‘Po’ is a word used to show respect and humility in the Philippines. It can be used when talking to someone in higher position, someone older, or even when a person in a higher societal status wants to show respect and humble himself before an old beggar.
For foreign people, it’s also appreciated if they include ‘po’ in their statements. For example: ‘Yes’ is ‘oo’ (pronounced as oh-oh), but to sound respectful, people made it ‘opo’. ‘No’ is ‘hindi’, but ‘hindi po’ would be better.
Where to put ‘po’ in the statement depends on the phrase or sentence but if a foreign toungue would use it, it will be better if they will have it at the end of the sentence, like, “I don’t know po”, “I will check your sms later po”, “hello po”, “how are you po” and “happy birthday po”.
In the video below I’ll be explaining a core essence of Filipino culture: bayanihan.
Bayanihan is a Filipino term derived from the word bayan meaning community, nation, or town. Pronounced like “buy-uh-nee-hun”, Bayanihan literally means, “to be a bayan”. Basically, it’s used to refer to a group or a community coming together and helping one another to achieve a common, greater goal. It promotes a culture of empowerment and empowerment of every person through innovation, teamwork and action.
One of the best and most known examples of bayanihan is the past tradition of neighbors helping a relocating family. Volunteers are gathered within a community to help carry a whole house to a new location.
Unlike modern houses today, which are made from cement, concrete and bricks, traditional Filipino houses were made from nipa and bamboo; and built on stilts. This example of bayanihan is done by placing long bamboo poles crosswise and lengthwise below the house. Its then carried using this bamboo frame.
As you can imagine, this is a heavy task, and it requires a fairly large number of people, often about 15-30 people, depending on the size of the house. They work together to carry the entire house to its new location. While it’s tough, all this is done in a festive and happy mood. At the end of the day, those who received help will express their gratitude often in form of hosting a small fiesta for those who helped. Everyone has worked hard, and it’s now time to party!
The Bayanihan spirit shows Filipinos’ concept of supporting each other most especially in times of need. Another feature is that one should is helping another at free will, without expecting anything in return. Filipinos strongly believe in supporting their “kababayans” (fellow countrymen). They do this in any possible way they can and actively reach out to offer help. It’s a beautiful Filipino mentality of helping one another.
The traditional form of bayanihan is rarely performed nowadays. More and more people have moved from small rural communities to large cities for their career. However, it’s beautiful to see that the bayanihan spirit lives on. For example, during natural calamities or disasters we see a strong sense of community. Filipinos will reach out and help their kababayans in need. This is the Bayanihan spirit.
No one celebrates Christmas better than Filipinos. In fact, the Philippines is known for celebrating the longest Christmas season in the world. It starts as early as September or the “ber” months, and ends one Sunday after the New Year or “Three Kings”. And while Christmas is celebrated worldwide, we Filipinos have customs and traditions that we can uniquely call ours. Here are some of them.
In the Philippines, Christmas starts as early as September. You can already see Filipinos decorating their homes with Christmas lights, huge Christmas trees, and of course, Philippine lanterns, or ‘parols’ made from bamboo sticks and colorful papers.
Local Filipino Christmas Songs
Aside from this, you can feel the Christmas spirit when you go to the malls or listen to the radio because you’ll be hearing timeless Christmas classics by Jose Mari Chan and other Christmas carols.
Simbang Gabi: Attend Mass
The Philippines is a Christian country and that’s why we believe in going to church together as a family. From December 16 up until the 24th, Filipinos attend mass with their family before the break of dawn, this is why we call it simbang gabi. After this, we make a wish and we believe that it will come true.
Noche Buena: Food
The highlight of Christmas for us. We celebrate the eve of Christmas with our families, with all kinds of food on the table. We have lechon, pancit, leche flan, and other kinds of food.
We believe that it’s more fun in the Philippines, especially when you celebrate Christmas not only with your families, but with friends and other people that you love as well.
Marriage from courtship to post – marriage activities is a community undertaking in the Kinali culture.
Pre-marriage activities ensures the compatibility of soon-to-be partners in the Kinali community, and once united are expected to become productivemembers of society.
Kinali tribal courtships starts with the anag. Bachelors, after the farm works return to their villages, and take their rest at the dap-ay. From thence forth, they will make the customary journey into the olog, the designated dormitory for young girls and unmarried ladies of the village. Stories commence into the night, with the bachelors doing everything they can to woo the ladies into their side.
