Jobs For Americans in the Philippines — Are You Qualified?

Day after day they come … and don’t get me wrong, I’m glad they do … people searching for information about Jobs For Americans in the Philippines.

Although I Am NOT About Finding a Job Here, More About Making a Living

Often they ask me about finding a job in a call center here in the Philippines.  After all:

How to Move to the Philippines Manual
  • The market here is heavily, very heavily English-oriented. (and most of my readers are native English speakers)
  • There’s little technical or academic perquisites for the typical call agent’s job.
  • It’s no secret there are thousands and thousands of openings every month
  • Pay and benefits, in Filipino terms are not bad … certainly better than trying to sell pineapples off a cart on the street.

But there are some hurdles that many Americans need to consider:

  • Having normal English skills is an advantage … but it doesn’t make you unique
  • Foreigners are a big liability for many companies.  In paperwork and benefits demands alone, the bias is normally going to be towards qualified Filipinos.  Taking on employees in this country is much more expensive and restricted than the same issues in the USA.
  • Most Americans who contact me are not prepared to apply for a job as a street sweeper.
  • They don’t have resume’s ready to send out,
  • They can’t express any specific skills or interests they can bring to the table,
  • They seem to think that “needing a job” is a qualification.

Folks, “needing a job” is not a qualification, it’s a liability … you’re “needy” and let’s face it, personally or business-wise, who wants to deal with a “needy” person.

Instead of Telling an Employer You NEED a Job, How About Telling Something You Have Done?

What can you bring to a prospective employer’s bottom line?  What experience do you have in helping a business earn, rather than just being another guy who stands in the pay line every two weeks expecting his sweldo (oh you didn’t know what “sweldo” meant?  See what I mean?)

Some Thoughts From An Experienced Reader

My friend Mike is a regular reader here and he’s also a foreigner (US) who has landed a good “foreigner job here in the Philippines”. A job far, far above the call center agent level I might add.

Here’s a few snippets from a conversation Mike and I have been having about Americans working here in the Philippines and their chances of find good one.  Thanks, Mike.

I agree with you that if you hire in as a local hire at a call center you’re unlikely to rise into middle or upper management.  I suspect that it’s tough to avoid being stereotyped as a worker bee.  You probably know better than I do that class distinctions and perception can be a big deal here, more so than in the US. 

This is a big deal here, fellows and gals.  In the USA who your father is, what work he does, what high school or college you went to, etc. is seldom even considered.  In the Philippines it can be a big deal.  A Really Big Deal.

Also cost cutting is the name of the game, and Americans have a reputation for being expensive unless they are on local scale.  Whether you are willing to work for less or not, again that may be a tough perception to shake.

Most Americans are not going to be able to do what it takes to live on Filipino wages.  But even if you are one of the rare ones who can and will di so, there’s a huge chance no Filipino hiring official is going to believe that you are.  They’ll pass you buy in a heartbeat to hire a Filipino who may, in your onion, be less qualified, but in their opinion … which is the only one that counts … will not cause them any “trouble” and hard feelings.

I saw very much the same thing that you have during my 25-odd years working in high-tech in the US.  I definitely see a big difference between now and when I started.  Back then the focus was mostly on whether you could do the job or not.  Now every hiring manager has a huge stack of resumes of people who are qualified at least on paper, so they look at things like degrees just to cut down the stack.  I have a friend who is quite capable but only a high school graduate that has been underemployed or unemployed for several years since being laid off from Intel.
I think that as you said in your post, and as you, I, Bob Martin, and others have said many times, the best way to find a job in the Philippines is to import or create your own job
Best, Mike

My friend Mike, who is an American living in the Philippines with a good expat job, writes often about Jobs For Americans in the Philippines.  I thought it would be illuminating to highlight a recent conversation we had on this subject.  If you don’t have time to read the whole thing, I’ll make my point here, first.  The degree of success you are going to have in finding a job here in the Philippines, as a foreigner, has a LOT to do with your qualifications, both academic and technical.

One of the things I’d like to steer people to are ways to find foreign companies located in the Philippines, so that they might then identify potential job targets of opportunity.  The Chambers of Commerce I have come across are hopeless, and many companies apparently don’t want to advertise their foreign presence … wonder why? 😉

One thing many Americans in particular may have an issue with is the level of skills as well as educational background that their fellow foreigners bring to the table.

One of my nieces works for a big call center/BPO provider and while I was visiting there I saw a big list on the wall of all their management people, including a little ‘capsule CV’ as well as their countries of origin.

There are a lot of foreigners in management with that firm, but a large majority are from India … the US representation on the list was about 10%.  And based on what my nieces have told me … I have insight into three big companies through them … the Americans often don’t rise above trainer and trainer/supervisory levels.

They’re hired for their accent, but they all wind up working for Indians, Brits, Singaporeans and Chinese. You Are Not “Special” because you are an American.

Jobs For Americans in the Philippines — Aren’t Americans Always First?

Jobs for Americnas in the Philippines

Hi, We’re Americans, can we just walk in and take a job from a Filipino?

I think a big problem is that as a country we Americans don’t realize how times have changed.  When I started in government service 50-odd years ago, a degree in anything was totally unnecessary.

