WE ARE finally down to the last installment for my Taipei, Taiwan trip-travel tips and budget!
So let's get down to business, shall we? (*wink)
Exploring Taipei Tips:
- Get your own 4G traveler SIM: Although there are a lot of Wi-Fi connection spots in Taipei, I still secured my own mobile internet connection just to be sure. This is a top essential for navigation via Google Maps and also in communicating. I got a five-day 4G SIM via Klook for only P505 and scheduled it for airport pick-up on our arrival date. SIM pick-up kiosks usually open at 5:30 a.m.
- Easy Card makes transpo easier: Easy card is a reloadable card mainly used for paying the bus and MRT in Taipei. This was the best option for us since we really did go on a lot of bus and MRT rides during our trip. Other than paying for transpo, you can also use it for paying in convenience stores and even in riding the Gondola. Easy Card is available in most convenience stores in Taipei for NTD150 or from vending machines at the airport just near the exit.
- Plan your day ahead and expect long walks: Just like us, if you are planning on commuting the whole time during your Taipei visit I highly suggest checking on the bus/MRT schedule and routes via Google Maps right before stepping out to start the day. Buses are way cheaper than MRT but they can get quite complicated as routes changes depending on the time, so be alert when that happens so you don't miss your stop! Also, the 3-minute walk to get to your destination as per Google Maps may not be that accurate as per experience which is why wearing comfortable shoes is important as well.
- Choose a place to stay near a bus stop/MRT station: In relation to commuting, one of the things that you should consider when choosing a place to stay in Taipei is proximity to a bus stop or an MRT station. We actually changed our Airbnb booking a few weeks before our trip because of that and chose a place where the bus stop was just right outside the building (Yay for our kind host!). We stayed at Zhonghe District if you're wondering.
- Change your money to NTD at the airport: There are not a lot of money changers in downtown Taipei so be sure to exchange your moolahs at the airport before heading out. For us, because we are girl scouts, mom and I already exchanged a small amount of cash at NAIA just for transportation.
Moving on to the most important part of this trip which is BUDGET:
Davao-Manila-Davao (P2,413x2) - P4,826
Manila-Taipei-Manila (P2,075x2) - P4,150
Airbnb (room for 2): P2,760.39
Traveler Sim (via Klook) - P505
Taipei 101 Observatory (P862x2) - P1,724
Actual Travel Expenses:
Terminal Fee (Davao) - (P200x2) P400
Travel Tax (P1,650x2) -P3,300
Taxi (to and from) + airport meals during layovers -P1,500
Pocket money (transportation, food and others) - P15,000 (NTD 8,500)
GRAND TOTAL: P34,165.39
So in total we got to spend about P34,165.39 and that's for both me and my mom! If we divide that in two that's only around P17k!
Including our pasalubongs already, we still have a few NTD's left for our pocket money which we just kept as souvenirs. Food is quite affordable and we rode the bus most of the time which was really perf for our budget.
We were also very lucky enough that our travel was just on schedule when Taiwan officially started their visa free implementation for Philippine passport holders. Ph passport holders will get 14 days visa to be issued upon arrival provided that one has a return/onward ticket. I believe that this trial will run from November 2017 to November 2018 so go and get that promo fairs while you can!
In general, Taipei is a safe and a peaceful place to be for those who want to go on a vacay. Especially for the food, history and nature lovers, you shouldn't miss being here!
That's all for this week!
Hi, I'm Kriztja and thanks for reading My Notebook! Check out my blog: rainbow-wishes.blogspot.com for more and like my Facebook Page: My Notebook by Kriztja Marae for more updates. Comments? Suggestions? Email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Published in the SunStar Davao newspaper on February 21, 2018.
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