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What do you love about living in the Philippines?


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On 11/9/2019 at 2:00 PM, boyee said:

What do you love about the Philippines that you just don't have in your homeland?

Oh I'd definitely love to follow up on this topic too!

 

Nr.1: serenity and a slow pace of life:
The lifestyle in the Phils is much more "l'aisse faire" compared to western (or more exactly to be said: northern) countries.

Concepts like "filipino time" (always being too late for 1 hour) are things that many of us westerners are having a hard time to cope with and to understand - but once you got used to it you can even use it to your own advantage, for the sake of your own peace of mind! *lol*
Of course, especially me as an Austrian I normally insist on punctuality, that's the "German correctness" which is always on top for us; but if you find yourself in a country where this simply doesn't exist, you can either have a bad time by complaining, or have a good time by adapting.
I adapted, and I'm loving it!

You stay at home, suddenly some friends or relatives just show up at your house, they just walk in ("ayooo"), get something from the fridge, join you doing whatever, sometimes they bring food or drinks or something else just to share it...

In general, I experience that in the Phils (and also in other countries in (Southeast) Asia) people are more open-minded towards each other, they are easy to talk to, easy to start a conversation. They don't just look at the floor while walking the streets and avoid every human contact whatsoever.
A very big difference to Europe, for me.


Nr.2: the helpfulness of virtually everybody:
your car got stuck in the middle of the jungle?
Couple of minutes (if you're not too far off) and a group of people are happy to push you out of the mud!

Locked yourself out of the house and only the wife has the keys but she is downtown? (happened to me once)
Just tell a neighbor the story and they will invite you to hang out, have some food and a drink and a chat for letting the time pass...

Brother in law just passes by, sees you're building something around the house: get's off the bike starts helping without being asked to!

(I could go on...)


Nr.3: housing costs:
I bought a house and lot for the fraction of the price that I'd have to pay in Europe!
No strings attached.


Nr.4: the weather, obviously:
There is nothing better (for me) than being able to go to the beach at any time of the year!

On a medical note: starting in my childhood I have always been heavily allergic to animal hair, crops, dust, and so on.. My doctor back then always advised that seaside air would be the best natural remedy against it - and BOOM: all allergies are 100% gone since I live here. I even have 4 dogs and a cat right now which would have been unthinkable for me back on the mainland.
(okay, that applies to any place at the sea, not to the Phils per se..)


Nr.5: tax freedom (probably not too interesting for retirees):
I talked to the tax authorities of the Phils because I live here and I work abroad, so am I taxable here and how much?
"Nope, as long as you don't generate income within the Phils you don't need to pay income tax here."
-
Well, noice!!

 

I'm sure I got some more detailed examples (also about what I DON'T like about the Phils, of course!), but that shall be it for now.

 

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10 hours ago, gery0x said:

Oh I'd definitely love to follow up on this topic too!

 

Nr.1: serenity and a slow pace of life:
The lifestyle in the Phils is much more "l'aisse faire" compared to western (or more exactly to be said: northern) countries.

Concepts like "filipino time" (always being too late for 1 hour) are things that many of us westerners are having a hard time to cope with and to understand - but once you got used to it you can even use it to your own advantage, for the sake of your own peace of mind! *lol*
Of course, especially me as an Austrian I normally insist on punctuality, that's the "German correctness" which is always on top for us; but if you find yourself in a country where this simply doesn't exist, you can either have a bad time by complaining, or have a good time by adapting.
I adapted, and I'm loving it!

You stay at home, suddenly some friends or relatives just show up at your house, they just walk in ("ayooo"), get something from the fridge, join you doing whatever, sometimes they bring food or drinks or something else just to share it...

In general, I experience that in the Phils (and also in other countries in (Southeast) Asia) people are more open-minded towards each other, they are easy to talk to, easy to start a conversation. They don't just look at the floor while walking the streets and avoid every human contact whatsoever.
A very big difference to Europe, for me.


Nr.2: the helpfulness of virtually everybody:
your car got stuck in the middle of the jungle?
Couple of minutes (if you're not too far off) and a group of people are happy to push you out of the mud!

Locked yourself out of the house and only the wife has the keys but she is downtown? (happened to me once)
Just tell a neighbor the story and they will invite you to hang out, have some food and a drink and a chat for letting the time pass...

Brother in law just passes by, sees you're building something around the house: get's off the bike starts helping without being asked to!

(I could go on...)


Nr.3: housing costs:
I bought a house and lot for the fraction of the price that I'd have to pay in Europe!
No strings attached.


Nr.4: the weather, obviously:
There is nothing better (for me) than being able to go to the beach at any time of the year!

On a medical note: starting in my childhood I have always been heavily allergic to animal hair, crops, dust, and so on.. My doctor back then always advised that seaside air would be the best natural remedy against it - and BOOM: all allergies are 100% gone since I live here. I even have 4 dogs and a cat right now which would have been unthinkable for me back on the mainland.
(okay, that applies to any place at the sea, not to the Phils per se..)


Nr.5: tax freedom (probably not too interesting for retirees):
I talked to the tax authorities of the Phils because I live here and I work abroad, so am I taxable here and how much?
"Nope, as long as you don't generate income within the Phils you don't need to pay income tax here."
-
Well, noice!!

 

I'm sure I got some more detailed examples (also about what I DON'T like about the Phils, of course!), but that shall be it for now.

