Sorry, no Americans

I remember the first time I came to the Philippines.  It was in July of 1990.  While I had traveled to Europe, Africa and South America in the past, that trip in 1990 was my first time to set foot in Asia.  One of the things that I distinctly remember is how friendly Filipinos were, and especially when they found out you were an American.  There was just something in the Filipino psyche that had an admiration or love for Americans, and basically anything American.  It really made my trip enjoyable, albeit sometimes to such an extent that it could be embarrassing.

Over the decade of the 90’s, I made a number of trips to the Philippines, and the very pro-American feelings remained very strong.  We moved here to the Philippines in May 2000, and still, being an American kind of gave you a special kinship with the vast majority of Filipinos.

Over the time that we have lived in the Philippines, I have encountered a few times when I was treated with some anti-American sentiment, but I could count the number of times on my two hands without a problem.

These kids seem to like Americans
These kids seem to like Americans

In the past few years, though, there is starting to be somewhat of a shift that I can detect.  Americans are still liked by the vast majority of Filipinos, but there is also some negative feeling starting to creep in.  Although I can say that this has been creeping in for a few years now, I didn’t realize it until just a few months ago.

As regular LiP readers know, my wife Feyma is involved in the Real Estate business, primarily assisting foreigners who are moving here, or who are coming for a longer term visit and wish to rent a house or apartment here in Davao, rather than staying in a hotel.  On average, Feyma probably helps a half dozen people per month with such needs, in various capacities.  Out of those 6 or so people per month, probably 4 or 5 of them are Americans.

A few months ago, Feyma and I were talking, and the subject of Americans looking for real estate rentals came up.  I have to say that I was a bit surprised at what Feyma told me.  I don’t recall exactly how this precise subject came up in conversation, but Feyma related to me that it was getting a bit more difficult to find rental properties for Americans.  I asked her what she meant, and she relayed to me that she was starting to encounter a number of property owners who had expressed to her that they are no longer willing to rent to Americans!  I have to admit that I was quite shocked to hear this.  I can remember when we first moved here, if you were an American looking to rent a property, you were highly sought after as one of the best rental clients that could be found.

Typical American Tourist
Typical American Tourist

I proceeded to ask Feyma why people were not wanting to rent to Americans.  She relayed to me something that I already knew.  Many Filipinos consider Americans to be complainers.  If anything is wrong at all, they complain.  Heck, a lot of Americans that I hear from always think that any Filipino they are dealing with is out to rip them off, steal money from them, or whatever.  Are there bad Filipinos?  Sure there are, just like there are bad Americans, bad Chinese and bad people from every other country in the world.  Well, according to what Feyma has been hearing from property owners, many of them are just tired of dealing with Americans, and would rather just not rent their place out rather than dealing with Americans!  What a huge turnaround from the situation that existed not that many years ago!

I got thinking about this situation in the past few days after I saw a post over on the LiP Forum.  A fellow named Matt posted an inquiry there.  To be honest, I don’t know for sure where Matt is from, but I think he is American.  Here is Matt’s post from the forum:

If anyone has hired an architect in Davao and can recommend them to me I would appreciate it.
I have already contacted several and none of them seem to be interested. Strange.
They act like they don’t want my money. Is this a cultural thing?

Thanks, Matt

Now, when I read that, I wondered if this was just an extension of the situation that Feyma had told me about.  Maybe the architects that Matt contacted just didn’t want to deal with an American, expecting that there would be trouble, arguing, suspicion and complaining in the long run.  I can’t say for sure, but it sounds that way to me.  I wanted to answer Matt, but to be honest I just didn’t really know what to say.  Saying something like “hey, since you are American, they probably just don’t want to deal with you.” seems to be a pretty nasty thing to say, and I felt bad even thinking of saying something along those lines.  But, that is what came to my mind.

So, fellow Americans, what do you think?  We do seem to have a bad reputation all over the world.  In many countries, American tourists are just tolerated at best.  What can we do to rehabilitate our reputations?  The sad part is that even if you and I act in an upstanding way in public, and are nice to the people that we encounter, it is the general reputation that we are up against, and it is firmly ingrained in many parts of the world.  Maybe it has not fully taken root here in the Philippines yet, or I hope so anyway.  The problem is when there is only one of me, and one of you… we are up against thousands of other Americans who may well be acting like an ass in public here.  Just you or I can hardly fight against an army of others who are misbehaving.

I’m gonna try to do my part.  How about you?

Post Author: MindanaoBob (1353 Posts)

Bob Martin is the Publisher & Editor in Chief of the Live in the Philippines Web Magazine. Bob is an Internet Entrepreneur who is based in Davao. Bob is an American who has lived permanently in Mindanao since May 2000. Here in Mindanao, Bob has resided in General Santos City, and now in Davao City. Bob is the owner of this website and many others.

49 Ways to Make a Living without a Job


    • Paul says

      I have been phili 3 times in the past 2 years. I love to stay in Palawan and Boracay. Not the 5 star hotels, but the 2 and 3 start hotel as there you get to meet the real phili ppl.
      I was there May 2011 for 25 days, loved eveyrday and meet some great ppl.
      I heard alot of Western complaints not just Americans. I got sick and tired of Western ppl complaining about little things. I even jumped in at one hotel I was staying at becasue a Western person was yelling at poor phili girl at the front desk about the tour they took that day and was a longer day then they anticipated. I will not use the colourful language that was spoken. After I stepped in and told them what for they backed down as they did not like me (Australian) having a go at them.
      I asked the Hotel management does this sort of thing happen often. The response I got. “Getting worse”.
      After I left Palawan for Boracay. As I have stayed in the same hotel in boracay 3 times, I have a good relationship with the owner. I was talking about what happened in Palawan and how upsetting it was. The owner said ” Western ppl are forgetting this is Phili not the USA/Australia/Germany. Ppl are expecting far too much, it is not there house back home. They have had to remove ppl from this hotel because of the abuse some ppl have given.
      I love phili and the phili ppl. Wish I could be there 100%

      • says

        Hi Paul – I believe you, and I think you are correct that this is a problem that is getting worse. Maybe westerners are under stress due to the poor economy, I don’t know, but they do seem to be taking out their stress here.

      • Tom says

        Well the way I look at it is the difference in age groups. When I was in P.I. back in the Vietnam days, we were young and had a great time. More laid back then, now it’s go go go go!, and me me me me! People are more rude and self-centered. I think it comes with the times. There are more people in the U.S. now and we are turning into Asians. Chinese, Japanese, Koreans, Indians….and other asian cultures have come to the United States and they are pretty rude here. They bring their cultures with them and expect to have their demands met too. Back when air travel was still a luxury, we traveled less and we were in awe of new cultures. Now I believe this world is one big melting pot, and we are all fighting for more service and quicker results, because we have made more money than our fathers did. My parents were lower middle class, during the war years and into 80’s. Now it seems everyone is rich, and can travel at a whim. So when we go some place exciting, we want the same service we get at home. It’s truly a shame that our bad habits follow us where ever we go. And by “we” I mean every culture.

  1. Neal in RI says

    Honestly I could see how Filipino/s would not want to deal with Americans. When we pay rent we pretty much want everything/issue taken care by the landlord, he owns it he fixes the problems and issues. And I think it is in our character that we are frank and to the point when we have what we feel is a issue and want it taken care of.

    I hope the Filipino nation on a whole doesn’t trend to judging all Americans by the acts of some “Ugly Americans” that they may have dealt with in the past.

    • says

      Hi Neal – I think that the tendency to “judge a group” by the few bad apples is probably pretty endemic in every country. In the States, immigrants are judged. Think about how most Americans consider Mexicans, and others.

      • art wolford says

        Hey Bob,

        It is not how most Americans think about Mexicans, it is how we feel about all the 12 million illegal mexicans here that are demanding rights, expect our tax dollars to support their children in school and etc. I just wanted to clarify there is a difference of being in the country legally or not.


        • Katrina says

          Does Jose Antonio Vargas ring a bell. I wonder how Filipinos queueing in the US Embassy feels.

          I do have mixed feelings about “immigration reform”. From how I read the immigration reform proposals, it’s more of amnesty to illegals than helping people come to the US easier.

          I think the US just needs to enforce its immigration laws…and strictly define the 14th amendment (it is just too vague and open to interpretation) because the lack of those affect a lot of overseas Americans. Just imagine the ridiculous requirements when a US citizen wants to pass his citizenship to his offspring born abroad. Even though I am non-American, I find it ridiculous that people on tourist visa can have a citizen child. I’ve come across Filipino forums where they are discussing that they are going to the US on tourist/visitor visa to give birth in the US. Maybe the State Department should create a “Birth Visa” instead.

          Imagine the case of Flores-Villar. Born to a US father in Mexico but cannot be a citizen because his father failed to meet the 5 year residency requirement after 14 (his father sired him at age 16)… (and now some people are pushing to legalize the illegals)

        • says

          Hi art – I am not in favor of illegal aliens either. But, think about this.. most Americans, at the sight of a Mexican, automatically assume them to be illegal. That’s what I was talking about.

          • Papa Duck says


            Working in the law enforcement/corrections field i can pretty much tell if a Mexican or Central American is illegal. Don’t speak english, no social security number, don’t know where the live, no DL/registration/false tags and a pocket full of money. Alot of them will have a ICE Hold placed on them if they do not post bond first. The biggest thing that irks me about them is that when they get pulled over for drunk driving the officer will not charge them most of the time with DUI because the officer cannot speak spanish to conduct the Breathalyzer test or has no one to interpret for him. I’ve seen so many that could hardly walk be arrested, but only charged with No DL. Great article Bob! Be safe.

      • says

        Thoughts to consider there, Bob. Anti-foreigner attitudes are spreading widely across the world right now. In the US, individual states enact their own anti-foreigner laws, believing that the federal law isn’t strict enough.

        In Europe, the Schengen Visa (which allows free travel between European Union countries) has been suspended or heavily restricted by many signatories.

        In Thailand, which formerly had a tourist visa policy nearly as flexible as the Philippines, visa renewals are now essentially limited to one time only.

        And of course, who can forget the recent outrage in Norway … true the product of an extremely deranged man … but anti-foreigner in nature none-the-less.

        I certainly don’t think it’s a Filipino-American issue only.

        • says

          Hi Dave – I have to say, the thing that really surprised me on this is that property owners told Feyma that they did not wish to rent to Americans. They specifically told her that other foreigners were fine, but they preferred no Americans. Seems a bit surprising, don’t you think?

          • says

            Agree, Bob, but I was commenting on what you yourself said … it seems, overall, more of a world-wide issue, brought to light directly by Feyma’s experience. Maybe yes, maybe no …

          • Pete says

            Thanks for the advice Bob, I will tell them I am Canadian next time… haha nobody hates Canadians. Well You know us Caucasians all look the Same Im sure they were mistaken about the nationality of their bad renter. You know i have had bad filipino landlords making that siraan ng puri, peeping tom neighbors, I am not flipping the bill to make the water running rewiring the entire house etc por libre. I dont mind lightbulbs minor stuff. If i have 3 months advance on a place I know ill never see a centavo again of that money i will have to burn it up. Im not advancing self priming water pumps Paying for a new roof etc.. Thats Overreaching.. All these things are a two way street. Its typical whever you go bad Landlord Bad Tenant. The Us and Them mentality, Categorically lumping People certain Nationalities is Simple Minded. Filipinos need to move away from that kind of thinking so do Foreigners. People are people it would be better to think of people in those terms. That guy specific no good.. not those Americans all bad( i know i rented to one only).
            Note: Hardly Grammatically Correct Almost Never politically Correct

            • says

              Pete,speaking of Canadians, 15 years ago I had an American guy help me paint my house. During the Viet Nam war he was in Army intel/communication.He traveled a lot. He told me whenever he wore civilian clothes no matter what foreign country he was in,he would wear a Canadian pin & sometimes hat. He said,he learned that foreigners generally have a much better opinion of Canadians than Americans.He wore the Canadian pin to avoid trouble. By the way,I also read a survey once that declared “According to foreign woman asked in a survey, Canadian men are perceived to be or actual make better husbands than Americans” I don’t recall the exact details of the survey,but I do recall foreign woman preferring Canadian men,next American as husbands. Of course as I recall,the woman preferred Canadians & Americans over men from any other country. So,I guess a person can conclude that American men on average are a good catch “Internationally speaking” or at least they are perceived to be. Whenever a country is perceived to be rich & or powerful,there will be jealousy,envy,resentment,fear etc, We Americans will need to start worrying if the Canadians & Mexicans start/finish building fences to keep us out.hehe The aforementioned Re: Best Husbands survey is devoid of exact details. It is a general recollection & nothing more.

    • mark baculna says

      I think its a generation gap/difference. Americans of the 50’s until the 80’s probably had grandparents who lived and served in the philippines (back when it was still US territory) and had a much better understanding of the people and culture here.. old people i’ve met we’re generally nicer… don’t worry.. it’s not just filipinos who had issues with rude westerners… my sisters’ father in law (a texan) always complains about how rude the other american guy (living across the street) is.

      Also, i don’t that what you’re experiencing is outright hostility. I think it’s a reaction from filipinos who felt insulted by westerners claims that all filipinos are out to steal or are after them for the money… its probably our way of telling people that not all of us can be bought. Its not a racist thing since filipinos really dont care that much about race (im mixed greek/italian/chinese/filipino and most filipinos arent pure race).

      Its not that westerners like to complain… its because some westerners (especially the younger ones don’t know how to respect others) it’s the materialism of the current generation, whether filipino or westerner who thinks that everyone, everything including pride, honor, and respect can be bought..

      Or maybe thats just people in the cities. People in the provinces sure are nicer :)

      • says

        Hi Mark – I wrote this article some years back, and I have changed a fair amount since I wrote it. I am like the Texan that you described, I also feel uncomfortable with the actions of some of my fellow Americans who live here. I am in my 50s, so maybe you are right!

  2. Roselyn says

    Hi Bob: Maayong buntag. Ang among ginikanan na-ay rental homes nya gibilin sa amo, para sa retirement. Ang akong igso-on ang legal executor. Siya retired na sa U.S. Navy. Gipag rent niya and properties para makabayad sa taxes, insurance, ug dili na mahimo sa squatters. Na-ang managers on-site. Ang among managers mag sulti in reference to “Americano” kong ang renter “Puti” bisag dili Americano. Basa puti, “Americano” and ilang tawag.

    • says

      Maayong gabii sa inyo sa States, Roselyn. Mao gyud, kon puti sila, Amerikano diri sa Pilipinas! Wala nay European o Aussie.. Amerikano lang kong puti! Ha ha… Maayong swerte sa inyong mga balay nga arkila!

      • Roselyn says

        Hi Bob: Salamat kaayo sa imong Binisaya. Ako, wala na nakasulat ug Binisaya sa quarenta ka tuig. Ang ako Binisaya nya sulat didto sa akong lola. Nagpahulay na siya. Ang akong inahan gusto man ug Iningles para makapractice siya. Pero, and akong inahan mag Binisaya kong motawag ko nila dinha sa Filipinas. Kataw-on ko sa akong inahan kog mag-Binisaya ko. Ing-nan ko niya nya ang ako Binasaya “slang Binisaya”. Kamusta na lang.

  3. Kevin Kasperbauer says

    Hi Bob,

    Yam lives in a four unit apartment building in Cebu. It is among a cluster of buildings that form a residential compound. Several months ago a middle-aged American moved in. He was a nonstop complainer, and a loud one at that. He put the entire compound on edge and I’m sure has made the landlord much less inclined to rent to Americans or foreigners in the future.

    His complaints were often about things that I consider part of the cultural fabric of Pilipinas residential compound living, and therefore, should be out-of-bounds for us to try to change. For example, he was constantly shouting about people’s roosters’ noises and he wanted people to keep their dogs from wandering around in the compound.

