Philippines: Trip Preparation & Destination Information

About the Philippines


Breathtaking scenery, spectacular beaches and clear blue waters, combined with the cuisine and unique culture, the Philippines is one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations. With remarkable beauty and undeniably friendly locals, the Philippines isn’t difficult to love. Mysterious, grand, and inviting at the same time, the Philippines in one word, it’s breathtaking. 


Capital City: Manila

Population: 112,850,068 (2022 est.)

Currency: Philippine peso (PHP)

Time Zone: Philippine Standard Time (GMT+8)

Emergency Number: 911

Outlet: Types A, B &C


Packing List

Speak the Language

Language: Filipino and English are the Philippines' two official languages. Filipino is a native language based on Tagalog.

  • Hello - Kamusta
  • Good bye  - paalam na
  • Thank you - Salamat
  • How are you? - Kumusta ka 
  • I’m fine - sayos lang ako
  • What is your name?  - ano pangalan mo
  • My name is..  - ang pangalan ko ay..
  • Excuse me - pasensya na
  • Where is.. - nasaan si..
    • The bathroom  - banyo
    • An ATM - isang atm


Google Translate: Download the Google Translate app or click here 




Fun Facts

  • There are 7,641 islands, which makes it among the largest archipelagos on the planet. Only 2,000 of these islands are inhabited.
  • Filipinos spend more time each day on social media than any other country in the world. Earning it the title of Social Media Capital of the World in 2020
  • There are at least 175 languages spoken in the Philippines and at least 171 of them are considered ‘living’ languages. You’ll have no trouble being understood though since more than 52 million people speak English, making it the fifth largest English-speaking nation in the world.
  • The tarsier, one of the smallest primates in the world, is found exclusively in the Philippines and can be seen in the provinces of Bohol, Leyte, Samar, and parts of Mindanao.
  • Jellyfish Lake in the Philippines contains more than 13 million jellyfish.
  • A Filipino tradition is to welcome the new year by displaying 12 round fruits on the family tables on New Year’s Eve. The 12 fruits signify the months of the year and the round shape is said to attract good luck. Some even associate the shape with money.


Tipping Suggestions: Tips for Guides, drivers and restaurants are not included. Tips provide supplemental income, and, while not mandatory, are greatly appreciated. If the local teams have added to the experience, please reward them.

Guides USD $5-10 per person/per day
Drivers USD $3-4 per person/per day
Restaurants  It’s uncommon to leave tips for restaurant service crews since your bill will include a 10% service charge.



Where can I find information on travel safety? Check out the US Department of State's website for the most up-to-date information on safety while traveling.


Is the water safe to drink? Tap water in larger cities such as Manila is safe to drink. It can vary from region to region in more rural areas.


Do I need a Visa? For Visa information, click here. Make sure your passport is valid for at least six months after you return home and has two or more blank pages. Otherwise, some countries may not let you enter.


What about vaccines? For vaccination information, click here


Do you recommend travel insurance? While not required, we highly recommend all travelers get travel insurance for their trip to protect themselves from the unknown! Check out travel insurance options from our partner, or from a provider of your choice.


How much should I pack? As we will be using shared transfers and spaces throughout our tour we recommend all travelers pack as lightly as possible. Please review our luggage restrictions below.


What does public transportation look like? The most common means of transport for the locals are taxi, buses and jeepneys. There is also a light rail system in place in Manila.


Is Uber or Lyft available? Not anymore, however, there is a replacement ride share called 'Grab' which uses an app, screens its drivers, allows payment through the app and tends to be cheaper than normal taxis. FYI: hotels have restrictions on what taxi companies or if Grab can pick up at their location.

Luggage Restrictions

Luggage Restrictions purple
Luggage restrictions purple – mobile – 1

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