If you’re born with a wanderlust, chances are you’d be dreaming about having a job that would allow you to travel all the time. Flight attendant, pilot, and seafarer are just some of these job options. JM De Guzman was one of the lucky ones who was able to make it happen. A former seafarer, JM is now a blogger and most of the time he travels with his wife and kid. He blogs about their travel adventures in his blog, Man of Wanders. Get to know about JM as we put him the spotlight in this Travel Bug feature.
Tell us some things about you
I am an Entertainment Specialist from the majestic country of the Philippines. I used to be a Seafarer in an International Cruise Line and spent 1/3 or almost 10 years of my life on-board and traveled around the globe for free. I left the High seas on 2015 and settled on my motherland for good. However, I still travel overseas often for work and pleasure. This time, I want to a tourist in my own country and discover the surreal beauty of all the 81 provinces of the Philippines. I want do most of my adventures through road trips and share my wonderful experiences through writing.
When did your passion for traveling begin?
I started traveling when I commenced to work overseas on 2005. My first official job after completing a degree brought me out of the country and showed me the rest of the world.
How do you prepare for a trip?
When I travel out of town or overseas for leisure, I do a lot of research about the place, city and country that I am going to visit. I read various blog posts and always look for the ‘best things to do’ or ‘top things to do’ in that specific place.
What are your travel must-haves?
My mobile phones, chargers, power banks, and an adapter. I document my experiences through my mobile phone so I cannot travel without it. I usually have 2 or 3 phones with me to capture photos and instantly connect to social media.
How do you balance work with your passion for traveling?
I work and travel at the same time for many occasions. Isn’t it great? I am working in a travel industry company so balancing my work and travels has never been an issue before.
What is your non-negotiable term when traveling?
Comfortable hotel. I’d rather spend more to have the convenience and experience a great relaxation.
What are your greatest considerations when traveling with family?
Since I always travel with my wife and child recently, safety and convenience are on top of my considerations when going out with them. I always ask myself these questions before confirming a trip; Is this place and its surrounding safe for my family?, Are we going to have difficulties going around in this place?, Are there any nearby malls, restaurants, hospitals and recreation centers from our hotel?. These are some of the concerns that I always consider before getting away.
So far, which destination is your favorite and why?
In the Philippines, my favorite destination is Palawan because of its natural beauty, stunning beaches and I find it really a very safe place. Overseas, Bali is on top of my list. It has a little bit of everything. Pristine beaches, amazing adventures, affordable shopping, lively nightlife, exotic food, cheap accommodations even in luxurious hotels and many more.
What is your take about the traveler versus tourist issue?
From my point of view, being a traveler who dares to explore everything, anywhere and know everyone is great if you are a solo traveler, with your partner and circle of friends. But if you are with your family, being a tourist is perfect. You need to be in your comfort zone and ensure that your family is always at the safe side.
When you go to a place, what is the first thing that you look for?
Restaurant. I need to gain weight when traveling. That is the real essence of having a holiday.
Where do you plan to go next?
Seoul, South Korea. Probably few months after my wife delivers our second baby.
What is your dream destination?
Iceland. I wanna see its surreal waterfalls, ice caves, hot springs, glacier, geyser and volcanoes.
Tell us some things about your blog
Most of my posts are about my travel escapades abroad while still working as a seafarer and also my latest travel experiences in the Philippines after being deprived of time to explore my own motherland for almost 10 years.
Any useful travel tips you wish to impart to our readers?
Always read and research about your destinations. It is important to know the reviews, stories and recommendations from other people to be prepared with whatever this place might show and throw to you. Spontaneous and unplanned travels work sometimes but planned getaways usually give better experience.
Join JM in his travel adventures on his blog, Man of Wanders.