JTOL – All Foreigners Are Rich, Right? Part 1 of 2

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60 comments

  1. The brazenness can get frustrating. That’s why I establish the rate before getting in the cab, that it’s gonna be “just the meter”. Or else I walk away. One time, while getting from the Pier in Cebu to Mactan the driver purposely passed the south bridge and took me all the way to the north bridge and back to jack up the fare. The bridge wasn’t closed or filled with traffic. I asked him “Why?..” and he couldn’t say anything. I got out right there and took a tricycle rest of the way.

  2. We are rich. That’s why so many of us want to live there. We don’t have poor people in the US because real poor people are not fat,have refrigerators, eat meals every day. So just understand they need to be opportunist. Its not personal but it starts to feel that way.

  3. I make enough to take care of myself, but not to be handing out free money to everyone who asks. I’d go broke. But it’s really hard to convince them I don’t have millions of pesos in a bag somewhere. : /

  4. Interesting. You should learn Tagalog, it’s really easy to learn. Once you speak Tagalog you won’t have to pay the “tax” It will be easy for you because you could pass for a Filipino, or Filipino of Spanish ancestry.

  5. When my fiance (foreigner) then was here (twice in 8 months) I would have him stand a distance from me and transact our transportation. Although he could certainly afford it, I wanted to save us money. I feel ashamed of filipinos who does this. I always get the filipino rate for us.

  6. Yes. several Filipinas have done the same for me when we are in town together, so that we get a fair price for tricycles. With taxis, I insist on the meter or I won’t ride. Jeepneys I pay the 8 pesos like everyone else. ūüôā

  7. I have experienced this exchange many times. I have found that I have to be firm and direct with taxi drivers. I even got out once at a red light. I carry my luggage in my lap, not the trunk. At the airports, they often have these unmarked vehicles waiting to overcharge.

  8. Taxi meter in Philippines are fraud . they adjust the meter to overcharge the passenger. Beware of the taxi at the airport. normally I would walk out of the airport to take the taxi.

  9. i was in Bacolod in sept 2012   hailed a taxi to take me and my gf plus her friend to a restaurant,,,,the driver would not put his metre on,so  I said   no metre  no taxi  and both girls laughed and repeated what I said.then the driver put the metre on plus no tip at the end.

  10. Once I was headed to Malapascua (north of Cebu Island) for scuba diving. To get there you have to take a boat. At the boat launch there is a large sign that said in both Filipino and English that it was illegal to charge more than 50 pesos for a one way trip to Malapascua. I along with my Filipino (gf at the time) and several other foreigners arrived about 4:30pm. The person running the boat said that it would 500 pesos per person for the trip. My GF began arguing with the guy and pointed out that it quite plainly said the trip was 50 pesos. He just said, if you don’t pay 500 pesos, you don’t go to the island today. You can pay 50 pesos in the morning. In then end we settled on 250 pesos per person, but not a great way to be introduced to the Philippines to be sure.

    1. I’ve had similar instances with taxi drivers, especially when arriving at the pier late at night. ¬†Overall it’s the minority of the time I get shafted for being a foreigner, but when it does happen I mostly lose respect for that particular person.

    1. I do that and my last two trips to Cebu had to walk away from 4 or 5 cabs each visit.¬† It’s the worst at the pier.¬† I already know the fare to my hotel is only 60 pesos.. but they will quote me anything from 150 to 300 pesos as their ‘special price’.¬† If I have to tell them twice that I only want the meter and they don’t agree, I just walk away and get a different cab.

  11. Sounds like, that cab¬†driver was just trying to scam you with more money….but you didn’t fell for it.. As soon as he realized that you were serious and he was loosing a fare..He changes his mind.. Henry¬† you’re becoming a local in the philippines..

