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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Thank you, 2013!

Just like the previous years, 2013 was another year to be thankful for.  It may not be a perfect year for me but another experience, another learning was imparted to me this year.

Beach from Pimalai Resort and Spa
For my personal life, I'm happy that my relationship with my boyfriend is still going strong.  You really get to know each other when you travel together.  And this year was the test of our patience and understanding when we both traveled to places we've never been, locally and internationally.  Though it may not be a perfect trip as our attitudes were put to a test, I'm glad we were able to survive it happily and those memories are one of those to be treasured.

For my career, I'm glad that I'm always blessed with challenges on my work.  And because I endure those challenges, I was noticed and an advancement for my career happened.  I hope I will continue to do good and perform well that will be pleasing to the management eventhough there were times that I really want to give up.  But through prayers and patience, I am still here.  Thank God!

For my family, this year was when an unexpected event happened that tests our togetherness.  I am glad that we survived it and we continue to stick together and love one another.  Through thick and thin, to whatever challenges we will face, through all those hurtful times, my family will continually to grow as one.

For my passion: writing, i am happy that my blog is starting to earn! It may not be that big but I'm glad for the advertisers who believed in my blog. I'm also thankful to my followers, readers and friends for all the likes, comments and viewing/reading my blog and page.  I appreciate your time and your gratitudes in making my blog useful to you.  I still have a lot to share, hopefully I'll write more next year.

Lastly, for my another passion: traveling, thank God I'm still alive and all my travels were safe and fun!  I may not have traveled enough or as much as the previous years but I will try my best to impart and share useful information and tips about my travel adventures.  I cannot promise nor say more travel next year (as my priorities may have changed) but hopefully I can still visit places I've never been to.

Thank you everyone for being part of my 2013.  Thank you 2013 for the experience and memories. Thanks to you who are reading this.  Thank you thank you thank you!  See you again next year!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

GMovies App: Convenience at Your Fingertips

I had the GMovies app for several months now.  But I only use it to view movie schedules on various cinemas.  It was just yesterday when I fully utilize its feature, that is buying movie tickets using my mobile phone, a real convenience at your fingertips.

GMovies is powered by Globe.  Even if it is under Ayala Group of companies, you will see movie schedules on various cinemas around the metro and even key cities around the Philippines like Cebu, Davao, Cagayan de Oro, Pampanga and many others.  But unfortunately, at this time, you can only buy tickets on cinemas managed by the Ayala Malls Group.  But I don't think one has to worry about it since Ayala Malls has been continually expanding all over the Philippines.  They have Marquee Mall in Pampanga, Harbour Point in Subic, Ayala Center in Cebu, Abreeza Mall in Davao and Centrio Mall in Cagayan de Oro.

The GMovies app enables user to browse movie schedules currently on showing with a brief synopsis and even movie rating from rotten tomatoes.  Users can also view nearest cinema on their current location.

Yesterday, we decided to watch Girl, Boy, Bakla, Tomboy.  Knowing its Metro Manila Film Festival season (meaning long queues in buying tickets and possibility of seats to be sold out fast), we decided to purchase tickets online.  Our choice of cinema was Glorietta as it is the nearest to my place.  I used to have a Sure Seats account, where you can reserve tickets and just pay upon arrival on the cinema (managed by Ayala malls) but I already forgot my credentials there so I tried buying tickets using GMovies app.  Here's what I did.

1. Select the movie of your choice. Click the Showtimes button. The list of nearby cinemas will be shown.

2. Select your preferred cinema.  I picked Glorietta 4.  Various schedules will be shown with corresponding price.  In case of our preferred movie, it is available in Cinema 3 and 4 in Glorietta.

3. Select your prefered schedule.  The available seats will be shown on your chosen schedule.  Select your preferred seat/s then click Buy button.

4.  Once you click Buy, you will proceed with the payment options.  Currently, there are 3 options available as shown below.  I read that Gcash payment will be available soon.  You may double check your prefered schedule and seat as indicated in the upper right portion of your app. 

5.  In our case, we chose the credit card payment option.  For credit card purchases, you will be charged an additional 20 pesos per ticket.  This is the same amount charged by sure seats for reservation.  Input your email address on the pop up screen then you will be directed to Peso Pay payment facility.

