Philippines Insider" The Ultimate Philippines Travel Guide for Tourists and Expats

Author Topic: Young European expat here  (Read 2859 times)


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Young European expat here
« on: October 22, 2016, 02:24:35 PM »
Mabuhay, fellow expats!

I am a young expat originally from Western Europe. I was still studying in college when I met my then-girlfriend, a Filipina studying in Manila. We first met in 2011, got engaged in 2013 and married in 2014. We now have two children and could not be happier. She is 23, I am 25.

At first our relationship largely took place on the internet. We were in a long distance relationship initially, even the first year after our marriage. It was at times challenging, because at the time we had to deal with a newborn baby who needed her constant care. However, as she is a very smart lady with a good support system back home, she was able to graduate university despite the fact she was breastfeeding a child under the age of one.

From late 2015 to early 2016 she stayed in my country of birth for a few months where she met and was warmly welcomed by members of my own family. I continued to work in Europe throughout this time, and before. In March 2016 however I quit my job in my country, and my wife and I decided to move to try our luck and move to the Philippines. Whenever I stayed in her country I was always touched by the warm nature of her family, by their close family ties. I really wanted that for our own family. By this time, as we were leaving for the Philippines, we were expecting our second child.

We have lived in the Philippines for over six months now. The money I saved up in previous years has been invested in several little businesses. The main source of our income is the planting and selling of fruits, pineapple and mango especially as well as rice. I get along fabulously with my in-laws, who are both educated professionals. My wife's grandparents, uncles and aunties are a great to us in raising our family. Her father-in-law has proven to be invaluable in our business dealings and his advice has helped me a lot.

Right now we live with my wife's family. It's just her parents, us and our two (very young) kids. My wife's younger sister is still studying and lives in a nearby boarding house. For a Filipino family, they are not particularly large in number although there are many cousins and second cousins, all of whom are either our "insan" or "auntie" or "uncle".

I'm one of the forums youngest members from what I have read and also one of the few who has nothing to do with the military. For what it's worth, my father was in the military before haha. But I have enjoyed reading the forum and would like to be a more active part, maybe reading some more about you guys' experiences raising a family in the Philippines, or setting up a successful business in the Philippines. I do not, sadly, have the benefit of having a military pension already so I have to rely on what little savings I have left and the ways in which I am able to make my money grow.

Offline Igorotak

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Re: Young European expat here
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2016, 04:26:47 PM »
Nice story mate! You got guts to move permanent to the PH at 25! And living with your in-laws......... not an idea that all of us here would embrace. (I think  ;D)
I am not sure if I would let my children go to school/study in the PH if I had the choice. I have serious doubts about the education system.
(I do not have a military pension, I am also not an Americano (W-Europe) so that makes 2 of us! Welcome!

Offline Lee2

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Re: Young European expat here
« Reply #2 on: October 22, 2016, 07:00:51 PM »
Welcome YoungExpat, good to have you on the forum. Interesting post, it is always good to hear when expats are able to make a living while in the Philippines, hope to hear more. BTW, I am not military either but I do have a pension. 
:) Happily married since 1994 & live part of the year in Cebu and the rest in S. Florida.

Offline Frosty

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Re: Young European expat here
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2016, 10:19:36 PM »
Welcome Y.exp.
after reading your story it reminded me of myself 20+ years ago.
if you have not started your Duo-citizenship papers for your kids and wife. you might want to start looking into it.
make sure to report the birth of the kids in both contries, that will help with future paper work if you decide on Duo-citizenship.

Offline BobHarding

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Re: Young European expat here
« Reply #4 on: October 23, 2016, 12:38:04 AM »
Terrific "Love Story". Thanks for sharing. If you are youngest I may be the oldest (71 in March) and new here too. You can read about me here in Welcome to the Forum.

I admit I envy you some. Being 25, living in the Phils with your soulmate is really Paradise.

Please stick around and invite any friends you may have you think might be interested.

Kind Regards

Bob Harding

Offline copusmaximus

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Re: Young European expat here
« Reply #5 on: October 23, 2016, 09:49:21 AM »
hello and welcome i too am not military nor on pension i been here 2+ years so far .your starting young i think is a big benefit for a more settled life and looks like you have family support . since you mentioned you have rice fields a big money maker in provinces is a rice mill if u get one you can never run out of customers lol :).   can trade rice for many things you need and trade milling for other things other members here we all have lots of info dont be afraid to ask questions .no question is stupid or small just ask

Offline FMSINC

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Re: Young European expat here
« Reply #6 on: October 23, 2016, 10:02:36 AM »
You off to a good start there in money in buying and selling rice

I moved here 15 years ago I'm non-military no income except what I earn here.

After 15 years my wife and I have on of the largest rice mills in the Philippines life has been good.

Just stay focussed on what your doing and keep up with the numbers on your businesses and you will do okay.

Offline iamjames

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Re: Young European expat here
« Reply #7 on: October 23, 2016, 06:32:18 PM »
And of course the most important part of setting up any small business is to be aware that all Filipinos want UTANG (credit/loan). I suggest you make a deliberate policy from day one of Bawal Utang (No credit). It is probably the most common cause of small businesses going bust here.