If you want to greet someone in the Philippines you can do this by putting your hands together and taking a small bow. This is quite similar to a greeting in China.
If you want to say something to the person you greet here are some tips:
- Good morning – Ma-gan-dang u-ma-ga po / Magandang Umaga po
- Good afternoon – Magandang Tanghali po
- Good evening – Magandang Gabi po
- You are beautiful – Maganda Ka
- You are from where? – Taga saan ka?
- My name is WhizKid. – Ako po ay si Whizkid
- I live in America – Nakatira po ako sa America
- Take Care – Ingat po
At last, read this article of you’re greeting and showing respect to an elder (60+) you know.
Mano Po Gesture: Filipinos’ Way of Respecting The Elders
‘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”.
It’s common for Westerners to give each other a hug or kiss each other in the face when you meet.
However, when in Malaysia, try to avoid touching a Malay or to kissing them in their face. The head and face are considered to be the home of the human soul. You can only shake hands if they will reach out for you to shake their hands.
The color red is considered to bring luck. But there is one way the color red may not be used. Please do not write somebody’s name in the color red. This means you wish them bad luck.
In general, it’s not good to write with a red color at all. In some more conservative company cultures, it’s not done, when your boss or colleagues see you writing with a red pen.
When given and accepting any objects (such as gifts or business cards) with both hands, it shows you are fully interested and dedicated to receive the object. This custom is relevant in China, but also in many other Asian countries.
For example, business cards are also given with both hands and thumbs up. When you’re the receiver, also accept it with both hands.
An often made mistake is to directly hide the card away. This is considered rude. The best thing is to study the card closely for a while and then put it in front of you on the table. Do not play with the card or write any details on the card. Instead, just take a careful look to remember the name and the background of the receiver.
Do not throw cards across table. This is considered to be very rude and disrespectful. Always handle the business card with great care and respect. After you finish the conversation pick it up and take it with you. Do not put it in your pocket directly!
Chinese Custom: Know as “Shou Sui” （守岁）, children stay up late on Lunar New Year eve / the last day of the previous year. It is believed that by doing so, their parents will enjoy longevity.
It is a tradition in most part of Indonesia, to pierce the ears of a baby girl right after she is born or when she is still a baby. It is considered odd not to do it, since it is one main symbols of feminine applied to females. Baby girl without pierced ear will be often mistakenly considered as a baby boy.
Filipinos are known to be good in cooking. A lot of Filipino chefs have been successful all over the world. What others do not know is any Filipino who knows the most basic in cooking can be good in it. Ordinary people can cook very good foods even without formal cooking education or learning from cook books. Philippines is a country where people love to cook. Since cooking is a known activity, there are also known beliefs about it. They say, a males or females who are single should not sing while they cook because they may not have the chance to marry someone someday and will be forever a bachelor or an old maid. The same will also happen if one will get the last piece of food on a platter.
During parties, people are used to have something on the table to be shared by many. In the Philippines, people are fond of preparing a lot of foods. During birthday parties, cakes will always be appreciated. Aside from cakes, there is this something that will always be prepared and considered as most important from all the foods that are set. Rice noodles or pastas should be present in birthday parties of people in different ages. These are long, and since Filipinos are into symbolisms and superstitious beliefs, they believe that having these on table to be shared will give the celebrant long life.
Some people just buy houses and become contented. Others buy houses and do some renovation. However, the more savvy in The Philippines will definitely look at the direction of the master bedroom. For some it’s so important that they decide to have a house built depending on his preferences.
The direction matters in fact for a lot of Asian countries, but in the Philippines, there are especially beliefs about the position of the the masters’ bedroom. The room, the door of the room, or its main window should face east. The sun rises in the east and the sun is believed to be a sign of God’s graces and blessings.
Having the room’s door or window facing east can catch and welcome blessings. If those are facing west, people who are living in the house may just let the blessings pass by and will welcome quarrels, diseases, and death.
While you may believe this is just a superstitious thought, you’ll be amazed how much value (especially the older generation) places on this aspect of a home.
Filipino people, though most of them are Christians, believe in luck. They would sometimes be heard talking about bad or good luck. When a person bought or built a new house, they would celebrate after the house is set and ready to be occupied. They would set a date, cook a lot of foods, invite a priest or a pastor and a set of close friends and relatives, and put a ribbon to be cut. When the day comes that the house will be blessed, they will let the priest or pastor do the blessing and the owners to cut the ribbon. After the ceremony, house owners will shower a lot of coins inside the house. Old people say, once people do this, they will forever welcome good luck.
Do not construct a house if the mother is expecting or trying to get pregnant in the Philippines. Moving and changing things in the house is asking for bad luck when you try to get or have a baby. In China this custom is also practiced.