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Philippines 2019 for new expats

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55 minutes ago, BritManToo said:

I was there last year, and I was staying at a holiday resort town (Barretto) near Subic.

Holiday resort town?  Lonely sailors cheap red light port of call might be another's description.  😀

 

Edited by lopburi3
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Havent seen any update on ExpatPH. Hope he is still with us.

 

Anyway, I read through most of this thread and big kudos to all the contributions and information. I currently live in Thailand and mostly enjoy it here. However I am interested in the Philippines, who knows what happens in the future.

 

I do have a question, and perhaps its a bit odd. But being a Norwegian its about something dear to my heart 🙂 Fishing. Is it possible for a foreginer to buy and own a small boat (daytrip size) for fishing? Anyone have any experience with this? Here in Hua Hin, Thailand, I find the coastline to be a bit too boring for fishing trips.

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BritMan,

thanks for the comment about the bucket. I also do hand-wash my clothes on the go while travelling. Since there is also this kind of "ladle" (forgive the wrong vocab) inside, it seems to have the purpose of manual shower as well. I guess for days with problems, water pressure etc.

 

For the accommodation we are talking about different things. I was talking about Cebu City, you talked about a beach. I stayed in Borocay much cheaper than here too, only talking about accommodation. I find the quality overall pretty bad, nothing you could not get used to it if you lived here. Many things seem to be broken in my Western mindset but do not get fixed. Having to double-flush a toilet so the water stops running, seen that twice now in different places. Always some "trick" to get normal things done. In one accommodation water came pouring down the ventilation opening above the toilet. They called "maintenance", but it stopped after 5 minutes on its own. Maintenance guy said "no problem". I think so too because it is not my property so I am indifferent about it. Needless to say the issue was not solved or nobody, not even the owner, cares about what went wrong, because most likely it will happen again.

 

For the security check, it seems we always have different experiences, which is fine. In Cebu City they always check my bag and I have seen them doing the same with every other foreigner, I am European. However the real purpose is not clear to me as they never check my bag once it is full with shopping or other stuff. Perhaps too lazy because of low salary is my guess.

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Robby,

I am not sure whether someone on a Thai Forum can help you about that. Try Philippine Expat forum. If this is against the forum rules, please delete this post.

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6 hours ago, cerox said:

Robby,

I am not sure whether someone on a Thai Forum can help you about that. Try Philippine Expat forum. If this is against the forum rules, please delete this post.

 

A Thai forum??? This is the general South-East Asia forum and a specific post about/for expats in Philippines. Cant see any better place on TV at least.

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On 4/8/2019 at 10:57 AM, Letseng said:

But not all pinays are like this.

Not all Thai females are out to fleece you either.

Interesting read:

https://britishexpats.com/forum/philippines-155/me-my-family-851728/

 

Jeeeeeezes Christ!!

 

I've been reading through this link you have posted above for the past 2 days, on and off ... my god, what a soap story. 

 

Sweet Honey, Money, Family, Money, more Family, more Money, loans, Family again, lies, more money, hidden kids, laws, no legal divorce, adultery, more family, more money, loans, pawn shops, tampo sulcking girls, more money, more family, pawn shops, loans, money and the Wedding.  

 

The very nice guy but super knobhead with 100% rose tinted glasses on. Unbelievable.

 

And I thought Thailand was heavy 😉

 

I had to stop reading at page 116 (from 231) ... 

 

But, if you want to know all about the PH ... you learn a lot and get in-depth info about what has been mentioned and touched on in this thread.

 

Edited by RedPill
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I wont even try PH after reading Cerox experiences.  I need some comfort in life. The standard of condo buildings here in Thailand is very important to me, and plenty of staff around that will assist you if there is a problem.

PH will be a step backwards, not for me. 

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On 8/20/2019 at 2:35 PM, AAArdvark said:

As well as the US and Europe.  I know multiple Filipina nurses in the US, who if they don't mind the hard work, earn a veritable fortune. 

They are rarely eligible for work in the UK and the rest of The EU unfortunately.

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4 minutes ago, RedPill said:

Having said this, I have no real experience with the PH girls, only from what I read now, and compare to what I know from the Thai girls.

I know several Filipinos , both men and women working in Thailand, very friendly and easygoing people, asked them several times about PH,  and they all tell me Thailand is better when it comes to the infrastructure, food, hotels, condo , prices, etc.  

It's good for a short holiday to visit the islands, but that's it really.  


 

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9 minutes ago, balo said:

I know several Filipinos , both men and women working in Thailand, very friendly and easygoing people, asked them several times about PH,  and they all tell me Thailand is better when it comes to the infrastructure, food, hotels, condo , prices, etc.  

It's good for a short holiday to visit the islands, but that's it really.  


 

Yes, I also have met many Filipinas before, working in the office, being in malls, maids etc., working abroad.

 

Super nice people and very attractive and friendly girls ... 

 

But it's that complete backwards catholic controlled PH gov which is the problem (those laws I talked about which could get you into jail).

 

And the families, pushing so hard on the girls to get the money in ... 

