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The Philippines, To go or not to go.

Discuss culture, living, traveling, relocating, dating or anything related to the Asian countries - China, The Philippines, Thailand, etc.

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The Philippines, To go or not to go.

Postby th3g4me » Thu Mar 05, 2009 3:14 pm

I am looking to take a month off of work, and go do something. I was wanting to visit Mexico, but with all of this "U.S. State Department says Mexico's bloody drug war is a growing threat to tourists" stuff going on I have crossed them off of my list. I don't want to be held for ransom or anything. I dont really want to get caught up in the whole spring break thing either.

I have also seen warnings for the Philippines though. The State Department warns U.S. citizens of the risks of travel to the southern Philippine islands of Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago and urges extreme caution if traveling there.

I wanted to find a place that has a lot of english speakers, a place with beaches, a place to do tourist stuff and take lots of pictures. Some place where people are nice (well as nice as I can find in the states not asking for much)

In the end I could go to Florida, or California but that doesnt make for a very good vacation story does it? Maybe Australia?

What do you all think?
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Re: The Philippines, To go or not to go.

Postby ladislav » Thu Mar 05, 2009 8:16 pm

th3g4me wrote:I am looking to take a month off of work, and go do something. I was wanting to visit Mexico, but with all of this "U.S. State Department says Mexico's bloody drug war is a growing threat to tourists" stuff going on I have crossed them off of my list. I don't want to be held for ransom or anything. I dont really want to get caught up in the whole spring break thing either.

I have also seen warnings for the Philippines though. The State Department warns U.S. citizens of the risks of travel to the southern Philippine islands of Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago and urges extreme caution if traveling there.

I wanted to find a place that has a lot of english speakers, a place with beaches, a place to do tourist stuff and take lots of pictures. Some place where people are nice (well as nice as I can find in the states not asking for much)

In the end I could go to Florida, or California but that doesnt make for a very good vacation story does it? Maybe Australia?

What do you all think?



One word: GO!

You are reading the SD warnings? They make me yawn. I have been to the PI some 20+ times with warnings and all. It is still safer than the US.
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Postby Mr S » Fri Mar 06, 2009 5:50 pm

Yeah, all the problems are in remote southern provinces or islands. Unless you plan on going nature tekking in the middle of the jungle in isolated Muslim populated areas, I don't think you have to worry about much.

That's one of the reasons most American guys have not discovered Philippines because of reading the Bullshit hysteria the American government puts out about certain countries. You'll be safer running around Manila at 3am in the morning than you would running around Miami, that's for sure!

I hope more guys stay dumb f***s and stay away, as more p***y for me and other enlightened fellow expats who know that all the warnings are complete bull shit!

If you come here you won't want to go back to dreary America, you can bet on it! If your still afraid, go to to Thailand, same shit, different language!
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Re: The Philippines, To go or not to go.

Postby Hero » Fri Mar 06, 2009 11:57 pm

th3g4me wrote:I have also seen warnings for the Philippines though. The State Department warns U.S. citizens of the risks of travel to the southern Philippine islands of Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago and urges extreme caution if traveling there.


LOL I remember seeing that travel warning 3 years ago and I almost chickened out. I'm glad that I decided to go anyway. I had the time of my life. The only ones who attacked me were hot young girls who couldn't keep their hands off of me. :D
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Postby gmm567 » Sat Mar 07, 2009 4:43 am

I wouldn't worry about the state department advisories. Just stay out of the southern Island, and the Northern part of Luzon

Manila is a city of 11 million so I am not surprised that there is crime, but as both ladislav and S have said , it probably is much safer than say Miami. I bet those two guys have a pretty accurate assessment of the crime.

What does give me pause is the police setting up tourists for false underage (statutory) rape charges to extort money out of them. That gives me pause.
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Postby Mr S » Sat Mar 07, 2009 9:49 am

Just don't pick up girls walking the streets on known foreigner hang outs and you will be fine. Most guys that get suckered into that are dumb asses who are pushing the envelope anyways. IF you meet a girl and thing she looks younger than 18, then there is a good chance she is and don't do anything with her. You'll be ok, there are plenty of girls around that won't get you into trouble and are easy to figure out their age and all that.

I've never had any problems with "police stings" and I've been here over five years now.
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Postby ladislav » Sat Mar 07, 2009 1:49 pm

Mr S wrote:Just don't pick up girls walking the streets on known foreigner hang outs and you will be fine. Most guys that get suckered into that are dumb asses who are pushing the envelope anyways. IF you meet a girl and thing she looks younger than 18, then there is a good chance she is and don't do anything with her. You'll be ok, there are plenty of girls around that won't get you into trouble and are easy to figure out their age and all that.

I've never had any problems with "police stings" and I've been here over five years now.


And if you doubt a girl's age, do not have sex with her. Just buy her some food. That is what I do.
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Postby gmm567 » Sat Mar 07, 2009 11:34 pm

Well it looks like this Web site (http://www.centralluzoncorruption.com) which is reporting on police corruption has some sort of tie with the CIA.

The evidence they are collecting is from police cell phone conversations. If you read the site enough you'll see where they say that. Now the thing of it is is that cell phone conversations are very easily intercepted--you just have a radio tuner that tunes into the radio broadcasts. The difficulty is in decripting those messages. The encryption level is about what is used to transfer bank/credit card information so it takes something like 1 trillion years for a quad core processer to decript. That is unless you string 450 million dollars worth of quad cores together--then you can decrypt them in a month, maybe a few days. But who's got 450 million dollars to spend on such a thing--well the NSA--The National Security Agency of the United States Government. They aslo listen in on overseas telephone calls to intercept terrorist activity. I suspect that is what is going on. Someone from the NSA is leaking this information to that Web site.