    Usually he spoke down to all Filipinos as if they were all idiots and he was inconsiderate. He would take his trash and throw it onto other people’s space.

    There was a common gutter system that ran along the back of the entire building. It was shared by each of the building’s apartments. His was the furthest “downstream.” He built a little dam blocking it. That caused everyone’s laundry water and “outdoor kitchen” water to have nowhere to go and flooded the other three apartments. He was completely unapologetic, and thought it was his right to prevent other people’s stream from flowing past the back of his apartment.

    On the other hand, he thought it was none of anybody’s business when it came to his lifestyle. He had an endless parade of women coming and going which was a bit of a scandal to everyone. If the Ayala family weren’t already rich, he personally helped out at least the next generation get that way; he drank San Miguel as if his mission in life was to make them millionaires.

    As I said, he changed the entire atmosphere of the compound, and very negatively at that. Because of Pakikisama, nobody wanted to confront him. And yet he was so much in violation of Pakikisama his impact was much stronger in a negative way than it would have been if he had been in the USA. Over there he would have just been a bit of a “jerk.” But in that Filipino compound his disturbance of the harmony of the compound was so severe I think the residents are emotionally scarred for life.

    Fortunately for everyone in the compound, he got “fed-up” with the way the Filipinos were, and moved out, taking his constant yelling and his harem with him.

    I still can’t get over the fact that he actually tried to get the landlord (who only owns his house and the one apartment building) to order all the neighboring houses to get rid of all roosters.

    • says

      Hi Kevin – I don’t know whether to laugh at the guy or cry over the situation he created. You sure hit the nail on the had, though, of what I was thinking when I wrote the article. One thing you said was that it probably made the landlord leery of renting to Americans or other foreigners… I just want to clarify that in Feyma’s experience on this, the property owners are not adverse to renting to other foreigners, but it’s the Americans that are not acceptable to them any longer. Sad… very sad. Unfortunately, it’s people like your “friend” that are causing trouble for the rest of us!

      • John Miele says

        Bob: I agree with you that Kevin really nailed it… What makes situations like that worse is the Tsismis that surely followed, leaving a lasting impression on everyone. It is why I cringe every time I see and hear a fellow American going on about their “rights” is an obnoxious manner. It paints everyone with the same brush.

        • says

          Fully agreed, John. My only thing is that.. hey, I’ve done it myself, so it’s hard to complain. I am thankful that I moved beyond that “version” of Bob, grew up a bit, and am able to better blend into Philippine society. As Paul T. always says… if we don’t like it, we can always go to the airport and catch a plane home! 😆

        • Scott Day says

          Hi John,
          I wish my fellow Americans would realize they actually leave their right behind soon as they leave US airspace. Just because you are an American does not mean your rights follow you anywhere you go. When you visit or live in a foreign country you live by their laws and customs. I think this is part of the problem and they do not realize they are being arrogant. I wish more people would think of their Miranda Rights and think of “You have the right to remain silent.” Because “Anything stupid you say or do can and will be used against you and every other American.” (I adapted the last one)

          I was taught all my life to respect people and their culture. I know soon as I land anywhere in the world I am basically an ambassador for my country. I respect others and their traditions whether I agree with them or not. So my fellow Americans please THINK before SAYING anything.

    • says

      I think the drunken American syndrome is a real problem.

      I recently had an encounter with a Filipina mom with her two early teen age daughters. She didn’t want to sit near me in Pizza Hut. It was obvious.

      I suspect she was afraid what the American, who is probably a drunk in her mind would say to her or her daughters.

      All the foreigners that can’t leave the underage girls alone are also causing the rest of us problems.

      A damn? Geesh, what a jerk. Roosters? Don’t like those but want to live in a compound? go home yankee.

        • says

          You know, I am surprised I even wrote that. I must have been in a really foul mood. Sorry Kevin.

          I get back around some day.

          Bob, I love the Rate this in the comments, I’m going to have to look for that.

        • says

          You know, I am surprised I even wrote that. I must have been in a really foul mood. Sorry Kevin.

          I get back around some day.

          Bob, I love the Rate this in the comments, I’m going to have to look for that.

      • Pete says

        @ Rusty, I dont think the Filipina Mom was nervous her daughters because she thought
        you were an American. Ang tanging mga pedophiles ko na narinig ng sa Pilipinas ay Canadian at mga Australyano What did u say? dai! wala kang pera sa food dai sumama ka sa akin saglit bigyan kita pera sa fud. Hindi lahat ng mga Amerikano ay Yankees ilang mga Rebels
        well :) Inside every foreign national is a little American trying to bust out
        Katawa ko :) lol

  4. says

    Well I can understand why some may feel that way. I am sure there is many people that come from America that for some reason they think that the Philippines is ran by America and they think that everything should have the same type of treatment as America. How far from the truth they are in my opinion. Now do I feel that who ever you are should get what you paid for or was promised. Yes I do, but do i know that some times that means different ideas in different countries why sure I do. So what i would suggest is that these Americans that are having problems get out of their little bubble and get to know the the Filipino people and their cultural. I remember all the years taking college students to Cancun Mexico and they would get into trouble or they did not like something and they said they would sue or have their family attorney get them into trouble. I would laugh so hard at these kids and remind them about the pep talk I gave them all on the plan ride down that once they got on the plane and sat down they left their rights back at the ticket counter and now they are no longer covered by any american rights, they would all give me the deer in the headlight look and say OK. then when time came and they were in trouble they would ask for help and I would remind them of what I told them. They could not understand why they had been locked in a jail cell for 3 days for throwing gum on the ground. See so i don’t think the problem lies with in the Filipino people, i think it lies with the Americans and other top countries that are used to certain laws and requirements when you pay for something and its not what they feel is standard. These people very fast, learn that they are no longer in Kansas anymore and have been taught a hard lesson. So should Filipino people stop doing business with american people? I say no, but should the Filipino people try a new way to market their rentals and realy describe the rentals and work that they sell of rent out, Yes that way there is no confusion from the start from either side. The person renting or paying for the service will feel better and I think both sides can make a better business relationship for a long time. I dont know if that ran all over the place, but I can see a bright future for everyone as long as communication is the number one factor for each party.

    • John Miele says

      Brent: When I worked in the Bahamas, I was there during spring break one year, sitting in a restaurant in Nassau (like a Bahamian carinderia, next to the street open air). A group of drunk college kids came along and decided to sit across the entire road, lying down in the street blocking traffic in both directions. Needless to say, there were some fuming drivers and the police arrived before long. The cops came, batons in hand, going up to the kid who appeared to be the ringleader…

      “What are you doing here? Get up!!!”

      “Dude, were just partying…”

      “Come on!!! You know you can’t act like this back home! Go lie down somewhere else.”

      A VERY tolerant warning that most US cops wouldn’t give. So what did this group of 20 idiots do? Walked around the corner and blocked another street.

      Five minutes later, 25 cops, about 15 bleeding kids being carted to the pokey….

      Boy, my national pride swelled that day… USA! USA! USA!

      • Scott Day says

        Well they got what they deserved! I hope they got a few more wack from the police on the way to jail! They sound like PRIME upstanding examples of the government schools here in the US. And my asawa wonders why I said when we have kids they would never go to a government school here in the US.

      • Papa Duck says


        Americans should always be ambassadors for the US. It’s so embarrassing when americans cause problems in other countries. When i was in the Marine Corps we had a military exercise in Denmark in 1983. Well one Marine decided he wanted to Rape a local Woman. Well needless to say he got left behind when we flew back to the US. I never found out what happened to him. Take Care.

  5. Loren Pogue says

    Methinks that the reason a lot of people move to the Philippins is to get away from crappy self centered neighbors and a goverment that protects the rights of the low lifes to infringe on and take from the working class. It should be no surprise that the worst of the crappy neighbors just might show up in foreign countries to continue their crap. Especially a country like the Philippins where the people are basicly tolerant and will put up with a lot more than some one from another country might. Too bad some one didn’t call the local police and complain about that guy. A few years in a Fhilippino jail cell may have mellowed him out and made him easier to get along with. In America the renter has all of the rights and the land loard has the problems. A good share of the rental units are trashed and left with unpaid rent by the time the tenant is evicted. Oh well hopefully not too many of this type will make it to these wonderfull islands.

    • says

      I hope so too, Loren. Additionally, I think that not only those who want to get away come, but there is also a large number of Americans who come here for two things:

      1. Sex with young women.
      2. Cheap alcohol.

      The combination is perfect to produce yet another ugly american. As Kevin said when he told about the ugly american in his complex…. the guy was into these two things pretty heavily. It is often that type that makes a bad name for other Americans who just want to live a nice life.

      • Biz Doc says

        kurat ko sa imong pagka-prangka sa imong opinion aning butang bob, abi nako kid-sensitive tanan topics diri sa LiP hehe ” )


      • Gary Zies says

        Maybe it’s better NOT to promote the Philippines to americans anymore. I have witnessed very bad behavior by americans on several occasions and I was ashamed of my countrymen. Many of those tourists are losers in the US. When they come to the Philippines they’re given a level of respect they’ve never experienced at home. In return, they’re abusing the Filipino hospitality and reflect badly on the rest of us.

      • Pete says

        @Bob sometimes the drinking thing is an expat thing lotta expats drink whenever they get together and it becomes a habit. Sometimes the dating isnt so much that it was intentional seeking sex with many women its the inability to find a woman that you deem worth marrying. The younger 19-25 pursue aggressively the western men, a wise man would run from the younger ones. I envy these guys that find a good wife right off one that marrys for the right reasons. I took a break from dating and dating sites. Yeh i think maybe the dating sites may not be the best place to meet that Special Lady. I dont drink anymore Im losing the weight i gained. I am going to try a much slower approach to dating as well, Just make my list of what Im looking for and take it slow real slow.
        BTW You did forget
        3) cheap cigarettes

  6. says

    Hi Brent – You are so correct on so many levels. Like you, I don’t blame the Filipinos, I think that it is a few American bad apples who make life difficult for other Americans here by causing trouble and such. They set a bad example, and it rubs off on all of us. That’s a shame, but it’s also understandable.

  7. maynard says

    This brings to mind when im searching for an apartment or house i always let the little woman ask the rent price without me there first.Then i go look at it,i have had some jump the price by 2000 after they see me.It seems like its the older generation that does that.As far a fixing problems where i live now i buy everything and fix it and take it off my rent or it may not get done.I think on the whole filipinos like my money because they know i will have the rent each month to give them.

    • says

      Hi maynard – I’m glad that you have everything worked out as far as repairs and such. We also have good landlords who are always willing to fix anything that needs it, which I am very thankful for.

  8. Lenny says

    Again an article you write, has something that has happened to me recently, (funny)…..I been wanting to move to the Dumaquete area, and have been looking for almost 2 years for the perfect property, 2 years ago I found the perfect rental, but it was taken…It became available again 3 months ago, and I made an offer thru an agent who managed the property. He sent me an e-mail back saying the owner did not want to rent to an American. I was amazed!!!!

    • says

      Hi Lenny – Ha ha.. yes, I am inside your brain, and document your experiences for the rest to learn from! 😯

      Seriously, it really is amazing, but as I think about it, I can understand why it has gotten like this.

  9. queeniebee says

    Hi Bob, It’s difficult as you say trying to be a reasonable representative of the US when all around are many brash, ignorant, whining and clueless foreigners acting out all around you. I think that foreigners in general have earned a reputation for being irresponsible and not being very respectful or interested in Filipinos as individuals or even being aware of their culture or ways. Many Americans are constantly expecting things to be the way that they have always known them to be, and not willing to compromise or see the lighter side of any situation.
    Also, I think that many Americans seem to leave their common sense at home when visiting or spending time in the country. I read in the Cebu news almost weekly about some foreigner staying at a hotel or local bar acting foolishly and getting themselves in trouble or even worse, injured or killed. It’s no wonder that Americans might be looked upon with distrust, impatience or disdain.
    I guess it takes an attempt by every concientious person to do their best to be mindful of how we as guests are perceived here by others.

    • says

      Hi Queenie – I would agree with everything you said. I see the reports too of Americans down here in the south doing the same kind of things. Often times I don’t even need to look in the paper because I can see it when I go to SM, or anywhere in public. Sometimes it’s quite embarrassing.

      I agree that we all have to try hard to improve the reputation of foreigners, and especially Americans. Problem is that it only takes a few bad apples to spoil the whole bunch!

    • says

      I fully agree, Queenie, that learning the local language is a huge benefit toward becoming more at ease here (and thus less likely to getting feathers ruffled) and also being better understood … much more enjoyable and being better understood.

      I envy Bob. Not because he learned Bisaya, that was work and effort on his part, and laudatory, but because he found a local teacher who knows her job and had the gumption to stick with her teaching for years.

      Learning Tagalog, Bisaya or any other local language is not as easy as one might think. I’m very disappointed now over five ears, I’ve been looking for a Tagalog teacher, I’m willing to pay, and have never found one.

      I talk to many Filipino friends, including ones who say, “Oh,Sir Dave, can’t you teach me how to make money”?

      When I reply, why don’t you teach me Tagalog … how much per lesson and what textbook will you use?

      That’s often the end of the conversation. I’m still looking … not every American who is language-deficient is that way because he is lazy or cheap.

      • queeniebee says

        Hi Dave,
        I’m sure that that’s true of many. I notice in your site posts sometimes though, that you understand and speak more of the language than you give yourself credit for.
        What I think is that many foreigners though, just “don’t get it” how important it can be and are not even interested in even trying.
        I think that having the desire to learn, like you’ve expressed, will eventually lead you to a teacher and greater language skills. It’s never too late to try, Right?

  10. harry lipniki says

    if i like a place i rent..if it needs something fixed i just do it my self no problem..i like to work with my hands i have tools..i like nice yard i make it nice..its like a hobby for me,we all need something to do here besides go to mall or complain..or drink,im not big on the drinking thing

  11. Mark G. says

    I remember the first time I visited Cheryl’s parents house the neighbors commented after I left how well behaved I was for an American. So I think there is some perception even in the province that Americans are spoiled brats. I try to over come that impression everytime I vist now. Not just in the province but any time I travel here.

    • says

      You are certainly right, Mark. The feeling that Americans are rude or obnoxious is prevalent in the Province and in the City! It’s hard to overcome at times!

  12. Loren Pogue says

    On one post it says “I think on the whole filipinos like my money because they know i will have the rent each month to give them.” Having had rentals in the states I was interested in two things when I rented property; The charater of the person I was renting to -*-* and believe it or not , if I thought the person that would rent my property would pay. I guess even though I am a kano I have a lot in common with the Filippno, I too was very interested in collecting my rent in exchange for the guy using my property. According to the trend Bob is saying is coming about it appears that perhaps the property owners are becomming more interested in the character of the people renting their property than in liking a persons money.

    • says

      Hi Loren – In Davao the housing market is very strong. Houses usually get rented quickly. I think much of the Philippines is like this, although I can only speak directly for Davao. So, in the situation here, the house is going to be rented out, no matter who it is. If they don’t like dealing with Americans, or feel that many Americans don’t meet their character standards, it won’t be hard to find a different, more acceptable renter.

  13. AlexB says

    Hi Bob,

    That’s an interesting article. Haven’t come across that but I’ve heard a bit about the Koreans. One local town official commented they would prefer not to have the Koreans in their community.


    • says

      Interesting.. you are exactly right about the Koreans, Alex. I had not thought about that, but the same thing has been going on with Koreans for a longer time, maybe 6 or 7 years now. It seems that Americans are sliding into that position now.

