MANDALUYONG – THE SUN-KISSED SHORES of the Philippines have long lured travelers with their powdery sands and turquoise waters. But in 2024, the archipelago has the opportunity to write a new chapter in its tourism story, one that goes beyond beach bliss and delves into the vibrant tapestry of landscapes, cultures, and experiences waiting to be discovered.

To captivate curious travelers and climb the ladder of global tourism popularity, the Philippines needs to shift its focus. While paradise beaches will forever be a draw, they must be complemented by diversifying tourism offerings, prioritizing sustainability, and crafting deeper connections with visitors.

The Call of Adventure Beyond the Shore:

Imagine trekking through emerald rice terraces in Banaue, their delicate steps a testament to generations of farmers. Picture yourself scaling the majestic peaks of Batanes, the wind whispering tales of ancient Ifugao spirits. Or feel the exhilaration of diving into the kaleidoscopic reefs of Palawan, home to vibrant coral gardens and playful marine life.

A new dawn in Philippine tourism: More than just beaches

The Philippines boasts a landscape far richer than just beaches. Lush rainforests, rugged mountains, and serene rice paddies beckon hikers, bikers, and nature enthusiasts. Hidden waterfalls tumble through verdant jungles, promising tranquility and adventure in equal measure. This diversity, if effectively promoted, can attract a new generation of travelers seeking unique experiences beyond the sun lounger.

Sustainable Steps for a Brighter Future:

Tourism, a double-edged sword, can both enrich and exploit. The Philippines must prioritize sustainable practices to ensure its natural wonders and cultural treasures remain pristine for generations to come. Responsible tourism initiatives like eco-friendly transportation, community-based projects, and conservation programs are not just environmental necessities, but also magnets for environmentally conscious travelers.

Imagine staying in an eco-lodge nestled in the Taal Volcano highlands, built with locally sourced materials and employing sustainable energy practices. Picture yourself learning weaving techniques from women in Ifugao villages, contributing directly to their livelihoods while preserving their traditional crafts. These immersive experiences, rooted in sustainability and community engagement, resonate with conscious travelers seeking responsible adventures.

The Tourism Department could partner with the Department of Trade and Industry and immerse visitors with the wonder of local craftsmanship from basket-weaving to wine-making. (photo not Crossroads Hostels)

From Visas to Vr: Enhancing Accessibility and Engagement:

Navigating travel logistics can be a frustrating hurdle. Streamlining visa applications, implementing online visa options, and improving airport infrastructure can ensure smoother travel experiences for visitors. Digital advancements also offer exciting possibilities. Augmented reality tours can bring historical sites to life, while virtual reality experiences can showcase hidden wonders to travelers before they even book their flights.

But true engagement goes beyond technology. It’s about sharing stories, traditions, and the warmth of Filipino hospitality. Offering cooking classes where visitors learn to whip up a steaming adobo, or organizing homestays in rural villages where tourists can truly immerse themselves in local life – these are the experiences that create lasting memories and foster genuine connections.

The government did a lot of good. It’s now more important to develope that and tap more stakeholders. (photo by

Building a Brighter Tourism Future:

The Philippines’ tourism journey demands collaboration. Working with local communities, private stakeholders, and government agencies is key to ensure a holistic and sustainable approach. By showcasing the country’s diverse landscapes, promoting responsible practices, and fostering meaningful connections with visitors, the Philippines can unlock its full tourism potential in 2024 and beyond.

This is not just about attracting more tourists; it’s about creating a tourism industry that benefits everyone – from local communities to the environment, and of course, the curious travelers seeking an unforgettable adventure. So, let’s venture beyond the beaches, embrace sustainable practices, and forge deeper connections. In 2024, the Philippines can rewrite its tourism story, inviting the world to discover a destination as diverse, vibrant, and unforgettable as its people.


A GROWING SENTIMENT to place Mega Manila (Metro Manila + outlying provinces such as Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Romblon, and Quezon provinces (CALABARZON) under Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) is snowballing. The sentiment was brought out by tired, fatigued health care workers whose stress and pressures in caring for more COVID-19 victims in official and makeshift medical facilities are reaching a condition where their health and physical condition may breakdown. Doctors, nurses, medical technicians are front-liners caring for the people’s health and in turn, it affects the country’s economy. 

Officers and Members of the Philippine College of Physicians (PCP) calls on the national government to act decisively and immediately to help all medical professionals

If and when the government decides to put us back to ECQ, CROSSROADS HOSTEL MANILA WILL CONTINUE TO OPEN and be of service to other front-liners in the country such as businesses that should still continue to serve and open.

