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afathertobe

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About afathertobe

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  1. I've been riding my bike throughout Luzon and the Visayas and it's a mess almost everywhere. Even the smallest towns with one school will have congested roads in the mornings and evenings. Don't even get me started on Cebu or Manila... I live in BGC at the moment and it seems to be getting worse by the month. New developments going up but no new roads of course, that would be silly. All of Taguig right until Sta. Rosa, Laguna is getting built up and messier by the day. Without family obligations I'd leave for greener pastures for sure, Thailand is traffic heaven in comparison.
  2. I feel so lucky I didn't buy the condo I liked last year, best investment decision of my life. The Peso has since depreciated by more than 10% vs. my own currency, which makes me a lot richer and the condo a lot cheaper, but I'm still not buying... wait and see what happens in the Phils.
  3. For the vast majority of regular savers actively managed funds are a terrible choice. Buy a very cheap index fund (which essentially buys all the stocks of a particular index) and keep them for a very long time. This outperforms the majority of expensive, actively managed funds. The very reason why Warren Buffet doesn't like hedge fund managers much.
  4. There must be well-paid jobs for foreigners in the Philippines because those 100k+ PHP/month condos in BGC and Makati have to be paid for somehow.
  5. Can second Airbnb, use it often and mostly good to very good experiences.
  6. I've made very good experiences with Airbnb, though there are few offers in the provinces. Just rent for a few days, talk to the owner.
  7. I have long been saying that monorails should be built all over the country, easily the best way to decongest the main commuter routes. Start with Manila and Cebu based on simple and robust designs that are cost-efficient, then scale up across the country. Light rail, mono rail, some metro... the Philippines needs an awful lot of investment in public transportation.
  8. I experienced and heard the same about Thailand. Immigration officers at the airport are often shockingly rude and unprofessional, much better here. I think they have a clear policy to only allow in well-heeled tourists for short amounts of time and discourage expats to live and work in the country, similar to China, with which coincidentally they share ever cozier bonds. In that regard the Phils are much easier to deal with from my limited experience. But there are also clear drawbacks compared to Thailand. Renting, banking, services, retail, just about everything is much less developed
  9. Rent, both short and long term, is quite a bit more expensive here than in Thailand and of lower quality. You may be disappointed if you don't adjust your expectations accordingly. You won't get anywhere with 14k php for a studio in Cebu city, especially for short term rentals. The locals make next to nothing, that's true, but they also live in conditions few people would put up with elsewhere. Even the middle class live in places I couldn't bare.
  10. I think the market is just too small at the moment, for most a 150cc "racing bike" is already aspirational. But you're right, few mid-level bikes on the market unfortunately.
  11. As far as I know yes - SLEX and NLEX, really important to leave the metro area.
  12. Sorry for the late reply, that was 55k new I think, but I got a discount plus helmet plus top case.. think I paid around 51k cash? http://ph.priceprice.com/Honda-CB110-10005/ Incredibly reliable and fuel-efficient... but just a tad too slow for me.. will sell it again for a 400cc bike to get on highways.
  13. Sorry for the late reply. I had my passport on me, they searched for the entry stamp both times. The other times they just wanted to see the driving license and OR.
  14. Anything up to 150cc is widely available, above that you're less likely to find it in the provinces. Personally I'd go to Cebu, very nice riding down South once you leave the country (search in my threads for more info)
  15. Careful about some of the advice on here, some things are not true in Manila at all. First of all, there are more frequent police checks than you'd imagine. I managed to get stopped three times within 4 days between Manila and Subic. Once in Makati, once one the road and once in Subic Freeport. Every time they checked helmet, lights (on at night), my driving license (foreign), checked how long I've stayed in the Philippines (less than 30 days!!) and checked my vehicle registration paper - valid for one year. So believe me, they do take that stuff seriously, and given that there's usually
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