Every single apartment I have stayed in Asia has had an ant problem. You just can’t keep any food out in the open or you will wake up one day and have hundreds of ants eating it. I have to keep everything without an air tight seal in my fridge.
Even if you use a cooler they will find a way in. I guess I could probably just buy a lot of big tupperware boxes to keep food in, but instead I just throw stuff like chips or cereal in the fridge. Take them out 5 minutes before you want to eat them and they are fine.
It doesn’t matter if I am staying in a cheap place or a nice place ants get in. I have tried using different products to get rid of them but nothing works. I have given up and have grown used to them. Just wash any silverware or plates right before using them, not a big deal really.
Before moving to Asia I had never seen a wild rat. Now I see them often. In Sihanoukville I had a few close encounters with them, including when one jumped in my bed within my first hour in the city.
When I would go use the kitchen at my hotel late at night there was always one that was in the same corner. And every night would be the same routine. I would turn on the light and make some noise trying to get him to run out, but he never would.
Then I would go into the kitchen and start making my food, and at some point he would run out with a quickness like he thought I was trying to kill him. Often he would smash into the fridge or a wall because he was so out of control.
One night I had to get something out of the fridge, it was on the bottom shelf so I crouched down like a catcher, right as I reached for it was when the rat decided he had to make a go for it. Right between my legs he ran and I almost had a heart attack.
You hear and see them scurrying in the bushes or running from one hole to another on the side of buildings. From time to time you see one flat as a pancake in the middle of the road.
Cockroaches are also quite common here, and they are huge. Most places I stay don’t actually have them in the rooms often, but sometimes they sneak in. Again they really aren’t that big of a deal. You already have to wash your silverware before using it anyways.
I have found the easiest way to get them out is using a dust pan. Just trap them in a corner and they will run into the pan, hold it at an angle and they cant run up it. A broom is a good way to sweep a lot of ants out at once also.
Even Gramercy Residences one of the nicest condos in Manila with 70 floors has a roach problem now. Usually they are the small roaches but occasionally you see the big size ones too.
Without a doubt mosquitoes are the most annoying of all the critters around. Mainly because they can give you diseases like Dengue Fever or Malaria. I always do my best to keep my doors and windows shut but they still sneak in from time to time.
Maids here love to leave the door open as they clean your room and this always allows a few to get in. Even if you ask them and remind them odds are they will leave your door open. Really annoying.
They have these electric mosquito killers that look like a tennis racket. They are very effective and if you are as paranoid about mosquitoes as I am you should definitely get one. Will cost you about $5.
Let me know your experience with bugs and other critters in the comments.