Multi-city destinations on a budget

You already know that there will be four long weekends this year in the Philippines. If you’re still undecided on where you want to spend these long weekends, then this post might give you an idea on where to go. 🙂

I’m a huge fan of multi-city destinations. When I fly out of Manila, I find it more satisfying to visit as many cities as possible. I’ve done Manila > Hong Kong > Macau > Manila, Manila > Kota Kinabalu > Kuala Lumpur > Singapore > Manila, and Manila > Siem Reap > Phnom Penh > Ho Chi Minh > Manila. A great backpacking experience!

I completed Manila > Kota Kinabalu > Kuala Lumpur > Singapore in 7 days.

I completed the Manila > Kota Kinabalu > Kuala Lumpur > Singapore route in seven days. Whew!

Personally, if I am already planning to travel abroad, why not make the most out of it? If you can endure more than 4 days of vacation, and your vacation leaves can afford that, then by all means, do this! Generally speaking, these options are cheaper instead of booking round trip flights from Manila to each city. Also, every time you get out of NAIA, you will be charged with the dreaded travel tax and terminal fee taking 2,170 pesos away from your pocket money.

However, these options will entail additional yet minimal cost due to web admin/convenience fee because you will need to book each leg i.e. book Manila > Hong Kong then separately book Macau > Manila. This will also mean that your return trip to Manila will be charged against a foreign currency, and sometimes, airlines issue different rates especially for promo fares i.e. Manila > Singapore may cost Php 1 during Cebu Pacific’s piso fare but Singapore > Manila may cost SGD 1 which is actually around Php 33. You will also be subject to fluctuation of currency conversion rate because you may need to pay using the foreign currency. At the end of the day, I still think that the Pros outweigh the Cons!

In the next few posts, I’ll share my Top 10 recommended multi-city destinations on a budget that you should be able to complete in 7 days or less. My recommendations are based on three main factors which I’ll call, 3 C’s: Cost, Comfort and Control.

  • Cost tackles the damage done to your savings account when you connect to each city.
  • Comfort rates you over-all easiness and the bearable length of transfer from one city to another.
  • Lastly, Control is influenced by the flexibility of the connection schedule, availability of connections and the dependency with a lot of external factors you can’t manage.

*drumroll please*

  1. Manila/Clark/Cebu/Iloilo > Hong Kong > Macau > Manila/Clark
  2. Manila/Clark/Cebu/Davao/Iloilo > Singapore > (Malacca) > Kuala Lumpur > Manila/Cebu/Clark
  3. Manila/Cebu -> Seoul/Incheon > (Jeju Island) > Busan > Manila/Cebu
  4. Manila/Clark/Cebu > Bangkok > Siem Reap > Manila
  5. Manila > Beijing > Shanghai > Manila
  6. Manila > Jakarta > (Yogyakarta) > Bali > Manila
  7. Manila/Clark > Kota Kinabalu > Bandar Seri Begawan > Manila
  8. Manila/Clark/Cebu > Kuala Lumpur > Phuket > Bangkok > Manila/Clark/Cebu
  9. Manila > Ho Chi Minh > Hanoi > Manila
  10. Manila/Clark/Cebu > Bangkok > Siem Reap > Phnom Penh > Ho Chi Minh > Manila

Do you have any multiple ASEAN city destinations originating and ending in the Philippines that didn’t make the list? Hit the Comment section and share your travel insights!



  1. Pingback: Multi-city Route #1: Hong Kong > Macau « Departure Card

  2. Pingback: Multi-city Route #2: Singapore > Malacca > Kuala Lumpur « Departure Card

  3. Pingback: Multi-city Route #3: Seoul > Jeju Island > Busan « Departure Card

  4. iceconyelo

    I’ve done Manila > HK > Macau > Shenzhen > HK > Manila and Manila > KL > Bali > KL > Manila. Kapagod!

  5. Grace

    MNL – KL – SG – KL – Cambodia – BKK – MNL last year. Fun! Sleeper train FTW!

  6. Pingback: Winter clothes dilemma « Departure Card

  7. Pingback: Multi-city Route #4: Bangkok > Siem Reap « Departure Card

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