To help all our potential guests, the following protocols will be applied as provided by the Tourism Department (DOT) thru the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF).

Guests we can accommodate:

  1. Transiting foreign guests;
  2. Distressed OFWs;
  3. Quarantine-bound Repatriated OFWs;
  4. Quarantine-bound Non-OFWs;
  5. All-types of Government workers;
  6. Health care workers and ECQ-allowed types of workers in ECQ zones 

Under ECQ and when checked-in in the hostel, remember that we’re not allowed to do the following for guests:

  1. Provide daily housekeeping. Cleaning and sanitation of rooms shall be conducted only as may be necessary;
  2. Open ancillary establishments such as restaurants and cafés but can prepare
    1. (i) packed meals for distribution to guests who opt for the same; and
    2. (ii) food orders for take-out and deliveries only.

Additionally, under ECQ (under Section 12 of the same DOT order), shared-room preferences will not be given to Health care professionals and Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs). They have to pay for one room, which is still more affordable than other accommodations by 30%.

We hope this article helps re-condition the minds of our would-be guests. It’s not as different as GCQ but under ECQ, only few businesses will open. Do you have any questions? Let us help you. Click the link and ask us with the help of the Facebook button found here in this article. #hostelshelp

/Photos by GMA News (main photo), John Louie Netro (artwork), PCP (artwork), JV Ejercity (tired med professionals photo)

An independent artist, John Louie Netro, made this work to dramatize the plight of our medical workers in Mega Manila. CNN Philippines featured this artwork in their Facebook post.

To our guests’ benefit, we’re publishing the text of the Administrative Order 2020-002-A send to us by the DOT issued June 9th, 2020.


Section 8. Permitted guests under ECQ. – Accommodation Establishments in areas declared to be under ECQ are allowed to accommodate only the following: (a) Guests who had existing bookings or reservations under any Accommodation Establishment within Luzon as of 17 March 2020, and outside Luzon as of 01 May 2020; (b) Foreign Guests who are transiting through, or are otherwise temporarily staying in the Philippines for a short period and will leave the country; (c) Long Staying Guests; (d) Distressed OFWs; (e) Repatriated OFWs in compliance with approved quarantine protocols; (f) Non-OFWs who may be required to undergo mandatory facility-based quarantine; (g) Stranded Passengers; (h) Employees of agencies and instrumentalities of the Government, including Government-Owned and –Controlled Corporations (GOCCs) and Local Government Units (LGUs), especially health and emergency frontline, border control, and other critical services workers; and (i) Health care workers and other employees from establishments that are allowed to operate during the ECQ pursuant to the IATF Omnibus Guidelines; provided, that their place of work is located within the same ECQ zone.

Section 9. New Bookings under ECQ. – Except for Long Staying Guests, new bookings of guests falling under Section 8 shall be allowed.

Section 10. Prohibited Bookings under ECQ. – No Accommodation Establishment in an ECQ zone shall provide accommodation for persons undertaking leisure travel.

Section 11. Limited Operations under ECQ. –Accommodation Establishments in ECQ zones shall operate only to provide basic accommodation services to guests and food preparation services for take-out and delivery to the public. For this purpose: (a) Room service shall not be allowed; (b) Daily housekeeping shall not be implemented. Cleaning and sanitation of rooms shall be conducted only as may be necessary; (c) Only a Skeleton Workforce which shall be composed of In House Staff shall be retained; and (d) Ancillary establishments within the premises, such as restaurants, cafés, bars, gyms, spas, and the like, shall not be allowed to operate or to provide room service; provided, that Accommodation Establishments may prepare (i) packed meals for distribution to guests who opt for the same; and (ii) food orders for take-out and delivery only.

Section12. Conditions for Room Occupancy under ECQ. – Accommodation Establishments in ECQ zones shall ensure that the following conditions for room occupancy, as required by the DOH, are met: (a) OFWs and Health Workers shall be accommodated in single occupancy rooms. For avoidance of doubt, single occupancy shall mean only one person shall be accommodated in each room. (b) Other guests may be accommodated in double occupancy rooms, provided the following are observed: 1. Distance between the beds should be at least two (2) meters; 2. A divider should be placed between the beds; 3. A bathroom schedule must be observed. Only one person shall be permitted to use the bathroom at any given time; 4. Guests shall disinfect the bathroom after every use using the provided sanitation kit; 5. There shall be no sharing of food or any personal or non-personal belongings; 6. All trash, food and non-food, shall be separated. (c) Each room shall be provided with a sanitation kit which guests shall use to regularly disinfect commonly accessed surfaces and items such as door knobs, light switches, the bathroom sink, etc. (d) When in the Accommodation Establishment, guests shall be confined to their rooms. Mingling with occupants of other rooms shall not be allowed. (e) Guests shall use the same bed and the same room they are billeted in throughout the entire period of their stay.