6.  At the Peso Pay payment facility, you will be asked to choose between Visa or Master Card payment.  Once you have chosen any of these, you will then input your credit card details.

7.   You are done!  A payment confirmation will be shown on your screen once done.  Since this is my first transaction using this app, I just screen grabbed the payment confirmation.  I checked my email and there was no email yet, but a got it on a later time.

When I received the email, there were some instructions there on how to claim the tickets.    Specifically for credit card transactions, one must print the email confirmation and bring the card card used for the payment.  But since I don't have printer at home, I'm hopeful that presenting the email from my mobile will suffice.

Upon arriving at Glorietta, since I am familiar with Sure Seats transaction, we fall in line at the Sure Seats counter.  The lady asked me to log in my credentials at Sure Seats website but I told her I made transactions using GMovies so she told me to just go directly in the cinema to get our tickets.  Wow, what a convenience, I thought.

At the cinema, the lady at the entrance was asking for the print out but I told her I don't have it and asked where can I print it.  She told me I can have the email confirmation printed at the Sure Seats counter, I told her that it was them who told me to just go directly at the cinema.  I also said if she can just copy the barcode details instead.  She asked her colleague and she said to her to just copy the barcode while telling me to have it printed next time.  Well, that was not quite a convenience at that time.

It was just now that I learned through the GMovies app via My Tickets tab that indeed I no longer need the printed email.  

The lady at the Sure Seats counter was correct but unfortunately, the lady at the cinema entrance may not be familiar with it or maybe because I didn't tell her that I purchased tickets through GMovies.

This is really very convenient, a true convenience at your fingertips.  You can purchase your tickets anytime, anywhere.  I hope payment through ATM via online banking will be available soon.  Besides, BPI, another Ayala Group, have an online banking facility.  I prefer debiting my cash rather than paying through credit card.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Layover in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

My boyfriend and I had an overnight layover in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia after our Krabi trip in Thailand.  It may seem like a lot of time but it's not since we will be arriving in LCC Terminal at about 5pm.  Then the next day, our flight back to Manila is at around 12:40pm.  So basically we just have the night to explore Kuala Lumpur.  With that, we just thought of visiting Petronas Towers and KL Tower.  Good thing, I read that the Petronas Tower is more beautiful at night.  By the way, this is our first visit in Malaysia.  Read below on how our short but memorable trip went.

From LCC Terminal (LCCT), we decided to ride the bus, Sky Bus to be specific, to get to KL Sentral.  As per research, travel time will take about an hour and 15 minutes.  Another way to get to KL Sentral is by train.  But the train from the airport is located in KLIA terminal, which is about 15 minutes away by bus or shuttle from LCCT.  If by train, travel time is only about 40 minutes.

Sky Bus ticket
Then from KL Sentral, we rode the rapidKL train (Kelana Jaya line) going to KLCC station.  Travel time is about 17 minutes.  The Petronas Towers is just a short walking distance from KLCC station.

rapidKL token

The Petronas Towers
We arrived at KLCC station at around 8pm already.  Upon disembarking the station, you will be passing by a shopping mall.  I just forgot its name.  We were kinda lost upon exiting the train and we found ourselves inside this mall.  The concierge gladly showed us how to go to Petronas Towers, which was really walking distance outside the mall.  Outside the mall, we can already see the tall Petronas Towers.

Petronas Towers at night

picture taken by our kababayan

I was instantly amazed at its tall majestic structure with lights opened at the building.  Viewing Petronas Towers at night was indeed a good sight.  There were quite a number of people taking pictures outside of the building.  We even heard and see several Filipinos in the area.  With that, we were able to ask them to take a picture of us.  People around were quite friendly, whatever one's nationality is, because I've seen different people asking to take pictures of them.

KL Tower
From research, I learned that KL Tower is just near the Petronas Towers.  It is suggested to walk rather than take a cab since you might be stuck in traffic.  I read that we must take the P. Ramlee street but when we asked some security guards around, they pointed us in the other way.  I insisted my boyfriend to take the P. Ramlee street but I didn't argue further.

KL Tower from afar

We stopped here, it seems like KL Tower is nearer

Because we took the "longer way", we got tired and just decided to go to our hotel, which is at the Nilai area.  Along the way, my boyfriend buys some cigarette in a small store.  It was quite expensive at RM 12 to RM 14 per pack.  The store owner told us to be cautious in passing by small streets as there were some pick pocketers around.  I thought that was a nice gesture but it made us quite afraid in walking around the city at night.  That was past 9pm already and going to Nilai from KL Sentral would take us about an hour travel time. Our travel going to hotel was the most memorable one.

