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The 11 Commandments of Local Travel

by Maia Marquez

A jam-packed agenda doesn't always translate to an enjoyable vacation.

It's all about having the right mindset. Live out these travel commandments to make the most out of your local adventures!

An archipelago of 7,641 islands holds many colorful stories, dialects, religions, delicacies, and crafts. Being respectful of the cultural practices will always be greatly appreciated by the locals.

Even when you're traveling around the Philippines, don't expect locals and their environment to adjust to you. As the expression goes, "so sino mag-aadjust?" (so who will adjust?). Hint: it's you!

Being a responsible traveler is to travel sustainably. Minimise your carbon footprint when visiting other places. Practices, like avoiding single-use plastic, turning the lights out before you leave the room, and conserving water, can do so much.

Remember that you're in someone else's home. You'd want them to do the same if they were in yours.

While it's good to have a planned itinerary, leave a little room for spontaneity too. Just because the guidebook told you to go, it doesn't mean you have to.

Be a flexible traveler. Sometimes the unplanned experiences are the best ones!

Whether you're traveling solo or with company, don't forget that safety always comes first.

Be wary of your surroundings and avoid scenarios that can potentially put you in danger. Be living proof that it's possible to be smart, safe, and have fun at the same time!

The unique stories they tell, whether their own or passed down to them, are some that you wouldn't even hear of anywhere else.

Some of the best travel experiences are the connections you make. And that will make you come back.

There's so much more about food than meets the eye. It's the reflection of a place's history and culture. You'll never get to truly experience a destination without trying their local delicacies!

Always go local. Whether it's buying souvenirs or eating out, try to support local crafts and small businesses as much as possible. The Philippines is known to have one of the most hospitable and talented locals!

You won't get anything from being that snooty traveler no one wants to talk to. The solution? Strike up a conversation!

Read up on local cultures and learn a few phrases in the local dialect. Not only will it make your experience more meaningful, it'll save you the stress of being a stranger in a new world.

You never know what you can gain: travel tips, new places to check out, a new travel buddy, or even a lifetime friend.

While it's great to document and preserve the breathtaking sights, cherish it at the moment. You might just find it to be more beautiful through your own eyes than through a screen.

Only by immersing yourself fully can you make an experience truly your own. Ditch the gadgets for a while, live in the moment, and take it all in!

Whether you're a first-timer or you've gone back on your nth trip, it's always best to bring the essentials. Don't bring excessive packaging—it's bad for the environment and a hassle to bring around.

Bring enough cash on you since some establishments might not carry enough loose change. Plus, it's safer that way!

A small donation, an afternoon of volunteer work, or even just cleaning up after yourself can go a long way. The power of kindness and happiness can change lives indeed.

The memories you'll get from traveling is priceless. The question is, what can you give in return?

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About Maia
Maia’s passions in life are to travel and tell stories. Born in the States and raised in Manila while having studied in France, her ultimate goal is to travel all countries of the world. While she’s not abroad, she spends time tanning at the beach, exploring the underwater world or chilling with her 13 dogs. Follow her adventures on her Instagram @maiawillseetheworld.

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