  12. lol ya I’m quite familiar with the skin tax…..I don’t go for it and make it blatantly clear that if they want to go that route I’ll shop somewhere else…the taxi I report to LTRFB…which is like the equivalent to the DMV but they will and do revoke business licenses and fine the drivers for that stuff

  13. ALWAYS NEGOTIATE A TAXI PRICE BEFORE YOU GET IN, NO MATTER WHAT COUNTRY.
    “gringo price” in Latin countries.¬† I’ve got no problem with the gringo price as long as it isn’t way over or they threaten to get a cop if you don’t pay.¬† I went to a state run hospital in Peru and paid $3 for a doctor’s visit with a prescription – the first time that happened I felt guilty leaving.¬† The tourist hospitals charge $20-$50 for a visit so when I go to the state hospital¬†I hand them a $20 tip in respect for their profession.¬† I might not tip or tolerate the “gringo tax” if I was a poor student or a retiree on a limited budget(there’s no disrespect if you don’t have the money to burn), but I’ve got some extra money so I show respect for their work and that they have it rough in a third world country.¬† Usually I actually try to figure out what type of lifestyle the person lives on their salary.¬† Taxi drivers in Peru get paid well, with no schooling, so I don’t overpay them(tell them “I live here, so I’ll pay [this price]”).¬† Doctors go to the same years of schooling as US doctors¬†and are drastically underpaid(1200 a year,¬†about as much as a taxi driver)¬†very intelligent pros, so I try to encourage them with a big tip.¬† If I buy a creative product that someone made, I also will usually give them a tip, or not haggle too much if they are charging what I know to be more than what a local would pay.¬† ALWAYS have friends that are locals, so you can get things done without showing your face.¬† When travelling with a Peruvian, I would hide while she flagged down the taxi and negotiated a non-gringo price.

    1. @Roland Tuason
      I went in to the hospital emergency and paid 150 pesos for the emergency and 300pesos for the total 450pesos. However, I have gotten spoiled to the USA’s treatment of High Blood Pressure medicine. In the USA Supermarkets, with Pharmacies, it is VERY cheap. Some southern USA Supermarkets are free to their customers. Over here I pay over 2,000 pesos plus a month. My Filipina wife can’t even get me a better price.

    2. I paid only the equivalent of $11 dollars for a doctor’s visit and a prescription for a check-up for my daughter. It was a government hospital but was really surprised at the price for the doctor’s service in his office. He also had a nurse assistant in the office as well as a secretary. However, the prices are pretty much standard in those state run hospitals. The cabs and tricycle fares are a different story and you might feel like you are being ripped off but I think it’s because they only get a few fares from people because they sorta have to pay a bounty tax or line tax where their cab or tricycle waits for passengers in a tricycle stand which is sorta organized with all of them in line. There are a lot of them and in a day they are lucky to have 4 to 6 passengers on average. On certain days they have less.

  14. Another thing to do is take a picture or make a note of the license plate and the name of the taxi.. they usually have those info inside the door of the taxi too. So, if,  they screw with you, you can try to file a complain to the operator/franchise  of the taxi..or the local government that regulates the taxi fare law. 

  15. In my wife’s town in Cavite, tricycles¬† / sidecars are depending on how far of the area you go to. A tricycle ride from the bus stop where I get off is about 50 to 60 pesos. I was even surprised with the amount which is more than the fare of the bus or jeep because the distance of¬†the bus ride I take is longer but that the fare is only¬†25 pesos from Pasay near the MRT station. However it’s probably because you’re in the Visayas islands (Cebu). A two hundred peso deal is about $5 dollars and that’s cheap. A cab ride from Pasay – Mall of Asia to Cavite where my wife’s town is, cost about 300 to 500 pesos depending on traffic because it gets busy sometimes during rush hour and also of road construction.

  16. You know what I do when taxi drivers do that in Phils? I say…ok, well no thank you and he blew his chance of getting a customer. Thats how I think you should deal with scammers to punish em. I wouldnt stay and argue with him….
    You were talking in Cebu in your example. I NEVER had problems with cab drivers there…being the party animal that I am (late nights/mornings)…but Manila…uuuh thats another story. It’s more a rule there to fk foreigners over. Go subway there.