When I finally retired in 2003, a major reason I left was because I had been passed over three times in three years for supervisory jobs that were not ever going to be open to me again … and my bosses even told me, straight out, the law dies not require a degree for these jobs (yet), but senior leadership has directed that we don’t fill them with anyone not holding a 4 year degree.  End of discussion.

The funny part is, I’m not upset about it, I very likely was not as good a prospect for any of those three jobs as the folks they picked … all of whom had bachelor degrees and two of whom were well along working on their masters.

The world is a changing and many of us, especially guys like me in the “target market” age range for moving to the Philippines have had our head in the sand and not kept up with the times.

So what are your thoughts on Jobs For Americans in the Philippines


  1. zeke_axlerod says

    I find it to be very selfish for Americans to think they are going to get a job in the Philippines. Unless they have a skill that is very much needed in the Philippines, maybe a Doctor with a Specialty that is high demand.
    I recently completed paying for a nephew in the Philippines to complete a local Maritime Academy (certainly not the career of my choice) and I have seen his struggle, getting payed $50 a month as an Intern, having to buy his food with that money, its pretty outrageous. I also feel its a shame the US no longer recruits Filipinos into the US Navy the majority of Filipino Sailors were far better than the bozo’s recruited off the city streets here. Millions of Filipinos will ever have the opportunity for any decent employment in the Philippines, just because there are NO JOBS. Americans moving to the Philippines with a great desire to work should consider starting a business that can employ a Filipino or two even if its at a very minimal wage, or simply stay out of the job market.

    • says

      @ ==> zeke_axlerod » Amen to that, Zeke. Many don’t understand at all what conditions are like here. Many also just think of ‘a job’ as a place where you go fuve days a week to gte paid to surf the ‘net and hide out from responsibilities, sad to say … but you know, my web server documents exactly when every single surfer lands here, and also the computer he/she is surfing from. It’s really surprising how any hits I get from ‘name brand’ corporations, government agencies and schools I get, staring Monday AM, US time. Of course, perhaps they are just doing official company research or term papers or somehting … at least that would be one way to explain it.

      The US military (not just the Navy) does recruit in the Philippines. Each service makes a number of recruiter visits every year … anyone interested can write me for details.

      Problem for most Filipinos is, one of the requirements is that the candidate has to already be a US citizen or a US LPR (Legal Permanent Resident, i.e. Green Card holder). Very few young people who have one of those are going to still be here in the Philippines.

      • Ace Nacionales says

        Good day Sir Philly, My entire college life, all i dream is to become a soldier. Whether it is here or there in the US armed forces. But, here the problem is, they have too much requirements which seem to be inconsiderate. Like what you had mentioned, about green card, or alien certificate or something, how can it be obtained? what are the processes? I really really want to let my dream come true. Hope you have response regarding this. Good day sir

        • says

          Hello Ace, thanks for writing in. The US military will only take non-US citizen applicants from the if they have the equivilant of two years of college and legal US residency .. commonly known as a “Green Card”. You can join from within the Philippines or, of course if already in the US. Anyone who joins as anon-US citizen has to become a US citizen within their first term of enlistment. You can’t just “apply” for legal US residency, you have to be sponsored by someone legallyin the US and/or get to the US by other legal means (working visa, perhaps, marry a US citizen, etc.). Sorry, but it’s pretty restrictive and I don’t know of any shortcuts. Godspeed.

      • Jackie Ziotes says

        Moonkkang Talk Inc.

        NATIVE VIDEO/ONLINE ENGLISH TEACHER (American, Australian, Canadian)
        PHP 60000 – 80000 +Health/Medical Insurance
        National Capital Reg – Pasig City


        Teach English as a Second Language (ESL) to Korean students online (Beginner and Advance)
        Conduct level tests
        Edit students’ essays
        Write daily reports
        Write monthly reports


        *** Once hired, working visa will be processed by the company
        Candidate must be an American, Australian or Canadian (NON-AMERICAN, AUSTRALIAN, CANADIAN need not apply)
        Candidate must possess at least a Bachelor’s/College Degree , Post Graduate Diploma / Master’s Degree, Mass Communications or equivalent.
        At least 1 year(s) of working experience in the related field is required for this position.
        Applicants must be willing to work in Pasig City.
        Preferably 1-4 Yrs Experienced Employees specializing in Education or equivalent.
        10 Full-Time position(s) available.

        • Kenneth Kuykendall says

          Dear Sir,

          I am an American Secondary English teacher with 8 years of teaching experience, I have a Masters Degree in Political Science, my wife is Philippino and is in the process of obtaining her Green-card here in America. Our child will be born this summer, and I am looking for work as an English teacher in the Philippines. I would like to correspond with you about the potential of filling one of your positions. Please feel free to contact me at the e-mail provided. I look forward to hearing from you.


          Kenneth Kuykendall

        • Andy Carr says

          I have a masters degree in Psychology plus 18 graduate credits in English which qualifies me to teach both Psychology and English on a college level. I also have two Bachelors degrees and three AA degrees. I retired as a Psychotherapist and then taught college courses for seven plus years. I also worked as a radio personality for more than 20 years, Look at me on Facebook. I have lived here in Manila for more than two years. I have a Filipina wife and four kids. I am registered with Central Texas College as a PACE professor (Teach college courses on US Naval Ships at sea). However I haven’t been assigned in a long time and would like to work in the Philippines. I have US security clearance.

