Philippines

Practical Information

 
 
Currency
 
The Central Bank of the Philippines is the sole authority empowered to issue currency in the Philippines. The Philippine Peso is the currency of Philippines. Our currency rankings show that the most popular Philippines Peso exchange rate is the PHP to USD rate. The currency code for Pesos is PHP, and the currency symbol is ₱
 
Unit of currency: Philippine Peso /PhP/ 1 100 centavos. Bank notes: P20, P50, P100, P200, P500, P1000. Coins: 5c, 10c, 25c, P1, P5, P10.
Foreign currency may be exchanged at your hotel, and in most of the large department stores, banks and authorized money changing shops. Exchanging money anywhere else is illegal and the laws are strictly enforced.
 
 
Transport
 
Transportation in the Philippines is relatively underdeveloped, partly due to the country's mountainous areas and scattered islands. In recent years, however, the Philippine government has been pushing to improve the transportation system in the country through various infrastructure projects.
 
Jeepney’s are the most popular mode of public transportation in the Philippines, they have also become a ubiquitous symbol of the Philippine culture. In common rural areas motorized tricycle are their kind of public transportation. In the bustling Metropolis of Manila there are trains, the Manila Light Rail Transit System (LRT) and the Metro Retail Transit System (MRT). Taxis and Buses are also important modes of transportation in the country. Kalesa or a horse drawn calash are still use of some Filipinos specially in Luneta Park as this is still usable to avoid getting tired of walking. By air, there are many Airlines that can take you to different island of the country. Mostly island in the Philippines has different kind of boat that can take you to the breathtaking places of the country.
 
 
Electricity
 
220 volts, A. C. 60 cycles. Most hotels have 110 volts outlets.
 
 
Clothing
 
People in the Philippines dress for the weather. Casual attire during the day for women are light blouses and shorts. For men collared T- shirts worn over slacks. In the evening skirts are substituted for shorts and the T-shirts are tucked in.
 
For Formal Events:
 
Men:
If you expect to have to attend any occasion which would usually require a jacket and a tie, there is a wonderful substitute. You may go to a department store and buy a barong tagalog. It is an embroidered shirt that is considered a formal dress. It will cost more or less PhP 5,000.00, but it is worth every centavo.
 
Women:
Women wear the heavily starched, butterfly-sleeved terno and a matching long skirt on formal occasions.
 
Muslims:
The various Muslim groups in the south and the mountain tribes have their own distinctive garments. The Maranao Muslims of southern Mindanao, for instance, have the colorful malong. It is a large cloth wrapped around the body and is worn by both men and women.
 
For visitors, Light casual clothes are recommended. Warmer garments are needed for mountain regions. When visiting churches and temples, propriety dictates that shorts and scanty clothes are avoided. Formal occasions require dinner jackets and ties (or the Philippine barong tagalog) for men and cocktail dresses or long gowns for women.
 
 
Unit of Measures
 
The Metric System is used in most trade and legal transactions.
 
 
Telephone and Mobile Phones
 
Telephone service is modern and you can direct dial anywhere in the world. Public phones are plentiful. Public phones require a minimum of ten one-peso coins for a local call.
 
  • Bayantel - Bayan Telecommunications, Philippines.
  • Globe Telecom - One of the leading mobile phone companies in the Philippines.
  • PLDT - Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company.
  • Smart - One of the leading mobile phone companies in the Philippines and also offers mobile banking.
 
Local simcards are widely available upon arrival at the airport.
 
Some Important Telephone Numbers: (24-Hour Hotline)
 
  • National Emergency Hotline: 911
  • National Disaster and Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) hotlines
  • Trunklines: 911-5061 to 65
  • Operations Center: (02)911-1406, (02)912-2665, (02)912-5668, (02) 911-1873Emergency No.: 501- 650 or 501- 728
  • Directory Assistance: 114
  • National Operator: 109
  • International Operator: 108
 
NOTE: It is advisable to always have the telephone number and the address of your embassy or consulate with you.
 
 
Time Difference
 
Local time is GMT plus 8 hours.
 
Business English is the language used. Sexual equality is more widespread in the Philippines than in other Asian countries. Make sure you have business cards.
 
 
Business Hours
 
Most businesses are open from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM weekdays and 8:00 AM till noon Saturdays. Banks are open from 9:00 AM till 3:00 PM Mondays through Fridays. When banking in the Philippines, it is advisable to have your passport with you for identification.
The post offices are open from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM weekdays only. Stamps for postcards are frequently available from the Concierge Desk at most major hotels. The Philippines uses ZIP codes, please include them in addressing local mail.
 
NOTE: The Standard lunch hour is noon to 1:00 PM. Most businesses and government offices are closed.
 
 
Airport Tax
 
Travel Tax: is levied on the following passengers departing the Philippines:
 
  1. Nationals of the Philippines
  2. Permanent residents of the Philippines
  3. Non-resident who have resided in the Philippines for more than 1 year
 
Fee: varies.
 
Place of payment: for tickets purchased in the Philippines, through the airline or travel agency. For tickets purchased outside the Philippines, at Manila (MNL), Cebu (CEB) or any Regional PTA Travel Tax Office. Exemptions apply.
 
Airport User's Charge is levied on all passengers embarking for:
 
  1. International travel: PHP 550.-.
  2. Domestic travel: PHP 200.-.
  3. Place of payment: Airport of departure.
 
Exempt:
 
  1. Children under 2 years of age.
  2. Transit passengers remaining in the transit area and not leaving the airport.
  3. Crew members
 
 
ANTI-SMOKING LAW in Enclosed Places, etc.
 
MANILA, Philippines -- Section five of the Tobacco Regulation Act of 2003 (Republic Act 9211) prohibits the carrying of any lighted tobacco product in public vehicles, schools, health centers, elevators, cinemas, malls and in places where fire hazards are present. Smoking is also banned in recreational facilities for minors. Fines imposed on violators of this section range from P500 to P10, 000.