      • Biz Doc says

        hi bob,

        IMHO the perception we pinoys have of koreans is mostly about them being plainly unpleasant to be around with– not that they intend to rub people off the wrong way with their normal, day-to-day conduct.

        with ‘americans’ or caucasians from the west in general, i think it’s more about the perceived tendency to verbalize complaints up front without sugarcoating what they have to say, which pinoys find tedious to deal with on a regular basis– especially property-owners who live off rentals.

        but it seems those who refuse leasing to ‘americans’ are the newbies, with low-rent properties. if the rent is low enough, they wouldn’t want to deal with constant complaints because there’s no budget leeway to fix everything that needs fixing– we’re in the tropics, nothing is spared from the elements : leaky roofs during the rainy season, floods, roach & rat infestation, etc.

        long-standing lessors however tend to either have very long, detailed contracts that stipulate what property fixes are for whose account over the life of the lease, or have enough people on payroll to deal with whatever complaints come their way. these are lessors with rental properties costing at least P100,000 a month, and require the full amount paid– P1.2M for a year’s contract– the moment the lease contract is signed. at that price, they don’t mind complaints, kano or not ” )


        • says

          Without a doubt, Biz, Americans and many other westerners speak frankly, and don’t reserve their opinion. That’s quite different from the norm here, and can put off the local people.

          • queeniebee says

            Hi Bob,
            You’re an American who makes an effert to learn and speak the local language. How important do you think is being able to communicate with Filipinos in their own language as contributing to a shared rapport and understanding between the two groups? I wonder if an American would be so interested in needlessly complaining or going off on a rant if they could do so in the local language? I believe that many times, going off on a rant or constantly complaining in English is a kind of power play over a Filipino who might not be willing or able to join the dispute on an equal footing in English.
            We can all make an effort to set better examples for ourselves as Americans, but I think that the patience and tolerance between the two groups is greatly enhanced by even a basic ability to speak the common language. Many real or imagined frustrations on both sides would dissipate with a better understanding through a shared local language. The language issue is something that is understated by many but shouldn’t be.

            • says

              Hi Queenie – I could not agree with you more! You are absolutely correct. In fact, last night, a friend of mine, and his wife were here for dinner. They live in Cebu and in Manila (splitting time between the two due to business reasons). My friend is from Europe, and we have been close friends for more than 10 years now, and I mean very close. He can speak both Tagalog and Cebuano. I can speak only Cebuano (in terms of local languages). We were discussing this very line of thinking that you have laid out. I told him that without a doubt the #1 thing I have done to enjoy a happier life here in the Philippines is learning the local language. Can you “get by” or “make it” with only English? Sure. But, if you just “get by” you will never have a deep understanding of the local culture or the thinking of local people. If you just allow yourself to slide through with just English, you will miss out on so much of what the Philippines is all about. I personally believe that learning the local language (learn the language most commonly spoken in the place where you will live), it is the best thing you can do to give yourself a happy life, acceptance by the local people, and just all around better experience of living in the Philippines.

              • queeniebee says

                I feel the same way that you do Bob. Being happy in the Philippines without knowing the local language is fine and acceptable for many, but in my opinion, it’s really just the tip of the iceburg to really enjoying, understanding and fully flourishing in the country. I feel that any effort to learn even some of the local language can be so rewarding in many ways.

          • SneakyPete says

            @ Bob you know we Americans are used to speaking our mind, so are expats from other countries. The “New Guys” have to learn to dull their tongues and gain some understanding…This is not an overnight process. Its hard in some places esp. some remote provinces to get what we consider 1st class service when the tools etc. Arent readily available even if they were could the worker afford them. Often these guys are doing the best with what they have. Another thing to consider We take technical manuals for granted Imagine working on some of the automobiles without any reference to tech data. Im hard set to do things my way the Proper Way, and it isnt always feasible or practical or available. People have to cut some slack to these guys they employ for a service and also the salty expat community kind needs to give a little guidance to the “new Kanos” If you remember back and really think, Probably there were times we made the very same mistakes. Though some are hard impossible to help and those kind may just have to learn the hard way unfortunately. I’ve personally done this for others and it made things a lot simpler for the newbie involved.

            • says

              Hi SneakyPete – Oh, I am well aware, and have written many times over the years about my internal struggles to overcome this myself. As I’ve said, not only is it not an overnight process, I believe it takes about 5 years of trying to overcome it.

  14. Loren Pogue says

    Yes Bob the rental market does seem to be good there. My pamangkin just finished a 19 unit apartment building in Olongapo and they had half of the units rented before it was completed. The last two weeks they had people showing up every day trying to leave a deposit. For some reason they wouldn not take it but put their name on a list and told them to come back on the compleation day. I guess I am fortunate as I think they intend to rent to one american, me. After reading how the attitude is changing there I guess I better be on my best behavior or I may be homeless.

  15. Jim H says

    Yes it’s a sad situation, but it is how it is.

    There have been a number of comments on here over the years about foreigners behaving like clowns, and that’s probably only the tip of the iceberg. It brought to my mind a comment by Bob Martin perhaps a year ago, when he said that he would often see fellow foreigners in the malls etc, and give a polite nod, but not attempt to spark up a conversation.

    Here’s an additional thought: I met a lot of American’s and Brits (etc.) in Saudi Arabia, but only on one or two occasions did I ever meet any who were out and out ass*****. Now, I suspect that that is probably because Saudi Arabians believe themselves to be superior to Westerners, who are, after all, there as overseas workers, being paid for services rendered. Bit of a “role reversal” scenario really, compared to the Philippines. Perhaps people only act that way when they are foolish enough to think that they are in some way “special”, rather than a replaceable service provider?

    • says

      Hi Jim – Several years ago, as I recall, I wrote an article that applies here. I believe that the article was about something like the top 5 mistakes I have made while living here, or something along those lines. It’s been too long ago that I don’t remember the exact title. Anyway, one of the mistakes that I said that I had made was thinking I was special, because that is how people treated me, and that it took me time to realize that I was no more special than anybody else. The truth is that Filipinos do treat foreigners like we are somebody special, and it can go to our heads. The key is to not let it get to your head too much, because you will end up making an ass of yourself! 😆 I think that really applies here!

    • Loren Pogue says

      I have never been there but is there booze in Saudi? I am under the impression that if you are drunk in Saudi you would be jailed. If so it probably explains the differance in actions there and in the Philippins. Take away the SM and a lot of people would probably act a lot better.

      • Jim H says

        There’s plenty of Booze in Saudi Loren, it’s just that it’s underground; not that I touched any myself of course. 😉

  16. says

    Hi Tom – Gee, it’s really sad. I wonder why Americans are so like that. What made us that way? I suppose that the only thing I can come up with is that we are all so spoiled by the good life, and we have come to expect that we deserve only the best. It doesn’t always work that way, though.

  17. Tony says

    In defense of my fellow Americans I would say most folks here seem to be painting everyone with the same broad brush. I never complain except to my wonderful asawa unless I have a very good reason. I never expect perfection but I do expect to get what I paid for, nothing more nothing less. Perhaps if some people did demand more….more from their government, more from their social services, more from their education department then life might actually improve for all.

    • says

      Hi Tony – I don’t think that it’s far to say that most are painting with a broad brush. I think that nearly everybody, and I know I have said that “a few bad apples” are spoiling it for all Americans. I have never said that it was a majority of Americans or even a lot of Americans. I feel like I’ve gone out of my way to say it is “a few” who are acting badly, and thus giving Filipinos a bad impression of Americans.

      When it comes to complaining to the government, I personally do not feel that I have a right to complain to such agencies, since I am not a citizen here, nor do I pay taxes here.

      • Charlie Hannert (Charlie Tuna) says

        Hi Bob,
        I take exception to your not paying taxes unless you know some loophole here I don’t know about. I pay 12% VAT tax on almost everything we buy. They even had VAT on an insurance policy we bought the other day.
        Plus we pay rent and in that rent is our money that our landlady turns around and pays her taxes with.
        I consider myself a tax apyer here and that I do have a right to use the available agencies.
        If you are in the U.S. it doesn’t matter who you are, citizen or not you get police protection when you need it and your are guarded by the military and so on.
        Just another point of view.

        • says

          I guess I was not clear. What I am saying is that I do not pay INCOME taxes. Yes, we have a right to use the services here like police, fire or whatever. However, we don’t have a right to tell them that they do it wrong, they should do it like we think they should and that kind of thing. It is not our country, and we don’t have a right to tell them how to run it. If we don’t like the way it is, instead of complaining, we can most certainly leave and go to where we like it better.

    • Biz Doc says

      hi tom,

      you might be surprised, but local culture doesn’t bend too well when being demanded. try coaxing.

      as a pinoy myself, i find that i get stonewalled whenever i demand & expect what i pay for. that’s clearly an attitude i picked up growing up here in PH, but then somehow there’s a HUGE segment of the population that doesn’t quite see that it’s a good thing, or an advancement from values of yesteryears.

      since i don’t intend to leave, i’ll have to bear with the situation and nudge things along on my personal capacity. changing the world isn’t exactly a national pastime ” )


  18. Charlie Hannert (Charlie Tuna) says

    Treat others as you would like to be treated is an oldie but a goodie. So easy to say yet so hard for some to do. And some just don’t care as we all know. The polite and honest people just need to perservere and keep setting a good example.
    We have only lived in the Phils a little over a year and we are now in our second rental house. The first landlady( a Filipina) is just overseeing the houses her mother who lives in the U.S. owns here. This daughter was terrible is all I can say, her and her live in friend fought a lot and were very noisy and played music and karaoke at all times with absolutely no respect at all for the neighbors or their renters. And dogs in the sub to the point that my wife ( a Filipina) was afraid to walk at all as we were attacked more than once. No one seemed to care in the least. We are not complainer people I don’t think, butshould one be able to at least go for a healthy walk without being attacked by a dog ?, I should say a pack of dogs. Some places are good and some are just plain bad. I fixed and updated a number of things at that house and did not charge them for it. I don’t believe it was appreciated at all.
    So we found another house not in a sub and a tad further up the mountain where it is somewhat cooler. We have a great landlady now that “wants” to know if anything needs fixing and has also gone to the mayor of her own accord to see what can be dome about slowing down the speeders on this street. Her idea , not ours. But I do feel it is just a matter of time before someone is killed. Our landlady has had a 2 other renters here before us. One a Brit and one Filipino family. She (a Filipina) says she will never rent to a Filipino again. We are very clean people and that is just the way we are, we pick up leaves and things in the yard twice a day as an example. As you can guess this gets back to the landlady quickly as many people go by this house that know her. She told us she never had renters anywhere that took care of a house and yard like we do. How nice of here to say. She had a no pet policy which we were o.k. with even though we really like dogs. She changed her mind on that and now we have a great pup who is our best friend. If you want respect you have to give it. I am up-grading some things for this lady also at my expense and she is allowing me to do it as I explian why it would be better to have this or that. So being she is so obliging we will be staying in this house a long long time, maybe for good. Now, things may not get fixed or up-graded quickly but it will eventually get done. She has a maintenance guy she uses all the time and he is so good you have to just wait your turn in line. It is worth the wait and keeps him happy her happy so no big deal. Would we like it done sooner ? Sure. But I scratch your back you scratch mine. No problem. But if it is soemthing like no electric ( other than a brownout), no water, or something health related he will be over here in a flash even on Sunday.
    Now, our landlady has lived also in 2 other countries for a number of years, Does that give her a different outlook ? Probably. Bottome line she is great. Once our water was out and she wanted us to come over to her house and shower and spend the day. How nice is that ? We didn’t go as we just went to one of the mountain streams near here and “showered”. I am not saying I never get up-set about the noise and the fact they never enforce any speeding or driving laws, or motorcycles with no mufflers, it does happen. But that’s life. No place is perfect. Bottom line is a pretty darn nice place to live. Some people are super freindly and some not. I don’t see much difference that way between here and the U.S.
    On the other hand I have had some really bad experiences buying used cars here from local dealers. They lie through their teeth and it doesn’t bother them at all it appears. That in itself is a story. No one likes to be blantantly lied to I don’t think. With one guy I dealt with I told him up front that the car had to be a 2003 or newer. No problem he said. Low and behold after getting the thing I discover it was maded in 1996 ! But after bringing this and a few other things to his attention that were not as represented I am a complainer ! This guy is a lawyer to.
    Do you all think I am wrong for complaining that this vehicle is 7 years older than what was agreed upon ? Please let me know on that one. If I am wrong I’ll change my ways.
    Just how is it anyhow that a car made in 1996 and gets imported here as a surplus as it is called has a year on the registration as being a 2008 model anyhow ? This seems very wrong to me. Fortunately I remembered now how to tell when a car is made by the VIN number, or you can look at a little tag on the seat belts where it connects to the floor. That works if the belts haven’t been tampered with. The VIN number is the beat way.
    That’s my story for today folks. That’s life, some days are diamonds some days are stone. Some days you are the pigeon , some days you are the statue.
    Again, don’t give up, treat others as you would like to be treated. The jerks will be self eliminating and I think most folks know that.
    Have a fantastic day.
    Charlie Tuna the ole manook of the sea. :o)

    • says

      Hi Charlie – When it comes to used car dealers, I am not sure there is much honor to be found, no matter what country you are in!

      Sorry to hear that you’ve had trouble with landlords, but I hope your current situation continues to be good!

      • Charlie Hannert (Charlie Tuna) says

        Thanks Bob,
        I hope I didn’t paint a bad picture. I was trying to show two sides. I was trying my best to cut it short as there is more to tell and by far most of it good. I have run across some very honest car repair places here just as a for instance , that wouldn’t take my money to fix something, as they said I didn’t need it even though I thought I did.
        All in all I have a lot more positive experiences in the Philippines than negative ones.
        There is no doubt that most used cars dealers in the U.S. are surley not on the up and up. In 50 + years of driving I have owned over 40 new cars/trucks in the U.S. alone. I am just tired of supporting the auto companies so I have made up my mind to only go previously owned as they say. There’s those “they ‘folks again. Luckily I had enough experience in my younger years working on cars and in the military as an Engineman as we were called, that I know enough that is is hard to feed me too much of a line. I will not make the same mistake twice I am fairly sure. I look at all these experiences as learning curves. Knowledge almost always comes with a price. Gee I think I should have a least a couple of Doctorate degrees by now. lol
        Have a fantastic day.
        Smile and the world smiles with you. :o)

        • Ricardo Sumilang says

          I’m not only smiling at your sense of humor, but also ROTFLMAO reading your entertaining stories, Charlie. OK, Manok of the Sea, if that’s what you call yourself. :)

          • Charlie Hannert (Charlie Tuna) says

            Thanks you Ricardo,
            I am far from perfect but I try and keep a sense of humor.
            Laughter is one of natures best medicines and exercises. I hope we all learn to laugh more.
            You can call me Charlie, you can call me Charlie Tuna, or just about anything, just don’t call me Late for Panihapon.
            I have had so many nicknames people have given me over the years that I have to look at my drivers license once in a while to see just who I am.
            Best wishes and keep smiling and laughing.

            • Mars Z. says

              Hi Manok, glad you still have the same sense of humor some of which you undoubtedly picked up while you were in the service. I was also in the same canoe club you were in, except I stayed for 30 years, where were you station in your 4 years?

              Semper Paratus-Everybody forgotus!


              • Charlie Hannert (Charlie Tuna) says

                Hi Mars,
                Another Coastie / shallow water sailor. Nice to hear from you. I have an aquaintance here near Dumaguete that put in 32 years, yikes !
                Conatct Bob and I think he’ll give you my email address and I’ll fill you in on the stations and duties.
                By the way, I never did learn how to swim. Oh well , that is why we had boats and life jackets. :o) I only wish my so called superiors back then had a better sense of humor. I had some fun times in spite of them, I’ll tell you sometime how I got around the swim test for promotion. lol

        • says

          Hi Charlie,
          Two decades in the Navy and you never learned how to swim? That brought a smile… Got to love those life experiences. Maybe some day I will tell you how I managed to draw “Pro-Pay” as a Tank Commander in the Army, Vietnam tour of duty, and have never ever actually crawled inside a tank.

