July 30, 2018

Parkroyal Hotel in Yangon Myanmar

Yangon Myanmar is known as a melting pot of East meets West. The city is famous for their Shwedagon Pagoda. My husband was lucky to visit the pagoda during his first visit to Myanmar. He took some pictures and since then, I required him to take photos so I can have a glimpse of his business trip. Hehehe!

Read: Glimpse of Yangon Myanmar

There is still no direct flight from Manila to Yangon so there is still a short layover in Bangkok. During his first visit, he flew via Thai Airways and Bangkok Airways but last week, he flew via Philippine Airlines and Bangkok Airways. We had a bad experience at Bangkok Airways before, if you remember my post “How to Deal with Damaged Luggage”. This time, nawalan naman ng padlock yung luggage ni hubby so I was hoping na magkadirect flight na to Yangon.

Parkroyal Yangon Hotel

My husband stayed at Parkroyal Yangon Hotel, he likes this hotel compared to Taw Win Garden Hotel because the room is much bigger, comfortable bed, bathroom has a bathtub and stable wifi. It is located near the Yangon city center which is an ideal location because some popular attractions are near like Shwedagon Pagoda, Sule Pagoda, Yangon Central Railway Station, Bogyoke Aung San Market and China Town.


This is the room and bathroom.





Spice Brasserie

The room package includes buffet breakfast at Spice Brasserie where you can eat local and international cuisines. They also offer “Special of the Day” meal prepared by their chefs. The restaurant is open from 6AM to 11:30PM. Their signature dishes are Chicken Curry with Potatoes and Assorted Vegetables and Prawn Curry with Assorted Vegetables. For breakfast, you can try Myanmar Morning Noodle (Mote Hinn Gar), a national dish of Myanmar and most popular breakfast dish. The main ingredients are catfish, lemongrass, fish sauce, onion, garlic, rice vermicelli and coriander.






Shiki-Tei

Aside from the Spice Brasserie, you can also eat or drink at Si Chuan Don Hua Restaurant, Shiki-Tei, The Lobby Bar, and Club 5. My husband loves Japanese food so he took advantage of the Shiki-Tei, a Japanese restaurant at Parkroyal. It offers buffet and a la carte meals but my husband availed the buffet dinner at $45 but because of the promo, he paid around $33.






Lunch 11:30AM to 2:30PM
Dinner 5:30Pm to 9:30PM



Parkroyal has a gym and swimming pool, but the pool is not that clean because you can see moss on the tiles of the pool. I hope they clean and maintain their pool well. Service is good.

Parkroyal Yangon Hotel
33 ALan Pya Phaya Road,
Dagon Township,
Yangon Myanmar

July 26, 2018

I’m an Angel

Yey, I am an angel now, an angel without wings and not God’s messenger but I will be one of the angels that will inform you about the latest Korean Beauty products. I am happy to announce that I am now part of Althea’s Angel Beauty Ambassador Community. (insert happy dance). I discovered Althea Korea last year and I became hooked with Korean Beauty products. I’ve never been to South Korea so I am glad that I can order K-Beauty products in the comfort of our home. So far all my boxes were delivered on time and in good condition.


If you remember my post last week, I was browsing Althea Korea site because they are having an anniversary promo and I wanted to join their contest “Althea Turns 3”. I just placed my order then my Welcome Gift arrived, my Althea Angels box is here. Thank you Althea Korea.


The box includes Althea’s Real Fresh Skin Detoxers in Green Tea and Rose. These products will be available on July 30, 2018 so don’t forget to visit Althea Korea site. I will share my review on a separate post but to give you an idea, it is a daily 10 seconds wash-off mask, so if you’re busy, this will be your friend because you only need 10 seconds for your morning routine and evening routine.


Real Fresh Skin Detoxer Rose: Refining

It gently smooths away roughness and gives your skin a radiant glow. Perfect for your morning routine.

Real Fresh Skin Detoxer Green Tea: Purifying 

It calms down and purifies your sensitive skin. Perfect for your evening routine.

Read: Althea Korea Real Fresh Skin Detoxer Review
My Shopping Experience at Althea Korea
My Korean Drama List

July 25, 2018

The Westin Jakarta

Jakarta, Indonesia is not on my bucket list but whenever my husband goes to Indonesia, a part of me wants to go with him because I like his accommodation. You know that my son and I love hotel staycation and parang ang sarap magstaycation sa Jakarta. Last Thursday, my husband told me that he needs to go to Indonesia and he said he will stay at The Westin Jakarta and I just said okay.