Nilai Hotel
From KLCC station, we rode the same train, rapidKL, in going back to KL Sentral station.  From KL Sentral, we took the KTM Komuter train (Rawang Seremban line) going to Nilai station. It was almost 10pm when we rode the train.  Travel time is about 58 minutes, almost an hour.  Few stations before Nilai, my boyfriend sees that its less people already outside each station.  He is worried that we might not easily get to our hotel.  The hotel I chose was about 2-3km from Nilai station.  I chose this area as it is just 30 minutes away from KLIA by bus.  Also from Nilai station, the bus terminal going to the airport is just walking distance.

train station in KL Sentral

inside KTM Komuter train

Ticket of KTM Komuter
I explained all these to my boyfriend so he wouldn't worry that much.  But deep inside, I was also kinda worried myself as it is getting late already.

We arrived at Nilai station at almost 11pm already.  We immediately asked around where New Nilai Hotel is located.  Several people provided us with several answers.  Some say that we cannot go there by walking as it is far while some say it can be done.  This made us wonder who was telling the truth and how far really is our hotel from Nilai station.  We thought of getting a taxi but I was worried our money will not be enough as I opted to pay in cash on our hotel reservation even if I booked via agoda.  Another option we thought was to ride the bus going to the airport and just spend the night there.  Our hotel reservation will be forfeited and we will still be charged/debited through the credit card enrolled in agoda.  A few more walks around the area we saw the police station.  The gate was closed but a policeman was outside.  My boyfriend asked them if they knew our hotel.  For some reason, what they say was the one we believed in.  They say that it is located about 2 blocks away, on the second stoplight, about 3 km distance.  We can walk but since its already late at night, they advised us that might not be safe.  They told us we can ride a taxi but I know, from research, night taxi rate is higher than day rate.  As I've mentioned, our money will not be enough to pay for the taxi.  We thought of our second option but the policeman told us that there were no longer buses arriving at the terminal at that late time of the night going to the airport.  I was already worried, frustrated, mixed emotions and deep inside I was already praying.  It is already the last night of our vacation yet we don't have any place to sleep and rest.  What an opposite situation from our luxurious accommodation in Thailand!

Nilai police station post, at the back of the picture is the bus terminal

Nilai police station entrance
Then all of a sudden, the policeman we talked to offered to take us to our hotel.  We couldn't believe what we heard but we already took the offer.  Words of gratitude came from me and my boyfriend's mouth from riding the policeman's car up to our hotel.  That was the first time I felt "no words can really express how thankful we were".  My boyfriend wanted to hand him some payment but the policeman refused. We were really thankfuk to him.  And indeed, our hotel was quite near the Nilai station and can be reached by walking.

Once at the hotel, we were already quite relieved, though my boyfriend is still worried about our safety in Nilai area.  That was also the first time he told me: "matapang ka talaga" (you're really strong).  I don't know why he said that or what he really meant about it.  But I know I made him worried a lot, not for himself but for me and my safety.  To me, this experience is an adventure but scary.  Prayers can still do wonders and God is good all the time.

The next day, from our hotel, we just walked towards the bus terminal.  From Nilai bus terminal to KLIA, we took the Airport Liner.  Travel time is about 20-30 minutes.  Waiting time or bus interval is about every 20 minutes so it is important to be early at the bus terminal to wait for the bus.

Airport Liner ticket
I like the ticketing system of Airport Liner.  Even though there are 2 doors in the bus, everyone must enter in the front, at the driver's side, since the bus ticket is printed there.  They have like a POS ticketing system where the driver inputs the number of passengers and destination then the ticket will print the amount.

Here's the breakdown of our expenses (for 2) in our layover in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia:

Bus from airport to KL Sentral - RM 18
Train from KL Sentral to KLCC station - RM 3.20
KLCC station to KL Sentral - RM 3.20
Mc Do dinner - RM 21.95

Train from KLSentral to Nilai station - RM 9.40
New Nilai Hotel - RM 60 (watch out for my blog about this hotel)
Nilai bus terminal to KLIA -  RM 6.40
KFC lunch (at KLIA) - RM 27.50
Souvenirs (at KLIA) - RM 44.70

TOTAL - RM 194.35 (Php 2,600+ approx.)

