-mates are love!

Here's what we did:

Day 0
  • Late PM - Arrival @ Bangkok via airplane from Clark, Philippines
  • Check in at MHC Guesthouse (do not stay here!!!)


Day 1


Day 2


Day 3
  • Explore Siam Paragon
  • Foot Massage
  • Dinner at Face
  • Beckies' Night Out @ DJ Station | Girls' Night Out @ Banyan Tree


Day 4
  • Last-minute shopping
  • Depart for Clark via airplane



For a total of 4D/4N, I survived with a budget of around Php 10-15k. This includes roundtrip promo airfare, lodging, shopping, transpo and endless food splurges. 

Complete! 

I can't wait to go back to Bangkok. Songkran, maybe?

The next time I'm there, my itinerary will include the floating market and the BKK Art and Culture Center. I also woulnd't mind going back to the Old City and of course, DJ Station!

Sawadee khaaaaaaa!

Tour A | El Nido

Tour A - (Php 600 / pax)
Kayak rental is an additional Php 700

EL NIDO, Palawan — If you're more into lagoons than beaches, then this tour is for you. You'll even see where parts of Survivor was filmed!

Personally, this is the next best tour after Tour C.

1. Seven Commando Beach
It was frustrating how there were invisible creatures biting us under the water. It stung! 


I told her to smile and she did!

2. Simizu Beach
Here's where we had lunch, used the kayak that we rented, and saw Nemo!


Staring game with Nemo

3. Secret Lagoon
You won't even notice that there was something beyond the rock formations. The entrance to the secret lagoon is so discreet! 

View from the outside

Inside the Secret Lagoon

From the inside looking out. See how small the passage way is?

The entrance isn't that small once you're there.

4. Big Lagoon
This has got to be the best part of Tour A. The passage way leading to the Big Lagoon is absolutely majestic. This is also where they shot parts of Survivor. 



The set of Tribal Council.

Kayak-kayak din 'pag may time.

5. Small Lagoon
Our final hurrah with our kayak. The small lagoon makes for a great photo op!



We felt like experts after. Lol.

Survivors.