Basic Facts About Living in the Philippines - Coron Busuanga

What are the facts about Living in the Philippines

Consider to retire in Thailand or Philippines a lot of people are not that surprised to know that even though Thailand has bigger land, Philippines have more people living in the place. It is not surprising to know as well that every year the population of Philippines continue to rise even more. From this fact alone, we can already comprehend that Philippines is poorer than Thailand. However, it is not as bad as the economy of other countries.

If you would do your research, you would know that Thailand was never colonized by European countries. The Philippines however have been colonized by different countries at different periods. For instance, the Spaniards colonized the country for more than 300 years and after a brief period of liberty, the Americans followed. The Japanese also tried to colonize the Philippines but with the help of the Americans, they were able to fight.

Things to know about Living in the Philippines

300 years as we know is a very long time. This is the reason why the influence has truly left a mark in the country. A lot of people here still have Spanish sounding names. It is also no wonder that a lot of Tagalog words (Tagalog being the official dialect of the country) has a lot of similar Spanish words. One of the most apparent Spanish sounding name is the San Miguel Beer which is one of the most famous beers all over the world. Some people think that it is originally from Spain or Mexico and are surprised to know that Philippines has exported the world famous beer.

The Philippine Culture

Another thing that is very apparent in Philippine culture and the Spanish colonization is the current religion of the people there. More than half of the population in the Philippines are still Roman Catholics. Still, there are more people now that are converting to different religions that are available in the country such as Christianism and Muslim.

Still, this doesn’t mean that the Americans have not imparted anything to the Filipinos. In terms of sports, a lot of people enjoy Basketball. In fact, a lot of people flock the PBA (Philippine Basketball Association) games every Basketball season. However, this isn’t very fitting for people who are not naturally tall. Like most Asians, Filipinos tend to be smaller than Americans. Some have commented that other sports like Baseball will fit the country better but the game is not very popular in the Philippines.

Another game that has become popular in the country because of American influence is Billiards or Pool. A lot of people frequent the Billiard halls all over the country just to play. They have also gained recognition for this because some of the best players that have played pool hailed from the Philippines.

Life in the Philippines

Life in the Philippines may be considered simpler than living in other countries. Generally it is a poor country that is still developing. Here is the Purchasing Power Parity per capita of selected countries in US Dollars in 2009:

Philippines : $3,521
United States : $46,381
Hong Kong : $42,748
China : $6,567
Indonesia : $4,147
Vietnam : $2,942

From this we can already see that the standard of living in Philippines is in between Vietnam and Indonesia. Even though there are a lot of people here who are very articulate and smart when it comes to their job, they only earn about less than 10% of what a person in the US usually gets. Most Filipinos work for the sake of paying the rent and getting by with their lives. They almost do not have enough money to buy luxury items.

Since it is a developing country, the infrastructure and transportations here are much primitive than that of other countries. For instance in Angeles City, which is a very popular place to foreigners, you might be surprised to know that buses and trains do not pass by this area constantly. There are still schedules that would have to be followed.

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If you would decide to come to the Philippines, you can expect poverty all around you. You must not be surprised that there are still old men and women and young children that sleep at the streets at night and would ask for alms. Giving alms would always be your choice although it is discouraged in some parts of the country.

Do remember though that these are the negative side of the Philippines, there are still a lot of good news.

The obvious good news is that your money here can buy you a lot of things that you cannot afford in your own country. You could live in Philippines a good life like a rich man here provided that you have saved up a lot of money that can open your own business if you ever decide of living and retiring in Philippines. Remember that it is not poor to the point that people are always violent and starving. You might be surprised to know that they have some of the biggest malls in Asia and are even plusher than those that can be found in other countries. The night life here is also good and a lot of Filipinos party at night.

English is the second language of Filipinos. You can find a lot of well educated people in the country that can speak the language better than most other people in Asia. In fact Filipinos have taught other nationalities the English language. Most English teachers in other countries are Filipinos.

What Makes Filipinas Attractive to Foreigners

Even though many foreigners compare the Philippines to Thailand often, Filipinas are naturally more attractive to foreigners because of the lack of language barrier. Most young Filipinas can speak the English language well and can easily talk to foreigners who can speak English. Even though Thailand has more establishments to offer, the people in the Philippines are naturally friendlier and are more accommodating than Thai women. Thais are usually more reserved and cool towards people from other countries while Filipinos are very hospitable and friendly.

The average lady in the Philippines have a lot of dreams and one of their dreams is to fall in love and marry a foreigner that can take them to another place. Thailand women can fall in love with foreigners as well. However, they would not want to leave their country. This can be an issue for the foreigner in the long run. There are some Thailand women though who are working in Thailand’s sex industry who are willing to leave their country if they would be given the chance.

Thais usually just take whatever they can from western people and leave the rest. Filipinos are more giving and loving. Do remember though that the middle class and upper class sector of the Philippines are different from the margin that would like to leave the country and get married. It’s a good thing that there are a lot of pretty women who are there in that country.

However, while it is true that a lot of Thai women are prettier in comparison to Filipinas. But they have that certain inner beauty that is much more appealing in the long run. Physical looks will fade in time but their inner beauty will remain and will make any person happy in time.

What do Filipinas like on Foreigners?

You might be surprised to know that even though foreigners have more money than typical Filipinos, there are still other traits that will make you more attractive to the typical Filipina.

  • Your baby face
  • By being friendly and having a sweet smile
  • Your sense of humor
  • Dress conservative and wear sneakers instead of flip flops. This can turn them off.
  • Being well-groomed is a plus. They are naturally very hygienic people. Some even take a bath 3x a day.
  • Good smell – use cologne and/or aftershave, brush your teeth and carry & eat mints, especially if you smoke.
  • Be easygoing
  • Speak a few Tagalog words. They find this cute.
  • Understand their cultural icons – don’t run down their customs/culture/government even when it doesn’t make sense to you.
  • Be familiar with and eat most of their food. (especially bbq and rice)
  • Respect her family and elders. Families are very important to Filipinos.
  • Non smoker and social drinker – never drink too much
  • Don’t be a “Cheap Charlie”

If you would treat a Filipina nicely, you will make a huge impression on her and she will remember you well. She would be more giving and accommodating to you.

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  1. Nobody


    All my life, whenever I read Filipino articles about everything, not just tourism, they always compared themselves to Thailand or other ASEAN countries, and said they are better.

    Yet when I read articles from Thailand or other ASEAN like Malaysia, Vietnam, etc., I have never see them compared themselves to Philippines.

    See another sample below.

    It seems like Filipino or anybody live there don’t know how to state their good points without lower down others. May be that’s the way they feel more suprior with themselve. Actuallu it’s noty just me who see this. Others see it as well. For example a Malaysian named chesney c. said:

    …Just look at that answer, putting another country down just to prove his/her point is not something wise to do. This is what i mean when i say Filipinos are GENERALLY more “Egoistic” than Indonesians…

    Just a few days ago I’ve read an article from a PI authority said that ASEAN should join some tourism programs together, which make me chuckle. While many do some joint programs to promote their tourism together like the news I post below, do you want to work with somebody who always compared himself/herself with his business partners whenever he/she can?

    It seems like Filipino don’t know about win-win game. What they know is zero-sum game, and they always want to be in that “sum”.

    Honestly I don’t know why they, with attitude like that, join ASEAN? It seems like they believe they can be a solo cowboy since the beginning.