          • Philly says

            Hello Andy,

            Welcome. Pretty impressive resume’ (or CV if you prefer). But it’s too bad you didn’t learn one important thing with all that classroom time and expense:
            You Don’t Have To Work Where You Live!
            Here’s a couple of your fellow teachers who I happen to know of who were caught in the last-century “trap” of a j*o*b because, well, that’s what they learned from their fathers and grandfathers. Then they realized “jobs” are not the way to go in the 21st century, and look at them now. Our Story

            There are hundreds of other ways to earn, and earn decently where ever one lives (ever thought of teaching on … actually get paid properly for all those qualifications you have earned?

            But I would strongly suggest that seeking a job, especially expecting US wages in the Philippines, is NOT the way to go about it.

          • Andy Carr says

            Thank you for your interest in my resume. I have considered teaching on line and I saw a post where I could teach English, on line, to Korean students and earn $2,000 per month but when I punched up the address I got an error message.

          • Philly says

            Hi Andy, Hmm are you sure that teaching Korean student’s was talking about 2,000 Pesos and not $2,000? Making $2,000 USD through any of those “fly by night” teach Korean’s cheap schools are shadowy to say the least.

            What did you think of the Sam’s, a couple high school teachers who came to realize that even a “real job” teaching school is not worth much in today’s world … read the two links I sent you in your last comment and let me know what you think.
            To me, I feel the answer is NOT to follow the path to eking out a marginal living via someone’s Korean school or whatever, but set yourself up to make money for yourself. As I wrote above you don’t have to earn when you live.

            See Also:
            10 Reasons You Don’t Want A Job In The Philippines
            10 More Reasons You Don’t Want A Job In The Philippines

            It’s the way forward Andy, truly I think it is.

          • Andy Carr says

            Thanks Phil. Not even the US Embassy pays American wages to local hires and I even have US security clearance. I would like to work for real wages but I am making 200 pesos per day teaching two classes at a Catholic school and that gives me something to do. I have sufficient income to live here and not be on a strict budget but not living as well as I would like.

      • david says

        How often and when does other branches come to PHILIPPINES to enlist children of american parents that live in the philippines?

        • says

          I don’t believe any of the services have a regular schedule, but they all come to the Philippines from time to time. Schedule information is usually posted here: and/or here: or (best bet), contact the recruiting hq. of the service you are interested in (Google is your friend)

          Common requirements are, be 17-34, have two years of college completed, be a US citizen WITH Passport in Possession, or posses a current US Green Card.

        • Philly says

          Hi Jim,

          Welcome and thanks for writing in. Suggestions? Sure I have a lot of them. Over 1,000 articles published I’ve devoted more than 10 years to living in the Philippines. Perhaps you should start here: Moving to the Philippines and then some back with specific questions. I’ll be glad to help, but I can’t put 10 plus years of experience into a blog comment or an email … the investment required of you is to read and study … that’s the way most of us who are successfully living in the Philippines did it.

        • Andy Carr says

          The first thought to moving to the Philippines is do you have a regular source of income sufficient to sustain you here because you will not be able to find a job here that will support even a moderate lifestyle. The average worker here makes about 400 pesos per day and that is if you can find a job at all. (approx. $9.00 per day). Cost of living here is very reasonable if you prefer a moderate lifestyle. I pay around $600 per month for a large house in Manila but you can find cheaper out in the Provinces. Electricity is very expensive and I pay about $350 per month and that is only running one window unit at night. Food is cheap enough if you eat only the native food. Things you buy in department stores are about the same price you would pay in the USA. Live in maids are plentiful at $75 per month.
          Here is an example of a used auto: 1991 Isuzu Trooper $5,000 but public transportation is cheap. Example: You can ride a Taxi across town, here in Manila, for about 300 pesos ($6.81 American). I would say that if you have income of $1,500 per month you can live a good moderate lifestyle here and could get by on $1,000 per month.

          • Philly says

            Thanks for that confirmation/amplification, Andy. I’ve probably written 8 or 10 articles (at least) on this site about the “Cost of Living in the Philippines” and they all come out just about the same. The cost of living in the Philippines depends much more on the person doing the actual living than on any other factor. As a wise man once said, “You pays your money and you takes your choice”.

    • shane says

      “I find it to be very selfish for Americans to think they are going to get a job in the Philippines. Unless they have a skill that is very much needed in the Philippines, maybe a Doctor with a Specialty that is high demand.”

      Try looking at America now. Illegal Mexicans flooding the country, taking away our jobs, working under the table and paying no taxes. Why would it be selfish for an American to want to find a job legally in the Philippines? As long as it’s legal and they fill the requirements and pay taxes, why would that be selfish?

      Apparently you think Americans should work in America only? In that case, maybe Filipino’s should stop working abroad. Choose your words carefully.

      • says

        @ Shane:

        Hello Shane from somewhere@ (I can get your actual location via your ISP, Comcast if I need to, you know), thanks for sharing.

        You have your opinion, I have mine. I have chosen my words very carefully and I meant every one of them.