At times, farm works are required of the ladies to test the mettle and determination of the bachelors. These includes, but are not limited to pounding rice with mortar and pestle, gathering of firewood for the girl’s family, fetching water, carrying rice grains from the farms to the abode of the girl, and even looking after the cattle and livestock.
Every available methods are employed to test the soon to be member of the family, it include the observance of his character as well as values and attitudes.
At times, when bachelors have passed marrying age, of which is often nearing the mid-forties, the elders of the community perform the sagut. The sagut, is the traditional practice of pairing bachelors with spinsters, and at times younger girls even half their age. The idea for the latter, is for the girl to take care of the aging bachelor at old age. The consummation of such requires the approval of both parties, and the families should be amenable to the agreement.
Sukat the makan follows once the partners agreed to get married. This is the traditional practice of exchanging food, usually sweet potatoes and meat, between the families. In the old days, when the belief on tala (witchcraft and sorcery) and, kedet (food poisoning) was still prevalent, there is a need to established trusting relationships between families, thus the purpose of the sukat di makan.
Other practices includes the:
Daw-es – cleansing ritual
Begans – thanks giving ritual
Dawak – Traditional wedding
Senga – thanks giving party
Sekad di Gameng – passing of the inheritance during the wedding night
Bab-a-at – claiming of traditional gifts from relatives of neighboring villages
Found on the south-east part of asia, known mostly because of ist beautiful beaches. But do you know that Philippines is more than all oft hat? Yes, Philippines is more than white, pure grain sand,and it is deeper than blue pacific ocean.
Starting with a rich history during Spanish, Japanese and American Era, who greatly influenced the country’s culture and perspective. The Filipinos is a mix of all habits and characteristics from its colonizer; religious like spanish people, nature loving like japanese, and appreciative of the western culture like the americans. Nowadays, filipinos are competetively working and living abroad, i guess everywhere you go there is always a filipino living in the community.
When we talk about Pageantry, Filipino women „Filipina“ is always someone to watch out for in the universe of beauty pageants, they are most of the time one of the judges‘ favorites, and just few years ago a filipina won the crown as Ms. Universe. In the world of artistry and music, filipino singers are also making a name not just in Asia but also in other continents, maybe for the reason that singing is one of the favorite hobbys of every filipino; they sing while they cook, during at work, or just during some free time they do „karaoke“.
Filipino Delicacies is something that always get the heart of its tourists. Mainly with rice, like the other asian countries, but there is something to ist dishes that made it unique unlike the others. I myself couldn’t explain what that special ingredient is, since we are using globally known products too. If i may say, maybe it is the pure joy and love the filipinos give while cooking dishes for their visitors and to the tourists. Once you get a taste of it, the taste will always leave a special mark on your memory, and maybe, just maybe you will smile when you think of that food you had in the Philippines.
I know that Philippines is now one of the top destinations not just for asians but internationally. The beaches are indeed world-class, beauty untouched, and one could really say „it is worth every peso!“ but i would say, the trip would be unforgettable not just because of the natural beauty of country but mainly because of the experience with the filipino people. The joy they show on their faces even on the midst of problems.
I do believe it is better to tell a story than to turn pages of a book, so pack that bag and experience the filipino warm welcome!
Where else would you want to live in a country that offers crystal-clear beaches, cost-effective accommodations, rich culture, friendly and smiling locals, sumptuous food choices, and beautiful natural resources? We almost have everything you need for your perfect vacation.
Can you imagine the happiness naturally painted on your face when you’re in the Philippines? Allow me to give you an idea what is in-store for you when you spend time in our touristy archipelago.
Weather in The Philippines
Philippines is strategically located in an area that has an annual temperature of about 26.6°C.
This tropical weather makes the country very adaptable to tourists from anywhere across the globe. It would be best to come here from the months of November to May. You can even enjoy our monsoon season between June and October as we created lots of activities indoors like recreational events inside hotels.
People in The Philippines
Ask as many non-Filipinos worldwide who have been here and you will be captivated by how they describe their experience with our one-of-a-kind hospitality. Actually, it’s already ingrained in our culture. We’ve been known to be friendly and kind to our guests no matter our status in life.
Flora and Fauna
The archipelago is gifted to have the most diverse wildlife throughout the world. You will find different animal and plant species wherever you are – in the highlands or under the ocean. We are proud to be the home of the cutest monkey (Philippine Tarsier) in Bohol and the smallest fish (Pandaca pygmea) in the world.
