Have you planned your next trip this summer? Why not try visiting the summer capital city instead? If I'll tell you some tips that will make your trip to Baguio City cheaper than the usual, would you get ready, pack your things up and go?
A few days ago, a close friend of mine was asking some practical tips for her Baguio City adventure with her family. A first timer to the Philippines' coldest capital city, she wanted to know some budget friendly ideas on how to spend there wisely.
If you are also a first timer like her or maybe an occasional traveler to this place; listen, because I have some tips to share with you that can really make every little thing on your trip easier, manageable and affordable.
1. Utilize the jeepneys instead of the taxis
Though I am super proud how honest and courteous these taxi drivers here, but hopping into some jeepneys for a ride will be a lot cheaper, of course.
In the city, you'll find several jeepney terminals that can lead you to your desired destination. With just the regular 8-peso fare, you can already visit your favorite hot spots like Mines View, the Mansion, and Pacdal. There are also some jeepneys going to the nearby towns like La Trinidad where you can see, pick and taste the freshest strawberries.
What you only need to do is, (of course) know the name of the place where you’re heading to, ask the locals where to find the terminal of the jeepneys going to that place and you might want to ask them as well for some bite-sized information about other activities that you can do there.
2. Buy your pasalubongs in the market
The Baguio City's dry market is located just a few stone throws away from the famous Burnham Park.
I recommend you to go there to buy your pasalubongs like several native delicacies and some freshly hand-picked strawberries before leaving the city. Though you can find some stalls selling these things in most of the tourist spots, the price can be a little jaw-dropping. However, in the market, you can always bargain. Plus, there are lots of vendors that sell just the same items here also; thus, you can always compare the quality and the prices.
3. Try hostels and pension houses instead for cheaper accommodation
I know you like to feel the luxury of staying in the hotels or condominiums; however, we all know how expensive these are, especially in places like Baguio City. But don’t worry, there is always a cheaper alternative.
Sometimes you need to forget locating hostels and pension houses on the internet to compare room rates. Because the truth is, there are some hostels and inns here that don't have any website or any affiliated online booking service at all.
So in cases like you have just arrived in Baguio City; however, you failed to book a place to stay, take some time to roam around the city proper, for sure there are lots of cheap accommodations around. These can range from Php600 up to Php1200 depending on the room type and the number of people who’ll stay, of course.
Hotel 45 near SM Baguio and Baguio Harrison Inn along Harrison Avenue are some of my favorites. Though not so luxurious as some of the 5-star hotels, these affordable inns and hotels are always kept clean and well maintained.
4. Buy ukay-ukay in the market
Are you a fan of ukay-ukay goods too? You should know that Baguio is also a hot spot for these.
But don't think that the ukay-ukay shops along Session Road are the cheapest. You might want to come here, but the cheapest among these shops can be found at Hilltop, just behind Baguio City Public Market. As early as six in the morning, vendors are all set to sell their goods—from used clothes to bags—right after scattering all of them along the road.
And, don’t forget to visit the night market too. Every night along Harrison Avenue, there are over a thousand of vendors who lay down all their items just by the road. You can find second-hand bags, shoes, jackets, blankets, bed sheets and more. For sure, some awesome but affordable finds await you here.
Now, tell me. Have you already decided where to go this summer?
More and more people are falling in love with the city’s timeless charm. In fact, others no longer consider Baguio City as just a place to spend their summer vacation. Surprisingly, they have already decided to spend all the days of their life here.
If in the future you’ll imagine yourself living here too, there is actually a great deal of real estate companies now that can find a new home for you—from newly built condominiums to spacious house and lots. This means that the mountainside kind of living here in Baguio City can now be yours!
Hence, you don’t need to spend just a short and a little near satisfying vacation here anymore because staying in this magnificent city could now be longer as a lifetime.