Faith,Life,Relationships,Travel Stories

On Cancelled Trips and Undeserved Surprises

Cancelled Disneyland 1-min

It was supposed to be Luke’s first time to ride a plane, first international trip and first visit to Disneyland. It was also my birthday weekend. If you follow us on our Instagram stories, you’ll see how Luke has been talking non-stop about meeting Mickey. It’s definitely a big deal.

Then, three days before our trip, we had to cancel and rebook everything. Bye, bye, Disneyland. At least, for now.

The Hong Kong Flu Scare

Cancelled Trip 4-min

Three days before we were scheduled to fly, we woke up to text messages from family and friends with the same warning: DON’T GO TO HONG KONG. It was the same text message, forwarded many times over with a link to an article about a flu epidemic that has apparently hit Hong Kong (Link to that article.)

I will save you the trouble of explaining in detail. To cut the long story short, Hong Kong basically had a bad flu situation. It wasn’t really an epidemic (we asked a few locals and they all didn’t think it was a big deal actually) BUT what really got to us was the news that 3 kids have died from it and they were all around the same age as Luke’s. The common denominator as mentioned in the reports was that the kids all didn’t have flu shots. Well, Luke didn’t get flu shots yet either.

Cancelled Disneyland 2-min

I wanted to push through with the trip and just take additional precautions (like wear masks in public places) but Mor was very uneasy about the idea. What’s more, our family kept calling us to cancel. Additional pressure! We kept praying to God for wisdom and to make it all clear to us what to do.

Mor then decided to visit Luke’s pedia to ask for his advice. We also decided to get Luke his flu shot. SO, we go to the doctor and the doctor says it will take 2 weeks for the flu vaccine to take effect. He advises us to move trip to a later date. Mor says we have no choice but to follow. He says it won’t be wise to risk it. I was so disappointed. Huhu. But I submit to my husband’s authority. So, I agreed to cancel.

Rebooking Everything: The Answered Prayer

Cancelled Trip 5-min

So we had a lot of things to rebook and I was so overwhelmed. The one that worried us the most was our Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel booking because it specifically says on the reservation that NO CANCELLATIONS OR REBOOKINGS ALLOWED. And it cost us a LOT (check out the prices online for a night at a Disney hotel, they are CRAZY and only parents who are suckers like us book there, haha jk) But Mor said there’s no harm in asking so he told me to make a long distance call to call the hotel. So that’s the first thing I did.

True enough, when I told the reservations staff that our doctor advised us to cancel the trip, they allowed us to move our dates to September! Then she said “Oh and the prices have changed.” So I was thinking “OH MAAAAN. I wonder how much this would cost now!” And she said “…It’s actually $1,100 HKD cheaper now so I will refund that amount to your credit card!” Whaaaat?!

Isn’t that AMAZING? So not only were we able to rebook the dates without charge but the new rate is actually even SIGNIFICANTLY CHEAPER! And here I was sulking at the beginning and annoyed that we had to rebook. If I had only known, right? Haha.

But even with Disney hotel out of the way, I still had other bookings to work on. But God made amazing things (that we really don’t deserve) happen. Here, in bullet form, is how everything turned out in summary:

  • Philippine Airlines Flights: All moved without penalty and additional charges
  • 2 other Hotel Reservations: All moved also without penalty and additional charges (Thank you to the wonderful staff of The Ritz Carlton Hong Kong and Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong!)
  • Prebooked Disneyland Park Tickets: Still valid when we go
  • Prebooked Airport Express Tickets: Still valid when we go

So in other words, we were able to move our trip to September, without any additional cost. Actually, it’s now ever cheaper because of the better rate Disneyland Hotel was able to give us! Thank you God for everything. Huhu.

Lessons about Submitting and God’s Timing

Cancelled Disneyland 3-min

I was probably just as excited as Luke to go to Disneyland so I’ll be completely honest and say that I was extremely sad that we had to move our trip. But that’s how it is. Submission isn’t always easy and trusting in God’s perfect timing is honestly, really hard.

I always teach the girls on my Bible study about submission (it’s not as anti-feminist as you might think!) but to be honest, it’s one of the hardest lessons to live out. I love my husband and I’m so blessed because he is really full of practical wisdom. But I admit, it’s so hard for me also sometimes because we were just made SO differently.

Acacia Hotel 42-min

Whenever we take personality tests, we are the extreme opposite of each other! Haha. For example, I’m more of a risk-taker (YOLO!) whereas he’s very cautious and analytical. I’m idealistic, optimistic and a dreamer and he’s a downright realist, plus extremely practical. Even in parenting, the way we approach things are so different. The photos is a good illustration of the way we are: me throwing Luke and Mor catching him. Haha, just kidding.