        So disagree if you want, but don’t try to tell me what to think or what to write. This is my website and I decide what I want to say, when I want to say it. You are free to disagree as you wish, or you are free to go elsewhere where the opinions expressed are more to your liking.. As we say here in the Philippines, ‘Sup to You’>

        Want to come here and work for $6 a day? As long as you do it legally, great with me. I don’t like illegal immigrants in the US either, just for the record. Godspeed.

      • Andy Carr says

        Doctors in the Philippines make very little money and probably live at about the same level as a convenience store clerk in the US.

    • Richard Daniels says

      They still allow 400 Philippine nationals to join the US Navy in the Philippines. They dont recruit more than that and there is a very long list(in the thousands) waiting for those 400 positions each year.

      • says

        @ Richard Daniels

        Thanks for writing in, Richard. Indeed ALL the US services take candidates from the Philippines. The “catch” for most young Filipinos is, the candidate must already have a US Green Card and must also have at least two years of college, for a total of 12 years of education, over and above the 10 years that regular Philippine HS grads have. “Back in the Day”, they took candidates who were not US citizens or legal permanent residents, this was a great path to US citizenship for many youth, but that door was slammed shut back in the early ’90s.

        I am a huge believer in military service, especially for young men and women who are as yet undecided on a career. I owe everything to my military years … made a man of me and gave me a profession. Likewise both my sons. But it doesn’t seem to hold as much attraction to young people as it did back 40 years ago whne I joined the USAF. (Wow, it as 47 years ago, actually … time does fly). .

  2. Roselyn says

    Hi Philly: I am a Filipino-American university educator, grew up in the U.S., received all my degrees from the U.S. (B.A, M.A., and Ph.D.). Aside from teaching and research, I assist in the placement of graduating students throughout the world with multi-national companies. My expertise is in fashion merchandising and apparel design. There are many companies in the Philippines that hire Americans such as Loreal (cosmetics) and various department stores (usually located in the upscale malls). Multi-national companies require a minimum of 4 year degrees, references from internships and professors, leadership skills (proven activity leadership roles in professional organizations while a student in the university), and work experience. We require a supervised internship in the fashion industry before graduating our students. The field is very tough throughout the world. Our students who are not driven will be left out. Most of our students are holding part-time jobs after school to build their resumes so that they can compete worldwide.

    If an American will need a job placement in the Philippines, they must have the requirements mentioned, get an employment with a major corporation that exist in the Philippines, and get a transfer. You can’t do this however, if you do not have the 4 year degree and the job experience. It will be very tough to get a job in the Philippines if you are not connected somewhere.


  3. says

    Give it up guys! Your not going to find something to do in the PH. There are so many talented young Filipinos who need a job Create the income before you go, or bring retirement income with you! You’re not willing to work for what they do. Philipines is a great place but only if you have a little money!

    Think outside the box and live your dream

    • says

      Randa » You got that right, Randa. I heartily agree. That’s why I write about making your own lick(income) so often. If, for some reason I needed a ‘job’, I’d run, not walk, to thee airport and fly home. Even if you were to get a job here in the Philippines, they pay, working conditions, and the commute would shock most Americans to the core.

      Besides, you know how many Americans bleat and whine and actually get angry about “foreigners in the US ‘stealing’ American jobs’? It never seems to occur to them that here in the Philippines, they would be the “Mexicans stealing jobs”. I live here as a guest. I did not come here to ‘take’ from the Philippines. Seems there are a lot of Americans who don’t see it that way … “America for Americans and the Philippines for Americans too”?

      But, oh well, that’s what makes the world go ’round I suppose.

      • says

        I need to watch my spelling on my IPhone (and otherwise). My name is Randall. Thanks for the reply!!

        I’ll have to try out that new first name for a while just to see how it fits..

        Randa Ha!

        • says

          I’ll be the last one to ever talk about other people’s spelling … got a lot of problems of my own in that area. I just copied and pasted what came through … you don’t suppose that’s yet another iPhone bug that Steve Jobs will tell you happened becuase you didn’t hold the phone right, so you? 😉 (Joke, sort of …)

  4. Bob New York says

    Anyone contemplating moving to Philippines, sending out a bunch of resumes and expecting to get a job they can make a living from should Not move to The Philippines. Obviously they have not done their homework first !

    If there are not enought jobs for Filipino Citizens, how in the world would you expect there would be jobs for foriegners ? You think you may have skills, talents and degrees Filipinos do not have ? If so, once again you have not done your homework.

    I have toured quite a few colleges and Universities in The Philippines and maintain a close association with one of them. Although in some schools you may not see the latest fixtures, lab equipment, lecture halls and student desks and background music in the rest rooms, these things do not necessarily affect the quality of education the student takes with him or her upon graduation.

    In one instance, I personally handled the paperwork for a student holding a Philippines Bachelor Degree that was considering to come to a USA University to earn a Masters Degree. Foriegn students to be admitted to a USA University and acquire the proper USA visa for that must have their Ph degrees evaluated by an accredited evaluation service to have their grades, GPA, etc. converted to USA Standards. In this case this information along with the supporting documentation was submitted to ” World Educational Services ” in New York USA for evaluation. The Philippine bachelors degree in this case would hold the same value as if it had been earned at a USA University. You can not under evaluate Education in The Philippines. I have met with University chancellors, Presidents, faculty and many students while I have been there and I must say I am very well impressed. Many of these students have little or no difficulty in finding jobs in many places in the world including the USA, despite the immagration restrictions.

