Wednesday, April 17

Embracing the Filipino Way of Life When Moving to the Philippines

  • Embrace the Filipino culture through learning the local language via formal education, practice, and language apps.
  • Explore local cuisine by dining at local eateries, learning to cook Filipino dishes, and accepting meal invitations.
  • Find suitable residences in Manila, provincial cities, or beach resorts according to your lifestyle preferences.
  • Deepen your understanding and integration by celebrating local holidays, volunteering, and making local friends.

Moving to a new country can be both exciting and overwhelming, especially if you’re moving with kids. As parents and caregivers, you can be so focused on providing your children with a familiar and comfortable environment that you forget to immerse yourself in the local culture. Moving to the Philippines can be a culture shock for expat families, but embracing the Filipino way of life can enrich your experience and help you feel more at home. Here are some tips and tricks for becoming a local in the Philippines.

Look for a Suitable Residence

When moving to the Philippines, it’s essential to find a home or apartment that suits your lifestyle. This is especially true for expats with children, as you’ll want a safe and clean area. Do some research on different neighborhoods, read online reviews, and look at photos of possible accommodations before making your decision. Here are the choices:

Metro Manila

Manila, the capital city, is bustling with activity and offers a range of condominiums to fit various lifestyles. One worth considering is a pre-selling condo near MOA (Mall of Asia). This location provides a vibrant urban lifestyle and convenient access to shopping, entertainment, and dining venues, making it an ideal spot for expats looking to immerse themselves in the Filipino way of life.

Provincial Cities

Consider moving to a provincial city for a more relaxed and rural setting. Places like Baguio, Tagaytay, and Davao City offer a slower pace of life, cooler climates, and direct access to nature. These cities also maintain a deep sense of community, allowing expats to experience a close-knit Filipino community. Whether you enjoy the serene views of the mountains or prefer the city’s vibrant life, provincial cities offer the best of both worlds.

Beach Resorts

If you’re looking for a lifestyle that embraces relaxation, consider settling in one of the Philippines’ numerous beach resorts. Life by the sea is synonymous with tranquility, offering expats a chance to enjoy the country’s rich marine biodiversity and natural beauty. Places like Boracay, Palawan, and Siargao are renowned for their pristine beaches and clear waters, making them an excellent choice for expats looking for a serene and scenic place to call home.

Learn the Language

Learning the local language is not only a way to communicate with the locals but also a way to bridge the gap between cultures. Filipino or Tagalog is the official language spoken in the Philippines, but many Filipinos also speak English. Here are ways to quickly learn the official spoken language of the Philippines:

Acquire Formal Education

Signing up for a formal language course is a practical approach to mastering Filipino or Tagalog. These classes expose you to the language structure, grammar rules, and vocabulary, providing a solid foundation for your language learning journey. In addition, the interactive nature of these classes gives you an opportunity to practice your pronunciation and listening skills.

Practice Conversing With Native Speakers

The best way to get comfortable with a new language is to practice speaking it. Engage in conversations with the locals as often as possible. This gives you a chance to pick up colloquial terms and phrases, improving your fluency and understanding of the language. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes — most Filipinos are patient and appreciative of foreigners trying to speak their language.

Download Audio Course Apps

Learning a new language is as easy as downloading an app in the digital age. Language learning apps offer courses in Filipino, allowing you to study at your own pace and convenience. These apps often incorporate listening exercises and quizzes, which can help reinforce your learning and improve your understanding of the language.

Explore the Local Cuisine

Filipino cuisine is a unique blend of different flavors and influences. From Adobo to Pancit, there’s always something new to try.

Going to local restaurants and trying out different foods is a fun and tasty way to immerse yourself in the local culture. You can also learn to cook Filipino dishes by enrolling in a cooking class or asking a local to teach you. Filipino families love to share their meals and recipes with others, so don’t be afraid to ask.

Furthermore, most Filipinos are hospitable people and will happily invite you over for a home-cooked meal. This is an excellent opportunity to learn about the regional variations of Filipino dishes and the customs and traditions surrounding food preparation.

 

Living in the Philippines can be a unique and fulfilling experience. By embracing the local culture, language, and customs, you can deepen your understanding of the country and its people. Learning the local language, celebrating local holidays, exploring the local cuisine, volunteering in the community, and making local friends are all great ways to become a local in the Philippines. Remember to enjoy the journey and make the most of your time in this beautiful country.

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