 

No thanks. I have been through this (successfully) for many years in Thailand, pushing back on family support to an acceptable limit.

It was not that bad. 

 

I certainly would not want to go through this family thing with a PH girl.

 

MGTOW comes back to mind 😉

 

Edited by RedPill
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22 minutes ago, balo said:

I know several Filipinos , both men and women working in Thailand, very friendly and easygoing people, asked them several times about PH,  and they all tell me Thailand is better when it comes to the infrastructure, food, hotels, condo , prices, etc.  

It's good for a short holiday to visit the islands, but that's it really.  


 

My Philippina friend loved to visit Thailand because she was harassed a lot less than in the Philippines especially when she went out alone. Never bothered at all butin her home country sexual harassment,  comments,  assaults and unwanted attention was pervasive.

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On 10/5/2019 at 7:00 AM, pgrahmm said:

Have 2 family members, USMC Master Sergeants ..Both half filipino - USMC will not allow them to visit family in the PI on leave = cited as too dangerous....

USA Marines are not allowed to visit Pattaya on shore leave during joint military manoeuvres such as Cobra Gold.

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34 minutes ago, RedPill said:

Talking about backwards!

 

I mean, the whole thing about divorce not legally existing. And you bump into a girl who doesn't tell you she is separated from her ex.

 

You could go to jail for 7 years for adultery! 

 

The ex, PH guy of course not, he can go and get another woman and makes a new family. The law is only for the girls.

 

The PH girl is f#$% for years. Until they find someone who pays the crazy sums for the annulment, which is still at the mercy of the PH ex and PH courts/judges. 

 

And if you live together and get a kid with that 'legally separated' girl, that kid is legally not even yours. 

 

That ex PH guy can play all sorts of money extortion games with you.

 

Backwards? Very much!

 

And those much stronger family ties than even compared to Thailand ... what a nightmare to live with!

 

These were a few things which stuck out to me. You are getting yourself into a lot of trouble without even knowing it.

 

Yeah, in that sense, it's better to meet and have fun with the Thai girls ... sure they all also want money, also for the family, but it's

more controlable.

 

Having said this, I have no real experience with the PH girls, only from what I read now, and compare to what I know from the Thai girls.

 

 

I have, and you're pretty close....In one house it was not unusual to have 19 family members - just there, like everywhere most of the time.....A casual family reunion = 397 people.....

I just was not comfortable with that many people in close quarters......Some good folks, but you never knew who was into what, although they all knew having spent years together.....

I could make a very, very, long list of things I don't miss about the PI....

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On 11/7/2019 at 1:45 AM, cerox said:

Hello guys,

 

I have been in the Philippines for 2.5 weeks now so I will share my opinion. Please keep in mind that I have been here for only this short time and I am no expert at all.

 

I went to Manila, Boracay, Cebu. First two for travels, Cebu is where I have been almost a week now to see how local life works here and not be deluded by travels only.

 

Cost of living

Yes, you can live here very cheaply I do not doubt this - also cheaper than Thailand. However not for the same quality - you will have to settle for something smaller, less nice, sketchy area etc. - Thailand and other countries in my opinion provide much better value for money, esp. for accommodation. I pay around 550-600 EUR monthly for a small 25m² (did not measure) unit AirBnB. From what I heard is they rent them for 25k PHP monthly for a long-term contract so 440 EUR, but it does not include Internet (own Fiber) and Electric. So AirBnB is of course flexible, more expensive, but so much more comfortable, as I do not have to make long contracts with the Internet providers and condo owners. Also no risk of not getting the deposit back. I now understand what ExpatPH wrote here before that so many expats chose to live in monthly hotels / airBnB etc. It is just hassle-free.

Either way: doing it on your own or the "complete package" - bad value for money compared to other countries in the region.

 

I am aware that I can rent cheaper in other areas of the city.

I have seen a lot of poverty, mostly at dawn as soon as it gets dark - during the day it is "ok". Poor people do not even own a motorbike, not like Thailand, Vietnam etc.

Around the so-called "nice areas" Ayala, ITPark, there is a lot of poverty, slums, also for the other malls when you just go a few streets away. Rivers/Streams are black, polluted. Seems like you have to spend most of your life indoors, at the malls, home etc.  - there is not much to do here if you do not want to check out islands, beaches all the time.

 

I ordered a portable air quality monitor via Lazada. Delivery will take 2-3 weeks, not a few days. I was told I have to be home to receive the package myself. They do not receive deliveries for anyone, not even food in some buildings. This is what they call "security". I call it a great inconvenience and hassle. Sorry but this is how I see it.

The "security" at malls "inspects" the upper part of my backpack - usually if it is full after a supermarket etc. they do not check it at all. I do not understand the purpose of this fake security, other than fighting unemployment and giving people jobs.

