Cultural Notes and Observations: The Philippines

  • You can buy alcohol at grocery stores, 711, and more
  • Alcohol is very affordable. The Local Tanduary Rhum is only a $1.50 Canadian for 375 ml
  • You can buy cigarettes in nightclubs
  • Adapters were mostly not needed – North American sockets were widely used
  • Multiple modes of transportation: Scooter, Jeepney, Taxi, Van, Bus
  • Taxis are affordable and always available
  • Most popular local beers: Red Horse and San Miguel
  • No knives are provided at restaurants: only forks and spoons
  • On the island of Palawan – there was a security checkpoint asking if anyone had any mangoes. They were trying to mitigate the outbreak of diseased mangoes on the island
  • At several airport they asked us if we had the new Samsung Galaxy phone… because they explode
  • Food we tried:
    • Adobo
    • sizzling crocodile
    • Pinikpan
    • Ube
    • “Tamilok” a wood worm
    • Bbq chicken intestine
    • Deep fried banana
    • Pomelo
    • Turmeric tea
    • Chopsuey
    • Puto (rice muffins)
    • Halo-Halo (dessert)
    • Buko – young coconut
    • Biku – chocolate fried rice dessert
  • The tea selection is not the greatest
  • The majority of the population speaks English
  • Filipino people are friendly, especially in smaller towns
  • Stray dogs everywhere
  • Get woken up by dog fights and roosters daily
  • Security guards in many shops with large guns
  • Jeepneys on Bahol are like party buses, the drivers always play loud music
  • You can haggle prices of tours and items at markets
  • Lines on the roads are just a suggestion and drivers to not follow them
  • Bathrooms/washrooms are called “comfort room”
  • A lot of the time you put used toilet paper in a waist bin, and not the toilet
  • hand soap and toilet paper are a luxury: carry hand sanitizer and toilet paper with you at all times
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