My husband stayed at Westin Grande Sukhumvit Hotel in Bangkok so in my mind, same lang sila but the following day, I searched for this hotel and at that moment, I wanted to book a flight. Hehehe! But no more flights at Cebu Pacific Air and PAL has Premium Economy and Business Class flight only. Too expensive for two nights trip. Kaasar! Bakit kasi two days notice lang.

My husband booked online and he received the confirmation after a few minutes. The payment was already charged because of the no cancellation policy. I’m not sure if that is always the case or is it because my husband booked a day before his trip. Good thing that despite the heavy rains there was no flight cancellation last Sunday.


The Westin Jakarta is a 5-star hotel and one of the newest hotels in Jakarta. It is located on the top 20 floors of Gama Tower, the tallest building in Indonesia. It is in the heart of the city so you have stunning city view whether day or night. It is near shopping malls too so if you like shopping, this hotel is for you.

The Westin Room




One thing I noticed in Indonesia, their hotel rooms are always big compared to other countries. The smallest room is 46-48sq meter. The design of the room is similar to Four Points by Sheraton Bangkok, it is just bigger. This was the first time my husband stayed on this hotel but because he is SPG Member, the hotel gave him complimentary dessert and drink coupon. Additional 5% discount on their hotel rate too.


Tip: If you are a frequent traveler, business traveler or you love hotel staycation. Don’t forget to sign-up for hotel membership card. It is FREE. You get additional discounts every time you book. And sometimes they give freebies like complimentary desserts or drinks.




They say that they have a heavenly bed but my husband still prefers the bed in Hotel Mulia Senayan, yun pa rin ang favorite hotel beds niya. It has a separate rain shower and bathtub so plus points for us because we love bathtubs. The toiletries are similar to other Westin hotel except for the ‘Sleep Well Lavender Balm” so I told my husband to bring it home. Matry nga kung makakatulog ako ng mahimbing.


Seasonal Tastes

The room package includes buffet breakfast at Seasonal Tastes, it is an all-day dining restaurant that offers city view. My husband said it is similar to Spiral where there are so many choices, sa dami you don’t know where to start. They serve international dishes like Western, Asian, Indian and Mediterranean. It has seven live cooking stations so you can order and they will cook it for you.'

Read: Jakarta Eats: Seasonal Tastes Restaurant




My husband stayed for two nights or should I say one night only because of the delayed flight, madaling araw na siya nakarating. Hehehe! So he was not able to explore other facilities of the hotel, but The Westin has 24 hours Fitness Studio, Spa, and Indoor Heated Swimming Pool.


Update November 2018

My husband went back to Jakarta and stayed again at The Westin Jakarta. He was a returning guest so he was a little disappointed because there were no complimentary fruits and desserts in his room. So there is no consistency on the way they treat loyal SPG member or returning guest. This is one reason why he likes Hotel Mulia Senayan, they really know how to spoil their returning guest.


No more king-sized bed so he stayed at Westin Twin Rooms, but looking at the photo, ang laki pa rin ng bed for a single bed.


He was able to explore the hotel so he checked the gym, he swam in the indoor pool (lukewarm water) and ate breakfast and dinner at Seasonal Taste. If ever you want to use the gym and you forgot your workout attire, don’t worry because you can order workout gear.

“Pack Light Stay Fit - Westin Gear Lending helps you keep moving with New Balance workout gear delivered right to your room for just $5. Call Service Express to Order workout gear in your size. ” 




Pros: There is a bank in the building so in case you need money, you won't have any problem. My husband exchange Philippines Peso to Indonesia Rupiah.

The Westin Jakarta 
JI H.R. Rasuna Said Kav. C-22 A.
Jakarta, 12940 Indonesia

July 24, 2018

My Korean Drama List

It is indeed a rainy season here in the Philippines and I’m missing the sun. I dislike rainy season because it also makes me lazy and sad. Nakakastress din because you have to wait for class suspension announcement, it’s either mapuyat ka or gigising ka ng maaga just to check if there is news na. Unfortunately, lagi kami may pasok rain or shine (#onlyinLaguna), it is funny pa kasi kung ano yung hindi maulan, yun ang wala kami pasok.