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Surigao Adventure: Day 2d - The Beach

After the caves, we visited a small island/beach during our Sohoton tour.  I forgot the name of this beach but it was nice, quiet beach.  The shoreline is short but it has fine white sand.  Crushed corals can also be seen along the shoreline and on the shallow waters.  The beach was clean, clear with small fishes around.  It was only us who were at that beach that time.  Not much to say about this beach, just sharing with you these pictures we captured with it.

Small beach
Closer to the beach
Beach with some rock formations
Another rock formations, with the other couple on our tour

Fine white sand

Unique rock structure, spade shaped.  This has white sands inside.
Clear water with some rocks/corals

Underwater shot
Underwater shot

This beach side trip is part of the Bucas Grande Island tour which was explored during our Day 2 Surigao Adventure.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Review: Adapalene vs. Tretinoin Cream

Following my previous blog on how to have a pimple free skin, I mentioned that Tretinoin Cream helps in clearing your face from pimples.  But I also mentioned that too much application of it makes your skin dry.  This what happened to me.  When I return back to my derma (well I don't frequently visit my derma :)), I told her that I noticed that my skin seems to be drying from the regimen she prescribes: Cetaphil Oily Skin Cleanser, Acne Toner and Tretinoin Cream.  So she replaced the acne toner with clarifying lotion and tretinoin cream with Adapelene Cream.  (I soon changed the clarifying lotion to Human Heart Nature's Balancing Toner.  You may read about it here.)

Now here's my comparison on Adapalene vs. Tretinoin Cream

Tretinoin Cream

  • Dries up pimples fast (as early as the following day)
  • Pus can easily come out (can be the following day of after a few days) for those who are experiencing almost cystic pimples
  • Less appearance and occurrence of pimples
  • Can make your skin smooth when applied all over the face
  • Effective even on blackheads, whiteheads and "butlig-butligs"
  • A bit cheaper than Adapelene
  • 1 jar/container can last for months to a year, depending on your application
  • Nightly application all over face can make your skin dry the next day even after applying moisturizer
  • May not be suitable to sensitive skin for all over face application (but spot application on the pimple are may be ok)
  • Micro-peeling can be a bit visible especially when you apply face powder during the day
  • The peeling on the pimple can be an annoying sight
  • Sting sensation may be felt on those sensitive parts like near the eye area due to the peeling effect
  • May be a bit greasy on the face, depending on your application
  • For this type of tretinoin cream, I can only buy this from the derma
Adapelene Cream

  • More gentle and not drying when applied all over the face
  • The micro-peeling effect will make your skin smoother, less visible pores (better than the peeling in tretinoin cream) 
  • No visible peeling effect
  • Non-sting
  • Less appearance and occurrence of pimples
  • Non-greasy feel
  • Available in most drugstores
  • Somehow makes your skin fairer
  • I develop small whiteheads a few times on my first few days of application 
  • Drying effect on pimple is not as early as next day
  • Small tube can last for about 3 months depending on application
  • More expensive

Personally, I prefer Adapelene as it makes my skin looks fairer and smoother with less visible pores.  However, since I have an acne prone skin, I wanted something that can eliminate my pimples "fast" (with "" as there is no really a very fast treatment in combating pimples) which I find it in tretinoin cream.  This is just too drying that I'm afraid I'll develop wrinkles quickly.  Also, I don't look as "radiant" as with using Adapelene maybe due to tretinoin's drying effect on my skin.

Right now, I'm maintaining my tretinoin cream but I just use it in moderation as it is really drying.  I use it every other night all over my face or I just spot apply on those pimples.

I find these creams really helpful in combating pimples.  But of course, everyone has different skin conditions so what maybe effective on me may not be effective on you.  I also read in some forums that some experience purging effect on the first few days of using Adapelene.

I also use this cream in combination with my other beauty regimen such as using oil control facial wash/toner and tea tree oil application on pimples.

I hope this helps to those who are continuously searching for products that will help them eliminate pimples.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Review: The Face Shop Color Control (CC) Cream

This is a long overdue post.  I acquire this product (directly from Korea) since August and its just now that I'm writing a review on it.  Well, here goes.

