I am very happy that I live in the Philippines. Can I tell you that you should live in the Philippines? No, I cannot tell you that. I don’t think you can know that until you have actually lived here. But I can give you some clues. I should say that living here is not the same as a long term visit. However, a long term visit would help you very much. I consider the Philippines my home. It is very likely I’ll spend the rest of my life living in the Philippines.
Very Happy To Live In the Philippines
That doesn’t mean I wouldn’t go back to the USA for an indefinite period, I might if the right circumstance came up. A medical situation could send me back to the US but probably it wouldn’t. I’ll have to cross that bridge if it ever comes up. it wouldn’t be a bad idea for me to see a US doctor now. I have been having problems with my hands and feet for the last few months. I am pretty sure I have potentially serious disease known as scleroderma. It cleared up last month but now it has returned. I will have to see how this progresses but I don’t plan on leaving. I would really like to go back for a visit but it is expensive and I have things I need and want to buy here. A car, a DSLR and maybe a ring.
Some kind of emotional trauma might send me back for a while too. But anything that caused me to return to the USA would be temporary. I would leave planning on my return. That would be true even if I had to start over from where I started.
One may wonder why. The answer is an easy one for me. I have greatly increased my opportunities in life by choosing to live in the Philippines. There are three main areas that contribute to the increased opportunities:
- The Cost Of Living In The Philippines
- Women of The Philippines
- Travel Cost In The Philippines
Cost Of Living In The Philippines
My cost of living is substantially less in the Philippines than it was in the USA. For example, I live in a spacious four bedroom home and pay about $270 a month for it. The same house would cost me around $1500 to $3000 in the USA depending on where it was. I’m a half mile from the coast line but I wouldn’t get in the water there. It is near Bogo City and its dirty. Things are improving but Filipino have been throwing waste in the seas for a long time and change comes slow. I don’t have to go far though to be in beautiful clean and clean seas. This home would be out of my reach in the USA. I couldn’t even consider living in a place like this. Palm trees, banana bushes and a monkey in the carport.
There are a couple of area where the cost of living is higher in the Philippines. Electricity cost a bit more and for now gasoline cost more in the Philippines than in the USA. Name brand items will also cost you a bit more here. That is brands from the West. If you insist on having all that, great, I find that many of the more cheaply made items in the Philippines work just fine for me and cost much less. I’ll use those. So what if the sides of my washing machine are plastic instead of metal. That has no functionality and it doesn’t get dented.
There are many things in the Philippines that cost less. I’ve written about it extensively on this website or you could buy The Basic Expat Training Manual where it will be easy to find. It includes my actual budget and a cost comparison of what I spent on things in the USA as compared to here. It comes in three volumes and is close to 300 pages when all three eBooks are considered.
Women In the Philippines
In the USA, I’m lucky if I can get a woman to speak to me. Here, I’m sought out by beautiful “age inappropriate” women. Well inappropriate by the thinking in the USA and some of the expats that come here. Many Filipinos also don’t like it. Oh well, too bad. I like it. In fact, “I love it to death.” That reason alone would keep me coming back.
Hopefully, I’ll never have a reason to look for another partner but if I do, then I will have lots of opportunity. Oh it won’t be easy. Trying to find a girl that’s not going to want ONLY cash will be the hardest part. Some women like older men, many Filipina prefer Westerners but my good looks left long ago. A 25 year old woman is going to be looking for a better life as part of any romantic situation. I know that. That doesn’t mean she won’t fall in love and treat me well. Jessie is far too beautiful to be with me but she’s with me and has shown me more love than I’ve ever known.
Travel In The Philippines
This could be included in the cost of living in the Philippines but it is a huge part of why I love that I live in the Philippines. . I’ve traveled much more in the last four years than I did in the previous 20 years. Perhaps if I included work related travel that wouldn’t be true. However, that wasn’t very fun for the most part. When working, I worked and didn’t get to see the sights. It was all work.
Air travel is quite cheap in the Philippines. This is especially true if you catch Cebu Pacific with one of their famous low cost specials going on. Jessie and I flew to Palawan in July for P6000 round trip. That is what it cost for both of us, not just one of us. That’s less than $75.00 each! That price was a special price and normally it would cost twice that. Still even the full price is much less than one could find in the USA.
I usually stay in a pension house when I travel. It cost me about $30 a night or less. It has a bed and air con and a TV with wireless Internet connection in the room. I can save about $5 if I go without the Internet. Sometimes I do as I want Jessie and I to concentrate on each other rather than the dang computer all the time.
I’ve always been a homebody. I’m not one that needs to be out all the time. I’m quite happy as long as I have a computer, I can usually keep myself entertained with one. Learning, making money online or just goofing off. Physical and monetary limitations also come into play. I just can’t afford to go as much as I would like to nor with my health allow it. I have to go slow. I can do it usually but I have to go slow and get lots of rest. Those issues would only be compounded in the USA, especially the monetary limitations.
I have seen so many wonderful places and the places I plan to go are nearly endless. For now they are endless. I don’t see how I’ll ever see all the things in the Philippines that I wish to see.
Should You Live In The Philippines?
Part of why I am happy to live in the Philippines has to do with who I am. I have a curious combination going on. Though I am a homebody, I am also an explorer. I use to scare my mother to death when I was under five years old. I’d would go missing at 10pm and she’d find me out playing in the trash when I was a toddler. We’d go to a new place, and poof, I’d be gone. Usually into the closest forest or creek I could find. Once she found me on the railroad tracks when I was about five years old. 🙂 That didn’t go over too well. I think because as a teenager she and her sisters use to climb under moving trains! I’m not that crazy.
I’m also a very accepting and adapting person. I’m both of those things because I usually find a way to modify the situation to fit my needs. I don’t too often obsess on the way things are done here. Oh some things bug me, like trying to get something to drink at a restaurant. Or businesses being inflexible in their policies. There are things I do not like about the Philippines but I just do not allow them to be what rules my thoughts. There are too many good things going for me here to allow those things ruin my choice to live in the Philippines.
You will very likely have to adapt once you live in the Philippines. Things will be different here. If you are like me and not well traveled, things will be very different. I had never been out of North America when I moved to the Philippines. To say I was shocked is a massive understatement. I had my doubts for a few days but I hunkered down and thought to myself. “If others can be happy to live in the Philippines than I too can be happy to live in the Philippines.”
If you find change hard it may not be right for you. Most of us find change hard. I do to sometimes. I think what is most important is if you are one that obsesses on things that do not go your way. If you do, the Philippines may not be right for you. How you view the Philippines depends on what is between your ears. For me, it is almost the perfect place to live. Jessie and the other opportunities I’ve found in the Philippines have left me very happy to live in the Philippines.
Filed under: Living In The Philippines
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