Last week was a stressful week. Ikaw ba naman ang may pasok hanggang Saturday tapos exam week pa ng anak ko. Sabi ko nga sa IG ko, “Habang ang lahat walang pasok, kami meron, meron, meron. Habang ang iba long weekend, kami may Saturday Class pa” huhuhu! And because of that, last Saturday I started watching Korean Drama again.


It’s been more than a decade when I first watched Korean Drama, Jewel in the Palace is the first Kdrama that I watched. Then I watched Queen Seon Deok, crush ko si Bidam played by Kim Nam Gil so kahit mapuyat ako mapanood ko lang siya. My husband was very supportive so he bought a CD of Queen Seon Deok para di na ko magpuyat but in the end, mas napuyat ako kasi ayaw ko tigilan hanggat di ko matapos. After that, I watched Baker’s King, grabe luha ko dito. Hehehe! I stopped watching Kdrama on TV na. Several years ago, my friend gave me a copy of The Heirs, I like the story and naging crush ko si Lee Min Ho.

1. Jewel in the Palace
2. Queen Seon Deok,
3. Baker’s King
4. The Heirs

But it was only last year when I became hooked, I watched so many series last year because you can watch it online na so I don’t have to wait sa TV. In a span of two months, I was able to watch 11 Korean Drama. Kinain na ko ng sistema, lol.

5. W - Two Worlds
6. Descendants of the Sun
7. Legend of the Blue Sea
8. Doctors
9. Love Story in Harvard
10. Love in the Moonlight
11. Goblin
12. Cinderella and the Four Knights
13. Personal Taste
14. Boys Over Flowers
15. K2

Among this list, my favorites are Descendants of the Sun, Legend of the Blue Sea, and K2. I watched LOTBS, Personal Taste and Boys Over Flowers because I like Lee Min Ho. Then things changed when I watched K2, nadagdagan na crush ko, now I love Ji Chang Wook. I started searching for Ji Chang Wook movie and Korean Drama so I watched Healer, Suspicious Partner and Empress Ki. Now I’m missing him na, two years din siya sa Military Service.

April to December 2017 

16. Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo
17. Something About 1%
18. Healer
19. Strong Woman Dong Bong Soo
20. Cheese in the Trap
21. My Secret Romance
22. Suspicious Partner
23. Pinocchio
24. She was Pretty
25. My Love From Another Star
26. Fight for my Way
27. Oh My Venus
28. Empress Ki
29. Beautiful Gong Shim
30. Dr. Heo Live Up to Your Name
31. Bride of Water God
32. While You Were Sleeping
33. Doctor Stranger
34. School 2013

Hindi ko naman crush si Lee Jong Suk but so far, lahat ng Kdrama niya magagada ang story so pinanonood ko pag siya bida, I watched W- Two Worlds, Pinocchio, While You Were Sleeping, Doctor Stranger and School 2013. I watched Dr. Heo Live Up to Your Name because of Kim Nam Gil.

January to July 2018

I can’t believe that I watched 30 KDrama last year, ilang oras kaya yun. Lol. This year, medyo busy-busyhan ang lola niyo so konti pa lang napapanood ko. I started watching Introverted Boss and Tomorrow With You last year, pero like Goblin inaantok ako sa kanila so it took me a long time to finish it, inabot ng 2018. hehehe!

35. Go Back Couple
36. Emergency Couple
37. Hospital Ship
38. Black Knight: The Man Who Guards Me
39. Introverted Boss
40. I'm Not a Robot
41. Tomorrow With You
42. About Time
43. What's Wrong with Secretary Kim

Currently, I’m watching What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim. I have time now since no assignments this week, “Activity Week” lang sa school ng anak ko. So if I have no blogs this week, alam niyo na ang reason.

August to November 2018

44. Because This is My First Life
45. Wok of Love
46. Miss Hammurabi
47. The Time We Were Not in Love (The Time I've Loved You)
48. Something in The Rain
49. Are You Human Too?
50. Welcome to Waikiki
51. My ID is Gangnam Beauty
52. 30 but 17
53. Your House Helper
54. Risky Romance (Currently Watching)
55. Where Stars Land (Currently Watching)

How many have you watched? Care to share your favorite Korean series so I can add to my list.

