A little setback regarding my New York trip

So previously my family booked a couple of a AirBnB accommodation in New York. It was the most economical option available, considering that hotel stays in New York is crazy expensive. And with six of use travelling as a family, it makes sense to book our accommodation on AirBnB, where we can book an entire house or apartment with enough bedrooms and bathrooms to fit all of us.

Apparently, one of our bookings was cancelled by the owner of the apartment. It seemed that he was caught renting out his place on AirBnB, which wasn’t exactly legal in New York, more of a gray area, when it comes to short rental regulations.

So now we are in the midst of finding a different accommodation and hopefully, no one else cancels on us, especially when it approaches our departure dates. It would be immensely inconvenient, not to mention, expensive to find alternatives, like hotels at the very last minute if the hosts of AirBnB that we have booked decided to cancel our reservations at the last minutes due to legal problems with renting those places out to us.

I hope this little set back would not affect use drastically in any way. I am keeping my fingers crossed, hopefully nothing unexpected happens when we are day, especially when it comes to accommodations.

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Down with the flu

Last week, just before I was due to fly to Jogjakarta for my holidays, I decided to go to my colleagues house to finalise the accommodation for our Morocco trip in 2019. As I arrive, I noticed that she wasn’t feeling very well. Red nose and teary eyed, I knew she had the flu from someone. Nonetheless I tried my best to avoid close contact with her while I continue finalising out accommodation.

We spent about 4 hours booking our accommodations at various places around Morocco as we nail down the days and dates for our trip. After that we head to her parents house to have dinner.

Little did I know that within 48 hours, I would also get the flu and had to resort to consult my GP to get medicine to relive my symptoms of flu that manifested itself over the weekend. The flu was bad. Took my an entire week to recover and I had to spend several days in bed recuperating. The worst thing was that I got the flu just a few days before I was scheduled to fly to Jogjakarta and begin my holidays with my friends.

I was fortunate enough to recover just in time. I was still severely physically weak from the sickness, but at the very least, I did not have high fever or anything that might affect the outcome of the trip.

I’ve never been lucky when it comes to holidays in recent years. I always seem to be sick just before my holidays.

Because of the flu, I had to miss work, work that were crucial to be completed before I begin my holiday. Now that I am back, I have to immediately head back to the office and complete all the outstanding tasks I have abruptly left due to the flu and my vacation. Outstanding work not completed just before your holidays usually leave a sour taste in your mouth. Now that Christmas is just around the corner, I vow to tie up loose ends and complete whatever work that is left pending before 2019 arrives.

New York Itinerary planning has begun

Last week I borrowed a couple of travel books for both Morocco and New York. Last weekend however, I had some time to go through those books, especially the New York one and started taking down some notes and places of interested that I must visit on my upcoming vacation to New York.

Things are looking pretty exciting the more I read about New York. I have covered reading the basics on must see locations in Lower Manhattan, Lower East Side, Chinatown, Little Italy, SoHo and Tribeca. I stopped at Greenwich Village. Perhaps this coming weekend, I’ll spend one entire day just covering all the different districts and neighbourhoods New York City has to offer, all the way to Harlem.

I have 10 days, with my parents and aunts in tow for this trip. They aren’t exactly superwalkers given their age, so when planning for this trip, I need to be mindful of that. But they doesn’t mean I couldn’t encourage them to do a little exercise to increase some stamina for this trip, so that they can brave the outdoors and do a whole lot of walking while we are there in the days leading up to the trip.

The trip is still 3 months away, so I have plenty of times to plan the itinerary.

At the very least, coming up the top destinations and locations to visit New York City is a good starting point. I can always add little details like what to eat, and where to shop later as the date approaches.

I am still eyeing that Coach briefcase by the way.

London bound!

Our trip to Morocco (three of my colleagues and good friends, including myself) is starting to take shape. We have started to enquirer about desert tours and started finding cheap tickets to Morocco. Past couple of weeks, we have been trying to find out what is the cheapest (but not necessarily the slowest or most inconvenient) way to reach Morocco by air.

There aren’t any direct flights from Singapore to Morocco. There are connecting flights served by Etihad, Turkish Airlines, Emirates, British Airways, but most of them were quite pricey, although they can be convenient.

So today we managed to snag a great deal (what I think is a great deal) which coincided with Singles Day. 11.11 Sale is everywhere and Malaysia Airlines was one of those airlines offering air tickets with an additional 11% on certain routes. Singapore to London was one of them. Previously, we were eying their flights as it was the cheapest for London bound flights. It was around S$900 all in return flight from Singapore to London. Now with the 11.11 Sale, it was offering tickets for S$795. That is super cheap. So cheap, that I immediately coordinated with all of my colleagues to get the tickets before 11.11 sale is over. It’s not a direct flight, but one of the fastest. Singapore to KL, with a short stopover, and then on to London direct from KL. And all for S$795!!

Now that we have our outbound and inbound flights settle, we still need to book the tickets from London to Morocco and back before heading back to Singapore.

This is my second major holiday after booking my NYC trip in March 2019!

Getting pretty excited over this trip!

November 7. Thesis submission. The end.

November 7. The date of my thesis submission. November 8, the final assignment due. November 16. Presentation. Then, the end. The end of my 2-year journey as a postgraduate Masters student. It’s been a harrowing journey. Working and studying at the same is a huge challenge. A challenge that I have overcome. A challenge that I took head on from day 1, when I decided to sign up for the course. After November 16. I will officially graduate. So surreal, to have a Masters degree. I would never have expected to go so far in my education. I have been working for five years and I decided to go back school on my third. What was I thinking back then? Now, looking back, all the friends I have made, the knowledge I have gained and the skills I have acquired, it was all worth it.

After November, I deserve a break. Big time. I am going all out travelling. And I can’t wait.

First holiday of 2019! More to come!​

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Going to New York in 2019 wasn’t exactly planned. But when a credit card promotion offers an all-in return ticket on a non-stop flight from Singapore to New York City on a premium economy seat, you cannot walk away from such a deal. SGD1425 for a premium economy ticket, on the world’s longest flight, non-stop from Singapore to New York. LETS GOOOOOO!

 

 

Heading to Sydney without an itinerary.

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Now this is going to be interesting. My upcoming trip to Sydney will be my first solo trip without an itinerary. Yeap, that’s right. I did not plan anything for my upcoming trip. The only thing that I planned was my flight, my accommodations, and one outdoor activity that I decided to book in advance just in case of limited slot availability. I seriously do not know how my trip will turn out. It can visualise my trip as going in either directions; either it’s going to be fucking awesome, or it could be the most boring trip I have ever made as a solo traveller in my entire life. We shall see.

So why did I not have a plan? Partly the reason is that I am so busy with work and school that I just do not have the time to sit down and really draft a proper itinerary. Another reason could be that after I book my flights, I am starting to get cold feet on this trip. I am suddenly not in the mood anymore. Strangely, I’m not exactly looking forward to this trip. Yes I am busy, and I feel burned out sometimes, and I know that this trip is exactly what I need to get myself refreshed before facing the onslaught of work and school. But so far, my ‘busyness’ had dampened the mood somewhat. Just a little more than 2 weeks before my trip and the thought of vacation hasn’t reached to the top of my mind yet. Usually, by this time, my vacation is the only thing I can think of right now. My mind would be so distracted that I wouldn’t be able to focus on work or just about anything else other than the trip itself. This has never happened before. For the first time, I am not feeling excited about my holiday and it’s kinda worrying. I love to travel. Somehow that love has died for some reason.