  17. hello my name is johnny and love your series i would love information to live there in the Bohol area of Cebu i do have friends there i am retired Black Amercaian and a Licensed Barber/stylist and thinking about a nice small shop i have heard that for sure i  wold not make the money i make in U.S but with me and my wife who is Filipina from Manila/Cavite area to be our retirement even to teach my skills i always take advance training like Sassoon etc how rewarding a person like me could do there

  18. that is not a big deal for me if they are rich or poor,as long as I have savings or small business I can afford to support him if we live in my hometown Davao city,one of the most peaceful city in the Philippines.I dont like Manila or other city,I like only Davao City,You never experience like our topic now.Sir  try to visit Davao City.I am sure you will like it.

  19. Oh man you brought up the Jeepney, here comes my navy memories to haunt me. In the 80’s there was the jeepney ride for locals and then the “Special ride”, which if I wasn’t with a Hostess [code for bar girl hooker, you pay my bar fine I’ll spend all night with you, just don’t butterfly on me]. I landed up with a special ride, which was a tour of scenic Olangapo. At midnight there isn’t anything to see, but the jeepney drivers would turn a 5 minute ride down the street into a 30 minute tour of the city. I was a young fool at the time and can hardly blame them for exploiting an easy target, they made their money and I have the memory.

    1. @Barry Smith¬†it’s all a personal call. ¬†but most filipinas i’ve talked to seem to prefer no beards. ¬†or they just tell me that since i don’t normally sport one.

  20. I thought it so funny. A young boy came up to me when I was out walking. He must have been about 10-11. He approached me just as serious as could be. Then then pointed to a house and said, “hello, I thought I would tell you where I live. I live right there. Just in case you want to give me some money, now you know. That house with the yellow flowers in front .”¬† It is the media that confuses some people so much. I have been told a couple of times by adults, “People in the USA must have a lot of money because they give it to other countries.”¬† … nice video …

  21. Compared to the Phillipines and its people, yes! But for the westerner the place itself is not as cheap as the Philippines reputation claims. Hotel’s and other accoms, many places charge you costly for fridge use, hot water, transport’s, food markets and even malls, trips as well all are expensive to the non filipina, aspecially if you’re white or black person.¬†

    1. Anything beyond a disgusting level of tourism Philippines is very expensive compared to the other countries in Asia beside being dangerous.. “Last Plane Out”

    2. @John Erskine if you are in a ‘tourist area’.. prices go up.¬† but, if you are in a non-tourist area, prices for lodging, food ,etc are much lower.¬† compare the prices in boracay to a province outside of bogo and it’s about a 300% difference.¬† it’s all about location and there is plenty of variety in the PH.

  22. I have alot of fun taxi stories in Cebu. Yes, they want to do you wrong.
    One time my friend in the back seat threw up and the taxi driver wanted to charge me 900 pesos. I told him you can charge her whatever you want – after a argument he took me to the police station. He went crazy – then the girl talked to the police. We paid the meter, then he left. I will never forget girl. Freakishly fit, attractive sexy and fun but left me with a gift. Lol. Needless to say i did not need or want another fish magnet for my refirigorator.
    Taxi drivers have took me to the police station many times but the police are always on my side. I think more of the Cebu police than I do of American police. They are truly good men with good common sense. The problem in Cebu is the tragic enforcers, they are mostly made up of opportunistic punks.
    1 timer I got in a accident and had to go to the c-tums office. There also I was impressed with the fairness and common sense.

  23. Yes I agree, please tell your audience not to yell and curse at these people.¬†¬†It is illegal according to Philippine law not to use the taxi meter and the driver knows this.¬† You the customer have the upper hand so don’t argue and remain calm.¬† Just calmly tell the taxi driver no and if he cannot use the meter to let you out on the curb.¬† Normally he will change his mind and use the meter no problem.¬† Yelling and cursing, for any reason, makes it harder for every foreigner who comes after you and can get you killed.¬† This is unacceptable behavior in the Philippines.

