Has Covid Changed Your Mind About Being An Expat?

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Author: Reekay

About Me.. In 2011 I made the decision to move to the Philippines within a year. Since 2012 I’ve been traveling through various islands of the Philippines as a full-time Expat. (Mactan, Bohol, Panglao, Moalboal, Dumaguete, Bacong, Boracay, Cebu) I recently spent the year living in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

Share with me here my ongoing adventures of life in the Philippines. Dating, vlogging, cooking, traveling and sharing the information with you needed to make your own plans for living as a full-time expat in Southeast Asia.
— Reekay


  1. Article: https://yucatanmagazine.com/expats-with-second-thoughts-pandemic-puts-retiring-abroad-in-a-new-light/
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    In this video I discuss, “Has Covid Changed Your Mind About Being An Expat?”

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    1. I will be travelling as soon as I can, hopefully in June with a vaccine passport, and for my very first visit to the Philippines. Bring it on !!!

  2. The pandemic hasn’t changed my mind to be an expat one day and retire probably in the Philippines. But I would only want to live now in either a tourist area or gated community in a big city like Cebu or Manila just for safety reasons. I certainly would not want to live out in the boonies in the province now and before the pandemic that was my plan. My girlfriend in Bohol who lives in a very remote area in the province as well as a couple of foreigners I know that live rather out the middle of nowhere have all said that this is not such a great idea anymore. The crime rates have gone up in these areas, people are desperate. It’s also too far from adequate health care. The other big difference as a result of the pandemic would be that I would not live in the Philippines all year long I would split the time in Canada. This is just to make sure I stay close to my family and also the better health care in Canada for check ups, tests, medications etc.

  3. Sure it brings up questions whether I want to travel or not I would still like to but now they’re staying 7 Days Inn hotel another swab test for 4000 pesos ended up costing 22500 pesos for your hotel stay and food a swab test and cab service to the hotel. And you made a real good point about what’s going to happen when things get rough you may want to live in a gated community or a condo you don’t want to live in the province the thinking you’re rich you’re going to be a knocking at your door coming through your windows every other night. I’m too old for that bahahaha but still I want to come over there at least visit for 30 days I’ll make another decision after that I guess. But thanks for putting that out there lot of people need to see that.

  4. Covid did change my plans to relocate to the Philippines. I was hoping to move there last June. That of course, became impossible when the lock down came along. It did not, however change my plans all together. I still want to move over there and will keep moving toward that end till I get there.

  5. As a dual citizen, home is where my heart is and she is in Cagayan de Oro. So looking forward to retiring because of life circumstances and the whole pandemic. I am still 10 to 11 yrs away but dreaming is free.

  6. when Covid is done or I don’t have to quarantine anymore I still want to come over and spend a vacation for about 2 weeks if I like it I want to come back and stay. I kind of want to see if the poverty level is as high as youtube says it is. Maybe I can sneak a homeless family into the city of dreams in Manila for a week or two

    1. Poverty rate is high but that’s not just YouTube saying that. Its statistics that say that. The pandemic only made it worse. The good news is that it was improving before the pandemic. Hopefully the economy willl get back on track again. I fear that not a lot will change for the impoverished because the 2 main factors that causes so much poverty in the Philippines remain the same or have gotten even worse! That is rampant corruption and overpopulation.

  7. Still hoping to be a permanent ex-pat in the next few months. The crisis has shown me which governments have the resources and organization to best deal with national calamities. Or do not. Filipinas are still the #1 sweet, warm, loving beauties, but only if can live somewhere other than PI. That has been the change for me.

  8. more determined than ever. The US is in total turmoil and cant get used to the fast life after 6 years of living in Philippines

  9. Hey Henry,
    It’s Curtis.. we met at Buff Wild Wings in HoChiMihn.. I came from Thailand where I was having dental implant work.. to play in a Poker Tournament in Vietnam. * You didn’t make fun of my missing teeth.. haha. We had a great conversation and we had a lot in common about Philippines and California.
    I just busted in 6th place at a big tourney at the Venetian, Las Vegas.. enough to buy you lunch again haha, next time we meet in Cebu or if you visit Thailand. haha
    I am NOT a know it all.. but I PREDICT that all the 3rd world cratering economies.. and vaccine progress, the WORLD will be 90% reopened by August. I really feel it!
    Best wishes.. Curtis

    1. hey curtis! good to hear from you. and yes, great hanging out with you that day. glad to hear you’re moving around. you did better in those tourneys than i ever would. we’ll have to meet up again when possible. which i hope is soon.

  10. Had a great time in Philippines 3 years ago came alone from n.y thank u reekay u changed my whole outlook on life covid has effect Ed my hope on returning anytime soon because even if this covid thing ends there is a new Visa requirement for ssrv and it’s very confusing and expensive it seems please make a video on the ssrv requirement s if u can..

    1. @Reekay’s LifeBeyondTheSea yes it will we will figure it out sorry was drinking last night all positivity from here on out God has a plan for us brother hope all is well..

    2. hopefully things will open up before end of this year and it will be a win-win for all involved.

  11. The pandemic has delayed my plans, probably by about 18 months. Apart from that, no real changes have been happening. Go to the Philippines, live with my girlfriend for 6 months or so then go back to New Zealand if we’re compatible for living together.

  12. No. Now to watch the rest of the question…

    I plan to be back in the Philippines as soon after the border opens as I can. Currently my passport is being renewed, so it has to come back to me … and, the border has to open.

    Ready, Set, GO!!!