          • Charlie Hannert (Charlie Tuna) says

            Hi Rich,
            That was the Coast Guard I was in. Search and rescue and many other things.
            I only spent 4 years active duty and I got mighty tired of treading water all that time.
            To this day I cannot swim 10 feet. Oh wait. Yes I can, but unfortunately the 10 feet is straight down.
            Maybe I should have been a submariner ?
            Like I said to Mars that also was in the Coast Guard, that is what boats and life jackets are for.
            I know plenty of guys in the Air Force including the pilots, that cannot fly a lick without their planes or parachutes.
            So I don’t see any difference, do you ?
            We never lost anyone because of my rather limited swimming ability.
            If you lost your anchor though I was the guy to find it.
            Ask Bob for my email address if you want to trade some stories, I’d like to hear your tank & Vietnam experiences.
            Now back to Bob’s topic. Well……………. it’s like this Bob…………….and then……..

    • Papa Duck says


      Really enjoyed your posts. Very entertaining. I’ve learned over the years just to go with the flow and everything will be fine. No use getting upset over something you cannot control. Have a nice day!

      • Charlie Hannert (Charlie Tuna) says

        Hi Papa Duck,
        Yes I agree with not getting up-set over things you cannot control. One will just go nuts trying to do that for sure. I at least learned a few things in my relatively short military time. One certainly learns there or you would never even make it out of boot camp.
        I also think that “Only a dead fish goes with the flow”. There is a time and place to go with the flow and a time to swim up-stream or perhaps cross current.
        I disobeyed an order only one time in my career and got a captains mast because of it. I will never forget that lesson and I would do it agian. Had I done exactly as I was told we would likely all be dead including the one we were rescueing. After being convicted in the captains mast I was asked to stay in the room after most people left. They said they didn’t want me to leave the proceedings with a bad attitude. What the Admiral and Captain told me was that “I did the right thing”. But they had to find me guilty as I did dis-obey a superior. But again they told me I did the right thing. The guy I dis-obeyed was one rank ahead of me and it took him years to get that far. He should not have been put in charge as he was not a good decison maker. We all make mistakes I know I make them everyday. But there is a time and place to not do as you are told. This happened when I was about 19-20 yeras old and to this day I still do not blindly do what I am told by “anyone”. No regrets.
        By the way, there was no punishment and in only 2 years time I was promoted to the same level as the other guy. He didn’t like that! Shortly thereafter he was very very quickly transferred anyhow for stealing from one of us. You don’t steal from your shipmates !
        Now, back to you Bob, I do tend to wander off. I think I am the original A.D.D. poster child.
        I vote for the roosters by the way. We have planty of them here. I am just an old country boy anyhow. But why don’t they have “hen” fights ? Just dunk’em in water and they’ll be madder than a wet hen.
        Cock-adoodle-doooo ………….. hahahaha
        Have a fantastic day………………

    • SneakyPete says

      If everything worked properly all the time, If everything was perfect Most of Us couldnt afford to live here. A 30 year expat told me that, I thought about it and said to myself yeh he has a valid point.

  19. says

    Frankly, I wish the Philippines would be a lot more selective as to the foreigners they let in. It’s pretty sad to say, but by default I tend to shy away from any foreigners I see, by chance, say at the mall.

    If I strike up a conversation, it’s about a 99% chance the subject will immediately turn to all the litany of things that are “wrong’ with the Philippines, and why “they” should fix this or prohibit that and on and on. Often accompanied by loud and bastos language.

    I’m no prude, I certainly can cuss when I lose my temper or I’m in a stressed situation, but I can complete a sentence or two without the F-word or changing the subject to blame the ills of the world on our current president … often accompanied by the N-word. It’s pretty sad.

    As far as property rentals? I might move to another location and rent out my current home in the not too distant future. I wouldn’t, however, dream of advertising and renting my home to a foreigner. I would not want to subject myself to the continual harping, whining and general dissatisfaction with everything.

    The last time I was back in the USA, I couldn’t wait to gte back home to the Philippines. You know why? Every American I met, especially older ones like me, seemed to be nothing but a veritable fountain of complaints, dissatisfaction and both covert and overt racism. And politics? OMG. Believe it or not folks, every problem you have is NOT caused by whichever political persuasion you particularly love to hate. I know that sounds simplistic, but it’s true,

    I really feel I don’t have a country to go home to anymore …thank God for the Philippines, and especially the roosters 😉

    • says

      Hi Dave – A lot of true words there, and words that echo my thoughts too. I just don’t have any desire to go back to the States, and much of what you say is included in the reasons why. Myself.. I’m pretty happy here. Yeah, it’s not perfect, but it’s pretty darn good, IMHO. I certainly don’t think that every Filipino I see on the street is out to get me, in fact, I find most of them to be pretty darn friendly.

  20. says

    no wonder Bob I don’t hear anything from some places I inquired during our stay in Davao…few hotels responded some don’t…only 1 condo replied to me she is based in New York a filipina that owns the place I’m interested…but in reality not all Americans are bad…every nationality has it own bad thing…regardless of how they think for Americans my husband will not change his mind of retiring in Davao;-)

  21. John Dryfka says


    I have discovered that here in Dipolog every Caucasian is consider to be an American. A lot of locals have problems distinguishing between the various nationalities. One time I heard guy say he was from Poland and his local companion replied “What part of the U.S. is Poland in?”

    I have met a lot of arrogant Americans while overseas and have had the chance to tell a few of them that they are not in Kansas any more! I have also meet and equally number of arrogant people from other nations.

    But no where is the sense of entitlement stronger than from my own country.. the good old U.S. of A!

    I have come to a conclusion over the course of many years observing my fellow countrymen in Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and now the Philippines. Only Americans expect a good life. In my opinion it is that strong sense of entitlement that is ruining our reputation overseas.

    I personally believe that if you have a problem with anything in life… look for solutions. That way when you present a problem you will also have several ideas that will improve the situation immensely. This approach has worked well my whole life and in every country I have lived in. I have found the concept to be universally acceptable.

    Moaning and complaining about a problem never get much done except create bad feelings!

    Guess I will wear a tee shirt with a German flag on it if I ever look to rent property in Davao!

    • says

      Hi John – Actually, it is not just Dipolog, generally if you are white, you are considered American. It is pretty much universal around the country. Still, you might keep that tee shirt handy, though! 😆

  22. Cheryl says

    I am a filipina and my fiance is American. Very very nice person and loves my country. I am proud this.

    But many Americans, including many on this site complain a lot. Always make negative remark about the filipines. Makes me wonder why they live my country when all they do is complain. If you don’t like my country leave.

    I think many filipinos still like Americans but are getting tired of the complaining and thinking they better than us filipinos.

    When me and my fiance stayed in condo in Manila the property manager was filipina. She told us that we were welcome any time. She said my fiance was nice and respectful and they appreciate that.

    Many Americans think they are better just because they born and come from America. That is not true. Filipinos have respect also and want to be treated with respect.

    • says

      Hi Cheryl – Thanks for sharing your story here. Yes, there are plenty of complainers on the site. I don’t like it, but not much I can do, really. I’m glad that everything worked out OK with your fiance.

  23. says

    Thanks to all the experts who have shown me the light of why Filipinos don’t like Americans. And I thought it was because of all the 50-70 year old men having wives in their teens or twenties

    • says

      For me, teens is a problem. Twenties is a choice for the girl, and it is not up to me to interfere with what she chooses. I tend to agree with Cheryl, the age thing is not an issue among Filipinos, it is things like respect and courtesy.

  24. Cheryl says

    I know many filipinas married to older man, some much older. Not once have I heard a complaints about the man being older. Many filipinas look for older husband and that fine to most filipinos.

    What is not fine is lack of respect and arrogant behavior of people just because they come from more rich country.

    • says

      Bob, Cheryl
      It’s not that I am against the older married to the younger I have friends who are in that situation but I’m just saying that it could be a reason that a Filipino might not want to enter into a business transaction such as renting with couple like this. These same people will have certain problems in the US.Just as someone commented earlier people don’t like to deal with situations that are different. We have to remember though that no matter how we try to fit into the Filipino community whether it’s to become proficient in the language, accept all the customs, or live there for 50 years we will always be seen as an American and have to accept that we won’t be 100% accepted as anything but. You just have to deal with the misconceptions and do what you can to prove that you aren’t going to be a problem.

  25. Michael says

    Hi Bob,
    Its not just filipinos who have turned off americans. I think you will find in Europe and Australia as well they are generally not highly regarded. Its a shame because you have so many good people who post on your site but there are also quite a few who display the ugly american attributes of not only complaining and thinking they are superior to everyone else but also a loud arrogant pig ignorance born out of what appears to be a very poor education system in the USA which makes educated people cringe. Its sort of a flat earth mentality that nothing of any worth exists beyond the borders of the USA.
    Dragging other western countries into useless wars and indefensible diplomatic positions to serve corporate masters in the US and her friends in Israel has not helped in recent decades.
    While the US was wealthy and all powerful it was tolerated but now that the US sun is beginning to set the grudging fearful respect is waning with it and disrespect is spreading like a cancer.
    What can you do? Nothing in my opinion – the die is cast.



    • says

      Hi Michael – Thanks for stopping by. Haven’t heard from you in a while!

      Yes, I know what you mean. Americans are hated, or barely tolerated in many places all around the world. Of course, the only reason I wrote about the situation in the Philippines is because that’s what this site is all about – the Philippines! 😉

      • Rudi says

        Just one funny example of how Americans are treated. I was traveling in Crete with a girl from Galveston Texas. She had to go to the bank, so there she was in line with her American Passport in hand, at least six locals cut in front of her in the line, it took more than a half an hour to get her money. Three days later we’re back at the same bank, only this time she is wearing my jacket with a large Canadian flag on the back, not only did the previous experience not repeat itself, but people stepped out of the line so she would be the next customer to the teller. Neither of us could believe the difference in the two situations.

        • says

          Hi Rudi – I have been cut in front of in line here in the Philippines plenty of times.. I hadn’t thought, though, that it was because I was American! 😯

    • Papa Duck says


      I think you are a little biased towards americans. Yes there are bad americans, but there are also bad Europeans, Australians, etc. I think your a little off topic too with your negativity!

    • Phillip M. Easton says

      michael: ” loud arrogant pig ignorance born out of what appears to be a very poor education system in the USA which makes educated people cringe. Its sort of a flat earth mentality that nothing of any worth exists beyond the borders of the USA.” this in my opinion is out of line and bigotted. Bob I am surprised this was not adressed as unacceptable?

    • says


      Though, I don’t have much concept of money matters, such as the effects of the US dollar on world per say. I am currently enjoying the low value of the US dollar. Our Australian currency has never been stronger! Buying for us is a lot easier.. overseas…

  26. Val Menne says

    I’m FilAm living in the USA, retired USN (26 yrs.). Of all the years I lived, worked and interface with American, I can count with one hand my experiences as far as discrimination or perceived racism. Americans are straight shooter, they do not pretend, nor beat the bush. In the Philippines, discriminations are rampant and blatant if you’re poor, not connected and/or not related to powerful person. Rich, educated and powerful Filipinos do not like Fil-Am to live permanently in the Philippines, because we know how they operate, they want us just to “visit”.
    During our visits (yearly) in the Philippines, we’ve experience first hand discrimination almost daily. My wife’s relatives are mostly very rich and powerful politician, income derived probably from stealing or corruption. They look down on us and quote ” I will never live in USA, I do not want to be treated like 2nd class citizen. At least the Americans sees the poor Filipinos as human being, but elitist Filipinos sees and treat poor Filipinos like animals.
    Elites Filipinos sees African American as sub human, I know, because i heard them spoke about it. My point is American people are the most generous people in the world. Any cathastrophe anywhere, inclyding IRAN…the American are the first one to help, civilian or US Gov. Unless their behaviour is criminal, they are within their right to get what they pay for. One American w/wife living in the Philippines supports hundreds of extended families.

    • says

      Hi Val – Thank you for stopping by my site, and also thank you for serving our country! So much of what you say is so true, and I know about it from my experience of living here. It’s sad to say, unfortunate, but true!

    • says

      Hi Val – I was surprised by your post. Every country has its own history of bad things. America has a history of racism but they moved out from it already. Discrimination (against the poor) is part of our history, too… But, time changed, people changed… So, i hope that your experience with your wife relatives won’t make your outlook about our country(Philippines) something negative. They(your extended family) doesn’t represent the whole Philippines anyway, but they represent the crook politicians… 😀 For sure, you know most politicians here that they always want previleges against ordinary people. They(politcians) doesn’t want to make a queue and will bypass everybody, they want to get ahead of the traffic all the time, etc… But, i’ve got to admit, discrimination still exist but its not rampant… :)

  27. says

    Your population is over 300 million. You guys have lived in a vacuum where the world revolves around the US. which it did but the cycles are truly moving now and China, etc, will become the dominant world economies, etc. The average American knew/knows an embarassingly tiny amount about the rest of the world. Australia is confused with Austria, for example. It all stems from being the centre of the world and the general ignorance re the rest of the world.

    • Loren Pogue says

      I think it may be a whole lot more painful for a lot of people from other places than it will be for the Americans.

    • John Dryfka says


      On the balance of power shifting… we shall see… the jury is still out, in my humble opinion, and time will tell. I remember how Japan was buying up all the assets for sale in the U.S. in the 1980’s. Then it was the Asian Tiger’s (ASEAN)… now its China.

      The biggest problem China has to overcome is the basic human desire for individual freedom. As China become more successful and its people become well-travel they will begin to compare and contrast.

      I don’t see how China is going to move forward over the long run…

      John in Dipolog

  28. says

    Three of My Uncles have Purple Hearts that they got in the Philippines. Filapinos do not speak Japanese because of Americans. I make no apology for being American. We gave the Philippines their independence. Rev. Bernie, Daddy Bern

    • Scott Day says

      Nowhere in the article said Americans need to apologize for being American. Sure Americans have given their lives for the people of the Philippines and the Filipino people are grateful for this. To be honest the Philippines was still under the protection of the U.S. when the war started. So the Filipino people owes Americans nothing for it was our duty to protect them.

      I agree with Bob your attitude is a great example of what the article was all about.

        • dans says

          hi bob,

          recently, my friend’s daughter arrived in the US and entered a public high school to continue her education, in her “US History” class, the Philippine matters came up a little bit, the high school teacher told the entire class that until now the Philippines is OWNED by the US., if her story is true, well.. it would not surprise me if lots of Americans in the Philippine acted as if they own the country.

            • dans says


              well, I had a discussion with my american “kumpare” his wife is a filipina, he is telling his children that they are half pacific islander because their mom is a pacific islander, and I told him that he was wrong, I told him that Filipinos are not pacific islander and we didn’t come from the island of Polynesia, Micronesia or any part of the pacific island, I told him that he got confused with the Philippine’s location on the map, not because Philippine is located in the sea of pacific that doesn’t mean we are pacific islander, he won’t accept my reasoning as that will hurt his “he-knows-it-all-ego”, a few days later his daughter approached me just to tell me that his dad was wrong and I was right because she asked her teacher about it and she cleared it up for her.

    • says

      But, to be fair, the US also took Philippine independence away after the Philippine-American War some 50 years earlier. I have always been very pleased by my reception in the Philippines.

      • Scott Day says

        The Philippines became a territory of the United States after the Spanish-American War. Under the December 10, 1898 Treaty of Paris, Spain ceded the islands to the United States for $20 million. At no time did the Philippines have freedom till July 4,1946. So America did not take their freedom.

