Thursday, May 24, 2012

What it means to be an Empowered Traveler #ThoughtfulTourism

Three weeks ago, I was invited to this awesome travel website launch party (the country’s newest and most comprehensive travel portal wherein #ThoughtfulTourism is promoted) via Twitter. I honestly didn't know anything about Meet Manila nor the meaning of the word 'Tertulia' then. But I felt truly overwhelmed to be invited as a traveler blogger. Being recognized just that tiny bit made feel so honored! :) So I RSVP'd and got really excited thereafter. 

And while learning more about Meet Manila through their awesome website, I came upon this humbling invitation -- Looking for the Empowered Traveler.

I actually got all giddy about joining. But while I was reading through the Travelers' Pre-requisites, I suddenly felt a tinge of sadness.

And so I did write my piece. I actually just wrote it a few hours before the call of entries were to be closed. 

I really did not have any expectations. I just wrote and shared my sentiments, in hopes that I would be able to tell my story and make a difference to somebody else. The prize was just simply, secondary to me. 

Anyway, here's what I wrote:

"Most people mistake me to be a professional Travel Agent. I'm actually not. I just simply love doing my homework, gathering my own research, plotting out trip itineraries for family & friends, booking airline tickets, budgeting trip expenses and taking photos -- you name it! I'm your person, no questions asked. And if some people find being obsessive compulsive a disorder. Well, I take my being OC to my advantage. The littlest details help me maximize my resources, and helps keep me enriched of the beauty that keeps me awe-stricken through every unique journey.

I created my online travel journal -- Budget Biyahera to not just religiously share my travel expense sheets nor my personal takes of culture-rich places. It was born to help reach out to those who may have uncertainties on where to go, what to ride, how to travel, how much to pay and what worth while places to see around the Philippines. My travel blog was created to show how I was raised to explore and to appreciate my own country -- to show why it's so special and why it's an honor to be born a Filipino traveler.

Budget Biyahera was also born to let others know that traveling isn't a luxury but a great investment in life. Each destination gives me more reason to continue empowering and encouraging my fellow men to travel; and to continue letting others see how passionate I am towards seeing as many Philippine islands as I can while I'm still living. 

These are the reasons why I travel. I want to continue empowering others to choose the same, fulfilling path. :)"

This entry gave me an opportunity to be recognized as a travel blogger last night, at Meet Manila's Tertulia Night held at the Adarna Restaurant. Not only was I amongst intelligent and inspiring personalities, I felt completely honored to be a part of this wonderful travel community. The recognition plus the "Prize" all the more encouraged the Budget Biyahera in me to continue promoting #ThoughtfulTourism. So thanks again Ms. Ysobel, Ms. Francesca and to the rest of the Meet Manila Team for this amazing opportunity! 

Also, it was nice meeting Froilan Grate of Mother Earth Foundation, Gabzki of Pinoy Travel Freak, Ms. Hazel of Unsugarcoated Reviews, Kalabasa K. Kamote of Pinoy Pop Culture. :) And congratulations to Ms. Vera and Jaypee David for also being chosen as one of Meet Manila's Empowered Travelers! Yey to us. :)

Until the next update!

Explore & Be Free!
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