Read: My Shopping Experience at Althea Korea

Don’t Forget to Secure Home Before Taking a Trip

It’s that time of year again. Time to pack your things, gather your family, and head off for a much-needed vacation. You’ve been planning for this trip all year, and you’re anxious to hit the road. Before you go, you should probably make sure that you’ve secured your home first. Imagine coming home after having a great time only to find that it has been burglarized, vandalized, or caught on fire? You may not be able to control the inevitable, but you can do your part to reduce your risks. Here’s how:

Ask Someone You Trust for Help 

A vacant home is a prime opportunity for burglars to access your property and take whatever they’d like. To make your house less appealing, ask someone you trust to keep an eye on things. It can be a neighbor, family member, or friend. Simply let them know you’re going away and ask if they’ll watch the house. They may choose to stay at your place while you’re gone or opt to drive by periodically to take a glance at things. Either way, there’s someone constantly accessing your home, therefore, reducing the likelihood that a thief would be interested in breaking in.

Hold Your Mail 

There are various signs thieves look for to determine which property they’ll target. One of those signs is a full mailbox or packages left outside the door. If you plan on being gone for more than a day or two, you should probably put your mail on hold. You can contact your local post office to find out how. If you’re unable to or would prefer not to go that route, you can ask a neighbor or family member to retrieve mail for you.

Insure Your Property 

Some things that could go wrong while you’re on vacation are completely out of your control and unforeseen. Natural disasters, for instance, can happen in an instant. To protect your house and personal belongings you should have property insurance. This way, if the house catches fire, floods, gets burglarized or experiences some other disaster, you can receive funds to replace what was lost or damaged. You can find cheap apartment renters insurance or homeowners insurance online and have coverage the same day.

Alert Your Home Security Company 

If you have a home security system that comes with monitoring services, this can provide you with added peace of mind while on vacation. Not only should you make sure that your alarm is armed when you leave your home, but you should also notify the security company that you will be away. When aware of your destination, agents know to be on high alert if your alarm should go off. They won’t hesitate to contact the local authorities on your behalf.

Do Some Yard Work 

Another sign that nobody is home is an unkempt lawn. Before going on your trip you should tend to your lawn maintenance. Cut the grass, prune the trees, trim the hedges, and secure all the lawn equipment in the shed or house for safe keeping.

Lock the Garage 

Here’s a big safety point that a lot of homeowners forget. When you pull out of the garage be sure to lock it behind you. This is especially true for garages that allow easy access to the rest of the house.

You deserve to get away from your everyday life. To spend some quality time with your family. You also deserve to come home to a house that’s intact. If you really want to enjoy yourself on this trip, before taking flight, it is imperative that you follow these safety tips and secure your home.

July 20, 2018

Althea Korea Skincare Haul

I discovered Althea Korea a few years ago but it was only last year when I tried shopping at their site and because of the smooth transaction, it became one of my favorite online shopping site especially for beauty products. If you knew me, I’m not fond of buying beauty products but things changed, now skincare products are part of my budget. Hindi na ko bata so I need to take care of my skin before it’s too late.


As of now, Althea Korea is celebrating their 3rd birthday, they have promos starting July 2 to July 31, 2018. I missed the 3 weekly promos but I won’t miss the 4th week, I want to join their contest. Malay mo, manalo ko ng “Fly me to Korea”. Yesterday, I was checking my skincare products so I will have an idea if I need to restock. I was also browsing their site to look for interesting products that I want to try. And because of that, I realized that I haven’t shared my Althea Korea Haul yet. By the way, if you haven’t tried Althea Korea, use this link so you will get discount on your first order (minimum of P1500)

Read: My Shopping Experience at Althea Korea

January 2, 2018 

Last year, I joined their contest and fortunately, I won shopping credits in one of their contests so as early as January 2, 2018, I placed my order.

It's My Puff; It's My Magic Sponge P110
It's My Puff; It's My Cushion Puff P50
Lizly Oh My Awesome Tint; Awesome Rosepink P350
Elizavecca Skin Liar Primer (30ml) P280
Milky Dress Wrinkle and Whitening Eye Cream (15ml) P210
Black Head Solution 3-Step Nose Pack; 3-Step Nose Pack_Single Sheet P60
Pig-Nose Clear Black Head 3-Step Kit P80
Boomdeahdah Set; Everyday Mask 5each + Hand Cream Gardenia + Rose Body Lotion P300
Innisfree Capsule Recipe Pack; Volcanic Clay P120


My husband tried the Black Head Solutions 3-Step Nose Pack and Pig-Nose Clear Black Head 3-Step Kit, sa dami ng steps mas gusto niyo yung second step lang, wala ng before and after process. Hehehe! I tried the Oh My Awesome Tint and I was having a hard time applying it or hindi lang talaga ko marunong mag-apply so I seldom use this, maglipstik na lang ako. I love the Elizavecca Skin Liar Primer because it covers the pores, moisturize my skin and it keeps my powder for a long time so no need to reapply. I love the scent too.


