Hostel Buddies Travel Diaries

After an eventful semester, summer vacation is finally here! Students usually do a range of activities during the three-month long break—ranging from summer internships to part-time jobs to travelling! Other than solo travelling or travelling with family, travelling with friends is also common among students. Let’s hear from three students who are embarking on exciting overseas trips with the friends they met through the various hostels in NUS! 


Alanis Joy Tay 

For Alanis (Year 1, Chemical Engineering), travelling overseas with friends is not a first! This summer break, she will be embarking on an 11-day buddy trip to Japan with her friend she met through Ridge View Residential College (RVRC). How exciting!  

As an orientation group formed in RVRC, Alanis was initially planning to go on a trip with her fellow groupmates. However, they could not reach a final decision on the country to visit together. The indecisiveness as a group ultimately ended up in no confirmation on the trip. Regardless, Alanis and her friend were certain since the start that they would like to travel somewhere together. 

While Japan is known to be a popular travel destination, Alanis and her friend had their own reasons for choosing the country as their destination. “I love going to Japan as I went there for my graduation trip after graduating from Ngee Ann Polytechnic last year. And since my friend has not gotten a chance to experience the cities of Japan, we both decided to go there together,” she shared. 

It will be Alanis and her friend’s first time travelling together, but she is confident that their friendship will still stand strong after the trip. She shared, “I’m quite sure that we will still be friends despite the minimal fights we might have throughout the trip, so I’m not worried at all. I’m also quite excited as we will both be doing things we have never done before!” Travelling together with friends is often said to make or break the friendship, but in Alanis’ case, their upcoming trip will most likely make their friendship even stronger than before! 


Alanis (left) at her friend’s performance at University Cultural Centre (UCC)


Joyce Fan  

For Joyce (Year 1, Sociology), her upcoming trip to Seoul, South Korea will be her first time travelling with a friend. They met through a common Sociology tutorial, and discovered on the bus that they both coincidentally reside in Prince George’s Park (PGP), with Joyce residing in Helix House and her friend in Pioneer House. Ever since then, the pair have become close friends who study and visit cafés together.  

Another popular travel destination, Seoul is famous for its cafés and is perfect for tourists who love café -hopping. As a pair, Joyce and her friend enjoy café-hopping in Singapore and exploring new places together, which are reasons why they collectively decided on Seoul as their travel destination this summer.  

When asked about how the decision to travel together came about, Joyce shared, “We were joking about flying off to get away from studying and we didn’t think it would eventually become a serious thing.” Now that the semester is over, Joyce and her friend can finally make their dream come true and fly off to catch a breather from studying! Like most people before embarking on a trip, Joyce feels very excited yet somewhat nervous. Let’s hope Joyce and her friend will get to enjoy exploring the aesthetic cafés in Seoul! 

Joyce (right) and her friend enjoying açaí on one of their outings together. 

Loo Sin Rou 

For Sin Rou (Year 1, Psychology), she will not be travelling with just one friend, but seven other friends! Under NUS College (NUSC), Sin Rou is set to visit Chiang Mai, Thailand for two weeks as part of an NUSC course. Titled “Food Production and Society in Southeast Asia”, the course teaches about agriculture and the various farming methods. In this 2-week field trip, Sin Rou will be visiting four different areas in Chiang Mai to learn about and experience industrial, organic, lowland and upland farming methods. What an insightful learning opportunity! 

While this is not Sin Rou’s first time travelling with friends, this is her first time going on an overseas school trip. As someone who loves Thai cuisine, she is looking forward to eating the food in Chiang Mai, especially since her professor has mentioned that they will be eating quite a fair bit on the trip. Apart from indulging in Thai delicacies, Sin Rou is also anticipating the trip as her professor has planned for them to try out a year’s worth of farming from seeding flooding to harvesting in just one day! 

With all the exciting events Sin Rou can look forward to, she also has her own concerns. “Two weeks is quite long for a school trip and we will be visiting rural upland areas, so it is going to be a tough journey and we might not get internet in some places. Hopefully, I can get used to the food and environment there as well,” she shared.  

Sin Rou (right) at the airport with her friends from NUSC. 

As this article is being published, Sin Rou has just begun her trip to Chiang Mai! 


And that concludes the three exciting friend trips! No matter what you are doing this summer vacation, we hope that you get a well-deserved rest after completing another semester. If you are thinking of a short getaway this summer break, be sure to check out this article for some getaway inspiration! Happy summer vacation!  

Tan Jie Min

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *