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jme

Travel Advice: How to deal with locals?

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jme

I wouldn't mind going to Boracay for a look but I'm worried about a few things:

 

Will I be hounded by locals trying to sell me viagra, sunglasses or whatever, it's bad enough in Cebu city I can imagine it could be worse there? On this subject, how do other expats handle these people? I usually just say no thanks in a firm but quiet voice with a stern look, they still ask a few more times but they eventually go. Once I got annoyed with one that kept pestering me and would not take no for an answer and started following me along a walkway so I said "NO" in a much louder and former voice and he looked quite frightened...

 

The other thing I'm concerned with Boracay is that there will be only bar girls there to meet, I prefer to date local girls from good families etc.. is is just bar girls?

 

One more thing... I'm not a rich tourist, I like to budget so I can travel for a long time, can I find some secure accommodation there for around 1000 - 1300 pesos per night and eat out for 200 - 400 pesos?

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Paul

First, if you are on a budget, a tight one, I don't know that I would visit Boracay. It is known to be a lot more pricey than other vacation spots.

 

Second, I have never been approached by anyone wanting to sell me viagra pills. However, the local merchants will try to sell you native jewelry, trinkets and small gifts as you walk from station to station.

 

Third, I don't recall ever seeing a bar girl there, unless she was with another guy already. There are prostitutes around, but you will usually find them walking late at night.

 

Do note, as I first mentioned, Boracay isn't a cheap place to visit.

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grumpy

Boracay... tourist trap.

 

 

Do some research my friend... there are many beautiful places in the Philippines at a fraction of the cost.

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easy44

I haven't been there for several years so my take may be outdated but...

 

Yes you will be pestered by street and beach vendors, mostly selling local crafts. Usually women and young girls who are pretty much harmless and not overly aggressive. Dongs selling fake watches can also be a pain.

 

Few if any bar girls, almost all freelancers and not that many of them. Many bayots so be careful! The local girls in general are not very good looking for some reason, and usually disinterested. Your best bet is to bring your own hot date from elsewhere. There are many, many girls that would love a holiday in Boracay.

 

When I was there you could find places for P1000 to P1500 fairly easily, but maybe the price has gone up now. Should be able to get a decent meal for P200-400, just don't go to the high end tourist traps.

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Moris

Ok...I hear this often from folks coming from developed countries, who have not seen beggars, viagra sellers, sun glass sellers, flower selling kids, my birthday sir kids etc etc that much...I'm from a third world country and i meet them everyday for the last 30 years and they don't bother me at all..

 

Now the trick is...NEVER MIND THEM...NOT EVEN A "NO" or stern NOOO or even a look at them....I see some tourist think if they engage with them and tell them politely they will understand and go ..BIG MISTAKE...The problem i see with western expats is they give way too much importance to a non-event...Even if you look at them...its all over...In the west..its like you had me at hello...in here..its just a look, an intent in mind and they will have you for the day....DO NOT EVEN MOTION your hands that you don't want it...and Never say...when you get frustrated with them, Do you understand english..i said NO.....they will follow you more ;)

 

Never smile at them and say NO, Never motion through hands at them and say NO, Never EVER look in their eyes and say NO...Just IGNORE THEM and KEEP ON DOING YOUR THING...That is the ONLY way you can rescue yourself from a bad situation...:)...Once they get the >>>>IGNORE vibe<<< from you....only then..you are free...never before...I cannot stress this enough...IGNORE is the only weapon and a defense mechanism ...never ever engage :)...

 

==============

 

I understand, i been harsh enough on poor kids and people in third world countries..but you see...people give money to them when they feel like...that is the only time i engage with them, when i have something to give. When you engage even in a slightest of way...THEY are expecting something....unfortunately...there harsh life has become molded that way...they are treated like trash in every country they are born and even your slightest gesture of looking is a very big deal for them.

 

You will be actually doing them a favor by ignoring them when you are not in a mood to give or buy...they won't waste their time and ours and move on to people who are feeling good and generous...

 

I hear people say, do not encourage beggars by giving them...see, how far that has gotten you..have you seen any decline in beggar pollution lately ? have they stop pestering you now?. We have to face the harsh reality and be practical..They ain't going no where...with corruption and economic realities...its going to stay for the good...They will live with us side by side...they are a part and parcel of our social life's...accept them openly and do you part..

 

Give them when you feel like...and IGNORE them when you don't...and do everyone a favor by not been in the middle of the two :)

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Mark L

Now the trick is...NEVER MIND THEM...NOT EVEN A "NO" or stern NOOO or even a look at them....I see some tourist think if they engage with them and tell them politely they will understand and go ..BIG MISTAKE...The problem i see with western expats is they give way too much importance to a non-event...Even if you look at them...its all over...In the west..its like you had me at hello...in here..its just a look, an intent in mind and they will have you for the day....DO NOT EVEN MOTION your hands that you don't want it...and Never say...when you get frustrated with them, Do you understand english..i said NO.....they will follow you more ;)

 

Never smile at them and say NO, Never motion through hands at them and say NO, Never EVER look in their eyes and say NO...Just IGNORE THEM and KEEP ON DOING YOUR THING...That is the ONLY way you can rescue yourself from a bad situation...:)...Once they get the >>>>IGNORE vibe<<< from you....only then..you are free...never before...I cannot stress this enough...IGNORE is the only weapon and a defense mechanism ...never ever engage :)...

