With the Philippines being over 7,600 islands, there is a slice of paradise for everyone. You can find just about any type of vacation you want here, from luxury getaways to being completely off the grid. This country has something for everyone. Before making the big leap and packing your bags, we need to make sure you are really prepared for the type of trip you are about to take.
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Taxi scams in the Philippines
Ok, this is a real issue, especially if you are in Manila or Cebu. In some cases (most cases if you are white) they will try and charge you a fixed rate. The taxi drivers will continue to say ‘no meter, no meter’ or ‘my meter is broken’. If this is the case, make sure you just keep walking. Go to the next one and the next one after that. Taxi scams in the Philippines and most places in Asia are a big problem and honestly, they would most likely get more business if they didn’t do this. We have heard that the reason they have such a high rate and the reason they do this is that Uber and Grab are so cheap. This brings me to my next point, use Grab or Uber. If you have to take a taxi using one of the two, this way you know the price is set in stone and you know what it will cost you before you get in. If you are arriving in a major city like Cebu or Manila there will be free wifi in the airport allowing you to order a car. If you still can’t get a connection, then walk outside of the terminal and there will be a grab car booth. They have tablets to order you a taxi upon your request.
How to stay safe while traveling the Philippines
Safety is something many people are worried about when it comes to traveling the Philippines. We did a whole video on it and our experiences in the Philippines (check it out here). I think the Philippines get a bad name because of a few bad places and the way media portray the stories. As for us, we did do a lot of research, as you should before you travel to some places but what we came up with is there are 5 main places not to visit. Other than these places, the Philippines has blown us away with how friendly the people are. They have been so welcoming and helpful to us that we would be crazy not to share the love back. I would go far enough to say that Filipino peoples are some of the nicest people we have met while traveling and would do anything for you. To be honest, all the places you will think about visiting you won’t have any issues.
Slice of paradise for everyone
The Philippines has incredibly so many islands. It would take you a lifetime to see them all. With this being the case, it can become very expensive to fly from island to island. I think this is one of the main reasons tourism hasn’t reached the same point it has in the main banana pancake track like Thailand-Laos-Cambodia-Myanmar-Vietnam route, which seems to be very popular among backpackers due to the ease of travel in terms of transportation. The good thing is they do have a ferry service that takes you to some of the main islands. The only downfall with traveling like this is sometimes you will get an actual ferry and not a fast boat. This means it could take up to 15 hours to get from one place to another. I know that sounds rough but it’s not all that bad and when it comes to cost it could be up to 15 times cheaper to take a boat over a plane.
How to travel the Philippines cheap
Traveling the Philippines can be amazingly cheap. It can also be very expensive if you aren’t careful. The most common modes of transportation once you get to the islands is either going to be a scooter, trike or jeepney. If you are in one location for awhile the cheapest thing would be to rent a scooter and drive yourself around. If you don’t have that option because you don’t know how to ride a scooter then your next cheapest option would be jeepney. The only problem with the jeepney is it has fixed routes, for you, this means it cant take you to the exact location you want to go. So you are down to the trike, the trike is a great way to get around. Actually the second best to a scooter but it can get costly if you are riding a trike on your own. The best way to get around this is to find a trike driving by with people on it, normally at this point, it will cost you at a minimum cost of around 10 PHP to get on and go where you need to go. This is much cheaper than having one all to yourself
All in all, have a great time on your trip in the Philippines just keep some of these simple things in mind when traveling. If you want to check our FULL VIDEO GUIDE we have that on our YOUTUBE CHANNEL showing you an in-depth guide to all the best and even some of the most unknown local spots!
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