 

Despite all the poverty, I want to say I had zero issues. No kids surrounding me, no confrontations, no people hassling/begging me for money. I think many people here exaggerated maybe way too much and made me scared before I even came here. But maybe that is because I have not been here long enough. Also the reason might be the way I conduct myself - in densely populated areas I will have empty pockets, carry my backpack in front. If there is heavy air pollution and strong sunlight, I wore sunglasses and 3M N95 mask - seems to scare people so you do not get bothered at all. Never had a need to carry a backpack in front in Thailand. If I go away from the malls (many other foreigners) I am quickly the only foreigner.

 

Another thing which is better than expected is the traffic. People here wrote you basically could not go anywhere after 4 p.m. I did not have any issues - just use Ankas motorbike taxi only or walk with a mask (pollution). I do not see any need to "plan my day around traffic" as suggested before. In Manila I found it worse with queues for the Skytrain at peek times at some stations. Cebu easy - do not understand the need to go home in the early afternoon.

 

Random stuff:

- country is just so inefficient - waiting times everywhere

- queues at ATMs - 2 out of 5 ATMs are out of order and nobody seems to bother to solve it

- queues at buses to neighboring cities are crazy-long - I really pity the people who have to commute like that every day

- not enough restrooms in malls, maybe one restroom per floor, 2 toilets out of 4 or 5 are out of order. Queues to go to the toilet and long walking to find one

- pharmacists have little knowledge or are little qualified - things I can buy in Thailand, unknown here, but Lazada has it. They have tons of malls but important  things I have to buy online?!

- Smart mobile Internet: needed customer support for some questions I had yesterday: two hours waiting time, not 3 minutes like at DTAC in Thailand

- queues at pharmacies, after you hand over the money it seems you have to wait again at another counter to get change and medicine

- Massage (talking about muscle relaxation, nothing sexual): mostly totally incompetent: had 4 massage, 3 were very bad, one was average and "much better" than the others. Compared to Thailand, as soon as I explain what I want I get 9/10 times someone very good

- construction quality much worse than what you know from Thailand, AirCon (window-type) if it does not fit in like in the current apartment there are small holes below it - it is not air-tight/sealed to the outside. - Toilet low quality - have to flush many times, Shower has a bucket for manual shower- surely for a reason. 

- Fire alarm (very loud) going off for a few seconds regularly also at night sometimes, nobody seems to bother (happened both in Manila and Cebu - both condo buildings, both expensive ones)

 

I do not need to tell you what kind of luxury I can get in Thailand or Vietnam for 600 EUR monthly. Yes you can get cheaper here but I do not want to live next to slums or have cockroaches in my condo.

 

Food: Restaurants are ok, but paid 10 EUR upwards for a good meal.

Street food: tried a few times, inedible in my opinion, I am not picky I eat street food in Thailand and Vietnam all the time

Food courts in malls: most stuff not good, they sell "Greek" food it tastes so bad it is really an insult for the Greek culture, same as the "Thai massage" they sell here.

Most food heavily fried in oil, unhealthy, many overweight people. Healthy food seems very rare. If you think Thailand street food is unhealthy with their sugar, MSG etc. in it, you are complaining on a very high level.

 

Boracay they scammed me everywhere, esp. for the boat ride back to Caticlan they insisted on a very inflated price compared to locals - no choice need to catch a flight. In the bigger cities I had choices like Ankas, Skytrain (Manila) etc.so less of an issue.

 

Electricity/Internet: in Boracay blackouts regularly when I visited, so I guess the province where some live so cheaply is even worse because it is not a tourist hotspot. Manila/Cebu no issues - zero blackouts so far. Internet stable - no issues. It is slow (15 Mbit/s downstream, 1 Mbit/s upstream "Fiber" in Cebu IT Park). but it is stable and usable - I do not understand why people need so many ways to be online and are offline regularly. No issues for me. For those who need very fast Internet - gets really expensive, not good value for money at all. Check the plan of PLDT/Sky as an example:

https://pldthome.com/fibr?gclid=Cj0KCQiA-4nuBRCnARIsAHwyuPreHSfxcnBDaA7qxoCXffJNUaYa3m8Or8GGTJIkgVXKvA9yX_1GxwAaAqVTEALw_wcB

 

Smart Prepaid SIM: only reasonable Load/package for me was 30 days for 1000 PHP - capped at 800 MB per day.

 

Positives:

Lots of choice if you want to date this is the country to be in.

Expats more approachable than in Thailand, I noticed that too.

Locals more approachable, most of them speak good English.

Easy-going country, starting from visa (got 60 days at the airport by just asking) - cheaper and zero time effort compared to Immigration office), but also the people are very relaxed and easy-going.

Bakeries better than Thailand, some good bread

Chocolate, marshmallows and other sweet stuff really cheap here as in Europe

 

Overall, much more negatives than positives for me. Plan is to stay till around December then head somewhere else. I would not live here, but I can understand those guys who want to live here. It is not that bad, if you are in a good area, but be prepared to either reduce your lifestyle or pay up. Easy to find a girl - see many old Western guys with younger Filipino girl here.

 

Good country for a holiday, beautiful beaches. Would be my first choice for beach holiday and some adventure.

Good report.  I find Thais and expats here very approachable. Ive been to Philippines for a holiday. I wont be rushing back.

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