          • Ricardo Sumilang says

            You’re correct, Bob. The Philippine revolution against Spain started in 1896, two years before Commodore Dewey defeated Admiral Montojo’s Navy in the Battle of Manila Bay on May 1, 1898. Philippine Independence from Spanish rule was declared on June 12, 1898 by the revolutionary government headed by Emilio Aguinaldo, and the first Philippine Republic was established in January 1899. The defeat of the Spanish Navy in Manila Bay may have hastened the collapse of Spanish rule in the Philippines. But the point is, the Philippines gained its independence through force of arms against a colonial power in 1898, as opposed to the July 4, 1946 independence, which was GRANTED, and not fought for.

            • Mars Z. says

              It’s the experiment of adventurism and political push for colonialism, thanks for an improper storage of ammos in the hold of USS Maine, or is it really sabotage?

              Bernie, this history links might enlightened you. Some arrogance were shown then, but overall, both countries or all countries have some arrogance attitude against other people.


              “The spirit of imperialism growing in the United States—fueled by supporters of Manifest Destiny—led many Americans to believe that the United States needed to take aggressive steps, both economically and militarily, to establish itself as a true world power.”

          • Scott Day says

            Hi Bob and Ricardo,
            Not trying to offend anyone here. The simple fact is there are three sides to this story and all will be different. I made only referenced this date as to show when the US would consider the Philippines as their responsibility. I again apologize if I offended anyone it was not my intention.

    • Biz Doc says

      hi bernie,

      i highly recommend the book, ‘heroes & villains’ by carmen guerrero nakpil, where you can review the circumstances behind the sham naval battle between spanish & american forces, and the extent of control the philippine revolutionary forces had all over the archipelago before the US “bought” the country from spain.


      • Ricardo Sumilang says

        Hahaha, Biz, I see you’re still plugging the book I wouldn’t read because of the Magellan thing, that of Madame Carmen’s claim that Magellan did not discover the Philippines, but, rather the Indios discovered him. LOL I am further convinced that I would never read the book in light of what you just said about the “naval battle sham” between Spanish and American forces. She really said that? The Battle of Manila Bay was a sham? Wow. Correct me if I am wrong, but didn’t the “sham” (secret collaboration between Spanish and American forces that effectively shunted aside Philippine revolutionary forces from the surrender picture) AFTER U.S. infantry had disembarked from U.S. transports arriving from San Francisco after a month long voyage, effectively denying the Katipuneros’ credit for the triumph over Spanish forces garrisoned in Manila? Commodore Dewey could not disembark from the Olympia to secure Manila after his victory over Montojo, but had to wait for about a month before the first units of U.S. infantry started arriving. This was when the “sham”occured.

        • Biz Doc says

          hi ric,

          you got the facts right on the sham naval battle, too bad the book review i reposted here threw you off when you & CGN are actually on the same page ” )

          i’m sure you’ve forgiven other authors of books on historical events for minor literary turns of phrase that don’t resonate well with you, i’m sure you’ll do the same after reading the book itself ” )


          • Ricardo Sumilang says

            Hahaha, Biz, my main man, you don’t give up do you? OK, I’ll order a copy to see what she had to say about the “sham naval battle” :)

            Hey, Mars, where are you? I was at the Kababayan in Woodbridge this afternoon between 3 and 4PM (Sunday). I stopped by to eat on my way home to Delaware from Alexandria. I had the special plus one other dish. Rice, pinakbet, nilagang baka and gisadong monggo. Yummy. I asked every guy who walked in if his name was Mars. I thought they needed more staff, or another cashier at least, because the line was a bit long. Food is OK, but the grocery portion of the store is pathetic though, they have more groceries over at Manila Oriental on Bailey’s crossroad.

  29. art wolford says

    Since I have been in the remodeling business here in the USA for over 35 years now, I have worked on homes from all walks of life. It seems most complain after moving to American. I just finished working on a home for a couple where the wife was Filipino. she complained about every little thing. So, I guess after people move to the states they really open up how they really feel. I guess when they are in their own country, they just accept the way things are, but that is not how they really feel about it. I hear expats here all the time complaining about how bad it is here. Hmmmmm! So, we go through the same problem with expats complaining. It is less a problem here because it is normal to complain, I think.

    Just my 2 cents worth.


  30. says

    Exactly, Bernie! Thanks for sharing that, because your attitude is what I was trying to point out. You really helped a lot by giving such a great example! :-)

  31. Goran Bockman says

    I went to boarding school with a majority of Americans in Sweden and have stayed in touch with several of them. My standpoint is that most Americans are good and upright people, but a few have this really off-putting Imperial attitude that reflects negatively on the good guys and mind there are plenty of you. Such a shame!

  32. Malcolm says

    Hi Bob
    How are you doing. I have traveled to most parts of the world, and every time I met an American , I have to say they did seem to be loud mouthed complainers who didn`t care whom they upset. So when I went to the USA for the first time, I expected much of the same, I was wrong, I found that everyone was very friendly ( with of course a few exceptions), everyone seemed to love the fact we were British, and treated us very well. So therefore I have concluded that Americans are great , in their own country, but seem to misbehave when they are abroad, yourself excepted of course (;-)). Its a theory, what do you think? Mind you, I have often found the same thing with the British as well!
    All the best

    • says

      Hi Malcolm – How are you doing? Been a while! I hope you are well, and the family.

      Come on, Malcolm – “every time” you met an American he was a loud mouthed complainer? I think that’s a bit of a stretch. Yes, there are Americans like that, but I don’t think every one, or even nearly every one is.

      I’ve seen more than a few Brits causing problems here too! 😉

      • Malcolm says

        HI Bob
        Yes we are all fine. Thank you. Its no good telling me that my experience of Americans is wrong or ” a bit of a stretch”, like it or not that has been my experience. Great at home, loud mouths abroad.
        It was me who told you that Brits can be the same, so no need to quote that. Maybe it is this mistaken impression they have of being superior to foreigners? I personally have had to tell both Americans and Brits abroad to be quiet as they are making fools of themselves.
        All the best

    • John Dryfka says


      First let me say I am American. Born in Idaho and a Navy officer’s brat for the first 18 years of my life. Hence my wanderlust! I have spent 8 years living abroad and working for MNC’s. One of my hobbies is people watching. I enjoy figuring out what make people tick.

      A quick internet search revealed an interesting find:

      From this article…
      “Only about 23% of Americans own a passport and only 10% of those actually leave the country”

      I will not argue how correct this figure is but let me say I believe it’s pretty darn close. This statistic indicates you almost certainly will not meet many “average Americans” here in the Philippines.

      I submit that the 10% of the Americans who ultimately travel form their own unique bell shaped curve or population distribution with respect to personality type.

      At one extreme of this micro-population are the utterly disrespectful, bossy, “Type A”’ personalities who believe they are God’s gift to the Filipino people. These are the ones who embarrass all American’s because they are sure they can beat the living tar out of anyone who challenges them in any way! Most of these guys are usually ex-military and can be found in abundance at the local watering hole!

      At the other extreme is the nice guy who meets a girl online, or through an introduction, and honestly wants to enjoy the beauty and serenity that living in the Philippines can offer anyone who come here with their mind open and mouth shut! There guys usually prefer a coffee over a beer anytime!

      Unfortunately the noisy, embarrassing Americans make a bigger, negative, impact on those around him causing rippling generalizations that affect the entire American expat community’s reputation.

      I am not trying to make excuses for bad behavior but don’t lump all American’s into one basket. I, for one, am trying to make a positive impact here in my town. Ultimately I only feel responsible for my own behavior and do not accept generalizations.

      If your ever in my neck of the Philippines… stop by and I will show you what real mid-west hospitality is!

      John in Dipolog

      • Aaron says

        John, imo that is a very insightful and accurate assessment. I have lived in the Phils, for the most part, since 1997. I have seen the the whole spectrum of foreigners who are here, having worked and lived in Manila, Cebu, and now Davao, as well as travels to many other areas of the country.

        On a perhaps related note, my wife has been told on two occasions (we only arrived in June) by sales staff while shopping in various malls here, that “your husband is so friendly”. When I asked her why they would say that -I was just being normal. She said that both times the clerks told her that generally the foreigners are unfriendly, and never smile.

        I see that myself and sometimes wonder why so many of these people look so glum, or angry or disinterested.

      • Malcolm says

        Hi John
        Thank you for the invitation, I might just do that! Didn`t say all Americans were like that, just said those I met outside the USA certainly were! (:-))
        All the best

      • Pete says

        Kung matandaan i tama kung saan ko tandaan rin, isang tao nakaimpake sampung Filipino sa mga manggagawa sa isang yunit sa isang tiyak na tambalan. Dahil dito nagkaroon ng isang kakulangan ng tubig para sa lahat. Huwag isipin para sa isang pangalawang walang Napansin ko narinig ang lahat ng mga reklamo. May ay isang salita na tinatawag na libelo paninirang-puri nito ng isang tao na haltak ng tuhod reaksyon upang makakuha ng mapataob kapag someones sabi ng asawa sa iyong g / f hey ang iyong b/f barfines na batang babae mula sa Rennosaince. Iyon ay isang kabuuang katha. Ka wouldnt tulad nito kung may sinabi sa iyong asawa na ikaw ay ginagawa na sa likod ng iyong likod at nagsimulang isang lahat out ng digmaan. Nagkaroon din ng isang norweigan na naisip ito ay mahusay na upang sabihin hello sa pamamagitan ng paglakad pakanan papunta sa aking apartment walang katok at upang simulan ang nagbabala sa akin ang unang araw, bago kahit i-on ang ref. (Im hindi ng paumanhin tungkol sa aking reaksyon namin talaga kayong kasama okay matapos na), Pagkatapos i ipinaliwanag na uri ng pag-uugali ay hindi katanggap-tanggap. Tila isang tao ay nakapagpapalimot sa kanilang sariling mga faults na habang ang mga ito ay ayaw kinikilala ang kanilang sarili. (Ano ang tawag na ang rationalionization kumplikadong.) GEE nagtataka ko kung bakit nakuha niya ang galit na ay napaka-dramatiko. May tila sa gumawa ng isang bit ng kalahatan ng kanilang sariling sa ka: dating militar na uri ay uri ng isang, tulad ko kung iyong itinalaga ang uri B positibong ugali sa iyong sarili. Siguro dapat mong reference ang Jung tipolohiya pagsubok ng hindi bababa sa ito ay may 16 mga kalapati butas vs 3 sa isang posibleng D. lol ako ay malayang sumuko ang aking musika ay isang maliit na masyadong malakas sa isang dating videoke bar, ako ay mayroon ding isang bit ng pagdinig pinsala ibinigay sa malapit hindi ko malasahan ito sa isang problema, kapag i ay tatanungin upang i-down na ay i readily.It ay malinaw na maliwanag ilang nagkasala ng overreaching na may isang kabuuang paglisan o pagsasaalang-alang para sa iba. Ang ilang mga tao ay wala na maunawaan ang anumang bagay ngunit isang malupit na tono Kapag Ive inabandunang diplomasya dahil sa bingi tainga ko ay maaaring pumunta sa isang mas confrontational diskarte. Alam mo kung bakit Pilipino ipaalam sa paglalakad ng mga dayuhan lahat sa mga iyon? Dahil sila ipaalam sa kanila, na doesn’t gawin itong tama sa paggamot ng mga tao na paraan. Amerikano ay mas hilig upang ilagay sa na pag-uugali. Kaya, Oo parehong kultura ay maaaring matuto mula sa bawat isa. Ang American maaaring malaman ang mga kaugalian at ang mga Filipino sa maaaring malaman na mas papilit mapamilit tungkol matatagalan pag-uugali nito sa isang pandaigdigang mundo mga na wala iangkop makakuha ng trampled sa. Mayroon akong mga kaibigan na Filipino sa ilang mga kahit kapit-bahay namin tinatrato ang bawat isa na may paggalang, At karamihan wala mahanap ako ng malayo mahanap nila ako friendly helpful at sa ulit mapagbigay.
        “Some people dont understand anything but a harsh tone When Ive abandoned diplomacy due to deaf ears i might go to a more confrontational approach. You know why filipinos let foreigners walk all over them.. Because they let them. Americans are less inclined to do so, Yes both cultures could learn from each other. Foreigners lacking could learn manners and the Filipino could learn to be more forcefully Assertive about intolerable behaviour its a global world those that dont adapt get trampled upon.” The reality of it is their is a large influx in immigration dealing with it, Controlling that influx is not my duty. At a local level locals have to deal with it according to each/every situation. All countries have immigration issues. Passes the mircrophone.

        • says

          Hi Pete – I am sorry, I can speak Bisaya, but I can’t speak Tagalog, so I really have no idea what your comment is all about. I would estimate that 90% of our readers know no Tagalog, so it might be best to post your comments in English.


  33. says

    Bob, you got me thinking this is why I married my wife Jenalyn — she’s more American than Filipino in many ways. She’d likely be like the old guy complaining about roosters crowing in the residential subdivision mentioned above, and she’d definitely “complain” if anything in the rental was broken and needed fixing. Me, on the other hand, would let a lot of things slide because I don’t want to “rock the boat.”

  34. says

    We are taking young people from Poverty Families and helping them get an Education. The only way to break the poverty cycle. We both work as on to GOD and do not care too much what people think of us as a group instead of considering us as individuals. Daddy Bern PTL

  35. says

    We are taking young people from Poverty Families and helping them get an Education. The only way to break the poverty cycle. We both work as on to GOD and do not care too much what people think of us as a group instead of considering us as individuals. Daddy Bern PTL

  36. Bob New York says

    I can’t say I would really blame a landlord there in The Philippines for not wanting to rent to Americans or for that matter maybe other foriegners as well. If they can get the amount they want from someone local or another part of the country without the possible hassle or complaints why not ? Who needs headaches they can avoid.

    I can recall just about every time during my visits where I have had to remind myself I am not in the USA and to keep my temper and for that matter my mouth in check. That can at times, take a little or a lot of extra effort.

    Rather than ridicule the way some things may be done in a foriegn country or to just come out and say the typical ” Ours is better ” routine, I try to remember some of the situations that may at first seem a bit off the wall to me. Eventually I will find out why certain things differ and the reasoning behind it. After I learn the reasoning some things that at first seem so different begin to make some sense.

    From my visits to The Philippines, the times that I have had to remind myself that I am not in the USA and make an effort to keep my cool, are far outweighed by so many wounderful experiences I have had, some of which I have shared with readers on this website.

    I think each and every one of us is in some ways are like a representative of our own home country when visiting or relocating to another part of the world. For me it is worth the extra effort that is somethimes required to leave some kind of good impression and if not that, not to intentionally leave a negative one. Why mess things up for those that follow.

    • says

      Hi Bob – You know, over the years I have seen things done in a totally different way, and at first I often though “wow, that’s stupid the way they do that.” After I learned more, often I discovered that they did it for a good reason, and is actually a rather intelligent adaptation that was not stupid at all.

    • John Dryfka says

      Bob New York,

      Nice post! I agree with you.

      Most of the techniques here have been developed to accomplish tasks without spending a lot of money.

      Of course things can be done faster or better… but only if the funds are available.

      I have a friend who is convinced he is going to teach locals how to fish more efficiently. He will probably feel a great sense of accomplishment as long as he continues to hand out free rods and tackle!

      John in Dipolog

      • Bob New York says

        Hi John,

        Since I first learned of what many jobs pay there in Ph, Funding is something I generally take into first consideration. Many times I really marvel at what Filipinos can do with so little as compared to what we have here in the USA, and for so many of them that I have met to have a good personality and a smile.

          • Biz Doc says

            hi ric,

            you’d be surprised– i know successful entrepreneurs back in my hometown whose resourcefulness & creativity keeps them breaking new ground, despite not having experienced poverty their whole lives.