Accommodation Establishments shall likewise comply with other issuances and guidelines on Minimum Public Health Standards.

WE’RE RECALLING WHAT WE DID in preparation for the lockdown. We call it the seven unusual steps because, for us, it’s not normal for a small business to take this route and try to predict the ravaging effects of such a disease and create solutions out of it. At least in our local context. This post is more for our purpose and nothing more. It is to prepare for the next ‘one’ in the hopes of helping other businesses learn from our experience. There’s a bonus tip that one should look out for in case you’re going to follow our ‘trail’. So without much further ado, the steps we took are:

NOT THE NEWS YOU WANT but it’s what we had to prepare for: Feb 7, 2020 news of CNN Philippines which reads, ‘PHILIPPINES REPORTS THIRD CONFIRMED CASE OF NOVEL CORONAVIRUS’
  1. We listened to the news, studied the problem – Ever since the news broke out in Week 1 of January 2020 in the Philippines, we intently followed the progress of the virus’ spread: We followed what it is, how it’s spread, where is it now, how dangerous it is.
    Called then NCoV-19 (Novel Coronavirus of 2019), China was grappling on how to contain the spread of the disease. It hasn’t acted decisively and for good reason: It doesn’t know what it is up against. So we followed the story and picked good websites, extracted helpful information that can help protect employees, then guests, then the business. During that time, the only clue much of the world knows was that it causes flu-like symptoms and it’s fatal if not treated fast.
  2. We took the pragmatic approach – We took into consideration realistic angles of how fast the virus spreads, how it is spread, and what initial actions to take to repel the effects towards guests, towards employees, and towards the business as a whole. This is different than just creating conjectures that may just create scenarios that place fear in us rather than preparing for practical action where minimal funds were set aside to start investing in protective masks, goggles, and alcohol to repulse the contagion. Timing is key and hedging ourselves for the worse is better than not preparing at all.
  3. We ‘Seized the day’ – After careful studying the news trickling in, how the disease is to spread, and how this will all play out, we know it will affect the hostel business either slowly or decisively. So while praying for the best to come, we also pushed further with plans as news spews with fear and confusion as it spirals almost out of control through social media and cable televisions. We started drawing up plans, created signs, oriented staff members, and even talked to guests on how they can protect themselves essentially shoring up to keep the hostel’s reputation even going unreservedly shunning guests from specific countries where the virus may have come from or have been. Checked-in guests have to be protected.
  4. We acted to protect guests – Guests’ confidence and security are paramount and there are two types of guests: local ones and foreigners. To both types, we have to prepare ‘exit strategies’ so each one can feel the hospitality and service we stand for. We readied vehicles to guarantee that guests are herded to the airports on the eve (and on the day) of the lockdown. We researched and readied information on how to help guests especially getting their embassy numbers and information where to drop off local guests in case public transportations are halted. The public fear is palpable and so filtering information is important so that important ones are handed and can be made useful for confused guests.
    As soon as we have information, we give it to our guests, and guests are also assisted with flight, airport, and shuttle information and leave the hostel the moment is needed so foreign guests can continue with their journey home or to their next destination.
  5. Moved to protect hostel employees – Employees are as golden as the owners are in crisis moments like this. Your staff provide the extra hands, feet, and mind you need to execute plans you’ve drawn up. Every personnel was given daily briefings, re-orienting their approach to work, and understand the dangers of how this virus spreads. They were given pointers and tips before they engage guests to protect them from the ‘unseen enemy’ because every employee matters.
  6. Executed our plans – Plan execution is prime. No success is ever achieved when no action is taken. Our objective was to protect our guests and nothing at this point can go wrong. Signs are up, posted in strategic places, employees are oriented so they can become your enforcer of new health policies, current guests are briefed so they won’t feel much anxiety of the unknown, future guests were emailed about the cancellation and their refunds, protective gears were bought are ready and distributed to each staff, and spray bottles of disinfectant sprays are posted in every room and corner of the hostel that gives guests more protection from the virus. We made sure that all those who booked their stay in Crossroads Hostel Manila are protected first – business, comes second.
  7. We evaluated and adjusted our actions – More news about the virus came and went. We re-iterated our plans. Our coordination now includes the national tourism department and we evaluated our plans, compared it with mandated ones, and adjusted what we know to make sure it stays current. For example, we bought white vinegar and Pinesol thinking it can kill the virus but later on found out that Lysol sprays, alcohol, soaps, and bleaches are the only ones that can kill the virus. In the absence of Lysol and alcohol, we used dish-washing liquid and water as an alternative spray to protect ourselves from this airborne disease.
  8. BONUS! We got accredited. I didn’t know then but now I do. Accreditation is very important. We applied for the tourism board’s accreditation to give Crossroads Hostel a leg to stand on. While we get raving reviews year in and year out from guests, the accreditation given by the said government department proved positive in times like this. As soon as the government locked down the region, the tourism department provided us the ‘shield’ to keep our business open and accommodate workers from different places and backgrounds. This paved the way for us to get business right away from a Business Processing Outsource company just a kilometer from us.