    It is unfortunate that many of these highly educated and capable students end up behind the counter of a fast food franchise or pumping gas or being a retail clerk or security guard earning the equivalent of $5 USD and more times even less ! I do know for a fact that a licensed school teacher earns the equivalent of about $8 USD per day teaching in a private middle grade school ! No benefits, No health Insurance, No sick pay. You don’t show up you don’t get paid for the day !

    A high majority of the employed Filipino population work as ” Temps ” with a 6 month contract. At the end of the 6 month contract they are out of a job. If the employer wishes to re-hire I believe there is a 30 day waiting period before another contract with the same employee can be established.

    Have you ever checked out Help Wanted adds in the Philippines ? Many of them would not be considered as ” Legal ” in the USA. You will read qualifications like ” Female Only ” ” Must be between 19 and 25 years of age ” Must be Attractive ” . Ever walk into a fast food franchise in The Phlippines and take a close look at the people behind the counter ? You are not going to see any middle aged or retirees working there. Anti-discrimination laws for jobs are kind of non-existant in The Philippines.

    Additionally you must have the proper Visa or Employment papers issued to you to do any kind of work, paid or unpaid or you could face being deported !

    If you don’t have a sufficient bankroll or any kind of retirement income that will support you, it is highly unlikely you are going to find it waiting for you in The Philippines !

    It is a fantastic place to visit, and for some a great place to live, but think about it, even if you could find or have a job there would you work for less than the equivalent of $10 USD per day and No benifits ? I don’t think so !

  5. Bob New York says


    From my visit to the ” Award Winning ” Iligan Medical Center College, Iligan City Mindanao with the school President, faculty and one of the students just prior to touring the entire facility. I am very impressed !


    The Award Winning Mindanao State University – Iligan Institute of Technology, Iligan CIty, Mindanao. I was so impressed with this place after touring it several time, I created a Scholarship here and on each visit I have brought donations of equipment and other things to help enhance some of the technical courses here. On my visit of 2010 I became the first Honorary Alumni of this university, something I take great pride in.

    If I did not think the ” Quality of Education ” was there, I would not invest my money in the future of these students !

    • Bob New York says

      I tried to post a couple of pics in the above post but I guess they will not work here, the captions should suffice though.

  6. Drew says

    I do the research almost daily looking for feasible ways to make my dream of living in Phils a reality. Working in Phils would be very hard for an American or most from from the west. I love the place but at my age (38) owning would be best.. In the US I make 60k+ on average most years and I work a blue collar job. I went to college for a few years but I am a technical person and it shows in my personality. Years ago I worked in the police department in new york as a fingerprint analyst but that specialty I doubt would help in Philippines.. know that to have a good western style living I cant survive on 300 a month and no insurance.. Living there as a wage workerwould be frustrating for this westerner…

    • says

      Drew » You have at least figured out what you do _not_ want to do, Drew, which is more than a great many of the searchers who come here have done. You need to decide on a way … likely several ways, don’t put your eggs in one basket, and start earning a significant fraction of your current $60k income from sources outside the Philippines … then make the move when you are ready.

      One thing that interests me … your work and qualifications as a fingerprint analyst. Why did you toss that aside as “I doubt would help in Philippines”? Maybe you haven’t noticed how many times I have brought up the issue that so much of what I love here … and how much things frustrate me, as well, is that the way things are done and often the technology itself is 50 years behind.

      What make you think there would not be a demand for your finger print experience? Likely not as a job, per se, becuase I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, especially for a guy only 38 years old, jobs are a losing proposition. What do you think Congress will allow to be left behind for you in the 25 or 30 years when you’ll be (possibly) eligible for conventional retirement?

      What if you taught and consulted and wrote and researched in that field for the next 25 years? You don’t think you would be ahead of a conventional 9 to 5 job? I do, honestly.

      • Drew says

        Thank you.
        Pardon me for replying so late..
        I worked in NY for nearly 6 years doing fingerprints..
        I hated it and I now suffer from bad eyesight from years of looking in magnifying glasses and outdated computers.
        Its the main occupational hazard from that job. I work conducting trains now.
        I already see that social security will be gone for me. I look at it as throwing money in a furnace..
        I just don’t see a future here anymore..

        • says

          Drew » OK, understood. I still see potential in sharing that knowlege. 6 years of experience at a technical skill like that is nothing you can just learn from a book or take a simple college course and learn. Godspeed.

  7. Colorado says

    There really are no jobs in the philippines for foregners unless you start some sort of bussiness with tour filipino wife…My wife is filipino and we have a nice house there and I would love to never have to leave the country. Truth is I can make more in the usa in one week running my seasonal bussinesses than most filipinos make all year…so im forced to fly back and forth working peak bussiness times here in usa..if your planning on moving here make sure you have atleast a 1000 a month to live decent…yes you can live cheaper,but it will be a complete dump and you will be eating rice everyday. The medical care in philippines is great for the low cost,and I trust filipini doctors/dentist more than usa..many things in the phillipines are the same price as usa though,so dont think everything is cheap!

    • says

      Thanks for reading and for contributing. Indeed, yet again, expereince speaks. So many people come here asking, even beggingme, to help them find work in the Philippines. In New jersey, we have a famous saying … “Fuggetaboudit”. If, inspite of all the other reasons that mitigate against it, how about this?

