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Are You Sure The Philippines Is The Right Place For You?

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To make a short story long.

 

Yes

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Some interesting thoughts here. I am currently in a half-way house situation, working in Hong Kong and having a wife and children (she was widowed some years ago) in Cebu. To me the real issue is whether or not we can adjust to life as an expatriate or not. I have known people get off a plane in Hong Kong, stay for a few weeks or months and then leave because they couldn't stand the heat, the crowds, living in a high-rise apartment block or just the day-to-day pressure here. Then there are those like me who thought they would try it for 2-3 years and ended up staying, in my case for 28 years. I have worked in and travelled to most Asian countries and one thing that I have found is that a smile, politeness and respect go a long way (as does learning just a little of the local language) and I can honestly say that so far I have never experienced any serious unpleasantness anywhere that I have visited or worked. The main point is that comparisons with whatever country you are from are just pointless - you are not there, you are here, be it Hong Kong, China, Thailand, Philippines or wherever. Things are different.

 

For me, the Philippines and Cebu in particular, are easy to adjust to as I have been a regular visitor for more than 25 years. I think my expectations are realistic and I find that I can live the kind of life that I want in Cebu. In some ways it is better than Hong Kong. Our home in Cebu is much more spacious and a meal at a decent restaurant is far less expensive. Maybe this kind of comparison is pointless as I said because Hong Kong is totally different anyway but so far I really don't feel that I have had to compromise very much at all on the kind of life I have in Cebu. Then again I consider myself extremely fortunate to have had a decent job for many years, I am still working, and I have managed to save hard for my retirement in a couple of years time.

 

But like I suggested, the real question is how adaptable you are and how willing you are to accept that things are different wherever you chose to live. One final thought - selecting a place to live because it seems cheap and/or has a plentiful supply of beautiful women is not the way to go in my humble opinion.

 

well im a hk permanent resident and not a day goes past when i miss the place ..cebu is a natural next step to living in some sterile rabbit hutch amongst the canyons of other over priced rabbbit hutches.

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I'm not trying to start an argument, I'm just curious about something...

 

According to the U.S. State Department's 2007 figures the number of permanent U.S. residents in the Philippines is approximately 105,000 (250,000 total including visitors and temporary residents). This number hasn't substantially increased for several years. Why? Could it be people are either moving to other countries, returning home or just dying? Since I haven't seen many deaths reported, I assume the former. If the Philippines were the ideal retirement location, the U.S. expat population should be growing in proportion to the total number of U.S. retirees. It doesn't appear to be happening. I don't have any explanations other than a word of caution. Clearly making the adjustment to living in the Philippines must not be as easy as we might imagine.

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I'm not sure this is the country I wish to live in for ever?...Why you ask,well several items come to play for me.

1.eating out is a problem

2.never know if you will get shot,robbed,stabbed,etc.

3. the constant humidity and bugs

4. the danger of a car or bike accident

4. the family back home

5.the lack of common language and the need for companions

enought of that...lets go for the short term good stuff

1.great cheap living

2.great respect from the people here in the phils

3.outstanding ladys to live with

4.same good books to read

5. meet new friends everyday

6. live on 25% income is the best

7.never buy house until the 10th aniversary...or land...promise me ok?

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1.eating out is a problem

 

3. the constant humidity and bugs

 

4. the family back home

 

 

That's why you can 'Live like a King' in the Philippines. If you eat at the wrong places you will find yourself always on the 'Throne'

 

I agree that the heat and humidity can wear you down when you come from a cooler climate.

 

Most of the fellows I know here have cut the ties to their family back home. Its not practical to travel back and forth from North America to Cebu very often.

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i saw a list on the best places to retire in the world and the philippines was not on the list i was surprised but thailand was number two... this was a forbes list..

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i saw a list on the best places to retire in the world and the philippines was not on the list i was surprised but thailand was number two... this was a forbes list..