So as you can see, submitting isn’t always my natural instinct!

But by God’s grace alone, I’m learning to submit more and NOT ONCE have I regretted it. This is again one of those times. Though I didn’t wanna cancel the trip, I submitted and so I was able to experience the blessing of an additional $1100 HKD. Haha! If I didn’t obey and forced my will, we would have paid full price. And who knows how stressful that trip could have been too (especially with Mor worrying constantly: just imagine if somebody sneezes on the MTR. Haha!)

It’s amazing to me that God cares about both the little and the big things in our lives. God has shown me His power and love in so many big ways that sometimes I feel ashamed to ask for small, seemingly selfish things (like for him to help me fix this trip without additional costs.) But like a good, good Father, He shows me that He cares even about those little details.

My Birthday Weekend

Cancelled Trip 6-min

So because we couldn’t go to Disneyland for my birthday weekend, we brought Disneyland to our home instead. We wore our mouse ears and had Disney cupcakes in bed (Thanks to my favorite cake artist: Wynne’s Cakes!) Then, we sang Disney songs, watched a few Disneyland vlogs on YouTube and talked about which rides we wanted to go.

Are you just as excited about our trip as we are? (Probably not, who I am I kidding, lol!) Watch out for our Disneyland posts in a month; we’re leaving on September! I just pray that the trip will be as wonderful as we imagine it to be! Praying the weather’s good too! Hehe. See ya then!

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  • Reply
    Ken Patricio
    August 4, 2017 at 8:23 am

    Wow! Indeed the Lord has it’s own time for everything plus additional surprises! Blessed to read this story. Thanks Ms. Sheena.

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      August 4, 2017 at 6:16 pm

      Aww thanks Ken, as always! Yes really the Lord’s timing is the best!

  • Reply
    micha manaig
    August 4, 2017 at 3:01 pm

    i really love reading your blog. God’s timing is ALWAYS PERFECT talaga.

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      August 4, 2017 at 6:15 pm

      Hi Micha, thank you so much for the encouragement! Thanks for leaving a message! <3

  • Reply
    Monique Galang
    August 4, 2017 at 11:14 pm

    i love reading articles like this. Turning the negative in positive aspect!

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      August 5, 2017 at 8:01 am

      Thanks Monique, just trusting in God’s perfect plan! :)

  • Reply
    Amy Arnold
    August 5, 2017 at 12:46 am

    Bummer it got cancelled but it sounds like it all worked out the way it was supposed to. Happy late birthday!

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      August 5, 2017 at 7:59 am

      Thanks Amy! Yes I’m sure it’s all for the best!

  • Reply
    August 5, 2017 at 12:58 am

    Interesting post! You were very fortunate to have been able to move all your bookings without any extra costs. In that regard, I am quite happy for you. On that note about submission… the bible is always right and for obvious reasons. The husband is the head of the family and makes all the decisions so submission in is order if your man is full of wisdom which it looks like he is. Take care!

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      August 5, 2017 at 8:00 am

      Hi Jamila, yes Mor really is full of wisdom and I’m so blessed to have him as my husband! God knows best! Hehe.

  • Reply
    August 5, 2017 at 1:01 am

    You are pretty lucky if you can move your trip to september! I hope everything is okay!

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      August 5, 2017 at 7:59 am

      Yes everything turned out okay by God’s grace. Thank you!

  • Reply
    August 7, 2017 at 7:35 am

    I’m sorry to hear that you had to cancel and rebook your trip to Disneyland. It’s definitely important to take vaccinations to avoid the high risk of catching the disease! I think you did the right thing by rebooking the trip. It’s always better to be safe than sorry! It sounds like you got to book the trip at a cheaper rate.

    I know I would be sad if I had a big trip and I had to reschedule. It’s a nightmare at first but isn’t as bad once you go through it.

    Hope you enjoyed your birthday weekend!

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      August 7, 2017 at 5:49 pm

      Thanks Nancy! Yeah it was definitely a hassle but I’m hoping it all works out for the best in the end!

  • Reply
    August 7, 2017 at 9:44 am

    Such a wonderful post! Getting a unexpected refund is one of the best things in life. Wishing you the best in your HK adventure!

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      August 7, 2017 at 5:44 pm

      Couldn’t agree with you more! Thank you!

  • Reply
    Mary Anne Escala
    August 8, 2017 at 4:53 pm

    Wooow! Is it safe now to visit HK. We also have tour on Sep 1-3.

    I am hoping all is well :)

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      August 9, 2017 at 12:04 am

      Hi Mary Anne, I can’t really say for certain! Our trip is also in September. Super hope so! I just keep on checking the news for updates!

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