      In the US right now there’s a huge haterd of illegal ailens … even legal ones. “Thoss damn outsiders are stealing all our jobs, taking up all our tax dollars with retirment progrmas, getting preferentuial treatement, etc., etc.”

      You guys reading this all know it. Heck, many of you have probably said words like that.

      Well, when you come to the Philippines, you are the outsaider, the ailien. The Philippines is way less capable of supporting it’spwn population than the USA, even given presnt finanicla and job woes.

      So did anyone ever give a thought to what gives a foreogner the RIGHT to come to the Philippines and ‘siphon off’ whatever small stream of money s/he can? You know how so many people in California, Arizona, Texas, etc. can hardly say the word “Mexican” without adding a curse word, or maybe a bit of a spit?

      In the Philippines, we Americans are the “Mexicans”. We come from a land of abundnace. Let’s act the part.

      I write here over and over about different strategies for making money from _outside_ the Philippines while living _inside_ the Philippines. And my bank account can show proof that it works. You do not have to earn from the country you choose to live in.

      Does anybody ever read what I write? I must admit, there are times i wonder…..

      Do the right thing, people, even if you can find a way to do the wrong thing and get away with it. That’s the definition of integrity. Exercise it once in a great while. You might even find it makes you feel good about yourselves.

      Colorado? Can you share with us what the nature of your seasonal business is?

  8. Dawn D says


    I am a newbie on this site :-) My husband is American and is a HS History teacher. My family is in the Philippines. They usually visit us since they make more money than we do. Anyhow, we’ve decided that my husband will try to get a teaching job at an international school (whether I.S., Brent or Reedley) and see if we can move there so we can be close to family. I am a licensed architect in the Philippines (reviewing for my state board here). We figured that between teaching, trying to pass my US architect’s board, not to mention taking care of an active 8 year old, our best bet is to stay there for a few years. How competitive is hiring for these schools since their curriculum is based on U.S. Education standards? We’re not worried as to where we’re going to live and getting around (it will be provided for by my family). Contrary to the usual scenario, we don’t need to give my family any money or help since they are doing well on their own. It’s just that I’d rather my husband gets his job outside our family business. Any suggestions on applying for these teaching jobs?

    • says

      Hello Dawn, how are you? Thanks for writing in. I don’t have any idea just how complicated applying for these schools are, but there are foreigners working there all the time so I know it can’t be am impossible challenge. I had along-time reader here who came to the Philippines afew years back and interviewed at Brent (in Manila) and several other international schools, I’ve written him privately on this and if he’s still interested he’ll join the conversation I am sure.

      Aside from that, application shuld be the same as applying for any other teaching position, the schools know about any special rues involving foreigners. Godspeed.

      • Dawn D says

        Thanks Philly :-) I hope your reader replies so that we’ll have an insight on the application/hiring procedure at these schools. Are you originally from Philadelphia? A good friend of mine moved from Philly to Chicago and that’s where I met her. I started reading forums regarding expats in the Philippines and I’m amazed at how things are from different perspectives. Growing up, we were lucky I guess to have a good family and a good life in the Philippines. Everyone wanted to leave and work here. I stayed because I got married but for the most part, I am having a hard time here knowing that I had a good life in the Philippines. I guess I’m the one who convinced my husband that life there is good. He’s been reading bad stuff where Filipino families ask you for money and that you have to feed everyone. I hope that he doesn’t change his mind. Anyhow, any helpful information is greatly appreciated.

  9. Kevin says

    So, i’m reading these comments. I am confused as to why you keep repeating that everyone asks you where to find jobs. As to what I see here, you only tell people they don’t have the right to work in the Philippines. You do realize that a LOT of filipinos go to the states and “steal jobs” too. If I fly to the philippines, walk into a company and get a job.. how does this lower one’s integrity? You pay taxes, and on top of that.. You even have to pay for a visa. (Not everyone is married.) Anywho.. I am 24 years old and I did not come here with a “life savings”
    obviously.. So why wouldn’t I be able to earn a living in the place I live? Incredible.

    • says

      Hello Kevin,

      Thanks for writing in. Opposing views are always welcome. You know I am not at all against foreigners working in the Philippines … you might get the idea that the Philippine government and a large segment of society here are against foreigner employment, but some people enjoy swimming upstream. I even maintain a job listing with thousands of Philippine jobs … have you applied for any of them? Let us know how you make out, and Godspeed.

  10. ImPinoy says

    I am glad knowing that Americans are looking forward to work here in our country. What i really wanna know is WHY? We filipinos are doing anything just to have work in your country. We even do jobs that we dont even thought we can,like being caregivers,domestic helpers,etc. Life is really ironic dont you think.

    • says

      @ ImPinoy:

      Welcome and thanks for contributing. Indeed, as an American, my question is the same as yours, WHY?

      Why so many of my fellow Americans want to come from a country of plenty to a country which is struggling to get enougyh to get by on, and then try to “suck up” whatever lobs are available is beyond me. Godspeed.

      Glad to have a Filipino viewpoint on this. Jobs for Americnas in the Philippines are just not a good idea. I din’t come here to the Philippines for a job, and I don’t beleive anyone else whould either. Much better to make your wn business and earn fro9m outside the Philippines so that you are not an “anchor” on the country. Godspeed.

