My wife and I have chosen the Philippines as our retirement home and lived here full time since 2006. Our future in Iloilo was sealed when bought a property and built a house outside of Iloilo City, in the small seaside town of Tigbauan, about one-half hour west of the city proper. Iloilo City continues to be our main center for shopping, medical care, dining and other urban amenities and necessities. We’ve posted an extensive account of our house building experiences.
We are pleased with Iloilo. The wonderful people are its treasure. Routine Medical care is available and educational opportunities are extensive. Thousands of doctors, nurses and seamen are trained in Iloilo every year. There are decent restaurants, and you can find and buy most of what you need at the markets, numerous malls or the downtown commercial area.
While we love living in the Philippines, we try to present a balanced view of the pluses and minuses of living in the Philippines. Be sure to read our short essay: “Reality Check: the Philippines – a tropical paradise for the retiree?”
Philippine Retirement Visas. The Philippine government offers some the easiest and least expensive options for foreign retirees. Philippine Retirement Visas
You can explore further using the topics list on the right side of every page. Comments, criticisms and additional information are very welcome. Address to firstname.lastname@example.org
You should be aware that the new Philippine government is undertaking a anti-drug and anti-crime campaign which has resulted in hundreds of police and vigilante killings. This campaign is unlikely to affect most foreigners, but martial law has also been mentioned as a possibility. In short, the political situation remains somewhat volatile for the immediate future.
ADDITIONAL READING. Here are a few of our favorite links to sites about the Philippines.
There are several Yahoo Groups concerning the Philippines for expats. These two have been around for years and have hundreds of members who will help answer your questions. Just keep in mind that (as with all things online) that some who respond to your questions are genuine experts and some are not. Usually an incorrect or incomplete answer will cause more expert group members to correct misinformation You have to join these groups using a Yahoo membership.
Mag-Anak is one of the oldest and most reliable groups. It has more than 3,000 members, many of whom are very knowledgeable. U.S. Immigration issues are foremost on Mag-Anak. While it can address just about any Philippine-related question, its specialty is helping members seeking to bring a Filipina girlfriend, fiancé, or wife to the United States.
Living in the Philippines is a huge Yahoo on-line group with over 18,000 members. The group discusses just about anything having any connection to the Philippines. Early on, the moderation of this group tended to screen out posts which focused on problems with life in the Philippines. While still prim and proper, the moderation seems less restrictive now. It’s a useful group to anyone living in or considering life in the Philippines.
PhilFAQS This site, run by our friends Dave and Mita Starr are just full of useful information. Go to the home page http://philfaqs.com/ and you will be able to view the list of available articles. You may also sign up for his email newsletter which will bring Dave’s posts to your mailbox.
Live in the Philippines (“The Web Magazine for Expats in the Philippines and Those Who Want to Be”), This site is run by Bob Martin who has been an expat blogger for many years. You do not have to log in to view the site but you will have to register for the very valuable forums. http://liveinthephilippines.com
Your Life in the Philippines lots of worthwhile content in this in-depth site. http://yourlifeinthephilippines.com/
Dumaguete on Negros Island, is a lovely small city and very popular with expatriates. It is also blessed with this excellent website full of good information, not only about Dumaguete, but also about Philippine life in general. The forum is especially good. http://www.dumagueteinfo.com/
Dining in Iloilo. Iloilo City is fortunate (no surprise, Ilonggos love to eat!) to have a great blog just about Iloilo dining. http://flavoursofiloilo.blogspot.com/ and a Facebook page
Cebu City is one of the most popular vacation and retirement locations in the Philippines. Cebu City has many of the advantages of a big city, but is not quite as intimidating as Manila. Its forum is very active and of interest to anyone considering the Philippines. http://www.livingincebuforums.com/ipb/page/portal.html
Finding a wife. Foreigners come to the Philippines for many reasons, but one is dating and marriage. Here is an essay which is very enthusiastic about Filipinas as wives, but also realistic and moral. http://lifebeyondthesea.com/so-whats-the-big-deal-about-filipinas/
If you are a history buff, you’ll love this site which documents the Philippine American War, America’s first colonial adventure which snuffed out the emerging Philippine Republic. There are hundreds of fascinating historic photos. http://philippineamericanwar.webs.com/