Toral: Meet-up Boracay

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Tuesday, December 3, 2013


I JUST finished my E-Commerce Creators Boot Camp in Boracay Island. It is my 4th Boracay trip this year. I can’t help but notice the big drop in visitors. When I talked to some of the locals, they gave varying observations. These include guest booking cancellations, unsure if the area is already okay, to Filipinos canceling vacation plans and giving their travel budget to charity to help areas hit by the earthquake or ravaged by super typhoon Yolanda.

You won’t find the usual local approaching you and offering various tour services as you walk around the place. I must admit this is the perfect setting, especially if you are after quiet time in a beautiful place.

I am glad that my boot camp participants decided to push through with our change in training schedule. My attendees found themselves having time to fix what they can on their online presence at this point and see what else they can do.

One of them is Eva Manayon who happens to work in a coffee / laundry / drinking water station. She has always thought of looking into the potential of doing something online but was unsure which one to do.

After our discussion these past two days, we agreed that she can foster the creation of an online community where visitors and locals can meet for casual discussion.

Hence, Meet-up Boracay (http://www.meetupboracay.com) went live today.

It is a daily meet-up happening in a coffee shop where visitors and locals can go and have a chat. The meet-up is intended to take place in various locations as time goes by to ensure variety and co-ownership of the local establishments as well.

If this will proceed according to how it was envisioned, Eva will have an opportunity to play a role in making Boracay a great meet-up place for Filipinos and foreigners.

Her challenge, though, is to ensure her business model will have a broad enough vision that can be achievable and sustainable.

As a regular visitor of the island, I look forward to attending Meet-up Boracay activities and understanding the place better.

Most of the folks I met so far came from various places who settled there. It will be interesting to know how much has changed since typhoon Yolanda. Who has remained, how the locals are coping and moving on with their respective business.

I suggest you check out the site and support this young local vision of creating a community of folks who love the place. And if you are in Boracay, don’t forget to join a meet-up session and get to know more people in the area.

You will never who you just might meet there.

(http://www.digitalfilipino.com)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on December 04, 2013.

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