The Philippines, Not As It Seems
The Philippines is a two tier priced place. On one side you have Filipino prices and the other you have dumb foreigner inflated prices. Basically any touristy place in a major city will be over-priced. Because foreigners will pay these prices and the
upper-middle to rich classes of Filipino society will also pay, for the sake of showing off that they can afford to eat or hang out in these kinds of establishments. If you look at the Philippines as a whole, there aren't many places like
this. But, these are where tourists usually wind up or they are in the better parts of town, so you are getting charged more for the "supposed" nicer ambiance and better facilities.
I agree that halfway decent hotels are overpriced here, but when every decent place gets away with it, there is no incentive to lower prices.
Lack of quality is a big issue in the Philippines, this is mainly due to Filipinos generally not being complainers so nothing improves much over time. I think the way things improve here is when something just breaks and the only option to fix or replace it with is a newer model item that didn't exist previously. There is no concept of preemptive maintenance, things just get fixed when they break.
Food prices vary depending on quality and if they are local or imported. Anything imported from Asia is generally more a little more expensive, like from China or local SE Asian countries. Anything imported from Europe or N or S America is greatly inflated, but the food is much higher quality usually than what you can find locally in the Philippines so people with money here are willing to pay the inflated prices.
Filipinos have no concept of price competition, they just raise prices, almost never lower them to attract business. For example, if business is slow in a bar the logical thing a foreigner might do is lower his prices to attract business or create special discount days to draw in customers. Here in PI, they think," well, business is slow and I'm losing money. So I'll just raise prices a bit and that will make up for less customers"… I have to agree though that prices have been going up considerably in the last few years. When I first came here 8 years ago it was A LOT cheaper than it is now. Even though the Government says that inflation isn't that high here and thus they can lower interest rates so banks will lend more money, I think they are just spinning a story to get people into debt and spend money just like what happened in Europe and America. So there will be a bubble burst probably second half of this decade in Philippines, will be a good time to buy real estate then…
You can stay here cheaply as a tourist, if you are willing to settle for less and know a bit of the tricks to being here. Mostly you have to have a bit of experience being here first before one learns how to navigate things here, or be guided by someone who already lives here. You can easily have a great life here on 50,000 Pesos or more a month if your single and don't go crazy spending money on nightlife all the time or Western foods and dining. If you want to settle down with a GF and have a family, you probably need to bump it up a bit. With a wife/GF and one kid, your living expenses will probably go up at least 20,000 Pesos a month is you live in the Metro Manila area. This is if you to choose to live a middle class life style or above.
Beauty is subjective to the person. Filipinos are not as ugly as you project them to be, but yes, there is only a small minority which would really stand out for their looks or physical appearance. Most of these women never make it into the dating scene. By their 20's they are usually scooped up by local guys while they are in high school or early college. The ones that do get onto the dating market usually have something going against them, whether it's family, single mother, mentally/emotionally unstable, gold digger/player, a P4P girl, etc. Also, one has to be aware that most families will try to send their kids overseas to study or work so a lot of the better looking girls are being sent off to Uni overseas. The better looking are usually girls from a family that could provide decent nutrition for them as they grew up. The good looking girls with decent social standing are readily snatched up by local guys and the good looking whore girls that many foreign guys run into are also being taken out of the bar market, so there are only left overs usually of average or below average girls. Almost all Filipinos with half a brain want to get the hell out of the Philippines for the most part cause they don't feel they can have a successful life here. So there has been a mass exodus of quality ladies over the last decade or more. So as more leave and more guys are trying to find foreign wives, there are going to be less decent 20 something women to hook up with.
Filipinos have all kinds of looks and you can find ones that don't have the monkey face, scarred legs/face, pig nose or Alfred E Neuman ears, but like I said you gotta take your time and wade though the masses and be patient. I've seen a lot of knock-outs and I could go to any large mall in Metro Manila and find them. But if you look at the millions of people in say Metro Manila, maybe when you go to the mall there are only a few dozen that one might find attractive enough for their tastes. However, most guys over 45 don't care as much about facial looks, they just want a young girl with a half way decent body that doesn't look like the fat older Western girls they are used to having to look at from where they come from (even though most of them are considered fat as well). I personally like a nice body and will overlook facial imperfections to be able to hit it. So maybe a girl has a 8,9,10 body for my tastes, but she only has a 7,6, or 5 for facial looks. Average face and killer body is okay with me, but I think most guys want a killer face and will work with an average body. However if I wanted to get serious with a girl then a nice face is a must, the body can be improved with proper diet and exercise. But with one-night stands or casual humping, I prefer nice body than face. As long as I don't have to put a bag over it.
