Living in The Philippines > Philippine Culture, Filipino Family Relationships

Do you ever feel like a target?

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Thanks for the feedback guys...

And so when people approach you do you get that sinking feeling of "here we go again" and raise the scam detectors? Or do you just accept it as part of life in Phils?

I must admit I found dealing with this "targeting" as quite draining, even though most of the scams are easy to spot and deal with. I felt like I could never fully relax...

Without reading all the replies I decided to jump in and give my opinion on the original question. I've been here nine years now. The answer is a big YES. My head is on a swivel at all times when out in public. I can count on one hand the people I trust in this country whole heartily. Granted I live in Manila and in a normal Filipino neighborhood not a gated subdivision. I have been pickpocket, had my stuff stole from my apartment and guns pointed at me twice once from a trike driver and the other was road rage, my wife has been robbed twice. I never go into the local market alone as white man tax is always added. As a joke or what ever what you want to call it the wife and I will be a few meters apart in the market like Divisioria I will ask the price of something and then she will come up behind me and ask the same thing in Tagalog. She ALWAYS gets a better price call it white man tax or what ever. Do I hate the Philippines? absolutely not I think it's a great place if you are willing to except that you are a walking ATM and can say NO to all the scams. Now with all that I've said I have met some truly wonderful people even those in the provinces who would spend their hard earned money to accommodate you for a weekend.   

Medic, where in general do you live?  I haven't been least by force nor had a gun pointed at me.  Now, we usually do not travel around Manila at night....unless have to but rarely do anyway. I found laws are a little more loose in the Provinces.  Dealing with land in the provinces is a somewhat risky venture, hardly any titles if any! No title insurance here so buyer be aware....go thru attorney and go to the Assessor's office and check things out and hopefully you will deal with good honest people. I know one guy who got fired inside the assessors office.....glad for him....who tried to screw a relative of mine...allowing an attorney....another dishonest person who should be in jail for it....but because of a whimpy judge just lets it go as they all know each other and that's what I find is a problem in least in provinces North of Manila.  I find Manila although rougher is more strict and much more costly, but I just can't stand some of the dishonesty witnessed in the Provinces.  (I do think it is more stricter under Duterte especially in terms of gambling which is a problem)  However one result was that the monkey business which ensued with an employee of an assessor's office cost an attorney to lose his political bid in an election so Karma is working just fine. There are other land cases related to the assessor's office.  I met a lady in Manila who sued a judge for his misdeeds, cost her alot she said (a filipina)but got the judge removed and pension removed. The only thing she gained from to remove a dishonest judge from his job....which is a big feat in the PI. JL

Complete opposite from most of the answers.  I have lived here for 6 years now, and never do I feel like a target, or always having to keep my head on a swivel.  I am wondering, is this the difference from living in a province or a relatively built up area?  I live in Tagaytay, and go to places like Manila, Sta Rosa, Dasma, etc..  all the time, and again never once have I felt uncomfortable or that I am a "target".   

I have lived here in General Trias, Cavite for 9 1/2 years and never felt like a target.  Is it the same as living in the US, heck no, but I never expected it to be the same.  Having served 22 plus years in the military and living about 10 years overseas during that time, I knew what to expect living here.  As a foreigner you are considered rich whether you are or not.  To most Filipinos you are rich.  Will people try to scam you here, yes they will.  Will people try to scam you in the US, yes they will. So what is the difference?  Whether you live here or anyplace you need to use common sense at all times.  Would you go to bad neighborhoods in Chicago, NYC, Baltimore, etc?  Then why would you do it here.



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