I’m using the Wrinkle and Whitening Eye Cream every night, though hindi ko naman napapansin yung whitening effect niya kasi pansin ko pa rin eyebag ko, but I will still purchase it. So I can prevent the wrinkles on my undereye. Winner yung Boomdeahdah Set ko for only P300, I like this brand because it is affordable and okay naman product nila. I have beauty blender from Daiso na but I bought magic sponge so I can compare kung may difference ba, well I did not notice any difference except sa price. I haven't used the Innisfee and Primer, I will update this post na lang.


March 14, 2018

I got a discount coupon last January but I wasn’t able to use it because I was waiting for the Skin & Lab White Vita-C Essence stock, lagi kasi siya out of stock. Naexpire na tuloy coupon ko. This vitamin C essence was part of the Althea Korea Head to Toe Box that I bought last year and I love this product so I repurchase it. I only bought two products but I’m happy with my new discovery.


Skin & Lab White Vita-C Essence (50ml) P730
Rire Pore Tightening Fresh Toner (300ml) P360


The Rire Pore Tightening Fresh Toner is only P360, sulit siya kasi 300ml so you can use it for more than a month. It has Amazon white clay, aloe vera and tea tree extract and Korean chestnut extract that will help you in minimizing pores, controlling sebum, hydrating and soothing your skin. I like this toner, feeling ko ang linis talaga ng face ko after using this.

May 8, 2018 

I need to buy a cleanser, eye cream, and moisture cream so last April, I placed my order but unfortunately, it did not go through. My order was canceled because they were not able to get my payment from Paypal due to system migration. I was so disappointed because I placed my order twice and parehong canceled so di na ko umulit. After one month, I tried ordering again and fortunately, my order went through and no more cancellation. I ordered the following.


Faceshop Herb Day 365 Cleansing Foam Lemon (170ml) P150
Milky Dress Wrinkle and Whitening Eye Cream (15ml) P210
Onsaemeein Perfect Moisture_Cream (70ml) P340
Rire Luxe Gel Eyeliner (0.5g); Kill Black P210
Eyelash Curler Comb P140
Vita 3000 Capsule Cream (30ml) Vita E P145
B-Lab I Am Sorry I Am Just Cleansing Water (100ml) P190

I reordered Wrinkle and Whitening Eye Cream because I gave my first tube to my mom, mag-order na lang daw ulit ako. Hehehe! I was using Wangskin Moist Soothing Skin Cream since last year, it was part of the Althea Korea Lazy Sunday Box pero naubos na. I like that product but when I checked Althea Korea, it was not available so I bought Onsaemeein Perfect Moisture Cream. I tried Onsaemeein Yogurt Peeling and I'm satisfied with it so nagtry ako ng cream nila. So far, I also like their cream, the texture and smell are the same with the yogurt peeling and it is not sticky. I will purchase this again.

I bought the Eyelash Curler Comb, cute kasi, meron suklay yung eyelashes ko. I used Missha Frui-tea Cleansing Foam before and for a change, I tried Faceshop Herb Day 365 Cleansing Foam. You only need a pea sized amount to clean your face so I guess one tube will last for long and it is only P150. It cleanses, purifies and brightens the face. I haven't used the other products so I will just update this post.

I bought Vita 3000 Capsule Cream Vita E, this Vita 3000 Capsule Cream has different variants depending on your skin need. But I'm already using Vitamin C Essence so I chose vitamin E cream for smooth and moist skin. Vitamin E cream protects skin from dehydration and itchiness. I tried the cream, it is so thick and ang tagal din iabsorb ng skin so I find it sticky. I don't like the smell too. The price is affordable but not my type.

If you're too tired or just lazy to wash your face, you can use B-Lab I Am Sorry I Am Just Cleansing Water. It can remove your makeup or clean your face without washing. I like this product because it really cleans my face without drying it. It has a mild scent too. I just bought a small size, next time I will buy the 500ml.

So that's my Althea Skincare Haul this year, so far satisfied naman ko sa lahat and no breakouts or rashes after using the Korean products. Care to share your favorite Korean beauty products.