  11. Jeff says

    I think it is funny all this talk about illegal imms from Mexico stealing jobs in America. Lol, it was NAFTA that overturned article 27 of the Mexican constitution and took the farm land from the people in 1994 raising the poverty level from 34% to around 90% in three years. The illegals we complain about are our own fault, off topic but just amusing…

    • says

      @ Jeff

      Yes interesting to say the least. Moat of those jobs that Illegal Immigrants are “stealing” from US citizens are jobs that US citizens won’t work at. And the legal immigrants, engineers and such, get the jobs because less than 4% of US students who bother with college take STEM (engineering type) courses, while about 40% of Chinese students are in STEM programs.

      But obviously it’s totally unfair for companies to hire Chinese … they should hold the job open for somebody with an “American” name. Oh well …

  12. Joe market says

    It’s not selfish for someone from the USA to want a job in the Philippines. Let’s face it, the whole BPO industry is based on taking jobs from Americans. It is only natural for an American in the Philippines training Philippino workers how to do the job they held in the U.S. To have a desire to work in the Philippines doing the job they held in their home country.

  13. fred says

    Who gives anyone the right to call people illegal? We all live in this world and sometimes we fall in love with people in other countries but the immigration laws seem to discourage people who want to be together in most countries including USA. As long as people are willing to work and contribute paying taxes etc it helps local economies

  14. fred says

    Because of immigration process haven’t seen wife in years ive been to phillipines many times visiting but if she doesn’t get approval would they rather I not live there and work which would be my only option and im am American. Not allowing people to live and work and contribute to a society where there spouse live is a form of racism and prejudice.

  15. fred says

    I also want to thank the creator of this site at least it gives a chance to share different views and helps to vent hopefully in a respected way

  16. says


    Ive been to the PI 3 times now so I have an idea of how to get around and communicate. I have an degree and 4 certifications in IT and want to try and move there by nov 2015. Ill be visiting again with my girlfriend oct-nov. I preferably want a job in Cebu. Do you think a company would be willing to provide me working papers and hire me even though im Foreign? Im not quite sure how the best way to approach this My girl is from Negros Occidental so I know she will a lot of help as far as learning the language and transportation but she is not sure on how to go about getting me a job there.

    thanks so much,


    • Philly says


      I know you don’t want to hear this, but I feel you’re barking up the wrong tree. You don’t want an IT job, or any other job as a foreigner here in the Philippines.

      What you want is an income and there’s plenty ways to get a workable income for yourself _wihtout_ saddlong yourself with a low pay, low benefits J*O*B. You might want to take a look at this ; Ways to Make a Living Pack
      Also, be sure to read:
      10 Reasons You Don’t Want A Job In The Philippines
      10 More Reasons You Don’t Want A Job In The Philippines
      You Don’t Have To Work Where You Live!
      As a few “idea starters” for you. If you “build your own” income source you will NEVER have to “submit your resume’, beg for an interview and you’ll never have to fear a layoff or company staff reduction. My advice is, start your ife here the right way. not the “last century” way. Godspeed.

    • Andy Carr says

      You cannot find a job in the Philippines. They have many IT people here and they are making peanuts. I have six college degrees and have taught at an IT college in the US and I can’t get a decent job. I teach two hours at a Catholic high school and make 200 pesos per day. Fortunately I have retirement income that is sufficient to live comfortably here. Even doctors her in the Philippines live in near poverty. You should get on the internet and try to find companies that are operating in the Philippines and in need of an IT person but chances are that even then the pay will be Philippines standards.. Even the US Embassy pays Philippines standards. If you have a Masters or PhD you may want to look into teaching online for a college like The University of Phoenix. The average working slob here makes about 400 pesos per day. Another thing you might consider is opening your own business where you can contract IT but you will have to still do it for Filipino wages.

      • Philly says


        Thanks again for contributing. But let me again point out that I believe there is one flaw in your thinking. You do not have to earn from the place where you live. One example I’d suggest is You have an impressive education. Why waste it teaching part time where you are not really appreciated. On udemy there are thousands of people teaching thousands of courses which they themselves devised and sell. Many make a very good income. Think more of yourself.

  17. John Miele says


    I find it interesting, reading the comments, people still going on and on about NAFTA more than 20 years after the fact. When the NAFTA treaty was signed, the entire economy of Mexico (including the oil industry, which was about half of it), was smaller than the economy of Ohio. NAFTA did not make all of the manufacturing jobs in the USA magically disappear overnight. In fact, the impact was positive, because so many of the naysayers forget about, or leave out intentionally, the fact that Canada was also part of NAFTA. US exports to Canada increased… A benefit to US “jobs”.

    The jobs people are bemoaning were leaving the USA anyway… due to the rise of technology. Those who are stuck in the old economy and old thinking are the ones who suffer. The technological innovations of the last 20 years have rendered much of the old economy obsolete. That is why manufacturing has moved to places like China. Borders are no longer relevant when it comes to the economy. Why would a company pay a unionized assembly worker in the USA thousands of dollars more, and need to deal with pesky employment standards and legal restrictions, in order to make a product that is priced too high for consumers in the USA to want to purchase? They won’t. Certainly not when they can automate or offshore production, and put that money into marketing or expanding into other global markets.

