5 Minutes with Mar Pages

For McCool Travel’s 112th travel profile, I am happy to present Mar Pages of Once in a Lifetime Journey. Mar contributed one of the travel tips for my recent article, 11 Useful Travel Tips You Have Never Seen. In fact, her tip was a very popular one, a great way to use Instagram for trip planning and travel research. I wanted to learn more about her and her travels and am happy she was available for a quick interview. Thank you, Mar!
Mar Pages‘ bio: “Over the past 10 years I have traveled practically non-stop, taking a plane every week to exotic destinations in the Middle East, Europe, Africa and Asia. I have visited almost 90 countries on all continents except for Antarctica. I have been an expat for the past 9 years, living in London, Montreal, Dubai, Johannesburg, Tegucigalpa, and Singapore. You are a lucky girl, you may think. I was indeed, extremely privileged. As a telecoms consultant, I was fortunate to have a job that required me to work with clients everywhere and travel the world, all expenses paid. And I sure made the most of it!”

travel interview with Mar Pages, Once in a Lifetime Journey
Mar Pages, Once in a Lifetime Journey

Mar Pages of Once in a Lifetime Journey

Sitges, Barcelona
Always in my luggage…
lip balm (I am really addicted to it and I panic if I forgot it, it is the only item I would go out of my way to replace if I left it home), bikinis (I mostly go to tropical places), and my camera gear (DJI drone, GoPro, GoPro dome, tripod, iPhone, camera, iPhone tripod, gimbal, lenses)

travel interview with Mar Pages, Once in a Lifetime Journey
drone photo by Mar Pages, Once in a Lifetime Journey

3 favorite home-away-from-home places…

  1. Africa feels like home to me. I spent a long time working there when I was in my early 20s and I consider it the place I “grew up” in as a person.
  2. Singapore …
  3. and Dubai also feels like home now because I have lived in both for a while.

A favorite travel memory is…
I recently returned from a trip to Kenya and had the incredible fortune of getting up and close with some lions who were mating and then decided to get up and close to us in the car. Most importantly, we were almost alone in the Masai Mara reserve, it was sunrise and the hot air balloons were going up in the background. I think that moment will stay with me forever.

travel interview with Mar Pages, Once in a Lifetime Journey
Mar Pages, Once in a Lifetime Journey

3 favorite travel brands…

  1. Big fan of Aman resorts for the most personalised service that is able to anticipate needs
  2. Google—because their suite of products really is all I need to travel (Maps, Translate, Search, Now)
  3. Tumi—their luggage is the most incredibly durable I have ever used, even if you travel every week like I did for over a decade and the carry-on becomes an extension of your arm, their suitcases will follow you to the end of the world

3 money-saving travel tactics I use are…

  1. Points—I am a massive and calculating hoarder, I even pay for a coffee with my Amex to accumulate points.
  2. Bring your own bottle of wine if you are going to an expensive resort and have great sunset views from your room.
  3. Sharing with friends, if you are three people most hotels will be able to add a third bed and then everything is cheaper and you can stay at more beautiful places, plus it’s always more fun with friends!

3 ways that I have fun while traveling are …

  1. Let serendipity and spontaneity take over sometimes, do something crazy or simply start up a conversation with a local and see where that takes you.
  2. I always research the really quirky or unusual side of a place and find ways to experience it from a different angle.
  3. Sunsets and sunrises, I like to find a place to see them both, especially sunrises when most places are peaceful and you can have an otherwise really crowded place (like Times Square) all to yourself.

8 word (or less) travel mantra…
“An adventure is never an adventure when it is happening.”—Tim Cahill
favorite non-travel website …
most memorable souvenir …
I have kept the boarding passes since I started traveling for work in 2005, looking at them is one of the most nostalgic things one can do and it reminds me of how fortunate I have to have been able to travel so much.

travel interview with Mar Pages, Once in a Lifetime Journey
Mar Pages, Once in a Lifetime Journey

favorite cheap eat …
street food in the alleys of Yangon
recent discovery …
Batu Batu, a private island resort in Malaysia accessible by car from Singapore, which is dead gorgeous and investing in preserving marine life, corals and turtles
I am fortunate to have met …
my best friend, Edwin, who shares my passion for travel and for visiting unusual places

Thank you so much, Mar, for taking a few minutes to share travel inspiration and tips.
Follow Mar Pages on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and her website.

Check out McCool Travel’s previous profilesMcCool Travel presents tips from travel experts in our 5 Minutes interview series—featuring travel industry giants, super frequent travelers, and adventurous persons. Previous 5 Minutes post: Cathy Merrifield of RoarLoud.

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2 thoughts on “5 Minutes with Mar Pages”

  1. Mar really has it together and I’m happy that she’s honest about the fortune of travel. That’s something that easily gets swept under the rug, I feel. Anyway, great stuff as always Charles. Thanks for letting us in on a pretty awesome traveler!

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