Use this link so you will get discount on your first order (minimum of P1500)

This post contains affiliate link/s. If you decide to make a purchase, I will earn a commission at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

July 18, 2018

Where to Stay in Singapore

Singapore is just a small country but a lot of tourists are visiting because it offers a lot of interesting sites for singles, couples, and families. It is known for having an amazing airport, food centres, family-friendly attractions and even shopping destination. In addition, you can visit Singapore, any time of the year and for Filipinos, we don’t need a visa.


Once you book your plane ticket, the next question is “Where should I stay in Singapore?” especially if this is your first time. Don’t worry because whether you are visiting for business or leisure, you can find the right accommodation. There are hostels, budget hotel, and luxury hotels so you can book depending on your budget. Although, Singapore has a very accessible train and bus system don’t forget to consider the location of your hotel. Some of the favorite locations of tourists are Bugis, Chinatown, Little India, Sentosa, Orchard Road, Clark Quay and Marina Bay.

We’ve been to Singapore a few times already so let me share some hotels that we have tried or my husband tried in the past. As of this writing, we have tried 6 hotels but I forgot the name of the first hotel but it is located in Little India so walking distance to Mustafa Mall. So if you are looking for an accommodation in Singapore, check these hotels.

1. SOUTH EAST ASIA HOTEL 

For our second visit to Singapore, I was looking for a budget accommodation and I stumbled upon South East Asia Hotel which is located in Bugis. The rate is only SGD100 per night with complimentary breakfast already. Since this is just a budget hotel, manage your expectation. The hotel has a good location, it is near shopping malls, market, money changer, souvenir shops and MRT. From the airport, you can just take the train and get off at Bugis station and walk to the SEA Hotel, about 6 minutes walk.

Read: South East Asia Hotel

2. SWISSOTEL MERCHANT COURT 

When my husband attended a seminar in Singapore, he stayed at Swissotel Merchant Court which is located at the city center. This hotel has good facilities, the room, and the swimming pool is also good. It is one of the nice hotels in Clarke Quay; in fact, when my husband took a taxi and told the driver his hotel, the driver said, “Oh, you have a nice hotel”. It is situated in Clarke Quay so you have Singapore River view, you can enjoy your hawkers' food trip and you can also start your DIY Singapore City Tour here.

Read: DIY Singapore City Tour

3. SHERATON TOWERS SINGAPORE

For our third trip to Singapore, we stayed at Sheraton Towers Singapore located in Scotts Road and the nearest MRT is Newton Station. This is a five-star hotel so expect that the facilities, food, and service are good. The room has a bathtub so plus points. The food is a little bit expensive but don’t you worry because Newton Food Centre is just a few minutes walk from the hotel. My favorite part of the room perks is the complimentary use of a smartphone device. I can use the phone and I don’t need to turn on my roaming. Yes, I have unlimited internet access during our stay.

Read: Sheraton Towers Singapore

4. OASIA HOTEL NOVENA SINGAPORE

Oasia Hotel Novena is the fifth hotel that my husband tried in Singapore. It is located in Central Business District, shopping malls and the nearest MRT Station is Novena. It offers complimentary arrival transfer from the airport and you can also reimburse one taxi receipt every day up to SGD20. The room and bathroom are small. The facilities are good too, it has a gym, jacuzzi and lap pool.

Read: Oasia Hotel Novena

5. FOUR POINTS BY SHERATON SINGAPORE RIVERVIEW

Just last month, my husband stayed at Four Points by Sheraton Singapore Riverview. Among the hotels that he tried, he likes the location of this hotel because it is near Singapore River, walking distance to his office and you can also do a walking tour here because some tourist spots are just a few minutes walk. It offers free shuttle service to MRT station and Orchard road, so if you like to shop, no need to spend money on transportation. You can just take advantage of the free shuttle to Orchard. This hotel has 3 restaurants and one of my husband’s favorite is Irodori Japanese Restaurant so if you love Japanese foods, try their buffet lunch and dinner.

Read: Four Points by Sheraton Singapore Riverview 
Things to do in Singapore

July 16, 2018

A Guide for SSS Members in the Philippines

If you are a member of Social Security System or simply SSS, it is very important to register at My.SSS in order for you to access and check your social security records without leaving your home. You can use a computer, laptop, tablet or even smartphone with an internet connection to access the SSS website.


Once you have the SSS online account, you can now view or update your membership records, you can check your contributions and you can apply for SSS loan and benefits. There are more things that you can do using the My.SSS account at the comfort of your home.

