I am probably a weird traveler.
This is not the first time that my travel destination is determined by (cheap) airfare, rather than the destination itself.
“I am going to ….. (fill in the blank) because airfare is cheap.” That’s why.
I spent two weeks in South Africa six years ago, because I was hooked by cheap airfare from Kuala Lumpur to Johannesburg. And it’s not as though I was safari-crazy. I barely knew South Africa then.
Friends were gobsmacked. They thought that I was crazy, as it was not exactly a safe country for tourists.
One might get robbed in a car at standstill in traffic jams.
One need to be aware of rampant snatch thieves.
I admit that I was ignorant, and didn’t realize untill after I booked. Oh, and I forgot to mention that it was a solo trip.
Well, I survived, didn’t I? And I live to tell the tale …
I think that all countries are uniquely different, and there are new experiences to be made, wherever I travel to. So, an experience nevertheless, to see the world.
Buy experiences, not things.
This time round, I’ll be covering countries that I’ve never thought of going to.
KLM Malaysia’s promotional airfare to Amsterdam caught my eyes this time, and it was a Facebook ad. So yeah, Facebook Ads work, and that’s why they are getting more share of digital adspend. My brain was geared towards Amsterdam; my starting point in Europe.
Knowing that Bangkok is a regional hub for budget flights, I focused in searching for flights out of Bangkok. Skyscanner helps a lot in this area. I almost booked Norwegian Airlines, in lieu of their dirt-cheap base airfare. But, later on, I had to change my plan, as my niece wanted to tag along.
32 days including 13 hours one-way flight from KL to Amsterdam. So, it’s a 30 days trip, excluding the two long-haul return flights. I avoided overnight travel (sleeping in a bus or on a train), and also long bus journey, since I’ll be traveling with a child. There are few days that we’ll be spending just on the road, traveling from one point to another, during day time.
My trip will encompass Netherlands, Belgium, UK and Germany.
Three out of four countries never been on my radar. Well, why not …
“Mama always said life was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.” Forrest Gump
As I mentioned, Amsterdam is where my ‘amazing race with my niece’ will kick off. From there, Belgium was included to ‘bridge the gap’ between Netherlands and London. We will then fly to Germany, and slowly make our way back to Netherlands, before flying home to Malaysia.
My quick thoughts on these few countries, after my travel research:
Glad to make their acquaintances. I am honoured to get a chance to explore this super smart country. The Dutch are the world leaders in flood control. Approximately 27% of Dutch area is below sea-level. Flood-tamers, isn’t that amazing?
Don’t we need this skillset for both Malaysia and Thailand?
I should have planned for a longer stay. Just for the fact that they have three official languages, have got me all pumped up. (But my niece told me that NZ has three offical languages too). I am dying to do a Belgium media scene, must be a very interesting media scene for a small 11 million population country.
UK – only London
London, the one and only city that I want to visit. I read, hear and see so much, but I’ve never been to! Now, I can say that I’ve been to London. Lucky me that our trip coincides with Thames Festival.
A country that started off as blank canvas, and slowly developed its character from my research. I even tweaked my itinerary, so that we can be at Munich for their Oktoberfest closing ‘gun salute’ ceremony.
Not sure how much I’ll be able to write when I am on the road, but will definitely share more later. Stay tuned …