I really don't have any idea about CC cream or Color Control Cream before.  I previously tried BB cream and I liked it as it serves as a foundation, moisturizer, concealer and sunblock cream in one.  When CC cream came out, I initially don't get interested on it.  I was happy with my BB cream.  Through research, I learned that it will only make your skin looks flawless.  It also gives moisture to skin but it does not have any SPF.  Even with its moisturizing effect, some say that CC cream is also ideal for oily skin.  But unlike BB cream, it seems like it doesn't have much benefits.

Knowing the effects of CC cream, I somehow just wanted to try The Face Shop Color Control (CC) Cream, replacing my BB cream.  Well, I really stopped using BB cream months ago since it somehow makes my skin oily.  And besides, I already have separate moisturizers and sunblock ideal for my skin (you may refer to my blog about the products I use, here).  I chose The Face Shop's CC cream from other CC creams in the market as it is cheaper.  Although its price difference from Etude's CC cream is not that huge.

The Face Shop Color Color Cream has a unique opening.  Well, that's comparing to other creams, not necessarily the CC cream.  You need to lightly press down the sides of the jar as this will enable the liquid to pour out in the middle.  Hard pressing will instantly release more liquid.  The liquid is whitish in color but it sometimes have traces of natural or beige color. 

Upon first application of CC cream, my face seems to be all white because of its color.  But I read that it will gradually blend to your skin color, thus the name Color Control Cream.  Instantly, my face seems flawless, although it does not provide coverage on my pimple marks.  It just makes my pores look smaller.  The flawless look lasted the whole day, during office hours, based from my experience.  What's best, I didn't get any breakout after application.

I read that CC cream can be used as a base before applying make up.  Some even use CC cream first then BB cream then their usual make up like powder or foundation.  As for me, after CC cream, I just add cream blush and lipstick.  Sometimes I apply face powder too just to set the blush.

Overall, I like The Face Shop Color Control Cream.  If you're on a budget and would like to try CC cream, then you may want to try this.    

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Products for Oily Skin

Having an oily skin could be a struggle.  You should watch out every products you put on your face, from facial wash, moisturizer and even up to make up.  Oily face can attribute to having acne breakouts which are common problems to most women.  Me, I have acne prone skin.  In my previous blog, I have enumerated some tips to have a pimple free skin.  This time, I will recommend products that will somehow help keep pimples at bay through minimize the oiliness of your face.  Of course there are a lot of factors affecting acne but having an oily (and unclean) skin initiates the appearance of it.  Through the years (and even until now), I still couldn't completely eliminate the appearance of acne on my face.  But gradually, I have discovered effective products for oily skin which somehow makes my skin behave and pimple free.  Read the products for oily skin I have used below which I personally use and find them effective in being oily free throughout the day.

Cetaphil Oily Skin Cleanser

When I first consulted a dermatologist, she recommends Cetaphil Oily Skin Cleanser as part of my regimen in cleaning my face.  I was happy to use this eversince.  The consistency is very light, almost like water yet a small amount can already thoroughly cleanse your face.  It's not bubbly or foamy so it comes in its purest form.  What's best, it does not dry your skin after every use.  Through months of use, I can say that this is really effective in minimizing oiliness of the face all throughout the day.  I have tried using this in combination with an acne toner and oil controlling toner which may also help in keeping my face shine free.  I use this twice daily.

Cetaphil Derma Control Oil Control Foam Wash

It seems that wherever I go, I no longer see Cetaphil Oily Skin Cleanser in the market.  Even in the USA and in Cetaphil's website, there's no longer oily skin cleanser but they have replaced it with Cetaphil Derma Control Oil Control Foam Wash.  So when I asked my relatives to buy Cetaphil moisturizer (to be discussed later) for me abroad, it comes with free Cetaphil Derma Control Oil Control Foam Wash which is very timely as my oily skin cleanser is already about to be empty.  This cleanser is different from the oily skin cleanser in terms of consistency.  As what the name implies, it is more foamy yet still light.  The foam is not like the foam you get from facial wash or soaps.  It is still like watery foam.  When applied to skin, you wouldn't see the foamy effect.  Again, I use this in combination with other products for oily skin which makes it more effective.  This product was also labeled to be specifically formulated for acne prone skin.  But for me, it does not seem to be effective in eliminating acne but it sure does help minimize oiliness on the face.