HOW TO CREATE SSS ONLINE ACCOUNT 

I created my SSS online account a decade ago so I’m not sure if the process is still the same. But one thing for sure, it is easy to create an account as long as you follow the steps.

1. Go to SSS website https://www.sss.gov.ph
2. Then click the “Click here” button below the NOT YET REGISTERED in My.SSS
3. Select one information, as reported to SSS to register.

Savings Account Number/Citibank Cash Card/ UBP Quick Card/UMID Saving Account Number Registered in SSS
Mobile Number Registered in SSS
UMID Card
Employer ID Number/Household employer ID Number
Payment Reference Number/SBR No./Payment Receipt Transaction Number

4. Fill-out the form, enter the verification code, check the I accept the Terms of Service and click submit.
5. Check your email and click the link from SSS to complete your registration.

SSS CONTRIBUTION RATE 

Last December 23, 2013, I received an email from SSS stating the increase of contribution rate starting January 2014.
“Dear Self-Employed, Voluntary and OFW Members: Effective January 2014, the Social Security System (SSS) will implement a 0.6-percent increase in its current 10.4-percent monthly contribution rate, thereby setting the new contribution rate at eleven (11) percent. At the same time, the maximum Monthly Salary Credit (MSC) will be increased from P15,000 to P16,000. As affirmed by SSC Resolution No. 711-s.2013 dated 20 September 2013, the new SSS contribution rate and the new maximum MSC will become effective for the applicable month of January 2014."
Here is the SSS CONTRIBUTION SCHEDULE.


WHERE TO PAY YOUR SSS CONTRIBUTION 

Banks 

AUB
Bank of Commerce
BPI
PBB
Security Bank
PNB
Unionbank

Payment Centers 

Bayad Center
GCash
Ventaja
Sky Freight
PinoyExpress
Iremit
SM Payment Center

I'm a voluntary member so I always pay my contribution at SM Payment Center. I choose quarterly payment so I don't have to go every month.

January to March
April to June
July to September
October to December

Payment Deadline 

For Regular and Household Employers. If the 10th digit of the 13-digit ER/HR number ends in | Payment Deadline (following the applicable month) 

1 or 2 - 10th day of the month
3 or 4 - 15th day of the month
5 or 6 - 20th day of the month
7 or 8 - 25th of the month
9 or 0 - last day of the month

For Self-Employed and Voluntary Members (Except OFW Members). If the 10th (last) digit of the SSS Number ends in | Payment deadline {following the applicable month or quarter (For Se/VM only) as the case may be} 

1 or 2 - 10th day of the month
3 or 4 - 15th day of the month
5 or 6 - 20th day of the month
7 or 8 - 25th of the month
9 or 0 - last day of the month

HOW TO CHECK YOUR SSS CONTRIBUTIONS ONLINE 

Nowadays, once you pay your SSS contribution, you may receive text confirmation that your payment has been posted, but it may take weeks after the payment. From time to time, I also check my contribution online, I copy/paste or screenshot it so I have a copy of all my contributions.

1. Go to SSS website https://www.sss.gov.ph
2. Log-in. Enter User ID and Password
3. Click E-Services then click Inquiry
4. Click Member’s Information and Actual Premiums. Then you will see all your contributions and the total of the contributions that you have paid.

HOW TO COMPUTE YOUR SSS PENSION 

From the time you started working, you are already paying your SSS contributions but do you know how much is your pension by the time you retire. Don’t worry, it is so easy to check your retirement benefits online.

1. Go to SSS website https://www.sss.gov.ph
2. Enter your User ID and Password
3. Click E-services, then click Stipulated Retirement

* Assuming continuous payment starting on the month after the date of inquiry up to the 60th and 65th birthday or until qualified for the pension.
* The computed amount of retirement is just an estimate and may differ from the actual amount of your retirement benefits.

To give you some estimates 

Contribution   | Amount Pension at the Age of 60  | Amount of Pension at the Age of 65 

P550                 | P4,673.45                                          | P5,173.57
P1,100              | P8,034                                               | P9,034.00
P1,760              | P12,674.40                                        | P14,274.40

So if you want to increase your pension amount, increase also your contributions and don’t forget this condition.

