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I'll be visiting my girlfriend of 2 years in 3 weeks, she lives in davao, how much money should I bring with me for spending money? I'm thinking $1000, hotel and flights are already paid for, I have no problem living like a local as I told her I didn't want to bring more than that. Also what are the best locations that offer the best exchange rates? I'll be flying into manila then have about a 4 hour layover until flight leaves for davao.
The best is not to bring money, but to use ATM services, this might cost some transaction fees, but is the safest way to go.
Davao is still considered a safe area, despite the kidnappings on nearby Samal Island.
USD 1000,- for how many days? This is about php 46.000,-. What kind of expenses do you expect? Also be aware that not only your internet-friend, but other girls will show up as well, inviting themselves to go with you and her...
Philippine places often charge entrance fees even where you do not expect them, for guarded places like beaches or mountain spots, public transport is often not available, spending money for taxi - your friend needs for sure some gifts, anything from clothes, shoes and up to stationery items and groceries, medicine and cosmetica and so on, a never ending list of wishes.
Be prepared that money is moving quickly.
I know best, as my foster daughter is a Filipina in Cebu, now 20 years old and still in university.
Philippine ATM gives you Philippine Peso, most of them will give max. php 10.000,- per transaction, some few ATMs offer a higher max. sum to withdraw.
It'll be for 14 days, she is from butuan as there are more things to do in davao, it was my choice to go there, she isn't bringing except her brother but that because he lives in davao, her family has money she was the one that bought my plane ticket after I repeatedly told her not to.
Edit: as for expenses just normal, transportation i.e bus, taxi, anything we have to pay to get into, and the occasional out to dinner cost.
Well, I cannot compare my expenses with your budget, as we both are in a different situation. I stay usually about 10 days, and I spend around USD 3000,-, sometimes more. I do a lot of social spending too for some poor people around where my foster daughter is living, like medicine, or food etc.
Maybe others in this forum will also show up with some comments.
I am not sure why you have chosen Davao, as Cebu is more convenient for both I guess. It would be good to hear opinions from others too in this forum.
$1000 is plenty as long as you keep your wallet closed. (There will be a lot of requests for cash, directly and indirectly.) It's always good to have emergency cash, ideally worn in a hidden money belt or kept in an equally hidden place somewhere on your body. If you take cash out of it, go to the banyo and do it. As far as your girl, her family, or anyone else is concerned, you only get money from the ATM. Filipinos are good at stealing, and are ninja-like in their speed and silence when doing it, so even if your money is hidden deep in your bags in your hotel room while you are taking a leak, it goes with you into the bathroom. (If someone is with you.) Sixty seconds is all it takes to lose a grand.
A helpful guide:
Expatriation Apocalypse! The Guide to Expatriation for the Broke and Hopeless (Kindle)
Expatriation Apocalypse! (Paperback)
7 posts • Page 1 of 1
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