Visit and be awed by our scenic geographic offerings including the stunning Chocolate Hills in Bohol, the naturally-crafted Banaue Rice Terraces, and the 2016 world’s best island – Palawan.
Islands and Beaches
With the 7,107 islands composing the archipelago, it will make you feel like you are having heaven on earth. Have a feel of our very fine white sand with your naked feet and get a plunge at the clear waters of our beaches. Never miss Travel+Leisure’s list of “The World’s Best Islands” in 2017 including Palawan, Boracay and Cebu when you visit in our country.
Although we already adopted American, Malay, Japanese, Chinese, and Spanish cuisines, we still have our own menus for our guests. Among the must-try local Filipino foods are adobo, balut (boiled developing embryo of a bird), halo-halo dessert, pancit (noodles), and sinigang. Seafood is everywhere; just ask some locals where you can buy some.
Almost everyone in the country, no matter the age, speaks English. You will never get lost your way so long as you can communicate in English.
Complete your travel across the country, especially in remote areas or in the countryside, riding in or on a jeepney and motorcycle (locally known as habal2x). These vehicles are already part of our culture and this kind of ride will absolutely make you feel like a natural-born Filipino.
Isn’t more fun in the Philippines? Try to book your next trip here and experience all these first-hand.
According to a recent survey, Filipinos are leading in social media use across the whole world; to them, social media is a part of everyday life. A study regarding effects of social media not only to Filipino youth but it is evident in all ages. Filipinos have a history of standing for what they believe in but in our digital age today, it is even more difficult to discern the truth to fiction. One example is a video of escalator etiquettes, this video went viral all throughout the Philippines and for a few months after the said events, this etiquette was spread throughout malls and public places nationwide.
2.Filipinos are religious
Since time immemorial, Filipinos have always been religious, dated back even before Spaniards time, they already worship gods Bathala or Anito. It is practiced until today, An example is the famous Feast of Nazarene, the devotion of the people to the image of black Nazarene is tremendously exhibited by carrying the life- sized image in procession to a certain route. This practice has been carried throughout the years till present.
3.The Filipino pride
Filipino pride or also called ‘Pinoy Pride’, is a hollow knee-jerk reaction of the Filipinos that whenever someone with a Filipino blood makes a name outside the Philippines, Filipinos react to acknowledge this person who made it big internationally. Examples of which are Charice Pempengco, Manny Pacquiao, Pia Wurtzbach, Kylie Versoza and Megan Young are among the biggest personalities Filipinos tagged as ‘Pinoy Pride’.
4.Time runs as ‘Filipino Time’
Filipino Time runs usually 1 hour late and excuses are always would be due to ‘traffic’ but they would consider this in time if the speaker/event /meeting has not started yet.
5.Filipinos are hospitable especially to foreigners
Filipinos are warm to visitors more so with foreigners, it is in their nature that they would always greet their guests warmly, make the guests comfortable and entertained. They place in their best to give the best services they can provide and many see this as one of the greatest positive traits of Filipinos.
6.Filipinos are superstitious
The Philippines is the melting pot of races but also local and foreign beliefs. Even in modern times, they still believe in some superstition. An example of a famous superstition is called Paglilihi is associated with to food cravings or any kind experienced by women during the initial stage of pregnancy.
7.A respect to elders thru ‘Pagmamano’
Pagmamano is a simple gesture used in Filipino culture by giving greeting bows towards the offered hand of the elder and presses his or her forehead on the elder’s hand as a sign of respect and accepting a blessing from an elder.
Pagmamano is a traditional common Filipino practice to respect people older than you.
8.Filipinos use a taboo and a timba for baths instead of showers or bath tub.
When staying in a Filipino home, you’ll usually see a pail or they call it timba and pail dipper or taboo for collecting scooping amounts of water for baths. Some Filipinos believe that this is a good way to conserve water but others do it because they were accustomed to the traditional way of bathing using taboo and timba.
9.Filipinos use their hands for eating.
What a better way to enjoy the food than to use your hands the same way Filipinos do. It is one traditional practice that is still present and you’ll usually see it in a fast food chain, Mang Inasal where they offer unlimited rice, but they would also practice proper hygiene of washing hands before and after meals.
