Trip Report: Beijing to Manila with China Eastern Airlines

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Oh boy, this is fun.

(If you want to read about the flight experience, scroll further down until you see the second photo)

I had the opportunity to try China Eastern Airlines last month when I treated my mom to a vacation in Beijing. The frugal side of me prevailed and booked the mentioned airline instead of Philippine Airlines.

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After four days of roaming around Beijing, it was time to go back home. Our flight to Shanghai Pudong, MU 563, was scheduled to depart at 5:15 in the afternoon. We left our hotel after having lunch and arrived at Beijing Capital International Airport T2 at around 2 in the afternoon. Continue reading

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Trip Report: Manila to Beijing with China Eastern Airlines 中國東方航空公司

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These past two years, I have been sticking with Philippine Airlines more and more for my travel. Why? Mabuhay Miles, of course. It may not be as powerful as other loyalty programs because of PAL’s non-membership to any of the alliances but it suits my needs fairly well.

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There are exceptions though. When the airfare is too good for me to ignore, I grab it. Case in point, my recent trip to Beijing. I promised my mom that I will bring her to the Great Wall on her birthday. I was about to book two tickets to Beijing via Philippine Airlines at 545 USD when I saw China Eastern Airlines’ promo — 400 USD for two. I booked the tickets immediately.

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Memories of Madras

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Some time ago, I left my job as a software developer in IBM for a technical role in one of the global banks. I felt it was the right time back then for me to explore other opportunities so I took it. Little did I know, I was in for a roller coaster ride that lasted for almost four months.

See, when I took that job, I thought my life will finally have some normalcy. I saw myself getting thrown to different locations in my first job so I wanted a bit of change. Imagine how surprised I was when less than a month into my new job, our team was told that we’ll be sent to Chennai.

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Chennai, formerly known as Madras, is the capital city of the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. It is located at the Coromandel Coast off the Bay of Bengal, east of India. It’s the fourth-largest city in India and is known as the safest city in India.

Before I begin describing the experience, let me just say that I was not excited at all when I found about the trip. My idea of a business trip, based on my previous role, was in Singapore. Maybe Kuala Lumpur. Probably Jakarta or Bangkok. My other friends even went farther like New York, Istanbul, and London. But Chennai?

Finally, I just thought everything will be fine. Or maybe not.

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Trip Report: Sriwijaya Air from Semarang to Jakarta

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This is some sort of a continuation of my previous post.

When I was booking for my flights within Indonesia, I used Tiket.com. Due to my preference in flight times, my inbound and outbound flights to Semarang were of different airlines. My flight back to Jakarta was with Sriwijaya Air.

Sriwijaya Air is Indonesia’s third largest airline. It is considered a medium-service airline – not a low-cost carrier but not quite a full-service one. They mostly serve domestic flights but they do have some international flights within Asia.

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Trip Report: Batik Air from Jakarta to Semarang

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It’s impressive. Amazing. Extraordinary. Those words pop into mind whenever I recall my Batik Air experience.

Before this flight, the only other non-flag carrier I’ve taken outside of the Philippines was Jeju Air. I didn’t expect much from Batik Air when I was booking my flights within Indonesia, I just booked the most affordable ones that fits my schedule. I really wanted to fly Garuda but because it was twice as expensive, I opted not to.

Batik Air, by the way, is a new airline whose parent company is Lion Air. It first flew in May 2013. It’s a full-service airline though currently it only flies within Indonesia.

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Eight Ounce Coffee + Kitchen Pasig

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I love working in coffee shops. I don’t know why but I’m most productive when I am in a place where the smell of coffee permeates the air.

Last February, I started to notice a new coffee shop whenever I pass by Pasig Boulevard. It may sound odd but it’s situated at a gasoline station where one would usually find a convenience store.

Eight Ounce Coffee + Kitchen is within the FilOil Gas Station along Pasig Boulevard near Kapitolyo. According to their barista, they opened in January 2015. They use Douwe Egberts coffee from the Netherlands. Continue reading

Buffalo Wild Wings at Estancia

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One of the indicators of a good restaurant is how full it is. If it is full and there are a lot of people waiting for their turn to dine, then the restaurant must be something special. One such restaurant is Buffalo Wild Wings at Estancia, Capitol Commons. Don’t be fooled by the pic. That was taken past 10 PM hence the vacant tables. You would usually see many people waiting outside just to get a table. Buffalo Wild Wings is an American franchise. It’s a mix of casual dining and sports bar that specializes in… wings! Continue reading