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Being Travel-Ready: Experiences of Two Filipino Travellers

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For many Filipino-Australian travellers, discovering new destinations and cultures is irresistible. But for many Pinoys, their favourite destination is still the Philippines. Many go back home to visit relatives and friends; others love to explore different parts of the archipelago from relaxing views to thrill-seeking adventures. 

When venturing on such journeys, a little preparation goes a long way, ensuring that adventures remain enjoyable and safe. Isabella* and David* share how they navigated their recent travels with careful planning and an adventurous spirit.

Isabella’s* passport ordeal

Isabella*, an accountant from Adelaide, dreamt of a relaxing getaway on Boracay, a postcard-perfect island renowned for its powdery white sand and crystal-clear waters. Her dream holiday took a stressful detour when she realised her passport had vanished. Panic set in, threatening to derail her carefully planned getaway.

However, Isabella* didn’t give up. Remembering her go-to trusted travel resource – Smartraveller.gov.au, which she had subscribed to before leaving. Smartraveller is the first destination for Australians planning to travel or who are already travelling or visiting family overseas. The website’s clear instructions on lost passports became her lifeline. She contacted the Australian embassy in Manila and started the process of getting a replacement passport.

Isabella* turned this unexpected event into an opportunity to spend a day exploring the popular local markets and historical sites, experiencing a different side of Boracay’s charm.

David’s* encounter with beauteous Mayon

Meanwhile, on the island of Luzon, David*, a photographer from Melbourne, faced a different kind of challenge. His assignment to capture the majestic Mayon Volcano, famous for its near-perfect cone shape, was threatened by sudden volcanic activity. Mayon had rumbled back to life, spewing ash and prompting warnings from local authorities.

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David was alerted to the Mayon volcanic eruption, while at his hotel, thanks to his subscription to Smartraveller advice and free travel alerts for the Philippines. Determined to capture the volcano’s beauty while prioritising safety, David* followed all advice on Smartraveller.gov.au. The website provided detailed advice including following local news to check for live updates on the unexpected situation. David* used the information as his guide allowing him to avoid any critical areas and capture photos from a safe distance, fulfilling the requirements of his assignment.

David’s* meticulous planning, aided by Smartraveller’s resources and advice, proved crucial for his Mayon adventure. 

Photographer taking a photo of Mayon Volcano and Cagsawa Ruins
Albay’s almost perfect cone Mayon Volcano with Cagsawa Ruins in the foreground. CREDIT: @onfilm – Getty Images Signature and @Timelmage

Lessons learned: Preparedness is key

Isabella and David’s stories highlight the importance of being prepared, even when travelling to paradise. Smartraveller.gov.au, a valuable resource for informing travel decisions, equips you to navigate unexpected situations. From passports, visas and travel insurance to detailed travel and cultural advice on over 175 destinations, Smartraveller has the information Australians need to plan their overseas trip and make informed choices throughout their journey.

So, whether you’re chasing sunsets on Boracay or seeking volcanic sights in Albay, pack your sense of adventure and a healthy dose of caution. Don’t forget to subscribe to Smartraveller for a less stressful and safer journey through the Philippines’ enchanting archipelago. They also have a dedicated Filipino community hub to help you.

*Names changed for privacy reasons.
Images used are for representation purposes only.

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