    My last job, as you are aware, was located in France. My old boss, who is now semi-retired, and I had a conversation late last year about the company and the French economy. He told me something that rings very much true…

    “You know, John, I started this company because I was an engineer, and I liked to make things that were innovative, and high quality. I would move the company away from France if I were 20 years younger or needed the money. I no longer am able to do what I love to do. I spend 90% of my time now arguing with lawyers, arguing with bankers, arguing with the union, meeting with the tax people, arguing with the environmental people, dealing with the insurance people. I no longer love my own company.”

    This coming from someone who paid very generous salaries (above union demands), ran a safe and efficient factory (exceeding EU safety requirements), and employed young people in order to give them a chance.

    The regulatory and business environment created there, ostensibly to protect “jobs”, has completely stymied any innovation and removed any incentive to expand. Staff are virtually impossible to remove for non-performance (It took 8 years to terminate an employee who claimed job-related injury. The case was won after he put pictures of himself wakeboarding on his Facebook page). The tax rates have become unsustainable (corporate rate 45%). The environmental laws killed an expansion of the factory (The land was supposedly contaminated from WWII… In order to build, a multi-million Euro cleanup would be required first).

    Why would someone spend millions and create “jobs”, when the work could be outsourced to Tunisia or Lebanon (which it was) for thousands? Why pay 10 times the amount for low-level assembly work and let a Chinese, or Indian, competitor undercut your prices in the global market? Why not use the money to increase the educated engineering and research staff (This is what was done so that our product was distinguishable from others. Our competitive advantage.)?

    The bottom line is that the economy is global. Like it or not, what happens to the economy in China, or Greece, or India, or Russia matters. 50 years ago, oceans sheltered the USA from a blip in Europe or Asia. No longer. In order to compete in the world marketplace, Americans have got to stop going on about these lost jobs that are never coming back. They need to realize that the world has changed, like it or not. They need to stop blaming others and innovate. They need to stop acting Xenophobic and look inward as to the “why” the US is non-competitive. They need to place real value on education and stop letting the religious nuts and politicians control the school curriculum. They need to take a step back from American exceptionalism, put away the flag for a moment, and realize that screaming “USA, USA” does not equate superiority.

    Don’t know what I am talking about? Ok. Some may think that. Perhaps they are right. I am an American living in the Philippines working for a Swedish company that is selling its’ products in nearly every nation on Earth.

    Enough of a rant. I see quite idiotic comments like were posted and, in the back of my mind, I think, “With that attitude, I WOULD NOT EMPLOY YOU!”. Come to the Philippines and look for a job in service or the trades? Yeah. Good luck with that. You are an amoeba in a pond full of hungry trout.

  18. says

    I am looking into eventually retireing in the philippines. My fiancee is Philipino. I have a job here and make decent money. I am older and close to retirement. I have heard that some age requirements go with jobs there. Is that true? I have many questions. I will do my resume and send to you later. I am retired military and only some college education. Thank you for your time.

    • Philly says


      Thanks for writing in. Retiring from a job in the US and then coming here to live in the Philippines is a great idea .. at least it was for me. I love it and I’m probably never going back to the USA.

      But coming to the Philippines to get a job here? Not a good idea. Especially not a good idea at all for a foreigner of retirement age. It’s very common to see jobs with 30 years of age maximums. This is not the USA. It’s not only perfectly legal to discriminate here, it’s also very common. Please don’t waste your time with a resume’, at least for me anyhow, I’m 100% against jobs here in the Philippines especially for older Americans. You really ought to read some of my articles, I devote a lot of time to this issue, and there’s a LOT more than I can go into in an individual email.

      Try for starters: You Don’t Have To Work Where You Live!
      10 Reasons You Don’t Want A Job In The Philippines
      10 More Reasons You Don’t Want A Job In The Philippines
      also be sure to read some of the “related” articles listed at the end of these posts. Forewarned is forearmed, my friend.

  19. Khalil says

    Hi Philly,

    I got a problem. I am a 24 year old who is trying to live in the Philippines and I am not retired or married. I am also trying to find a job there to support myself. I want to invest in a business of my own but don’t know to benefits based on my current status.

    What advice do you have for a 24 year old like me trying to get into the Philippines and stay there.

    • Philly says

      Well the first thing I would ask you is, what would you do to support yourself if you were in your home country? Coming to the Philippines with no experience, job skills, etc. and then expecting the economy to carry you along is not a very viable plan, How many hundreds of thousands of qualified Filipinos can’t find work in their own country? I’ve written many, many articles about this, including 10 More Reasons You Don’t Want A Job In The Philippines
      What’s Better Than a Job in the Philippines?
      You have to earn a living no matter where you love, but those who say you have to earn that living from the same place you choose to love are not thinking straight.

      • Khalil says


        Thanks for the article. Would be nice to generate income despite working or not.

        Well, my skills involve tutoring mathematics to children and college students. I wonder if I could make it with teaching/education skills like that there.


  1. […] //]]> Foreigner Jobs.  This is always one of my popular and searched for items … Jobs for Americans in the Philippines.  Personally, if I had to have a J*O*B I’d rather have one in the US, but who am I to tell […]

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