Planning a trip in the Philippines?
We’re here to provide you helpful tips about the interesting facts that you need to know before you book your trip to the Philippines.
Philippines is a Southeast Asian country in the Western Pacific. It’s blessed with 7,107 islands — of which only 2,000 are inhabited and these are categorized broadly under 3 divisions: Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao (with Manila as the capital that is located in Luzon).
IT’S MORE FUN IN THE PHILIPPINES
You’ve probably heard of the phrase “It’s more fun in the Philippines!“, a successful campaign of Department of Tourism as it promotes the beauty of the country — and you should totally believe this claim. So, why is it more fun in the Philippines? It’s not just the beaches and the fiestas, but the genuine warmth and friendliness of Filipinos that make the Philippines more fun to visit. The hospitality of Filipinos is incomparable to the rest of the world. You won’t feel like a walking wallet in the Philippines, getting in touch with locals and becoming friends with them is much easier than in other countries.
Philippines is a cheap country to travel. We have budget airlines that regularly hold promo
s thereby giving you rock-bottom prices that can be as low as $10 for a one-way flight. Cost of living can cost around $700 per month in the big cities and can go lower if you go to the more rural areas. (Our currency is the Philippine Peso [Php] and your $1 can already amount to around Php 45.00 which can easily buy you a meal). In some places, you can go to the beach without paying for an entrance fee! Just bring your own food and that’s it!
There are approximately 180 languages and dialects in the Philippines but there are two official languages: English and Filipino (standardized version of Tagalog). This means that there’s no language barrier and the country is very tourist-friendly. But of course there’s still places that can’t speak English fluently but most of the people can understand and utter simple English no matter if they have little to no education, from a 3 year old kid to the 90 year old granny.
There’s a lot of reason why Filipino food is the next big thing! Their breakfast consists of rice, fried egg and “Tuyo” (dried salted fish which is a must try!) We can say that it’s a true breakfast of a champions! We also won’t judge when you inhale a dozen of lumpia in one sitting. Filipinos love salty and sweet food as well, a good example is Adobo (a chicken or pork dish cooked in soy sauce, vinegar, and garlic). A hot bowl of stew or soup is perfect during a cold day, “Sinigang” is one of the best that they can offer! Don’t be afraid to try those foods!
Philippines mainly has two seasons: dry and wet. Dry season starts in late November and ends in May, and the wet season primarily starts in June until October. The capital, Manila, has a particularly severe wet season (peaking July to September). Don’t forget to study the regional forecasts carefully and choose your destination accordingly!
One of the most popular modes of public transportation in the Philippines are the jeepneys which we also often use as a symbol for the country. These were originally made or inspired out from US military jeeps that were left behind after World War II. For the shorter distances on all islands (outside and inside towns and cities), people make use of the jeepneys, multicabs and tricycles. The tricycle, a motorcycle with an attached passenger-cabin on a third wheel, is the cheapest. The big advantage of the tricycle is that it will bring you to every desired place. The multicabs, just as the jeepneys, have fixed routes. For a jeepney ride, Php 8.00 (pesos or $0.18) is the minimum fare; more is added after 4 kms. As for tricycles, it’s usually at Php 12.00 — less if you share with other persons whereas pedicabs are more costly. So it’s really cheap especially if you come from a developed country.
Nowadays, internet connection is a big part of our lives. Most of the people want to document their vacation by uploading pictures on social media and there are people who brings their job with them while they’re travelling. In major cities in the Philippines you’ll not only find broadband, but also free WiFi connections. It is available in many locations such as the metro and shopping malls. However, Internet reliability in the Philippines, especially in the province is still far from the standards you may be used to in your home country, that’s why you need a lot of patience when it comes on the internet connection.
Mindanao has an unjustified reputation for being a ‘dangerous’ place. But such is NOT true! In fact, one of the cities in Mindanao called as Davao has a very low crime rate and is even claimed to be one of the safest cities in Asia. Check and be aware of the latest travel advisories, of course, but once you get to the Philippines you’ll likely soon be laughing at the notion of it as a dangerous country. Relax and explore.
There’s a lot more interesting facts about Philippines, but I’ll leave it to the future Filipino guest posters to discuss those other things. For now, let’s just end it with these things. Hope you enjoy reading!