Human Heart Nature Balancing Face Toner

It is a struggle for me to find a toner that is not drying yet effective in minimizing oiliness on my face.  My derma initially prescribed an acne toner from them.  Though it does help in minimizing oiliness and appearance of acne on my face, it eventually seems drying.  Maybe the Tretinoin cream I use somehow affects the dryness of my face.  And so, my derma replaced it with a clarifying toner.  I find this just a cleanser, not really helping in keeping me shine free and pimple free.  So I tried Human Heart Nature Balancing Face Toner.  I have tried it before but I really didn't use it that long.  But now, after weeks of using it, I can see that my oiliness lessen.  I now seldom use my oil control sheet in keeping the shine away from my face.

Cetaphil Derma Control Oil Control Moisturizer

It is also a struggle for me to find the perfect moisturizer for acne and oily skin.  Before, I tried not to use a moisturizer as I don't want to make my face look shiny.  But then again, I know that moisturizer is essential in keeping my skin healthy.  Besides, I read that having a dry skin will just make your skin produce more oils to moisturize it.  I tried using water-based moisturizer such as Celeteque Dermo Science Facial Moisturizer.  It was ok but since I also experience drying out in some parts of my skin due to the Tretinoin cream I use, this moisturizer is not enough to give "moisture" on those dry areas.  My derma already prescribed me to use Cetaphil moisturizer but it was too expensive that's why I resorted to Celeteque as an alternative.  Because I wasn't too happy with Celeteque, I tried to use Cetaphil moisturizer.  From their website, they offer a lot of moisturizer but I chose the Cetaphil Derma Control Oil Control Moisturizer which is also formulated to be specifically for acne prone skin.  Since I still use Tretinoin cream at night from time to time, I needed a moisturizer that also serves as a sunblock or with SPF content.  This product is just perfect for it.  Initially, I thought this moisturizer is heavy due to its consistency similar to sunblock lotions.  But I was surprised that it was light and absorbs quickly by the skin.  I love how it does not make my face look oily or look liked I really applied a moisturizer immediately after using it.  Similar to the foam wash, I still can't seem to see its effect in minimizing or eliminating acne but it sure does help keep my face shine free.

Human Heart Nature Mineral Powder

I seldom apply make up.  I just put powder and lipstick then I'm good to go.  I find Human Heart Nature Mineral Powder helpful in keeping me shine free all day.  I already mentioned this in my previous blog.  And since I have acne prone skin, this powder does not give me breakouts even if I wasn't able to wash it off at night.  I've been a user of this products for almost 2 years already although I don't consistently use this but I always go back to this product.  And because of the different products I use to combat oiliness on my face, I need not to reapply Human Heart Nature Mineral Powder throughout the day.

So there, from cleanser to make up, I suggested these products for you to try if you have oily skin.  I'm just not sure if all of these products are available here in the Philippines especially those Cetaphil ones.  But if your budget permits, I highly recommend these products.  I don't have perfect skin now as pimples still appears on my face from time to time and I still have pimple marks but using these products have somehow keep my pimples at bay and lessen oiliness on my face.  Let me know if these are effective to you or maybe you can also share the products you use to help minimize oiliness of your face.


Monday, October 14, 2013

Viber, Line, WeChat, Kakao Talk

Admit it. I'm sure you have at least one of these instant messaging or chat applications on your smartphone.  Me, I have at least 3 but I frequently use only 1.

Before, text messaging was your only way to reach your loved ones in the cheapest way using your mobile phone.  But because of technological advancement, there are now so many ways to reach them, not just by texting but through sending instant messages.  No, not through email nor through online chat such as Yahoo Messanger and Skype.  And no, you don't even need to be connected to the internet.  Instant messaging applications (or a.k.a Chat applications) such as Viber, Line, WeChat, Kakao Tallk are available in application stores on your smartphones which you can download for free.  Once you have these applications, you can use them also for free!  Well not really, you still need to have either WiFi connection, Unli Data or Unli Chat service offered by your service provider.

All of these instant messaging applications offers free calls and text messaging.  So what's the difference between Viber, Line, WeChat, Kakao Talk and other instant messaging applications available for smartphone?  Well, I'm really not sure.  But I think they only differ to add-on features it offers.