 

I respectfully disagree with you Moris. If I am on the street trying to mind my own business or maybe I'm shopping, I don't want some beggar following me around like a puppy dog. They do not need to see my money or how much I have when I pull it out to buy something I do want. I don't feel safe in a situation like that.

 

I do try the ignore tactic at first, but if they continue to pester me or follow me I do let them know in a very stern way that I do not welcome this behavior. Many times these street people will reach out and grab me or make some physical contact with me. When they violate my personal space in this way I will immediately send them the other way. This has always worked well for me.

 

I love to help others in many different ways, but I will choose when and where I wish to initiate that. I never give to those who expect it because it reinforces a negative behavior. Maybe I can't change them, but I will not reward that kind of behavior.

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jme

first, thanks for splitting the topic, I thought my post had vanished into hyperspace, sorry for taking the other thread a little off topic.

 

Paul, if you go to that big circle area near robinsons in capitol I think it is, just up the road from the Diplomat there are viagra and sunglasses, belts and you name it sellers swarming the area. I use to say to the viagra sellers to come and see me in 30 years and laugh but that never worked. Moris, thanks for the info, I'm sure you are exactly right and that was the feedback I was looking for. From now on I will try the totally ignore approach but I was hesitant to go that route in case I came across as rude and arrogant and insulted the locals. I never give money out either as rule but if I can I will offer to buy them some food at a local shop, I don't mind at all doing that and if they are are genuinely hungry they will take up the offer and it's a delight to see children especially have a smile on their face after a meal.

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Bob Ward

Ok...I hear this often from folks coming from developed countries, who have not seen beggars, viagra sellers, sun glass sellers, flower selling kids, my birthday sir kids etc etc that much...I'm from a third world country and i meet them everyday for the last 30 years and they don't bother me at all..

 

Now the trick is...NEVER MIND THEM...NOT EVEN A "NO" or stern NOOO or even a look at them....I see some tourist think if they engage with them and tell them politely they will understand and go ..BIG MISTAKE...The problem i see with western expats is they give way too much importance to a non-event...Even if you look at them...its all over...In the west..its like you had me at hello...in here..its just a look, an intent in mind and they will have you for the day....DO NOT EVEN MOTION your hands that you don't want it...and Never say...when you get frustrated with them, Do you understand english..i said NO.....they will follow you more :D

 

Never smile at them and say NO, Never motion through hands at them and say NO, Never EVER look in their eyes and say NO...Just IGNORE THEM and KEEP ON DOING YOUR THING...That is the ONLY way you can rescue yourself from a bad situation...:ROFLMAO:...Once they get the >>>>IGNORE vibe<<< from you....only then..you are free...never before...I cannot stress this enough...IGNORE is the only weapon and a defense mechanism ...never ever engage :ROFLMAO:...

 

==============

 

I understand, i been harsh enough on poor kids and people in third world countries..but you see...people give money to them when they feel like...that is the only time i engage with them, when i have something to give. When you engage even in a slightest of way...THEY are expecting something....unfortunately...there harsh life has become molded that way...they are treated like trash in every country they are born and even your slightest gesture of looking is a very big deal for them.

 

You will be actually doing them a favor by ignoring them when you are not in a mood to give or buy...they won't waste their time and ours and move on to people who are feeling good and generous...

 

I hear people say, do not encourage beggars by giving them...see, how far that has gotten you..have you seen any decline in beggar pollution lately ? have they stop pestering you now?. We have to face the harsh reality and be practical..They ain't going no where...with corruption and economic realities...its going to stay for the good...They will live with us side by side...they are a part and parcel of our social life's...accept them openly and do you part..

 

Give them when you feel like...and IGNORE them when you don't...and do everyone a favor by not been in the middle of the two :)

 

There is no one method that works for all occurrences. You have to fit the response to the situation. They can spot a newbie from a resident in a heartbeat. They have gotten WAY more aggressive in recent years. They very seldom bother me anymore other than to lift up their product for me to see. One tried a little bit yesterday on the circle, but a simple "dili" in response sent him packing. I don't go to the circle often, but they remember for the most part.

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loosehead

jme you will have no problem finding accommodation in your price range at this time of the year and you can easily feed yourself for 2-400 at a wide range of restaurants. You really need to see Boracay for yourself to find out why it is one of the premier tourist destinations in asia. It's not for everyone. There are no girlie bars and very few local girls from good families hanging around. Ihere are many gorgeous tourists from other parts of the Philippines, mostly Manila, and also from all over the world. I don't know how old you are but my sons had young tourist girls buying them drinks and wouldn't come back to the hotel until the sun came up. The vendors are around but I didn't find them a pest at all.