 

it's always interesting to see what others think and how each of us have different perspectives - a few of the points above would make it to my list of things I don't like in the Philippines (Nos 1 and 4 for example).  No 5 I am with you 100% on, and mostly agree on No 2 and 3 with some reservations.  

One man's meat is another man's poison right enough!

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16 hours ago, hk blues said:

One man's meat is another man's poison right enough!

That's a very apt quote there! :smile:

I think this diversity is very fruitful!

 

On Nr.3 I also have my reservations - housing costs vary heavily depending on the location!

I chose my house to be at the border of the city - not too far outside, not too far inside - and the price was really okay.

But one shouldn't be fooled; even though he Phils are a "cheap" country, housing prices can indeed exceed those in Europe or the US - by a multitude!

 

On the other hand, buying land (I'm talking hectares) in the province is really really affordable here, compared to western countries.

 

The only downside is: foreigners can never truly own the land here (unless we inherit it), it's mostly always the wife.

Which is why I decided to buy a "smaller" house/lot so in case the marriage fails one day, the financial loss will be bearable...

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“What do you love about living in the Philippines?”

I love the way that I can carry so many notes/bills in my wallet.

Instead of carrying $100 US with one note/bill, I can carry five 1,000 piso notes.

It gets better with $1,000 US since I get to carry fifty 1,000 piso notes instead of ten $100 US bills. :mocking:

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5 hours ago, Jack D said:

“What do you love about living in the Philippines?”

I love the way that I can carry so many notes/bills in my wallet.

Instead of carrying $100 US with one note/bill, I can carry five 1,000 piso notes.

It gets better with $1,000 US since I get to carry fifty 1,000 piso notes instead of ten $100 US bills. :mocking:

We took 250k from the bank the other day, 1000s 500s and 100s. It came in a carrier bag.

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On 12/14/2019 at 11:59 PM, gery0x said:

You stay at home, suddenly some friends or relatives just show up at your house, they just walk in ("ayooo"), get something from the fridge, join you doing whatever, sometimes they bring food or drinks or something else just to share it...

Hi gery0x and welcome to the forum...

I appreciate and agree with a lot of your comments. Those are most of the reasons I decided to settle here a few years ago.

I will respectfully disagree with one of your ideas, however...

My partner, L, is a born and raised Mandayan, now here with me in Davao. She is a bit of an outlaw in her family because she actually resents some of the unannounced visits by relatives and friends to our home. She was like that before I even met her, so it was not my influence. She gets irritated when a relative or friend just shows up on the porch, unannounced, and then asks to spend the night or nights - without prior notice. She definitely has some western feelings! It's different if they just show up for a short visit... that's quite okay, and welcomed but to a degree......

She tells the relatives to please call or text well before intended visits because she and I have varied schedules and can sometimes be away from the home for several days. So they might show up on the porch, call Ayooo out loud then on a text and there is nobody home... And, unfortunately, a number of the relatives or friends show up empty handed expecting to be fed and watered too.... Sure, that is basic hospitality to provide that with anyone, especially those close to us, but to expect without offering anything? That bothers her even more than me...

Just our take on the system here...

Enjoy your time here gery0x and please feel free to ask me anything regarding Philippines or Davao...

Edited by Tommy T.
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14 minutes ago, Gary D said:

We took 250k from the bank the other day, 1000s 500s and 100s. It came in a carrier bag.

About a month ago, we needed to transfer 1m php from my account to my wife's - different banks.  The options were a) a cheque which would take a couple of days to clear or b) cash.  We decided on the cash option - they gave it to us in bundles of 1,000 and 500 notes - no carrier bag, no envelope, no nothing!  Luckily we were only going about 50 yards but still!   They really have a long way to go here - hard to believe we couldn't do an electronic transfer from A bank to B bank.  

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On 12/16/2019 at 3:21 AM, gery0x said:

The only downside is: foreigners can never truly own the land here (unless we inherit it), it's mostly always the wife.

 

Foreigners cannot currently own land here in the Philippines....period... That's the law... sorry gery0x.

You can get a long lease, but check earlier forum topics here and you can learn a whole lot about the ins and outs of leasing land here. Also, find and consult a good (sorry for the irony there) lawyer. If you require one, I can offer a good recommendation here in Davao...

 

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58 minutes ago, hk blues said:

About a month ago, we needed to transfer 1m php from my account to my wife's - different banks.  The options were a) a cheque which would take a couple of days to clear or b) cash.  We decided on the cash option - they gave it to us in bundles of 1,000 and 500 notes - no carrier bag, no envelope, no nothing!  Luckily we were only going about 50 yards but still!   They really have a long way to go here - hard to believe we couldn't do an electronic transfer from A bank to B bank.  

Yeah, HK... I have had to do some fairly huge cash payments to the contractors and others...

I have developed a bit of a relationship with my bank branch. They now pile the stacks of banknotes into a plastic (cello) bag and then load that into my backpack that I hand over the teller window... It is at least partially discreet!!!

 

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4 hours ago, Tommy T. said:
On 12/15/2019 at 11:21 AM, gery0x said:

The only downside is: foreigners can never truly own the land here (unless we inherit it), it's mostly always the wife.

 

Foreigners cannot currently own land here in the Philippines....period... That's the law... sorry gery0x.

 

Tommy T

 

I thought it is possible to inherit your wife's land.  I was under the impression her children get first dibs then the spouse.  Or was it Children, parents, siblings, next door neighbor, mail man then foreign husband?  

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