 

Forbes=money

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Forbes=money

 

i have heard it said a few times that tailand is cheaper than the philippines .. i am still wondering what it is that makes developers go crazy to build costal retirement villas in tailand ..and nothing is happening here in cebu whatsoever.

 

on paper cebu looks like it could be another pukett if the goverment was to be behind it but i guess this must be the big difference.

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Some interesting thoughts here. I am currently in a half-way house situation, working in Hong Kong and having a wife and children (she was widowed some years ago) in Cebu. To me the real issue is whether or not we can adjust to life as an expatriate or not. I have known people get off a plane in Hong Kong, stay for a few weeks or months and then leave because they couldn't stand the heat, the crowds, living in a high-rise apartment block or just the day-to-day pressure here. Then there are those like me who thought they would try it for 2-3 years and ended up staying, in my case for 28 years. I have worked in and travelled to most Asian countries and one thing that I have found is that a smile, politeness and respect go a long way (as does learning just a little of the local language) and I can honestly say that so far I have never experienced any serious unpleasantness anywhere that I have visited or worked. The main point is that comparisons with whatever country you are from are just pointless - you are not there, you are here, be it Hong Kong, China, Thailand, Philippines or wherever. Things are different.

 

For me, the Philippines and Cebu in particular, are easy to adjust to as I have been a regular visitor for more than 25 years. I think my expectations are realistic and I find that I can live the kind of life that I want in Cebu. In some ways it is better than Hong Kong. Our home in Cebu is much more spacious and a meal at a decent restaurant is far less expensive. Maybe this kind of comparison is pointless as I said because Hong Kong is totally different anyway but so far I really don't feel that I have had to compromise very much at all on the kind of life I have in Cebu. Then again I consider myself extremely fortunate to have had a decent job for many years, I am still working, and I have managed to save hard for my retirement in a couple of years time.

 

But like I suggested, the real question is how adaptable you are and how willing you are to accept that things are different wherever you chose to live. One final thought - selecting a place to live because it seems cheap and/or has a plentiful supply of beautiful women is not the way to go in my humble opinion.

 

Are you married?...first things first...the guy thatb wants to live some where should be un=married or married?...this is what makes the differance in my mind...do you find it is best to look for a wife or partner in what country?...the rent is about the same...but who is the lady you want to spend time with?

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I've lived for the last ten years in Taiwan, which has has become very prosperous, but things are definitely on the downswing here, with a lot of business shifting to China, and exports down because of the recession. And a lot of the peaking out here has to do with national character--or lack thereof: they are not sure just who they are. They have money on their hands, so it's "I shop, therefore I am." When some Taiwanese run out of money, they start jumping off buildings.

 

But living here has eased me into Asia. I'd taken trips to Thailand, then started visiting the Philippines. The first impressions in Manila were a shock, but over a few more visits to other places, it got into my blood. I find it very easy to live there, and I find it much easier to be positive about my own life--that's all you can do for anyone else--than I do in grossly materialistic Taiwan. Filipinos are much more open--maybe deceptively so, I don't know--than the Taiwanese, Chinese, Koreans, Japanese. A lot of this has to do with the situations they have found themselves in over the last 500 years or so. They have adapted to a lot of uncertainty, and this shows a great resiliency of character. They don't let it bring them down. Any westerner who spends time in the Philippines is in for a few knocks, a few realizations, but stick with it if you like the place. Yeah, keep your guard up too, but don't let ever let things confirm your cynicism: go back home and be angry there.

 

I've always liked politics, which contributes both to frustration and hope. I would tell anyone who is interested in living in the Philippines to read some history, get some understanding, learn Bisaya, Tagalog. Don't just see the place as a banana republic where your dollar goes further. And yes, I do believe the Philippines has a brighter future.

 

I realize that this is not the tidiest of arguments (I've had a few beers); and though I'm married to a Cebuana, I've yet to live there for more than a few months at a time. But there are foreseeable frustrations, and I think they are worth undergoing. In short, I would go there to live full-time in a heartbeat if I could.

 

Cheers

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