Why You SHOULD Move to the Philippines.
In my humble opinion, when balancing out the pros and cons of living or retiring in the Philippines, the positives FAR outweigh the negatives. Then again, at this point I don’t think it’s actually what the Philippines has (or fails) to deliver that determines whether or not it would be an appropriate place for one to move to – I think it’s actually the mindset and the ability to adapt on the foreigner’s part that truly makes or breaks the Philippines as a living, working, or retirement destination. Confused? That’s OK – just check out a video we did on The Most Important Thing to Bring to the Philippines!
We did a posting a while back on why someone SHOULDN’T consider retiring or living in the Philippines. In this post, we will look at some of the reasons why someone SHOULD consider our sunny island republic as a possible long-term work, travel or retirement destination.
The Weather: Toss out your snow shovels, rubber boots and bag up your North Face parka collection to drop off at Goodwill. Temperatures here are typical around 85 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and only go down to about 78 degrees at night. Most of the year is sunny and the sky is clear. Yeah, there is rainy season, but here in Negros is just more of random shower season, and after the heat of Summer (when it’s REALLY hot!), you don’t mind it so much. Got aches and pains from cold, dry weather? Watch them fade to a distant memory in the Philippines.
Visas: Tourist Visas are easy to get and run around $370 a year. The law just changed on when you have to leave the country to let your visa reset – it used to be 16 months, now it’s every 3 years. And then most folks just hop up to Honk Kong, Singapore or Malaysia for a few days of shopping and then come right back.
Vacation Destination: The Republic is a place where other people come to holiday! When chatting with these vacationers, you can usually pick up on the envy that they subconsciously express when they find our you are actually living or working here. Sailing, fishing, diving, ziplining, canopy walks, lagoon hunting, nature preserves, hiking, mountain (volcano!) climbing – it’s all right here.
Margaritaville: There are over 7,000 islands in the Philippines, so you will pretty much have your fill of white (and black and brown and gray!) sand beaches, Technicolor sunsets, palm trees and fluttering songbirds. Don’t worry about bringing a hammock over with you, though – you can find them in just about any shop.
Economic Refugees: Even with a small retirement fund, pension or salary, you can live quite well in the Philippines. Rents, local restaurants, stores and most other things are geared towards Filipino consumers who tend to get paid much lower wages than in the West. Us foreigners can take advantage of those savings and also help out the local economies at the same time by spending our money here.
The Women: I would be a total hypocrite if I didn’t mention the fact that older guys have an opportunity here to relive their glory days by being in the company of younger, attractive women. I mean, look at me – my wrinkly bald self would probably not be in a long term relationship with someone of Michell’s caliber (looks, smarts, wit, and charm) if I was still in the West. It just goes to reason. That said, if the ONLY reason you are deciding to live here is because of that – and you can’t adjust to some of the negatives of living here – you’re stay won’t be a long or pleasant one.
The People: It’s an oft-stated stereotype, but you will generally find Filipinos to be much more friendly and outgoing than folks you might find in the West. I actually had to work on my smile muscles when I first got here as coming from cold, impersonal New England, it quite the adjustment. Most Filipinos also speak English well (in addition to Tagalog and a few other local dialects), so communication isn’t an issue. In my time here, I have had nothing but positive experiences with Filipinos – some have even gone out of their way to help me when my bumbling self invariably gets into trouble!
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