            IMO people are just born with that trait. resourcefulness is class-agnostic ” )


  37. Matt says

    Bob, I was the one who wrote that about trying to find an architect. I did finally find one who I think I may be able to work with.

  38. says

    Good for you, Shawn. I believe that if we are mistreated we should speak up. But, doing so in a polite and respectful way usually works best. What’s the old saying about honey or vinegar?

  39. Cheryl says

    Someone above wrote about America being the most generous country in the world, they are right about that. But not because of the point I think they were trying to make.

    America is able to help so much because they have the resources to help. As a filipina I can tell you without a doubt most filipinas would happily help in cases of disaster, but we spend most of our time figuring out how to pay for our food for family and our rent. We do not have the income to help as much as Americans.

    We have a home that being built in filipines and if something is not like we want we will tell the builder, but it is how we make the builder know of the problem.

    Pointing out something is wrong with the building is not a problem, being rude and complaining about things all the time is not wanted by anyone. When I first moved to America I live in apartment, there were plenty of things wrong and I pointed them out, but I was polite.

    I would see American in managers office complaining and being rude all the time. So many Americans are spoiled and see the world through only American way. Well I am here to tell you that the world no longer revolves around America, thing change now.

    Americans are mostly really good, but just like my filipino friends and family they only see the world through their countries eyes. This why traveling and living in other countries is good for people. My fiance has good business in America and good life, but he would much rather live in the Philippines because he thinks people there are nicer and more polite. He like the filipino culture better than American culture…and so do I.

    I do think rich filipinos look down on everyone else in my country but you know what? I see lots examples of rich Americans looking down on the average man and woman in America. I think all culture have problems with that.

    • says

      Personally, I believe that Americans are the most generous people in the world. If there is a disaster, Americans will pull whatever money they have from their pockets and send it. I also do not believe that most Americans look down on others.

    • John Dryfka says


      Your right. This “looking down” on others characteristic is part of the human condition and afflicts all cultures and races…

      John in Dipolog

  40. says

    Ideally we should go beyond someone’s colour of skin, the language they speak, their looks, the amount of material possessions they have, etc.. and just focus on the person- and treat each other with respect and compassion. I try to do it but I must say I do have a “big mouth” if I feel that I am being treated unfairly :-(. Sometimes I think that some people have misgivings when confronted with the unfamiliar…. Human beings are so complex and fascinating….And I must say I am one of the many not out to get you Bob. I think you’ve done very well with your website about Wao- for one. Ayu ayo diha.

  41. David J says

    Hello Bob,
    Honestly Bob, My wife and I hope to soon move to the Philippines. I don’t plan to return to the U.S. I told her I don’t want to be around americans when I’m there. I frankly don’t care about them even though I was born here. I can be comfortable in a small place and small business. Don’t need fancy american style living. I don’t really fit in with the U.S. anymore anyway. I prefer the Philippine culture over american culture anyway. Thats the way I feel. Hope to be there soon.

    • Neal in RI says

      David J
      Now that is painting every American with the same paintbrush, so let me have a whack at the Paintbrush!!
      I you feel so anti American why don’t you give up your US Citizenship and any benefits associated with it, I bet you wont!
      If China invades the RP when you are living there I bet you would be running for the US Embassy.

            • Ricardo Sumilang says

              It’s one thing for a non-American to be anti-American – I chalk it off to jealousy, but for an American to be so anti-American?

              Neal and Papa Duck, there’s a Pinoy proverb that likens a Filipino who does not love the national language to a stinky fish.

      • Scott Day says

        Two thumbs up Neal! While I do feel most comfortable in the Philippines I would NEVER give up my US citizenship.

  42. says

    Shawn..I am sorry about what happened to your purchase. There are people out to make a quick buck regardless of where they are. I nearly got conned myself a few years ago while walking around Gaisano. I thought it was a legitimate shop- maybe it was?. I got so overwhelmed that I purchased stuff I shouldn’t have. I have to fight tooth and nail to get my money back. I returned the products but persuade the guy to sign that I returned them- as advised by my friend who worked in the bank. I have to attach the signed receipt when I wrote to my credit card provider. Thankfully, they were not able to charge me. Sigh of relief, a big one. Not sure about the process if it is cash…wooh..and nobody signed the receipt? Good luck.

  43. says

    Hi Deolinda – Thanks! I’m glad you are not out to get me! Truth is, there have been very few people here in my 11+ years of living here who were out to get me at all. I’ve had a few bad experiences here, but very few.

  44. says

    Hi Bob – Being a Brit and reading what I have read here all I can add is, I’m glad my forefathers stayed well clear of the Mayflower when it left Plymouth.
    Seriously there are good and bad in every society but most people seem to remember the bad minority rather than the good majority.
    I was thinking maybe this is the landlords way of increasing the rent.

    • Scott Day says

      Hi Jim,
      It is so true a person you do wrong to will tell 20 or more people where as the person you are good to might tell one person. It true in any culture negative news will travel much faster than positive news.

    • says

      Hi Jim – I don’t think it really has anything to do with raising rent. In the case of Feyma’s dealings, when she inquired with property owners, they specifically asked if the potential renter was American, and when she said yes… they said, sorry, we don’t want to rent to him. So, when you won’t rent to somebody… there isn’t much worry about increasing their rent, since they won’t be renting in the first place! 😆

      • says

        Hi Bob – Where I was coming from was, if Femya was to say to the landlords if the American offered a little more for the rent could they be persuaded to change their mind.
        After all money talks and if property stays vacant for long enough it will deteriorate.
        Just a thought.

  45. says

    What a controversial article you got here bob! But i commend you for coming out and addressing this problem with a probable solution. Anyhow I almost had the same trouble dealing with my relatives about how my hubby’s visit to Phils seemed pleasant but later relayed a different picture. It made me pull out my hair when pictures were posted in Fb seemed to berate the low standard of living in Phils. It garnered insulting comments and talking down to the culture but he did later apologized for it though. At first i try to understand such behavior becoz there are really some truth to the poor state of my country and my undisciplined countrymen. My experience working in a resort exposed me to different cultures while Americans are really hard to deal with they really don’t strike me as perhaps the hardest. Yes it is hard to get away with there complaints and how they expect the highest level of service being spoiled to the standards back home. In fact with all the nationalities I encountered to my humble opinion some of the hardest i dealt with are Britons, Jews (israel) and Japanese (now imagine dealing with there complaints and majority of them don’t speak english?:o) Being married to one now my msg to some American’s is that I hope they will be more open and accepting to the culture as this is after all the third world (as my husband would insensitively note?) becoz as much as we would like to change the system this kind of system has already changed us and to us who been abroad it is easy to look at the problem from above the ground but to an adamant arrogant american who is visiting the country it will surely post a problem not only to your neighbors, your wife and her relatives but to all your relationships in general back there. I am sure good communication is the key to success… so help us God!…Lol=)

    • David J says

      Hello Girlie Odi Morgan,
      You know, when all I knew was America I had the same thinking (looking down on cultures not the same as here). But after meeting my wife and learning the culture of the Philippines and being there before and after we married I have fell in love with life there. What I love is the more simple life. Things have become very complicated in the U.S. Even to the point where government agencies are tell us how we should live and if it is not up to the standard here you are looked down upon. Even people who have look down upon us who don’t. Or they look at you with pity and say thats too bad. But I noticed in the Philippines wether you have or don’t have you are treated with respect. If you don’t have a big nice house that is alright. Now not all Americans are like that but it seems we are seeing that more and more here lately. When I was there I felt less stress than I do here. The fast pace is slowly killing me. I hope to one day have a simple life there. Less stress, happier life. It might not be a rich Wall street life but it will be a happy one. We also would rather have our son go to school there than here. Be very proud of your country. Yes, it has it’s problems but it is still a very beautiful and charming country. Hope to be there soon.

  46. says

    Hi Girlie – Thanks for sharing your thoughts and experiences. To me, experiencing the culture of the country is the best and most interesting thing about traveling to foreign lands! That’s what makes the trip worthwhile!

  47. Loren Pogue says

    Something was said about expetations of how things should be because it is differant and a lot better back home. During my last visit my wife plugged her curling iron in to the 220 plug in and fried the iron. I ask the land lord ( my nephew, an engineer by trade) Why don’t you use differant plug ins here for 220, like we do in the U.S.A. ? His reply after giving me the how dumb can this guy be look “Why don’t they use a differnt plug in for 115 volt in the U.S.A? Most of the world is 220.? I looked at him and replied, “good point”.

    • John Dryfka says


      Most of the 220 v countries I have visited do have different configuration power points! UK, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia. France… etc…

      Philippines is unique in this sense. They use power points imported from the US. I can’t explain why…

      I have a friend who has his house wired with 110 and 220. He constantly has appliances at the electric shop for repair. He has implement a color code system which does not help. I told him to change the 220 voltage power points to the two round plug configuration but he doesn’t seem to care about his repair bill.. hehe

      Ultimately 220 volt systems ares more efficient and came along after the US already started down the road with 110v distribution. One example of increased efficiency can be found in motor coil windings. The coil windings in a 220 vac motor are half the size/length of 110 vac windings thereby reducing resistance and energy needed to run the device.

      John in Dipolog

    • Jim H says

      Laughed out loud at that one. 110-115v has it’s uses; for power tools etc., but 22o should certainly be the international standard, as should driving on the left and spelling the word colour with a “u”.


  48. says

    my philosophy,and belief thru experience,that no matter where you are in the world ,if you treat ALL people ,with respect and dignity, they will return with like manner ..thats a general statement ,obviously with some exceptions..most americans are spoiled from birth

  49. says

    Since I will be moving to the Philippines full time soon I have a question. To fit in there do you have to continually bash Americans and their attitudes? That’s what I get from this article and the comments. If that is the case I need to practice so I will be able to fit in. And no Bob, I don’t think that was the purpose of this article :)

  50. Ron says

    Bob, I am proud to be an American and I find this American bashing unpleasant. I know that perhaps the truth is hurting but it all works both ways. Americans do get charged more, Americans do expect to get what they pay for, etc…. What I am saying does not in my opinion justify rude behavior from anyone. Perhaps that white skin just sticks out more when there is a problem. You moved because people were not respectful of you and your privacy. I know you were not rude to anyone because I know thats not who you are. However the Filipinos you had the disagreement with may differ on that opinion as they paint that wide brush. Marlou rented a nice house with a great landlord. Marlou had neighbors though that were not considerate. She put up with a car parked right on her door step so she had to go sideways to get out of her home. These same neighbors had dogs and would wash and sweep the dog feces and urine right onto her patio. Marlou would never say a word as to not offend. When I got there I was polite but firm and it stopped. The neighbors hated me and I am sure painted me as the bad American. I tend to think other wise. I like everyone else do not condone bad behavior of anyone. I know Americans, Brits, Australians, etc.. are all lumped together with the bad eggs that are there for the sex and beer. But I know yourself, John Meilie, Paul Thompson, Dave Starr, other readers are good people and they are to the best of my knowledge Americans. A landlord that rents a home and refuses to repair what should be a basic function of the property is a bad landlord. Simple as that. If they don’t want to rent to Americans because we know that they should be held responsible then maybe thats a good thing. Sorry for the rant but at times it feels good to rant a little. Ron

    • says

      Hi Ron – I’m not really talking about a house with a leaky faucet or a hole in the roof. The problems that many Americans bitch and moan to the landlord about is like the rooster 3 houses down that keeps them awake. Or the barking dogs half a block away. The landlord has no control especially when it is several houses away, and not in a property that they own.

      Yes, I had trouble with my neighbors in Marfori. I waited until the lease was completed and I moved. I did not berate the owner of the house I was renting about it.

      Anyway, roosters and dogs are part of the culture of the Philippines. If a person can’t handle the noise, then they should not consider moving here.

      Thanks for chiming in with your comment, Ron. Nice to hear from you.

      • Jovencio says

        We just moved to a new house and ONE of our neighbors is complaining about our dog’s barks and I don’t know what to do. Haha! I am a Filipino and so are our neighbors. So who is the bad neighbor?

        When I visit this site. I read the article and all the comments with it. With this article I spent a lot of time reading the comments more than the article and I love it because inputs are really wise here unlike other sites.

        Thank you for a nice site, nice article and nice inputs!

        • says

          Hi Jovencio – Thank you for your kind words. I”m glad that you appreciate my site! I’ve got a lot of work into the site, and it is a good feeling when somebody likes it!

        • Jim H says

          The guy with the barking dog is the bad neighbour my friend, no question there Jovencio. Our dog goes to sleep at night, and only barks if there is a burglar or a prowler. If he barked for no reason, I’d just tape up his mouth with duck tape until he learned not to, coz I’m a lot closer to it and it would annoy me before it annoyed a neighbour. Doesn’t it annoy you?

    • Pete says

      I agree 100 percent with you Ron.. and yes i clinch my teeth everytime i hear that anti American sentiment, Most people Love their countries which are made up of People. You wont hear me say I love my Big Government and its Politicians.

  51. Joe says

    Hi Bob, If the owner gives what is said,then should be no problem. In the Province,a week or more would mean no solution to the rent that is being paid. No landlord on-site or nearby,means no resolution to any problems that arrive! Just my 2 pesos worth!

  52. Don says


    Lots of comments like usual. I have two perspectives, one as professional working in Manila, all of my colleagues appear to be kind and considerate to the Philippino people. Probably because we work with them on a professional level and are treated as equals.

    On the other hand, I ride with a motorcycle group, made up of mostly Aussies, Americans, Canadians and Europeans (as well as Philippinos). The difference between the Aussies and Americans is huge, much more overt racism from the Aussies. But the average Philippino likely assumes all are Americans.

    Also, not to streotype to grossly, but I meet a lot of Americans who move to the Phil because they can barely get by in the US and lack education and come to Phils because the beer is cheaper and women dont look down on them. The educated person typcally has income/retirement funds and does not have that great of need to come all the way to Phils – Florida and Arizona are easier. Anyway, my 2 cents.

    Lastly, my condo has a leaky pipe and already the condo management and owner are claiming its the other responsibility. I have a 12 page lease contract that defines responsibility, but once you pay 12 months in advance, little you can do. Complaining is the only recourse.

    • Biz Doc says

      hi don,

      too bad you’re caught in the middle. you probably need a copy of the contract between the condo developer / management and the unit owner to see for yourself which party has to fix that leak. i’m sure the owner will not furnish you a copy, see if you can secure one from another resident who actually owns their unit.

      responsibility over piping depends on whether it is incoming or outgoing flow, anything else with parts that are handled by unit residents during use are most likely for unit owners’ account ” )


      • Don says

        This is a brand new condo, am the first tenant. Unfortunately, the pipes are behind the counters so they cant tell if its incoming/outcoming. Will need to remove the counters. so the mgmnt says its renovators problem and will only address it once counters are out. I dont have to pay, but its a major inconvenience to have to deal with. My only option is to cancel the lease, but I really dont want to have to move.

        • Ricardo Sumilang says

          Hi Don- Would you happen to know the average rent on a brand-new two-bedroom condo in a nice location in Quezon City? Thanks.

  53. louie says

    Are Americans really complainers? Let’s see if this is true here in the list of Americans most frequent complains and perhaps some possible solution to it:

    They complain about the roosters crow – but they live in the province where roosters are everywhere. If they choose to live in Manila there won’t be many roosters.

    They complain about too much heat – but they choose to live or stay in a tropical country. Perhaps they could live in Baguio City where temperature is cooler.

    They complain about their asawa’s relatives asking money – but they are married to a poor asawa. They weren’t poking knife on you asking for money, they were just trying asking/begging for help and can just simply decline if don’t want to give any.

    They complain about facilities in the airport – but they seem to forget that this is a third world country. Maybe when time the country reach tiger economy status things may change for the better.