The Tourism Department was commendable for being proactive that by the fourth day after the lockdown was announced by the national government, they already have orders to provide accommodation to front line staff and health workers. The hostel’s occupancy was reduced to 50%, however, this was corrected by our hostel and is now running at 2 persons (maximum) per room no matter how big space the room provided as long as the occupants are not of the same family.
We purchased foot bath for guests’ footwear so it can be disinfected, we bought UV lamps to decontaminate rooms, we bought more alcohol and disinfectants, we made more signboards for new guests to follow and we implemented updated protocols for all staff to follow.

So far, we’re doing good. With such policies, we were able to attract a local Business Processing Outsource (BPO) company to trust us with their skeletal workforce. Through that, we were able to practice and refine our processes and now we’re accepting new guests through our own advertising and promotions.

As the country improves its pandemic status to General Community Quarantine or GCQ since Monday, 1st of June, we’re excited for the new prospects of providing the very best of our programs giving guests safer, cleaner, and more secure budget accommodation here in this hostel.

To simplify pricing and offer the same value-added service, Crossroads Hostel Manila will now offer our PhP699/night per guest on a daily basis. Security Deposit is not yet included in the rate and can be remitted upon checking in.
Only paid reservations will be honored as reserved and all other guests can do the same by paying promo rates using Online Travel Agencies such as Expedia,, and Traveloka.
The rate adjustment will help Crossroads Hostel Manila provide the same type of service and hospitality only we know how in this area — at least.
To make a reservations, we ask you to see us first using our Facebook Page and book thru our message box. We will reply and answer more of your questions as it comes.
We’re now launching the new pricing and will continue to honor paid up bookings prior to the launching of  this new policy.
If you want to talk to us, call us or SMS us at +63 (920) 959.5747.


Our lockers are big enough to store carry on luggage but please do not store food inside.

We want our guests to feel more safe. We want them to leave this place happy and more secure.
Please use our lockers. It’s free to use. There’s no rent to pay.
What to put inside?
Our lockers are located outside rooms and they’re sturdy and tough. You just need to buy yourself a padlock to use it.
Put your wallets, your gadgets, your laptops, some of your clothes, cash, jewelry, and other valuables you prize, however, please do not put liquid, food stuff, and other goods that ants would attack.
Trust but…
A poem: Friends inside this hostel you will meet but in all the travels you do, especially if you have limited resources, please keep a safer distance if you know what we mean.
Hostel Policy
Know that in a budget place like this, we are not insured to cover your lost items so know that you are sole responsible for the things you own and keep. Keep strangers as friends but keep those who come closer be on a watch list. Trust but never trust TOO MUCH.
While we want to raise concerns about safety and security, please do have fun but all we want to convey is to be responsible always. The journey of life is still long and more adventures wait for those who avoid being wrong.


Security Deposit is important when you check in to any hostels here in The Philippines.

No payment, we just hold the amount until you check out.
We hold them in trust so that there’s a minimal payment in our care in case guests break something while they are staying in the property.
We don’t consider it as a sale.
It’s just there for to guarantee that there’s a parity between the guest and the property to make sure the use of amenities are within order.
This guide will show the allowance each guest must prepare for Security Deposit when they check in:
Per Guest – PhP500 (roughly 8.50 Euros, 65 Yuan, US$10, 7.50 UK Pounds) *used to be PhP1,000
Individual guests
1 – 6 nights stay = PhP500/guest
7 – 12 nights stay = PhP1,000/guest
13 – 18 nights stay = PhP1,500/guest
19 nights or more = PhP2,000/guest
Group (four+)
1 – 6 nights stay = PhP2000/Group
7 – 18 nights stay = PhP5000/Group
19 nights or more = PhP8,000/Group
Guests are equally responsible to get back their security deposits but we would gladly deposit it to their bank accounts should in the midst of confusion, it wasn’t returned. We always work for the benefit of all our guests.
Policies may change without prior notice as blogs may be old but know we’ll be fair and equitable.
Should you have questions regarding this, call us at +63 937 378 0400.