Visiting the Philippines? We’ve Got Local Tips for You

The Philippines is known for its sights, beaches and island way of living. Travelling the country is a great way to get to know the culture, and understanding why Filipino hospitality is held in such high regard. And, have you seen how luxurious these villas are? To get you started, here are some quick tips on how to enjoy your stay in the Phillipines, where it really is more fun, as they say.

Read also: It Girl: How to Travel (in Style) Like Georgina Wilson

#1 Research Your Destination

El Nido, Palawan

If you’re looking for spectacular beaches and islands, Palawan, Iloilo, Boracay, Bantayan Island, and Siargao should be on your radar. Not only do they boast soft, white sand, you can expect good views of corals and fishes in the clear waters.

Food enthusiasts should make a trip to Pampanga for some of the best eats around, known as the culinary capital of the Philippines. On a foodie note, depending on where you do go, try these foods: Lechon in Cebu, Chicken Inasal in Bacolod, Talaba in Iloilo, Pastil in Mindanao, Bicol express in Bicol.

#2 Learn Some Local Lingo

Mount Pulag, Kabayan
  • Do you know how to speak English? — Marunong po ba kayong magsalita ng Ingles?
  • I don’t know how to speak Tagalog. Hindi po ako marunong magsalita ng Tagalog
  • Hello/How are you? – Kumusta?/Kumusta ka?
  • My name is… – Ang pangalan ko ay…
  • Can you please help me? – Maari n’yo po ba akong tulungan?
  • Can you take (drive) me to..? – Pwede nyo po akong dalhin sa…?
  • How much is this? – Magkano po ito?
  • I’m lost. – Nawawala po ako.
  • Please write that down for me. – Pakisulat naman po ‘yon.
  • May I ask for a bargain? – Pahingi naman po ng tawad.
  • Where can money be changed? – Saan pwedeng magpapalit ng pera.
  • I need help. – Kailangan ko ng tulong.
  • How much is the fare? – Magkano ang pasahe?
  • Can you show me on a map how to get there? – Maari bang ipakita nyo sa mapa paano po pumunta doon?
  • Thank you. – Salamat.

#3 Get Up Early

Baler, in the province of Aurora in the Central Luzon

In the Philippines, 6:00-8:00 am and 5:00-9:00 pm are the usual rush hours for students and employees. So if you want to start your day bright and early, plan it around those hours because trust us, you do not want to experience traffic in the Philippines. 

#4 Experience the Local Way of Life

Rainforest in Bohol

There is no better way to enjoy a trip than to experience the local way of life. For instance, instead of constantly making reservations at fancy restaurants, have a few lunches at the local carinderia, where long trays of food are set up (think chap fan!).  And if you want to go the extra mile, try eating with your hands. Another thing you should do in the Philippines is to ride around in the a colourful jeepney and kalesa (horse-drawn calash) — and remember to say “salamat” when you get off at your stop. 

Jet-set, GO!

Photo credits: Main, 1, 23 and 4.

Glenn Domingo

Glenn Domingo is a Filipino travel blogger who loves to experience the uniqueness of his home country. He is passionate about writing travel guides, is currently doing so professionally for Alviera Pampanga, Philippines.

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