I first learned about Viber and I knew it offers free calls worldwide as long as you have WiFi.  My siblings encourages each one of us to have Viber because some of them are working abroad.  Aside from Skype to help us connect to each other, we also had Viber which allows us to be connected instantly.  This has become very useful for us, most especially our homes have wireless connections and our mobile phones are capable of using Viber.  The free call offered by Viber was the most useful feature I love from Viber.  And now, the group chat feature is the secondary feature my siblings and I
enjoy.  Its like our billboard where we can post anything in case we're offline.  And when we're online, we can easily converse to each other, anywhere in the world!
Viber logo

I knew about Line when I downloaded Line Camera.  I enjoyed the features of Line Camera as it adds beauty to your pictures with its various effects, stamps/stickers and text features.  The stickers available in the camera are also in the instant messaging.  I've been reading in some fashion bloggers about Line chat and they find the stickers adorable as it can be added to your message.  Some of its stickers are also "moving" which can also express what you're feeling.  Although I have recently downloaded Line chat, I still don't use them as I don't have friends who uses the same app.   

Line logo

WeChat has became famous because of its advertisement on TV.  One of its famous feature is the voice chat wherein instead of sending text message, you can just send a voice message instantly.  This feature differentiates this app from other instant messaging app which got me interested.  So I let my boyfriend download this app so we can "talk" endlessly and for free.  WeChat also features voice group chat.  I haven't tried that though.  They also have cute stickers that is "moving".  So just like Line, aside from your message, you can just send stickers as an addition to what you wanted to say.

WeChat logo

Kakao Talk was the most recent instant messaging app available in the market.  Just like WeChat, this become famous because of its advertisement on TV.  The most advertised feature of Kakao Talk was their "moving" sticker.  With just exchanging stickers, you can already relay your message or your feelings to your friends clearly.  I'm not so familiar with Kakao Talk since I no longer downloaded this.  I feel I have enough instant messaging app on my smartphone.

Kakao Talk logo
There are other apps available for chat such as FB instant messaging, Yahoo Messenger, Skype and many others which I may not be familiar of.  Whatever applications you are using, the most important is that you can now connect to anyone at an instant.  I wonder what will be the next innovation available to your smartphone?  

Monday, September 30, 2013

Sky Fun Amusement Park at Sky Ranch in Tagaytay

During our impromptu trip in Tagaytay last May, we got the chance to visit Tagaytay's newest tourist attraction, the Sky Fun Amusement Park at Sky Ranch.  It has become the talk of the town because of the Sky Eye, the country's tallest and biggest ferris wheel.

The Sky Eye, Super Viking, and Gazebo in the background

When we got there, certain portions of the park were still under construction.  I read that they will also construct a Science Discovery Museum.  The entrance at that time was only Php 50.  I read before that the Php 50 entrance fee was only valid until May 31.  But upon checking Sky Ranch's Facebook page, current entrance is still at Php 50.

Still under construction

We were 4 adults and 1 kid when we visited Sky Fun Amusement Park.  Most of the rides were applicable for the kids.  I think the only attractions that adults can enjoy are the Sky Eye, Super Viking and Horseback Riding.

Below are some pictures of the rides (apologies as I did not intend to really take a picture of each rides thus it wasn't really appealing in my pictures) and its corresponding fee.

Sky Eye (Php 150)

Super Viking (Php 100)

Express Train (Php 50) and Wonder Flight (Php 50)
Nessi Coaster (Php 50) and Mini Viking (Php 50)

Zorb ball (Php 50)

Carousel (Php 50)
There are also food kiosk and gazebos in the area.  The Taal Volcano can also be viewed here.  Function rooms are also provided for big events.  As of this writing, I am just not sure if more rides were added and if the construction side were done.  For me, children will be the one to enjoy most of this Sky Fun Amusement Park.  For adults, well speaking for myself, it is a nice experience riding the tallest and biggest ferris wheel in the country. 

Sky Fun Amusement Park at Sky Ranch Tagaytay is located along Aguinaldo Highway, just beside the Taal Vista Hotel.  If you're coming from Rotonda (Olivarez), turn right and straight ahead.  It will be on your left side, just before reaching Taal Vista Hotel.

For more details on how to go to Tagaytay, you may read my previous post about it here and here.