10.Filipinos love to use banana leaves instead of a plate.
Get the ultimate ‘nature’ feel while eating your food on top of an efficient, budget friendly plate! One unique Filipino tradition that is not only fun, decorative and absolutely eco-friendly!
The Philippines is considered as one of the most stunning countries with beaches and islands that each and every individual will find pleasing to visit. Traveling to Philippines is definitely going to open up your eyes to their traditions and the way of living Filipinos have. This country is known for all kinds of reasons, but they are generally known for its amazing hospitality, wonderful beaches and active volcanoes. If you are a bit confuse regarding which country you should visit in your next tour, the Philippines is certainly the perfect choice. Let us talk about the basic pros and cons of traveling to the Philippines.
The Philippines and it’s amazing culture
One of the major benefits to traveling to this country is the magnificent culture you will get to explore. Whether you plan on visiting Baguio and seeing the modern lifestyle and traditions prevailing in the Philippines or you visit Manila, you will get to explore about all the ways on how Filipinos live. The only disadvantage to traveling to this country is the fact that you can be amazed at how a number of poor people live in this country. It is overwhelming to see how some people live, thus you may find this to be a little scary in the beginning; but that is just the way it is in a few countries. On the other hand, it’s still a magnificent place to visit, and seeing these kinds of people will assist you to see how lucky you actually are.
Shopping culture in The Philippines
If there is one place you would like to see that signifies their traditions and culture, you must visit Villa Escudero. It provides you the opportunity to swim in their freshwater and experience the stunning waterfalls that no other country can offer. When you travel to Philippines, you should visit all of the malls like the Rockwell Power Plant Mall and SM Mall of Asia. The Philippines is known for creating malls that are stunning and extravagant, so expect to see best malls in this country; though, if there was one spot to get the ultimate mall experience, you must visit Eastwood City in Quezon, Libis City. This little town is known for having several malls, condominiums, theaters, and celebrities singing on stage almost every day. This magnificent place is the perfect hotspot to be in if you wishes to experience the nightlife version of Philippines.
For most Filipinos, marriage is a holy ceremony. It is solemnized by a priest or any religious officiate and held at a church. It is a life-long decision and breaking it is considered an unforgivable sin. Before marriage, a period of courtship and engagement should be done first. During the courtship a suitor will have to prove worthy of the hand of a Filipino woman by performing different traditional courtship techniques. Some of these techniques include, the traditional “harana” or serenade, bringing foods for their family whenever visiting the woman in their house, and performing servitude wherein the suitor will do the household and farm chores of the family. If the woman and her family will approve the suitor, they will be an official couple.
After years of being together, if they decided to get married, engagement will then follow but before the man gets the approval of the woman he should formally ask for the approval of the woman’s family which is called “pamamanhikan”. The man will formally introduce his parents to the woman’s parents. If the family will approve the engagement, the wedding will be planned right away. Marriage in the Philippines will require legal documents. The couple should present original copies of birth certificate and baptismal certificate to the local civil registrar. It is forbidden to get married if you are under 18 years old. Couples within the age of 21 to 15 should obtain parental advice or else their marriage license will not be issued. Couple will have to wait for 10 days for the marriage application to be posted and they will pay certain amount, charged for their marriage license.
Marriage counseling is also an important requirement for the license to be issued. Two witnesses of legal age are required. Also, the wedding should be solemnized by any religious officiates. Also, the wedding should be held at public places unless they have sent a request to perform the wedding at a different location. Another thing is that the Republic of the Philippines does not allow marriage by proxy and marriage of relatives up to the fourth civil degree is strictly prohibited. The marriage license is valid for 120 days from the day it was issued. Those are the requirements needed to be able to get married. If the couple has already set the date of their wedding they can already start making preparations. The making of invitation should be the first one to be done since it has to be given to the guests before the wedding day. The bride will have to wear a wedding gown and barong for the groom. Same with the wedding guests, the color of their clothes shall be based on the couples’ choice. During the ceremony, an hour-long mass will be done. There are also certain wedding paraphernalia that includes the arrhae, the candles, the veils, the cord, and wedding rings. After the wedding, everyone will then proceed to the wedding reception.
The Philippines, an archipelago which has been colonized by many countries, is a place of diverse culture. From Luzon to Mindanao, every place in The Philippines has its own festivals as a way to continue their culture and tradition while welcoming new changes.