* SE/Voluntary/OFW/NWS who is below 55 years old shall be allowed to change his/her Monthly SSS contributions without limit in frequency and in number of salary brackets in a given year, but in no case shall be lower than the prevailing minimum monthly contribution for SE/Voluntary/OFW/NWS members.
* SE/Voluntary/OFW/NWS member who is 55 years old and above shall be allowed to increase his/her SSS contributions only once in a given calendar year and by one (1) salary bracket only from the last posted contribution

Note: The monthly pension depends on the member’s paid contributions, credited years of service, and the number of his dependent minor children that must not exceed five. The monthly pension will be the highest amount resulting from either one of the three pension formulae.

1. The sum of P300 plus 20% percent of the average monthly salary credit plus two percent of the average monthly salary credit for each credited year of service in excess of ten years.
2. Forty percent of the average monthly salary credit
3. P1200, if the credited year of service is at least 10 but less than 20; or P2400 if the CYS is 20 or more.

HOW TO PAY YOUR SSS SALARY LOAN IF YOU ARE A VOLUNTARY MEMBER

I applied for SSS Salary Loan and according to the email that I’ve received my first payment would be on October 2012 so I’ve made my first payment at SM Payment Center. The only disadvantage of a voluntary member is I have to pay every month at the payment center unlike the employed members, HR is responsible for that.

1. Go to SSS branch or SM payment Center. I always go to SM because it is open every day.
2. SM payment center provides form but if you want you can also print the form from SSS website.
3. Fill it out and make payment.

Read: HOW TO APPLY FOR SSS SALARY LOAN VIA ONLINE
HOW TO REPLACE LOST SSS ID

For more information, read, download or print this SSS Guidebook

July 13, 2018

Thingvellir National Park in Iceland

If you are going to Iceland, the most popular tour is Golden Circle Tour and I highly recommend that you get this package tour. But if you want to explore it on your own, don’t forget to visit Geysir, Gullfoss and Thingvellir National Park. Since we have relatives in Iceland, we had DIY Golden Circle Tour last year. We started our tour as early as 6AM and our first stop is Thingvellir National Park.    



Since we’re all first timers (yes, even my relatives haven’t visited this park yet) we don’t know where to start. The Visitor Center was still closed, I think we arrived around 7:30AM so we just look for a parking lot and started our tour. There is NO ENTRANCE FEE so we just followed the signs. Honestly, I have no idea about this park so all I thought, this is just an ordinary park but I was wrong. This park surprised me and this is my favorite place among the three tourist spots that we have visited. 


Thingvellir National Park is a protected national shrine and if you want to know more about Iceland, visit this place. It is where the general assembly was established in the year 1930 and a lot of major events held in this park. In 2004, this park became part of the UNESCO World Heritage List



Aside from the history, Thingvellir National Park is considered a natural wonder because of their geologic history. It is where you can see the evolution and formation of Mid Atlantic Ridge. It is located on the tectonic plate boundaries so you can see the evidence that the Eurasian and North American plates are drifting apart. 

What can you see in Thingvellir National Park? 

Kastalar lava hills
Almannagja 
Drekkingarhylur (Drowning Pool) 
Lorberg (Law Rock)

Hakid View Point
Gestastofa 

Flosagja 
Thingvallakirkja Lake
Valholl 
Silfra 

Stekkjargja 
Oxararfoss Falls
Langistigur 

Watch the video here 

This park is so huge, there are four parking lots and it is not free so we just park at P2 and started our walking tour. Thingvellir National Park is so wonderful and stunning so even this park is so big and our feet were tired, we're not complaining. My son was enjoying this park this park too, sa laki nito siguro ilang kilometro na rin ang nalakad namin. We arrived around 7:30AM and inabot na kami ng lunchtime, kakalakad. For lunch, we had baon so we ate in the parking lot where picnic tables and comfort rooms are located.  







standing on the fault line





Despite the beauty of this park, there are also sad stories. This park is also a reminder of the harsh punishments and execution that happened in the 16-17th century. According to the information post, there are seventy-two people known with certainty to have been executed at Thingvellir from 1602 to 1750; 30 males were beheaded on Hoggstokkseyri, 9 burned of alleged wizards and witches in the Brennugja, 18 women were drowned in Drekkingarhylur and15 men were hanged in Stekkajarja. There were also offenders that were flogged in Kagaholmi. 

As the quote says, "Travel - it leaves you speechless then turns you into a storyteller". This park leaves me speechless and now I’m sharing it with you and hopefully, you can visit this too. 

Read: IcelandAir Experience
Blue Lagoon  
Reykjanes Peninsula Tour
Bridge Between Two Continents 
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