    They complain about karaokes – but they lived in rural areas where karaoke is all around. If they would rent a house in a private subdivision there won’t be Karaokes noise because homeowners association would not allow it.

    They complain about tricycles noise – but they live in the province where tricycle is the primary mode of transportation, specially in remote areas. In Makati City areas taxi cabs produce less noise.

    They complain about not many traffic signs and warnings – but they live in boondocks and far flung areas where municipal budget can be used to other projects more beneficial to the masses.

    These are just few of many complains of foreigners here. Perhaps others can supply some more to this list.

    Now the question, are Americans really complainers? Well, I don’t know, I guess it’s for you to judge…

    Note: this not intended to offend, the list is written tonque-in-cheek.

      • Scott Day says

        Hi Bob,
        I agree every nationality complains to some extent and Americans tend to be frank when complaining. And some Americans are bad neighbors and I bet they were a pain to their American neighbors too. I do get the feeling Americans are catching some of the flack for other nationalities shortcomings. I had the biggest problem with my wife thinking everyone who is Caucasian is a American. We would be walking in SM Mall and she would say “babe Americano.” I finally got her to realize a person is not an American just because they are Caucasian.

          • Ricardo Sumilang says

            It goes without saying that the general perception held by SOME Filipinos that all Caucasians are Americans is the deeply-seated memory of American colonization of the Philippines, America’s defense of the islands in WWII, and their subsequent establishment of U.S. military bases, the legacy of which is still felt to this day. More often than not, it’s usually the folks from the provinces who are susceptible to this misperception, and would probably take another hundred years before the “footprints” of America disappear from the Philippine landscape.

        • louie says

          Hi Scott,

          I agree with you that some Americans catch the flack for other nationalities shortcomings because of Caucasians similarities in their features. But in this case of discussion here, the property owner probably knew it was Americans that they don’t want the house rented to, because for every prospective tenants it sure there would be discussion about its nationality before they could actually occupy the house.

          Some problem I see here is perhaps cultural. You see Filipinos in general are not complainers. If they see some minor things not in his/her liking, they tend to just shrugged it off and say “pwede na yan” or it’s just fine. On the other hand other nationalities deal with it differently, they would complain to every little detail. The locals would just smile to be polite, ok if that is want you want, but deep inside the mind thinking other things, you know what I mean. So the next time there would be Americans or other foreign nationals for that matter looking for a house to rent, they just would not allow it, even preferred the property just remain idle without income rather than rent it and later having constant headache dealing with this foreigner. It’s simple, if you can rent the property to some other people less the headache, why choose otherwise.

          Most Filipinos have high regard for Americans, possibly because of its shared history. Some bad eggs maybe is changing it in times, but I think Filipinos would not generalized some few people’s bad actions.

  54. Pita Mike says

    Sorry, I just don’t see it. Every Filipino I met in the Philippines has become a friend, and every westerner I met has always shown to be decent and respectful to Filipinos.

    You’re hanging out with the wrong crowd, or is it perception?

    I love the roosters, hell, I live next to a fighting cock farm! They may crow in the morning, but I don’t have to get up, so let them crow.

    I was kinda ticked when I purchased our home in Dinalupihan, and found the previous owners took the air conditioners out of the bedrooms, and the center counter from the kitchen, but they can be replaced, no big deal.

    I always hear stories about costs. One cost for Filipinos and another for Kanos. Well, I haven’t seen that either.

    Let me ask ya’l something. If you should see me walking down the dtreet with my 17 year old niece, would you consider me a dirty old man, before you even knew me? Perception my friends is just another name for racism.

    Just sayin….

  55. Jim H says

    Even if I saw you walking down the road with your 17 year old girlfriend, patting her bum and nuzzling her neck, I’d not call you a dirty old man. I’d call both of you lucky; you for obvious reasons, and her because she won’t have to wait too long to inherit.

  56. Jawz says

    I’ve noticed that some have feared me when I first came. It felt awkward, and kind of hurt. Since then I tried to make it clear that I am nice. It’s shocked some, because sometimes I go as far as to even live under their own standard. I’mm the I-don’t-care laid back type with most things. I do notice some of my American friends here complain about things not worth complaining about. I end up in my mind complaining about their attitude. lol

  57. Dan says

    I am sure you can not blame the Fillipino rooster for make a little noise…it could be he is only wanting a cute fluffy Fillipino chicken to cuddle to on those long Fillipino nites there! Or, it could be that he is just letting every one know how happy he is that he has many fluffy Fillipino chicken girl friends and wants every body to know about it. Talking about Fillipino chickens, I saw one on the net one time and they sure look different than the chickens here in the USA and sure looked like they would taste nice all fried up Fillipino style….So, I quess if one chooses to live there, they be better off if they could look for the fun or postive side of the things they say they do not like and sure their lives there would be happier……

  58. Mike says

    Perhaps, the increase of foreigners retiring in The Philippines has overwhelmed many Filipinos, as well, Bob?

    When it comes to a safety-related issue, personally, I will speak up, regardless of whether someone will be embarrassed and/or annoyed, or not. If I rent accommodations to someone, I have to know that it won’t fall down on them in a quake, that they won’t receive an electric shock from poor wiring, etc., nor would I live in such a place.

    If I rent a place to an American & he’s a pain, I’ll move him along but wouldn’t hesitate to rent to another. Same goes for all nationalities. To not do so would be prejudice. I do wonder if the unwillingness of some to rent to Americans is because of rental-related complaints, alone.

    The dramatic increase in foreign retirees has sparked anti-foreigner sentiments in some folk. I worry about our development in that it will alter the public beach access. Although the Barangay Captain is very supportive of our plans, I fully expect a neighbour or two to be less than enthused.

    On a lighter side;
    As my boat is licensed in California, I fly the Stars & Stripes on my stern. So, when locals see the boat at the dock they’ll think I’m American! (LOL)

      • Mike says

        Not allowed to switch flags, Bob! It’s going to be the source of much head scratching, as we make our way from nation to nation; Canadian owners of a U.S. boat. All I can do is promise my American friends that I’ll treat their flag with respect, until we re-register under another flag. Perhaps I should fly “echo” “hotel” pennants under my U.S. flag, as a hint.

        I appreciate how a few bad apples can embarrass a nation of decent people. When I was the deputy warden (Can.) in the Davao area, we had an issue with a Canadian who came to The RP each year for a month of debauchery. While the jerk was escorted to the ferry to Cebu at the end of an M-16, it was hard to live down the jokes & criticisms around the golf club & other social venues for awhile. Pretty much all one can do is tell the offender – when possible – that they’re embarrassing more than themselves & hope that they get the point. Still, when it comes to suitable accommodations, is it much different to the situation that you found yourself in, Bob? The noise you experienced from your previous neighbours was unreasonable and you felt that it was important to take a stand. If those same neighbours also rent living accommodations, perhaps they have become less willing to rent to Americans because of the clashes they had with you? Not your fault, but possibly this issue exists.

  59. Bill Bernard says

    Frankly I didnt see any anti-American sentiment in my visits to the Philippines, especially the same kind I see in other Korea, Japan, China, etc.
    As a Canadian most Asians assume I am American, and yes, we are treated very differently when they find out we are Canadians. It is amazing how much better we are received in some countries after they realize we are Canadians.Even our Auzzie frieds react differently. It is strange, because their is very little difference. Both are big countries with many different regional attitudes, but our values are very similar.
    When I worked in the tourist industry most customers were Americans, and after a few monthsI knew how to adjust my approach based on the license plate. People from the southern states were so cordial and polite, relaxed, we always gave them the best rooms. They were similar to Canadian Maritimers. Other states were more like Ontario residents, in a hurry, more abrupt, demanding, impatient. Here-in lies a difference, in Asia, they assume we are all the same.
    I was amazed at the resentment towards Americans in Korea, where the security and the economy exist because of Americans.
    Koreans base their opinions on the conduct of the US military, so you have a very refined well educated culture in Seoul, and military base encompassed by the military. God bless the military, but they didnt achieve world dominance using social etiquette. I once interceded on the streets in Seoul because a large loud Marine was physically abusing a small Korean over a parking dispute. When I challenged the marine to push me, pushed him back, and stared him down, the surrounding crowd cheered for me. As far as they knew I was American. Maybe the marine even thought I was American, who knows, but no doubt everyone who witnessed the incident formed an opinion. However, they will not appreciate that marine for providing security, only they will recall his behavior.
    So, whenever we are abroad, we all represent our race more than our country, but still we also largely represent our country. Maybe it is an obnoxious tourist in China, a marine in Korea, or a wining retiree in Davao, locals will all form or reformulate their opinion based on their contact with us.
    So folks, represent your country and race well. If you cant, stay home.

    • Pita Mike says

      Hi Bill, I was stationed in Korea with the Army at Camp Humphreys, I spend time in Osan near the Air Base as well, I always thought the Koreans treated me very nice. I know some Americans who dreaded it when the 2nd Infantry returned from the DMZ, they would tear the town up, dring all the booze, harrass the women, then leave. These were mainly 19-22 yr old boys who were never away from home before. Unfortunately, the U.S. government does not punish offenders unless legal action is taken or a national incident occurs. Nobody likes drunken foreigners who disrespect their country.

      But I agree, if you don’t respect yourself, then you won’t respect others. Like I said, I haven’t seen it in Bataan, and I hope I never will.

      • DANG says

        Hi Pita Mike,

        Glad to hear that you havent seen that behaviour in Bataan. I am from Balanga, Bataan and proud to be a Balangueño.

        Would you mind me asking, where are you in Bataan?

        • Papa Duck says


          My G/F lives in Pilar, Bataan right down from Balanga. She runs a internet cafe. Take care have a nice day.

    • Ricardo Sumilang says

      This ought to be a good movie. I love the earthtone colors employed in both the movie poster and the movie itself, as they bring out the natural beauty of rural Philippines. The movie trailer indicates an unbiased depiction of the horrors of the Philippine American War, but I doubt, though, that the movie would generate more resentment against present-day Americans than there already exists. Afterall, sons do not bear the sins of their fathers. or do they? However, although the movie is a fictionalized drama, the setting is factual, which does nothing but reinforce the long-held belief by most Filipinos about the atrocities committed by a U.S. Army hardened and embittered by years of American Indian wars back home.

      I hope this movie about the Philippine American War will not be the last, because there is so much more about Philippine history that deserve world-wide awareness. Hand in hand with the Philippine American War was a lesser-known struggle. In 1899, the day after Spanish garrisons moved out of Mindanao and Sulu in defeat, the Americans came – a new foreign power to be resisted fiercely by the Moros or Mohammedans, as they were then called by the Americans. A Steven Spielberg movie about the U.S. Army’s pacification campaign in Mindanao and Sulu that led to the Bates Treaty, and. finally, culminating in an epic battle atop Bud Bagsak perhaps would be a good start.

  60. David S. says

    I can’t help but be amused by this topic. While some Americans might be overly vocal at times, most of us were taught to value other human beings, even those we disagree with.

    There’s an immense divide between the wealthy and the poor in third world countries like the Philippines. The poor are treated almost like cattle while the rich and powerful get away with proverbial, and in some cases, actual murder. Rich filipinos regularly treat their poorer brothers and sister far worse than even the most depraved Americans.

    The national media sport is to point a finger at the strange looking foreigners and try and hang them in effigay whenever possible so the public won’t examine too closely what their own politicaians are doing to them.

  61. Jaye says

    Good day,

    I have been reading all the post and I must be missing something. Let me explain….My husband has a great desire to move to the Phillipines, the weather, nature, people, he has chattted with, a nice retired life in a good place.
    I have been reading , researching and getting quite a panic going, because when I enter a new country, I want to be the most well mannered representative of myself, my family and my nation. I have been setting my standard of learning up a notch to be ready for this new life.
    Than I read how some americans are giving a bad light to of nation.
    I am also a little scared because I am a black woman married to a white man. I have had enough of the race card in my life… and would like to retire in positive peace.
    Any thoughts, words of wisdom or knowledge greatly appreciated.
    Be blessed,
    Mama Jaye’

    • says

      Hi Jaye – I would highly recommend that before making any decision to move to the Philippines for retirement, you should come here first and stay for a month or two to see if you like the place.

      I will say this… the Philippines is much like the US was 50 or more years ago when it comes to race. The “N” word is used freely here when referring to black people. It’s not so much a prejudice or hate against black people, rather that is what the people here have heard, and they just use it too. I feel uncomfortable when I hear that. I will say that I believe this has improved in the past decade and is not as prevalent as it was before. Come give the place a look before leaping.

      Good luck to you Jaye.

      • Anthony Lane says

        Bob, I am a African American that has wife and kids in Davao for a bit longer than you. I have never heard the N word ever. I am in the Talisay and all over Davao. I am also a light skinned brother who people have no idea that i am black which would lead you to think that at some point throughout the years i would have heard that word. Please if you hear that word again please inform the offending party that we all bleed the same color and that black is as beautiful as any other race of people.

        • says

          Hi Anthony – The use of the N word has decreased a lot in the 11 years that I have lived here. I used to hear it nearly every day, but in recent years not as much. I am happy about that!

    • Anthony Lane says

      Jaye, Sister you and your man come to the Philippines without worry. I am a black man who has lived in the Philippines for many years. To be honest, the lack of prejudice that i know all to well from living in the US is non-existent in the Philippines. I tell my relatives who ask that question all the time. You will feel a new found breath of life without the prejudice vibes that only blacks can really articulate truly in reguards to the struggle and crap we have had to endure in the USA. My only issue is that i wish i had a bid wist or a spades group to play with. You feel me?!

  62. says

    Well, I am American and beginning to agree. Three weeks ago I was in Tagaytay and met a European expat, we hit it off well, nice guy. He told me that there are about sixty expats in that area and there are actually only twelve he would hang out with, most just complain. Who wants to be around downer people! BTW, new to this site, looking good, thanks!

  63. Robert says

    Don’t look any further, the ‘poor quality’ of expats in general is the greatest problem.
    The lower the quality, the more problems. Unfortunately, Philippines is paradise for international social misfits.

    When was it that an expat who is married, has decent income, is mentally sane with good education and good manners, had problems here?

  64. Anthony Lane says

    Bob, My Goodness as an American with family in Davao i have had no idea Americans in particular were viewed in such a negetive light in the Phil. Seems that lots of people responding here are anti-American. I know beyond doubt that i could go to any Filipino thats renting out there home, condo and in just a conversation come away with a lease or rental agreement. The “Ugly American” attitude which is valid can very easily be overcome with a smile, sincere speech, and just a plain ol good attitude with a smile. Try it folks, it actually works for a reformed “Ugly American”.

    • says

      Hi Anthony – It seems to be a pretty new thing, because like you, I really didn’t know about it until Feyma told me. I also agree that you or I could overcome the negative perception, just with how we present ourselves and interact.

  65. James Watt says

    Regarding your reply to Anthony, Bob you have highlighted a point my Pinoy chums appreciate.

    Quote “I could overcome the negative perception, just with how we present ourselves and interact.” Unquote.

    We’re not American, but I’m assumed to be one it seems.

    Shortly after moving to Davao Oriental, I noticed that when I replied to locals who shouted “hey Joe” to me, and I responded in local language with a ‘time of day’ reply, their attitude changed from ‘mickey taking’ to a more respectful follow up.

    I do not claim to be fluent in Cebuano, or Tagalog, or any language, but in 40 something years of travelling, I have always had a better interaction with locals when using their language, and behaving in a respectful manner (normal for us).

    The number of times my wife and I have been disgusted/ashamed, by the behaviour of people from our country when overseas, are many.

    Kind regards James

    • says

      Thank you James. I agree, if you can respond to people, or interact with people in the local language, you will always get the best treatment possible! That’s been my experience.