Some of the most popular festivals, and highly-visited by locals and tourists alike, are Cebu’s Sinulog Festival, Baguio City’s Panagbenga Festival, Lucban, Queonx’s Pahiyas Festival, and Marindugue’s Moriones Festival. People will always plan their visits and try to insert them to their schedules so they can go their hometowns and celebrate the feast with their loved ones.
Here are the reasons why it is fun celebrating Philippine festivals and why you should try it next time you visit the country:
From ethnic dance numbers to cool performances depicting a town’s culture and tradition, a visitor will never get bored when going to a festival. Usually lasting for a week or two, a festival’s highlight will always be a street dance complete with drum and lyre. Performers, usually locals, don their costumes with pride as they dance and depict their place’s origin. Sometimes, these costumers are woven with intricate details, materials of which can also be found in their place.
The Culture and Traditions in The Philippines
Festivals are way to promote and relive the origin of the place. Activities you may enjoy other than dance numbers in the streets are beauty contest, photo exhibits, theater plays, and even free tours to their known destinations.
What is a festivity with the food? The Philippines, a food-loving country, is not at the bottom when it comes to preparing food in the table, especially during festivals. Each home will prepare sumptuous food for their visitors to indulge on. You know you are in a Filipino home (and in a good and happy company) of there are rice, adobo, menudo, pansit, and puto at the table.
The Philippines’ is one of the world’s most happy people. They are known for their resiliency in trying times that is why there is always a joy in finding a good company with a Filipino friend. Your Filipino friend will gladly introduce you to his family and make them feel like you are at home with them. They will insist you try the trademark Filipino food like balut, halo-halo, and adobo during your stay. You will gain friends in no time because they are naturally friendly. They can even tour you around the city and tell you stories about their place. Truly, their hospitality is one-of-a-kind.
More than the selfies and the photos uploaded on social media accounts, memories created during the celebration of each Philippine festival is a way to further promote the place. Every local aims that their place’s culture and tradition will still be continued even when changes made by technology has already made available for everyone. The bonding of family members, the camaraderie of the community, and the creative ideas of people behind a festival’s success, is rather vital. The culminating activity of each festivals proves that Filipinos loves where the place where they came from.
The Philippines has only two seasons – dry and wet. Arid lands cover most of the agriculture areas while hot and humid air permeates in major cities during the dry season. Rolling trickles of sweat from the temples to the cheeks of dehydrated men with parched lips is a normal scene. The Filipino practice of taking a bath daily is our way of beating the heat. We indulge in 10 to 20 minutes of fun and leisure soaked with water and soap so we can face another day under the sun.
Why Filipinos take a bath every day
It is a custom in the Philippines to take a bath, at the minimum, once a day. Skipping one would cause repulsion from other Filipinos. It can even be a source of a joke whenever someone is found out to have not taken a bath. He or she can be deemed as lazy or a slob. An interesting thing here is that even though the person does not smell or look like he or she has not yet taken a bath, the person can be judged nevertheless by fellow Filipinos.
Taking a bath is not limited in the confines of a bathroom. Filipinos have done it in many places. Those who come from lower income class families take a bath outside their home in the streets. With their boxer shorts and undershirts, they can bathe and groom themselves without any hassle or disturbance from passing vehicles. Another popular instance for taking a bath is when it’s raining hard. Majority of Filipinos do not have a shower installed in their bathrooms. When it rains, the outside becomes a large shower room that you can share with other people. Children, in particular, enjoy playing while taking a bath in the rain.
Filipinos and their “tabo“
Because of the lack of shower heads or bath tubs in most Filipino bathrooms, Filipinos have to be inventive in order to take a bath. We use a tabo to scoop up water from a bucket and pour the water down to our body. A tabo is like a pitcher that is smaller than a pail but bigger than a mug. It is normal to see a tabo in Filipino bathrooms and wash rooms. It is also widely used by Filipinos to clean themselves after moving their bowels. It is a replacement for toilet papers since we, Filipinos, are not accustomed to using toilet papers in the washroom.
There are many traditions in bathing and hygiene among countries. Some give a spiritual meaning to taking a bath while others view it as a waste of time and resources. For Filipinos, taking a bath is an activity that should be religiously done for hygiene, for cooling down, or just for fun. The next time you visit the Philippines, try to observe the people how they live their normal lives. Because beneath these activities, there are deeper meanings that can reflect their culture and values in life.