‘Can I ask a Favor?’
The more girls you talk to in the Philippines the more times you will hear this question. And the follow up will almost surely be ‘can I borrow…’
I try to make a lot of new friends of the Filipina variety, and many of them will pretend to be your friend before trying to get some money from you. Obviously you should never ‘loan’ money to anyone you don’t know well, and a Filipina girl is no different.
I have loaned out money to 4 girls since I have lived here and 3 paid back. One I was really good friends with, we had hung out a lot over the past 2 months and she was in the hospital. I sent her the money via Western Union and she paid me back the next week when she got paid. She had a good job at a call center so I trusted that she would pay me back. She later borrowed a small amount which she never paid back, but I never asked her for it and considered it a gift.
Another girl was in a bad spot where she had come to a new city to meet her cousin then when she arrived couldn’t get ahold of him. I allowed her to sleep on my couch the first night because she didn’t have enough money for a hotel, and the second night she was sitting in a park at 3am alone because she was ‘too shy to ask for my help again’. When I found this out I had her come back over and gave her the bus fare home. She paid me back the next day via Western Union.
The last girl ‘borrowed’ a small amount and never paid it back. It was under $10 and I really never expected to get it back. She had just got a housekeeping job and said she needed the fare for her jeeps to work or she wouldn’t be able to go in for the next week and would lose the new job. We had hung out 3 times and I was fine giving her money that I would not get back because she had made me happy in our times together.
A friend sent me this Line chat with a Filipina he met once in Thailand who didn’t even put out
Begging Culture in the Philippines
From my first days living in the Philippines I could tell that there was a far worse begging culture here than there is in other poor countries. In Cambodia and Thailand you might get poor people on the street wanting a handout, but in PI even regular people ask to ‘borrow’ all the time.
I would guess 20% of the Filipinas I talk to ask to ‘borrow’ money at some point, many of them right after we just met and don’t even know each other. It really amazes me how many people here are fine with asking to borrow money they have no intention of paying back, and by that I mean how many people are OK with lying and stealing.
Beggars on the street are much more aggressive as well and some of them won’t give up. All you can do is keep walking and say no or ‘wala’ but that doesn’t always stop them. Even people like trike drivers have begged me to take rides from them when I just wanted to walk.
If you’re with a Filipina girl you will often get pressured by other people to buy her things or pay for rides. In Subic I offered to pay a girl’s trike ride home and she said she just wanted to take the jeep. Being the gentleman that I am I walk her out and wait for the jeep with her and a trike driver across the street honks and waves at us. I offer again and she says no and for the next 5 mins he honks the entire time even when I yell at him that we don’t need a ride.
There are girls on dating sites whose entire job is to chat with guys and try to get money from them. They will try and be your friend for a bit and feign interest. Then she will tell you about her ‘big problem.’ This can be anything from she is sick, her mom is sick, her baby is sick, she needs money for her tuition, her boarding house rent is due…… the list goes on and on. Just end contact them the moment they ask the first time because it is all they are interested in.
I know poor people beg wherever they are from. Homeless people in the US beg all the time, and there were quite a few beggars in Cambodia. They don’t even compare to the begging culture that exists in the Philippines. Saying no is all you can do, just be prepared to say it often.