Ever tried balut? For the uninitiated, this regional specialty is a fertilized duck embryo, boiled in the shell and eaten with salt, chili or vinegar. I've heard it's the perfect accompaniment for a frosty beer and you can find them being peddled on every other street corner – the Filipino version of hot dog carts.
Let's play with an elaborate metaphor for a moment – moving overseas can be a similar to a steaming serving of balut: what appears to a hard, strange shell surrounds an exotic, delicious experience. Once you slough off your apprehensions and dig in, you’re in for a treat.
Perhaps it’s a tad naïve, but I was stunned to learn how wildly popular the Philippines have become with expatriates and retirees. Millions of British and United States nationals have flocked to the islands. The popularity of the tropical nation shows no sign of decreasing. Why? Well, let’s take a look…
The low cost of living is one of the biggest draws to this region. For those of a certain age, the widely-available affordable medical and dental care is a big factor to consider. Rent and utilities are reportedly a fraction of the cost when compared to a similar-sized city in the UK or US.
Speaking of money, if you are retired (or an expat) offshore QROPS transfers can unlock hefty benefits and allow you to avoid extraneous taxes on the pension you’re drawing on. Hiring a financial advisor, like the QROPS Group, can help weave through the intricacies of your plan and maximize monetary advantages.
The Philippines are the world’s second largest archipelago, making the area ideal for island-hopping jaunts and beachy meandering. With the prevalence of low-cost inter-island flights, there are endless day or weekend trips available for exploration.
Luckily, the English language is widely spoken by Tagalog-tongued locals (but don’t let that stop you from taking a course or two in the native dialect). Street and business signage are also frequently in English, making it easier for expats to get around. Friendliness is a commonly cited virtue of the Filipino people, so expect to be treated as a human being and not an expendable tourist.
Enjoying a relaxing way of life is the prevailing mentality throughout the Philippines. Expect the hustle and bustle, the reliance on fancy electronics and social media – basically everything obnoxiously essential to the “Western” way of life – to melt away as you stare into the crystal blue waters.
About the Author
Mario Vitanelli is a freelance blogger who specializes in writing about international finance and travel. When he’s not testing his culinary boundaries or taking scenic photographs, you can find him devouring economic policy publications.
NOTE: This is a post from one of our contributors. Any views expressed do not necessarily reflect the views on www.pinoyadventurista.com.
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