travel & lifestyle blog by ruth dela cruz


My Travel Plans for the New Normal + Let’s Travel Again Soon

May 30, 2020
We are indeed living in a very interesting time.
It didn’t occur to me that I would be witnessing and surviving a global event that would soon be printed on History books that kids of the next generation would read about.

In the coming years, I would probably sound like my late grandmother who told me stories about World War II; while my stories would be about the Coronavirus Pandemic. 

At present, I am staying home with my family thinking of the “old normal” just like they were fantasies and dreams. The Coronavirus Pandemic has affected so many lives and industries, including the travel industry.   
Sometimes, I look at my old travel memories and feel happy to have experienced things – jumped off the plane,  went down the tunnel in a cave,  and traveled far to experience new things. I thanked my adventurous self. 
My first time doing Sky Dive 
Rabbit Hole in Lobo Cave, Samar
Big Bike Ride from Manila to Zambales 
(we had short stopovers but also considered a side trip to stay in hotels in Tarlac)
But part of me also feels the regret for not exploring the places that are close to where I live – thinking they would always be there. But the pandemic paralyzed the industry and the economy.  Every place seems so near, yet so far. 
Behind all the different emotions and overflowing nostalgia, I am feeling hopeful that we would all embrace the “new normal” stronger and smarter.
Now that Metro Manila is transitioning from MECQ to GCQ, it feels like everyone is being born again and learning new ways on how to navigate life. The beauty of the “new normal” is that we will all be a part of the changes that would shape the world. 
They always say that changes happen within ourselves; and for such, I want to start the change within the community.  Here are the places I plan to explore and new ways to travel while complying with the Social Distancing Guidelines and preventing the spread of the coronavirus. 

1. Explore tourist destinations near my place. 

Since transportation would still be limited due to the GCQ guidelines, exploring places near my place would help lessen the movement of people, yet would help the economy moving by keeping the businesses alive in my community. 
I live in Manila and I plan to visit the new sites and attractions that the City Mayor has renovated and opened for its people and tourists.  Some of the interesting sites to explore in Manila are Luneta Park, Fort Santiago, Intramuros, National Museum, and the newly renovated, Kartilya ng Katipunan.

2. Taste the flavors of local food businesses
From ready-to-cook meals to pre-cooked dishes, the trend in the food industry is ever-changing to meet the needs of the current situation to contain the virus. I will continuously support local and family-owned businesses to help provide a living for business-owners, cooks, and riders. 
A take-away order or a food delivery may also be a new way to enjoy food when I get to go out and explore nearby places. Maybe a picnic at the park with take-away food?
A stroll around Binondo
3. Learn how to ride a bike.  
I am taking it literally when they say, travel is all about the journey, not (just) the destination. For now, I can trade the window seat and sea of clouds view to what the present is offering me – a safe ride to and from any destination using an environmentally friendly vehicle,  bike. 
Once mass transportation systems like jeepneys, MRT and LRT open, it might be too crowded to accommodate employees who need to go to work. To help the government and fellow Filipinos, it would be best to use personal vehicles for leisure trips. I believe that bike is the best transport vehicle which is environment friendly, and a good form of exercise, too. 
Next time, I want to really ride a bike
4. Enjoy a real staycation. 
I always include a good, decent, and clean hotel as part of my “old normal” travel experience. It is always nice to crawl back to a fresh clean sheets and comfortable bed after a day of exploration.
Even if I plan to visit places near my place, I will still book a hotel to complete the “travel” experience and to help the hospitality industry.  Manila has a lot of nearby hotels where I can stay for a night, or two. 
A staycation in a RedDoorz hotel
Many travel experts and economists are saying that travel would change in so many ways because of the Coronavirus Pandemic. I hope my small ways can make a difference while the government and different industries strengthen the guidelines to the “new normal”. 
The vision is to make a positive impact in the community that would soon echo locally, and globally. 
For now, let’s try our best to be a responsible citizen and help contain the spread of the Coronavirus. Soon, I am hoping I would get to board the plane again and take my seat next to the window. And I pray I get to ride the same plane with you. 

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