These past 2 years have probably been our happiest, and wildest! \m/ So many good things have come to our family and getting to travel again across the globe has been one of our best & most appreciated gifts. Praise God from Whom all blessings flow. <3
Ang buhay nga naman talaga, parang gulong. Minsan nasa itaas ka, minsan nasa ilalim. The most important thing is to hang on & never lose hope. Pasasaan ba’t iikot din ang buhay, so always stay hopeful, and most importantly humble, because you never know what life will dish out.
(Btw, sharing with you our Korea itinerary below, lovingly studied & compiled by Ate, enjoy! <3 )
I really don’t mind budget travel & sobrang pagod so much if it means we can go on fun-packed adventures with the fam. It’s time away from home, yun bang walang ibang tao at kayo-kayo lang talaga ang magtititigan, that builds a strong bond. You get to know one other on a deeper level, even after you thought you already knew each other well. Basta, iba talaga. :)
The last time we travelled internationally was to China in 2009, Singapore in 2010 then HK/Macau 2011. 2011 was the last, taghirap muna pagkatapos, lol. It’s no joke funding a trip with FIVE members in a family ha, kahit na tipid na tipid pa yan. And there was always something more important that needed to be paid off & prioritized like school, insurance, tax, surprise bills, daily expenses, monthly obligations. Travel was a luxury that had to wait.
Before that, when the kids were much younger & we didn’t have to follow a strict calendar school year, we were able to go to Canada & several cities across the US. I remember clearly Ate was just 7, the two kids were 4 & 2 respectively. She was already such a good Ate then, helping us with everything, especially caring for her siblings & pushing them in their twin stroller while Daddy & I wheeled the heavy maletas.
Then other pressing matters had to be prioritized. Home, business, school, miscellaneous expenses. Life in general. Which is why now that we are able to spoil the kids a little, we do so. Kasi hindi rin naman biro ang pinagdaanan namin. There were some major belt-tightening seasons along the way and they have been such good & understanding kids, never insisting or demanding things they knew were beyond our reach. Kaya naman now that we are able to, we spoil them a little as a reward for their good hearts. <3
I’m just so happy that we got back on track and can now travel again. I hope that we can do this at least yearly. It doesn’t have to be far or super exotic. Somewhere we haven’t been to lang sana so it’s also a learning experience. On my bucket list for the next 10-15 years while Kap & I can still travel & enjoy life are Australia, UAE, a repeat of Canada, Africa & other parts of Asia we haven’t visited. Will pray for God’s faithfulness & continuous provisions to make this dream a reality. <3
Our target this coming Christmas vacation December/January is Osaka, Japan. Then 2018 God willing, across the US again (and hopefully Mexico na din) for Kap’s 50th birthday & our silver wedding anniversary. <3 Huwag na huwag lang aatakihin si Kap ng kunatitis! ;))
Anyway, about Tax Refunds:
If you’re shopping in Korea (which I’m 100% SURE you will), make sure you tell the staff of your status as a visitor to the country so you can get a rebate. It is necessary that you bring your passport with you at all times.
Foreign visitors to Korea have the option of either applying for a sales tax (VAT) refund at the airport prior to departure or not paying the tax when making their purchase (immediate tax refund) in a tax free store.
In Korea, sales taxes are included in the purchase price of each product – VAT/sales tax (10%) and special taxes on high-priced goods such as jewellery, etc. Before paying, ask for a tax refund. The store will either not charge you the sales tax or will give you a tax refund receipt (and maybe an envelope) along with the regular receipt. Hold on to both receipts and fill in the information required on each of the refund receipts (full name, passport number, nationality and address) and sign at the bottom.
Shoppers eligible for Tax Free Shopping
- If you have a permanent residence outside South Korea.
- If you are a foreign visitor to South Korea who stays for no longer than 6 months.
- If you are a South Korean national living oversees for more than 2 years, who is visiting South Korea for no longer than 3 months.
You are not eligible for Tax refund in South Korea, if:
- If you receive a salary from a company located in South Korea.
- If you are a member of cabin crew or flight crew of the aircraft who works at Korea Flight Company.
- If you are a South Korean diplomat, who works in South Korea or overseas.
- If you are a foreign diplomat, who works in South Korea.
Standard rate: 10%
Minimum purchase amount
Thank you my dearest readers for joining us in our GO-reanovela, and of course..
Thank you God for this wonderful opportunity, and for your traveling mercies.
And thank you Fam for making my life so full. A million lifetimes & I would choose the same Kap, the same Ate, Babyson & Lovey over & over & over again. You guys complete me. I love you! And I thank God for you! :-*