If you think Filipinos are ugly, don't go to Indonesia! They are way worse looking than Filipinas. I was just there a few months ago and basically you can go days without seeing a good looking girl. But I prefer curvier woman, so girls in Indonesia don't have those characteristics. If you like short girls who are either super thin with no tits or ass, or slightly plump girls who think stuffing their face gives them curves, but they still have no decent tits or ass, then go to Jakarta Indonesia.
You can goto the local nightlife hangouts and spend minimally, but do you want to hang out in a drab place with dirty plastic furniture with roaches crawling around and the bathrooms look like they haven't been cleaned since the building was built? yeah you can still get 20-40 Peso beer prices if you are willing to lower your standards to the local Filipinos male one, but most foreigners can't and the locals know this so they will usually charge higher alcohol and food prices cause they know they can get away with it.
What Winston said about current prices is basically correct except Taxis now are 40 Pesos start of meter and go up 3.5P so often depending on KM and time. So Taxis are a bit more expensive now than they were in the first half of 2011. I would say they went up by a third. I never tip girls from bars in the provincial cities, only give them taxi money like 50-100 pesos. In Manila they expect a tip because there is a larger influx of business tourists that go to the foreigner bars and they often just put their expenditures on their business account. This is why Burgos and EDSA Complex have expensive bar fines and lady drinks. The girls expect a tip also cause they have been spoiled by these guys throwing money at them. So I wouldn't bar fine a girl from those places unless you don't need to watch your expenses and are willing to spend well over 5000 pesos just for the barfine and tip. Pick up girls at the bars in Malate are cheaper but the quality and attitude varies so if you are a tourist with a limited time frame then you may or may not have the best experience there. It's luck of the draw.
I used to be a regular whore monger at the bars but I don't really go to them anymore due to my own life schedule, higher prices and lower quality of girls nowadays. I'm not kidding when I say that the good looking girls are being pilfered away through different mechanisms at an increasing rate of speed than just a few years ago. If I didn't have personal commitments here I would much prefer to go to Thailand or Vietnam and date the girls there. Cambodia, I didn't really see too many good looking girls there so it wouldn't be on my list unless things have changed in the past 5 years from last I was there. The only thing PI has going for it nowadays is English being spoken and used here, but even that is slipping away every year because of the atrocious education system here and Tagalog TV being preferred than English channels. I interview Filipinos regularly and test their English skills and every year their overall abilities have been going down on average. In another 10-20 years the average publicly educated Filipino will be on the same level English wise with all the other Asian countries, basically minimal or none. I'm already seeing it when I travel to provincial cities. I'm also seeing it in metro Manila when I'm not in the larger commercial areas.
The Philippines is self-destructing upon itself, it's just that the population living here that hasn't already immigrated from the country can't really see what's coming around the corner for them, with the increasing population and everything that comes with that problem…The average Filipino really has no clue how shitty their county is getting every year unless they have worked or traveled overseas. And basically every overseas worker I've talked to is trying to get back overseas as fast as they can. It's pretty sad actually. Having just a Filipino passport is a really shitty prospect. I'll live temporarily here or visit but I'm glad I wasn't born here and forced to be a Filipino… That would suck!
I have tried to keep an open mind with these submissions about the Philippines, but they have become so extreme that I don't think I will publish any more that are quite so negative.
I can understand that people don't like or even respect a place yet still enjoy living there, but frankly I would rather read a report that dwelled on the positives, or at least had some useful strategies on how to overcome the common difficulties foreigners face.
This, like other recent submissions from the same party, seem nasty, mean-spirited and frankly, full of hate. It's a shame because the author can obviously write, but unless there is a major shift in focus, this is the last one I will publish from this author.