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Paul

first, thanks for splitting the topic, I thought my post had vanished into hyperspace, sorry for taking the other thread a little off topic.

 

No problem. People rarely realize it, but if they were to start a new topic in a situation like yours, rather than to simply post a reply to an older topic, they will often get more views and replies.

 

 

Paul, if you go to that big circle area near robinsons in capitol I think it is, just up the road from the Diplomat there are viagra and sunglasses, belts and you name it sellers swarming the area. I use to say to the viagra sellers to come and see me in 30 years and laugh but that never worked. Moris, thanks for the info, I'm sure you are exactly right and that was the feedback I was looking for. From now on I will try the totally ignore approach but I was hesitant to go that route in case I came across as rude and arrogant and insulted the locals. I never give money out either as rule but if I can I will offer to buy them some food at a local shop, I don't mind at all doing that and if they are are genuinely hungry they will take up the offer and it's a delight to see children especially have a smile on their face after a meal.

 

I understand that. I was talking specifically about in Boracay. I never had anyone come up to me trying to sell me Viagra, there. However, on many occasions, I found myself being bothered to sell me trinkets, etc.

 

Around Robinson's and other areas like that, I have been swamped by sidewalk salesmen attempting to sell me everything from puppies to p#ssy.

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Davolives

I have been in Boracay for 3 days now and will be here for several more. You will have no problem finding accomodation in your price range. I saw meals in restaurants today starting at 70 pesos [ chicken,rice,iced tea] - and go up from there. I have been approached by very few vendors- and not one of them was hard to get rid of. [ btw- not one of them was offering viagra] . I have not seen any girls that I could identify as putas - but i have not been looking.

 

 

I have been to Bohol and Panglao island 3x and to Palawan [ but not yet El Nido- am going there in November], and the beach where I am on Boracay [ just past station 1 ie would be station 0 lol ] is by far the nicest beach I have been to in the Philippines. Especially today with the wind and the 3-4 foot waves. No rocks, no sea grass, perfect temperature, not too salty . Absolutely perfect.

Edited by Davolives

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USMC-Retired

There are cheaper places that are nice. Dealing with people is the same here as your country. Just keeping moving. A solid "No" works best. Just do not stop as it shows interest.

 

People are People.

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jme

well forget the bar girl thing, I was meaning prostitutes, I thought they are the same thing, anyway it doesn't matter as I thought I was single as me and my gf had our first argument last night and I thought it was over but I'm glad that it is not the case after hearing from her today... warning, never tell your new gf off about texting her friends when eating out, especially if she is very sensitive and a text freak like mine :D I will still go to boracay soon, even alone as I doubt she can come with me with school and strict parents, i will just enjoy some time alone and do some swimming etc before going back to cebu

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jme

Another thing that is quite funny, well it is now but when I first arrived here I was jet lagged and nervous from little sleep etc... I was walking around the circle looking for a shop but to make things worse I was lost.. The big mistake came where a seller came up to me when i first got there, he was selling belts. In fact I had a new belt on the list of things to buy that day as my other was falling apart. I had been to the department store earlier that day to check prices and the same ones as this street seller had were around 700 pesos. So when he came up to me and offered the same belt for 200 pesos eventually said OK, I actually do need a belt (big mistake I know now), I then realized I had no change and I would have to get a 1000 bill from my money belt and get it changed, this made it more hectic as I could not back off now since I had said I would buy one.

 

So I said to him I will go to the mall and change it there. I was lost and could not find the entrance to the mall and he was pointing me to the drug store after going around in circles and gathering a crowd of followers lol. I eventually got it changed and purchased the belt. As soon as I gave him the 200 pesos there was a swarm of every man and his dog trying to sell me everything you could think of, I tried to find that belt seller to ask his friends to leave me alone hahaha but he was gone and I could not see in front of me due to the now building crowds of sellers and beggars. I started walking to other shops and they all followed me, then a woman ran up to me with a baby that looked starving, she stood and walked right in front of me, she begged and cried, so I eventually gave in and gave her 5 pesos just so I could walk without stepping on her, I think that was the last time I ever gave money to someone. Now I was starting to feel like a messiah as the crowds of beggars and sellers intensified, I eventually escaped and got the hell out of there, looking back it was quite funny now but it was very intense at the time.

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USMC-Retired
warning, never tell your new gf off about texting her friends when eating out, especially if she is very sensitive and a text freak like mine :oldtimer:

 

Sorry to say that is rude behavior. It does not matter what or who she is texting. If she is with you she should be paying attention to you and not that damn phone. My GF, now wife would never have thought to do that or ever done that. There is a time and place for everything. Having a nice dinner is not the time to be texting friends. There is nothing so important it can not wait. I am not against people texting just against it being an annoyance like it was in your case. Where you asked her to stop and it upset her. If she got upset then that is a bad sign. As she does not see the importance of time together with just you to. This is my opinion others can agree or disagree.

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