  24. In some places in Asia, I thought I was doing well to just pay double the local rate for anything.  It just seems to be imbedded in people thinking that foreigners pay at least double the local rate. 

    One time in Indonesia, me and a local guide took two motorcycle taxis to the market, the guide negotiated a fare for both of us and he got a pretty good deal, no problem with the price, but the weird thing was, even though we took two motorcycle taxis, they rode side by side and I paid for both of them, the rider who took me, earned double the fare of the rider who took my guide.  

    Coming from a Western culture, I just couldn’t get the logic in the¬†rider with the white guy riding pillion always¬†gets double the rider with the local guy – even if the white guy is picking¬†up the tab for both.

    1. It’s interesting how you remember this minor incident compared to the overall experience in Indonesia this is where they should teach their local population to treat tourist with respect returning to their own country and share with others it’s some minor incident compared to the overall interaction with the majority of people.

  25. That is a scam. Why don’t they use that justification to get money from rich filipinos? You are not rich compared to the midde and upward filipino, that is where the whole pity the poor filipinos concept breaks down. The upper strata there wouldn’t lift a finger for their own people but you the rich American are Ghandi. It is exactly the same here. The upper stata Mexicans have an invisibility cloak, they don’t exist…

  26. LOL i kind of understand why a tricycle would want extra, if you are extra large.
    THE CABS JUST SAY ,MANGGI NGI LAD and get out.
    Means Scam Artist.
    If the ride was smooth and the driver was nice, a small tip was always given.

  27. Reekay,
    Would it be wise to have your luggage with you in the backseat, so the guy can’t just drive off with your stuff if you jump out? Also, would it help if you say, “Take me to (fill in the blank) hotel, it’s three miles.” If you state the distance (and even the route) the driver might not be as willing to mess with you.

    1. i usually have my luggage with me in the back seat. only once did i put it in the trunk, and that was at the airport. i also didn’t get out of the car until i saw the driver behind the car with the trunk open.

  28. how do we avoid the special price when first getting here at the airport ? i have been here 2 times and it was real bad both times, even for a short distance they are saying 2500 or so for a 10 km drive to the hotel, and there seems to be nothing you can do but grab your bags and walk if you wont settle, now both times i talked it down to half the price but even so it was a huge rip off…

    1. both times i arrived it was at night and i guess i was just in to much a hurry and both times had a pretty girl waiting for me at the airport , next time ill take the time to find one, i had thought the ones i used were metered but your right its just private taxi and thats why i got major ripped off lol

    2. at the mactan/cebu airport.. just exit at the door, turn right and go to the metered taxis at the queue. avoid and ignore the people hawking out ‘special rates’ for private vans and cars that are not metered.

  29. Lol…omg. When I landed in Manila back in August 2017 I was very well-educated haha on the scams these taxi drivers run after retrieving my baggage going out of the airport walking all the way down to the Yellow Cab lo and behold the first cab started his crap it was so so late oh so far to Makati then they tried to charge me extra because I had several bags that boy found out just how pissed off an American who just travel 24 hours can get I think he heard new words he’s never heard before I blew up on him like a thermonuclear weapon and I could have cared less the second cab that I got had witnessed me and the other driver and did nothing but laugh got me in his car which was very clean we had a great conversation all the way to Makati charge me nothing but what was on the meter and I tipped him LOL but that first guys never going to forget who I am I believe me

  30. I have to explain to Filipino I am not rich in USA I be living on the street, But here with the exchange rate at 52 I get to rent a nice house and live a much better life. They all think were rich you think I like living in a 3th world country Hell no but at lest I can survive.

  31. I laughed so hard I cried. My GF being a Filipino helps a lot VS the rich American thing, When she picked me up at the airport the taxi was fair & used the meter but, she said can U take us to a close nice hotel. boy did he. She didn’t say the most expensive
    hotel in Cebu. It only had one suite and it was all they had available. 25,000 PHP for three nights. Why do I think he might have got a kickback. I would have got another taxi but, I had jet lag from He*l at the time. That was one month rent at the condo we ended up at.

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