  66. Steven Hark says

    Those landlords/builders/architects may just be following the lead of our Vice Mayor, who was quoted in yesterday’s press (Aug, 16) as saying, “I have never been enamored with foreigners.”

    • says

      Nothing new on that one, though.. I wrote like 7 or 8 years ago that Mayor (at that time) Duterte was not too foreigner-friendly. I still like the guy, though! 😉

  67. Steve says

    True, as a group, we kanos tend to be fairly outspoken. I’ve also noticed during my trips to the Phils that there are many kanos and other Western men who spend most of their time boozing and whoring with very young women. Their ilk seem to be over represented in the Philippines. For the locals lacking a broader perspective on expats, it would make sense if they painted us all with the same brush and chose not to deal with any of us.

  68. J.R. Huetteman says

    In my personal opinion, travelling before 2001 was pleasurable and Americans were still being treated fairly well all over the world. After Bush took office and began the invasion of Iraq and the War on Terrorism, it has been downhill with a hard landing – and fast! The way I see it, however, is that it is all our fault – and for many reasons. Many people of the world don’t appreciate our use of wars as an economic engine – many countries don’t appreciate our position in global affairs and our willingness to meddle where we see right or benefit, and many countries don’t appreciate our influence over trade nor do they appreciate the rules enforced by the very institutions we assisted creating. Those once poor countries, however, have grown up and have utilized those very institutions against us, since we aren’t perfect and sometimes we forget to lead by example, and that’s where the bad reputation begins since we have lost our very own voice and authority = and it’s a proven fact that people hate and resent being told what to do by someone who is doing what they are saying shouldn’t be done! Then again, many people have also envied the fact that as a melting pot of people, Americans are very proud and outspoken and will speak their mind – regardless of who they are – whether a waitress, a janitor, a secretary, CEO, lawyer or doctor. Americans having ties to every corner of the world from Nigeria, China, Jamaica, Cuba, Argentina, Czechoslovakia, Poland, Russia – wherever they had been from and from whatever socioeconomic class, in America – people speak up and speak their mind. Things today are changing, however, where more countries begin looking the way America did, and America increasingly looks like the other countries of the world – and in many ways – not just by eyesight.

    Another good explanation without blaming Americans but still blaming them, was being a sole superpower (which is really not much of a problem anymore, but helped in tarnishing our reputation) was the fact that as a sole superpower and while we were getting there, we really should have been paying more attention to what was happening here at home and strengthening our systems here within the government, our economy and education, as well as strengthen our defense – including cyberspace, so that we would be able to bestow this status on generations to come. And part of that would have been to carefully strategize who we assist and how we assist them, how we would globalize and under what terms, to prevent a loss of technology and intellectual property that could easily be copied and used in competition. And the regulatory authorities should have never allowed for the credit bubble

    • says

      I don’t think that politics or war has anything to do with the phenomena that I wrote about in this article. It’s the attitude and behavior of my fellow Americans here in the Philippines that created the problem.

  69. says

    I have seen for myself in Iligan, A Americano acting like Idiot in Gaisano because service was slow my friend from Australia tried to calm him and almost got his head chewed off. There has been other incident’s where I just think to myself “man what are you doing here? if you want it like home, GO HOME” When in Rome…….

  70. says

    Since this post was last year’s, I ‘d better write my comment here. Most Americans think they can extend their rights and privileges here in a poor country. They forget , it’s a different life here—different laws, customs, lifestyle and expectations, so they complain and demand that their rights and complaints be addressed. That of course, leads to animosity because most people in the Philippines are not able to respond to that properly because of their different expectations and orientation. Some Americans complain too much about this country forgetting that this country’s own problems itself are hard and impossible for them to solve. If they complain about the gutter and flooded streets, how would Filipinos address this when even the government and the specific group could not even resolve these? When my husband came here for the 1st time, I had to orient him frequently—again and again about what to expect and what not to expect from the Philippines and the Filipinos.” The Philippines is entirely different from anything you’d been used to in the US” I told him. HOwever, I have an American friend whose wife is a Filipino who failed to orient the American, came to the Philippines and spent the whole time complaining and griping that their vacation was wrecked instead of being enjoyed.

  71. says

    Hi Vivienne – You’re always welcome to comment here or on the Magazine site. Both are equally welcome. You are right in what you say, I totally agree.

  72. says

    I think you hit the nail on the head at the start.. we, individually, need to conduct ourselves in such a way that we leave a trail of Filipinos saying, “Hey.. I guess not ALL Americans are total jerks.. that one was very respectful and reasonable.”

    There’s no fixing someone who’s spent most of their life as an a-hole on two continents. I did just read an article though of an American being deported for being abusive to his live-in girlfriend. Serves him right, no matter what country he’s in, needs to learn some respect for people. Might serve as a warning to others that it is possible to get tossed out of ‘paradise’ for good. :)

  73. says

    Wow Bob,

    That is sad, but true. Having lived and done business around the world and in the US, I must agree…we CAN BE PERCEIVED as complainers and hard to deal with…as well as, party animals and hard to accommodate -for lack of better words.

    However, in our defense, the US has some of the highest service standards in the world. We have grown accustomed to tipped-service employes, easy no-hassle return policies, free demos and trial offers, ‘the customer is always right’ and powerful communication; so when most come to the Philippines, we expect a lot for our hard-earned dollars.

    In addition, we tend to ‘enhance’ places we stay. We often paint, landscape, decorate, hire staff and bring a cheery (sometimes too cheery) atmosphere. Most American’s, we love a good cocktail.

    But, as a black American, I know that dealing with ‘Americans’ is just an evolution in Philippines diversity and growth. Just as whites had to deal with blacks: now; thanks to Obama, there is a basketball court in the white house and Tiger Woods had fried chicken served at the US Open) and as we deal with Latins, Africans and the other hundred’s of nationalities in the States. The Philippines is the most diverse country in Asia…so, it’s just growing pains.

    I think that if in America, we started to say ‘we don’t hire Filipinos’ it would be an outrage. And, we never will say that…so, please (not you Bob) extend the same ‘warm welcome’ to us as renters and home builder’s as we do to OFW’s in the US.


    • says

      Hi Kareem – Thanks for stopping by, and thanks especially for offering your view. Some of your points I agree with strongly, some I disagree with, although only slightly. Probably the most disagreement would be when you say for Filipinos to please give us a warm welcome as renters. Although I love the sentiment, it would be hard to ask that from somebody who has been burned, especially multiple times, by other Americans. I understand that not all Americans are the same, but we can be perceived to be that way.

      Take care, Kareem.

  74. Walter says

    This has been going on for years, and in many different countries. I have traveled a lot, and been in the phils many times. I find this easily taken care of with a few kind words and a humble approach. Let us not forget there are many American who are very giving, and by many consider to be great customers. Unlike many other countries we tip, and this is greatly appreciated. As for myself I enjoy the people in the phils and I try to show it every time I am there, and they return the favor.

  75. says

    Sadly, I’m Guilty as Charged. the ugly American…

    I’m normally mild-mannered but i lost it the other day. Ive been here off and on for almost 3 years and I know how things work. but this last week something got under my skin and i had to complain…

    We were all in a local bus traveling from Davao City to Panabo and the driver kept loading more and more passengers til there was no room to move. I gave my seat up to a lady and everyone looked at me like i was nuts. My wife frowned quietly. “Sorry” I told her. “My mama taught me you give your seat up to ladies and elderly. I’m not changing”. So I spent the next 30 min crammed in the aisle with all the others. As soon as the girl left my seat a skinny guy shot into it next to my wife… dozens of other ladies stood in the aisle accepting their lot. oh well…

    But then when it comes time for us to get off no-one would budge. No one would move to let us out. they didn’t want to lose their spot in the aisle. my wife and our helper were struggling with the kids and i had 2-3 bags… I lost it. I started pushing everyone in front of us off the bus yelling at them “Use your brain people! You can’t take our seat if we can’t get off. You cant leave this station if we can’t get off!”

    Nice job Rick…

    We all have an opinion on how things should be or how it could be done better and I think thats what gets us in to trouble. You need to be ok with whatever you get here. If you think there is a better way, keep it to yourself. it’s not how its done here and your opinion may not be welcome.

    I see it on blogs all the time in response to foreigners complaints. “Don’t like it here? Leave!”

    oh well. As they say “When in Rome…”

    • says

      Hi Rick – I think all of us foreigners who live here or spend significant time here have lost it from time to time. It is natural, as this place is so much different from what we are used to. I know that I have lost it on a number of occasions here. In the heat of the moment, I let things get the better of me, and after things have calmed down I am embarrassed and regret my actions. Thankfully, I do it a lot less now than I did years ago. You will too. All you can do is strive to improve.

  76. Australian says

    Filipinos are now more aware of the international news, and the policies of America that has inflicted massive damage in many nations. They are more educated and well aware than before, of Americans and their mindsets in general. In the past, before cable tv or other things made an impact, most people only knew about Americans as those who fought Japanese. But in reality, most people didn’t know is why Americans fought Japanese, because they wanted to save their colony not cos they really cared a rat about Filipinos. People are also fed up with the way American old men come here, looking down on local men and oggling after women their granddaughter’s age. Seriously bob, the world has grown up. Except for good ole US of A.

    • says

      I am sorry, but I don’t think that what you say is accurate, Australian. Firstly, the USA did not fight the Japanese to “save their colony” – the US fought the Japanese purely because of their attack on Pearl Harbor.

      Secondly, the article was about Filipinos not renting to Americans… because of the behavior the Filipinos have seen from Americans living here… nothing to do with geopolitical topics.

  77. Karina says

    Greetings from a Cebuana now living in Australia.
    Hi i just bumped into your article, and it’s really insightful. You seem very content with your life sa Filipinas. The last time I was in Cebu, late 2005, I’ve just begun to notice a growing number of white Westerners in the region, and I, only 14 then, wondered why they flock to this pit hole (sorry to refer my home that way). On a surface level, filipinos generally revere any foreigner (especially those who speak English very well)- for many it’s status symbol- I mean, really, we watch more Hollywood movies than even our own! Added to the fact that our culture associates light skin with being rich- and this still traces back from those Spanish colonial rule. Society there operates like a little caste system where even someone like me, from a low-income family (dad a lawyer who’s paid a pittance, and mom is just a teacher earning even less than the casuals at McDonalds’ here in Aus), gets stigmatised.

    I don’t want to come off as someone who’s anti-Filipino, but I definitely am very indignant by the fact that even my own people try to make sure I don’t feel all too well at home here. In my direct experience with an American, it was actually, I shall admit, cool. Yes, my impressions as a little child with foreigners is that you have cool personalities. The American guy who used to live in a flat had a motorbike, and everytime we meet up, along with other neighbour kids, he would give us candies (he reminded me a little bit of Macguyver- haha I know it’s just that he was youngish and fit (this was in the late 90s)). I didn’t think he was anyway rude (probably because it was a little more urban so less chicken noises and dogs wandering about), but most often times I never see him in and out of the compound. Now, I used to live in a compound where you have disgusting landlords (they’re actually freeloading children of a wealthy architect). And these SOB (sorry for the language) were sly and bratty at the same time. They also had connections with the police so if anything, they’d heckle their tenants…I really don’t want to go down into that detail at this point; such painful memories.

    I guess the point in all this is that, filipinos themselves are very disrespectful and even more so than the rude & disrespectful American foreigners. I mean, you’re a more decent guy yourself (and I hope that your presence there can only influence all those around you that they, too, would be just as civil as you towards their own neighbours). It’s just amusing how these landlords would turn down rude foreigners (perhaps they didn’t want to be around their mirror images?), and so easy for them to use that ol’ tactic playing with the victim complex just to get their way. Again, this is just my perspective over the situation.

    My family had tried to be good citizens there but no matter how much we give, the return has always been more condescension- heck, even the cattle there are treated a little better than filipino amo (bosses) toward their filipino employees. Yes, there are good filipinos, but they are often as well outnumbered by the hooligan mentality of the majority (poor or rich alike). Somehow, the thoughts never escape me that many filipinos just want nothing but a quick buck (yes, including the rich bratty kids I used to go to school with there).

    In my opinion, filipinos must learn from the good foreigners like yourself, who sees the value in a person more than a walking cash :)

    • says

      Karina – Really, it makes me quite sad the way that you speak of your country. When you say that you live in Australia, how would you feel if I said “why would anybody want to live in that pit?” The Philippines is a great place, I have lived here for 13+ years now, and I love it here. I have, over the years, even considered giving up my US Citizenship and becoming a Philippine citizen.

      I do appreciate your kind comments, but would only encourage you to have more love for your country. It’s not a bad place!

      • Karina says

        Yeah I don’t hate my country entirely and I acknowledge that even Australia has its downsides. But having lived in Cebu all through the 14 years of my life, I have parents, educated and hardworking as well as obedient citizens have been subjected to all sorts of abuse from the system. My dad lawyer had seen the really darkside of our society- lawyers who really fight for justice are shot down, I’ve got an uncle who is the manager in Ayala mall who abuses his employees. All those working in malls are paid badly and also abused, people working in haciendas were painful to my dad, my own rich cousins driving away the poor who were at their gate singing carols, my classmates who would often care only big brand items, and would constantly ask where I’d used to buy my shoes and clothes (as a rhetorical remark). These are the type of filipinos who I just can’t love- and many educated ones who are also working abroad would also agree with this.
        Sorry if I said that harsh about my country. But I am just not happy over how the minority elites have exploited the people and look down on them. Things weren’ this before the Marcos admin- we were even ranked 2nd in the best run economy in the 60s of all Asia. Then martial law came and there started the cronyism that so rampant it became very ingrained in the filipino psyche. The many brains in our country have fled so there’s even less innovation and reform made from among the locals. The gov’t we have are still dominated from Marcos’ ex-cronees and their children and for as long as they are there many filipinos would still be exploited and remain impoverished. From where you are, Davao is actually one of the only safest place to roam about, but Manila and Cebu for low income working classes are just not as much pleasant.
        I hope that I’m not being misunderstood that I totally revile my nationality, but that I want to be truthful with how things are over there as I also speak on behalf of those who have been victimized by the gov’t and its utterly rotten system :)

        • says

          Hi Karina – By reading your writing (both comments) it is clear to me that you are an intelligent girl. Kudos to you for that. I would only encourage you to be more open to your own country instead of being closed minded. I understand that some of what you have witnessed and experienced during your life here set your opinion, and it may be somewhat inflexible. But, what your country badly needs, in my view, is people like you who have witnessed the bad, then through life experience have come to realize how things could be improved. The next step is big, but something that few Filipinos do… SPEAK UP! Spread the word that things can change. If nobody complains, and takes action, nothing will ever change. If only foreigners like me speak up, well, that won’t work, because of several reasons. Firstly, there are too few of us to make a difference. Secondly, it is not really our place to force change here, because it is not our country, and many local people resent it if we really speak our minds. It is people like you who can make the changes that will lead to improved conditions and better lives for Filipinos. You are smart, and obviously not afraid to speak up. The last key to the puzzle is that someday you have to return and put your voice into action!

  78. JP says

    It can take some work to adjust culturally. If they can’t take the gutters and flooded streets and accents difficult to understand and roosters making noises early in the morning, they should just move to more upscale neighborhoods like Makati or Bonifacio Global city. There’s still a place for their expectations if they look hard enough but price issues might come into play. As a local, I still get frustrated with the neighbor raising a dozen roosters for cockfighting (its not a real job and cruel to animals) but I’ve learned to take the rooster noises with a grain of salt and it has even helped me get up early for my morning jogs and now I’m almost twice as fast as before haha.

    I know its unfair but its true that groups of people tend to be judged by the actions of the worst of its members but same happens to Filipinos too. There’s quite a bit of racist rants in message boards online from foreigners, many from Americans, who’ve had bad experiences with Filipinos. I suppose it goes both ways.

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