Those cops have got to be scarred. I suspect there might be a major bloodletting in the ranks there.

"What we are going to do on this web site is what our sister organization (National Intelligence Coordinating Agency - NICA), which was founded in the 1950s by "The company", the "C. I. A.". also known as "The good guys", calls a "slow-constriction". from http://www.centralluzoncorruption.com/O ... ntials.htm

But hey thanks for the info S and Ladislav--stay the f**k away from any women who looks too young.
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Postby gmm567 » Sat Mar 07, 2009 11:46 pm

More information on that eavesdropping

Project Echelon

Together with the National Security Agency, the CIA also maintains "Project Echelon," the most sophisticated and the most technologically advanced eavesdropping system that has ever been devised. Through a relay system of satellites and spook stations in Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Canada and United States, the US intelligence system is able to intercept all telephone, fax, e-mail, Internet and cellphone transmissions worldwide. Its nerve center is located at Fort Meade in Maryland where the NSA maintains its headquarters. This has grave implications for both our public and private security.

The National Security Agency (NSA) of the United States has developed a global surveillance system, Echelon, which is a powerful electronic net operated by super-computers that intercept, monitor and process all phone, fax, e-mail and modem signals. The European Parliament in a 1998 report entitled, "An Appraisal of Technologies of Political Control" has listed serious concerns and has recommended an intensive investigation of US-NSA operations. The NSA Echelon system provides awesome potential for abuse against civilian targets and governments worldwide, even against allies of the United States.
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Postby ladislav » Sun Mar 08, 2009 3:15 am

gmm567 wrote:More information on that eavesdropping

Project Echelon

Together with the National Security Agency, the CIA also maintains "Project Echelon," the most sophisticated and the most technologically advanced eavesdropping system that has ever been devised. Through a relay system of satellites and spook stations in Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Canada and United States, the US intelligence system is able to intercept all telephone, fax, e-mail, Internet and cellphone transmissions worldwide. Its nerve center is located at Fort Meade in Maryland where the NSA maintains its headquarters. This has grave implications for both our public and private security.

The National Security Agency (NSA) of the United States has developed a global surveillance system, Echelon, which is a powerful electronic net operated by super-computers that intercept, monitor and process all phone, fax, e-mail and modem signals. The European Parliament in a 1998 report entitled, "An Appraisal of Technologies of Political Control" has listed serious concerns and has recommended an intensive investigation of US-NSA operations. The NSA Echelon system provides awesome potential for abuse against civilian targets and governments worldwide, even against allies of the United States.


And they still can't catch Osama Bin Ladin? And with all that they could not prevent 9/11? Where have they been successful if at anything?
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Postby gmm567 » Sun Mar 08, 2009 5:00 am

yeah I know. They haven't caught Obama, but they do have extensive eavesdropping capability. I mean it's almost like having a GPS system for all over the world. It's hard to believe, but they have it.
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Postby James G » Wed Mar 11, 2009 6:40 pm

I am in the PI right now, the only thing dangerous here is crossing the street.

I never take state Dept warnings too seriously, there are many political reasons in the background that dictate those warnings (I used to work with state guys overseas)

But Indonesia is extremely dangerous, you don’t ever want to go there :)



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Postby gmm567 » Wed Mar 11, 2009 8:02 pm

I've heard the manila airport is filled with pick-pockets and is sometimes dangerous.

It's not a good idea to wear jewelry, or to carry lots of money with you. You guys use a money belt?
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Postby Mr S » Thu Mar 12, 2009 1:06 am

I think you are reacting to over hyped hysteria of idiots who can't pay attention to their surroundings. Never been pick pocketed and never had any problems at the airport other then taxi's trying to screw me over with outrageous fares. Generally Filipinos don't target westerners for crime, they target their own kind. They target stupid westerners who get themselves into ridiculous situations on their own account, which is usually when acting like an asshole drunk or being overly rude and obnoxious.

If you're really paranoid keep your wallet in the front pocket and avoid squatter areas and you should be fine, also don't walk around drunk looking late at night around dark alleys or streets by yourself, in other words: COMMON STREET SENSE!

Philippines is a hundred times safer than any major American city, trust me, even at night.
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Re: The Philippines, To go or not to go.

Postby momopi » Thu Mar 12, 2009 8:46 am

th3g4me wrote:I have also seen warnings for the Philippines though. The State Department warns U.S. citizens of the risks of travel to the southern Philippine islands of Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago and urges extreme caution if traveling there.

I wanted to find a place that has a lot of english speakers, a place with beaches, a place to do tourist stuff and take lots of pictures. Some place where people are nice (well as nice as I can find in the states not asking for much)

In the end I could go to Florida, or California but that doesnt make for a very good vacation story does it? Maybe Australia?

What do you all think?


Try Boracay in Philippines. If you can afford it, stay at the Regency. Travel light and don't bring too much luggage, the luggage weight allowance for in-country flights is very small and you'd most likely end up paying extra. Bring/save extra small bills, you'll be paying airport taxes and they don't give change.

http://www.boracayregency.com/

Southern CA is still kinda chilly right now. On some days it's warm but mostly chilly. Come during Summer if you want to lay on the beach.
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