  13. I retired Feb 2020 & moved to DaNang but i returned home to CA in May, I didnt want to be away from my family just in case we needed each other… As soon as Malaysia lets Americans enter, I’m on the next flight. I’m staying updated on the world’s reopening…

    1. good decision. it’s good to know your priorities. we can always make a plan-b and pick up from there.

  14. I’m planning on Visiting the Philippines for the 1st time when allowed. I do not want a vaccine so that may have a influence. I’m considering retiring in Philippines, so my travels will include that purpose of helping me make that decision.

  15. I moved to Cebu more than a year before this mess, then got caught by the lockdown while visiting a friend in California. If the Philippines doesn’t reopen for tourists soon I’ll be going south even if I have to swim against the current of undocumented migrants.

  16. I have a friend who has been selling off his stuff so he can live abroad, he is from the USA. He mentioned the tension was so bad this last year up in the Seattle WA area, he felt people were ready to snap. I was happy to leave that environment myself and try something different. Btw my friend can’t leave fast enough ;>)

  17. It’s certainly changed my views. One of the biggest factors against my retirement in Philippines, was concerns re healthcare compared to free and superior treatment in UK. That has all now ended now, with only Covid patients being treated, and cancer and health patients are in a four million people queue waiting for treatment that has been suspended indefinitely. People are dying at home, and the country is in turmoil through never end restrictions. I would leave tomorrow if I could.

    1. There have definitely been crimes against foreigners for sure and the Philippine government will try to keep it under wraps so not to affect the tourism. However the government of Mexico and some central American nations do this as well. But as far as crime goes the violent crime rate in many US cities is probably not much different in the Philippines but there’s a different kind of danger in the Philippines as a developing nation you have to look out for things like more corruption, dangerous drivers on the roads, Communist rebels, Islamic extremists. Just keep up with current events, heed the travel warnings. One thing is at the tourist hotspots in the Philippines are extremely safe! Theyre heavily guarded with security including coast guard that constantly patrols the waters and man, so many military and guards around you’ll feel totally safe I guarantee it. Listen to advice of the locals as to where to travel and don’t go into a business deal with any local that you don’t know or trust (including wife or girlfiends family I have heard horror stories of this) don’t drink with locals you dont know. In other words use common sense and always think about safety but don’t fear or worry consume you there. Chances are you’ll be fine.

    2. @lionhearted1969 without “those kind of expats” (abusers)… any country would be better off. but that’s painting with a broad brush on expats living in the ph. a large portion are happily married men with families. and not every single=man in the ph is a sexpat.

    3. @Reekay’s LifeBeyondTheSea Your fellow citizens know that because they have lived much longer in those countries and they say that most South American countries are way far safer than the Philippines and you should believe them. Just as you should believe them that living in the Philippines is an agonizing experience to most Western expats. I understand that because the Philippines is a completely different world than the West. That’s why I’m warning those who plan to leave their home country to avoid the Philippines. Everything here isn’t up to Western standards as most Western expats have always complained. Actually, our lawmakers haven’t properly constructed the law on immigration including on expat retirees. The law attracts the wrong people to come and contribute greatly to the growing problem of child and women exploitation. Without these kind of expats here, the country would be much better.

    4. @Bonzo T Alonzo I ain’t a troll. I’m only feeding most Westerners desire to make the Philippines less appealing to expats because I’m 100% sure that you also share those sentiments about the country. I could certainly tell that those who have been living here, either permanently or temporarily, are actually not happy with their life here. Most of them always whine about almost everything. Whiners are not happy people, don’t you agree? Maybe about 1% only are genuinely happy to be here. You know that you’re not happy to be here. You’re lying if you say you are.

    5. Living my life in NY & Florida ,the Phils are considerably safer, just stay vigilant & observe your surroundings. Though poor it’s a happy culture. Be wary of anti-West trolls……………….

  18. No, covid has not changed my mind about living abroad, and here is why:

    ***Medical Care

    Regardless of any pandemic in the world, I would die in a foreign country before the US. I know whatever can not be fixed with me, they will not prolong God’s calling. The US will milk you to the end just to get whatever is left of your property.

    Senior Homes in the US is telling you your family doesn’t have time for you anymore. They have to work too, and more rigid than you did. Plus, your grandkids will only hang out until they get to an age they will go their way. So you are still left alone.

    Yes, the US has an excellent medical system, but it no different than the other countries. You have to pay for what kind of service you require. So whether I am a civilian or a veteran, I would get a 100% full medical exam before relocating abroad. You need to know your health problem, so the country you plan to reside in has that service.

    Veterans can get free service inside the US at the VA hospitals. You can also get it in the Philippines based only on your disabilities and things not related you will pay. So if you live in Cebu, take a once a year medical exam at the VA in Manila.

    Veterans still have the Overseas Tricare options, individual and family. Pay upfront, and the government reimburses you. If you have additional coverage, they pay partial, and the other company pays the rest. It’s easy to claim your expenditures because everything is done online.

    When it comes to medical insurance in other countries, you have to research to see what plans they have to meet your situation. FYI, the country Thailand does not have anything that worth your money. You would use up your outpatient coverage in two visits. If you are 70 yrs of age and do not have a policy before turning 70, no company will give medical insurance coverage in Thailand.

    I suggest you save $100 a month for a rainy day, and if a country requires you to have $10,000 in an account to live in their country, that your rainy-day money, but you still need to save that $100 a month. The downside, you use it and don’t have a replacement, you can no longer live in the country. So I would base my saving on a heart surgery cost, which would cost you 30K-40K in Thailand versus in the US, 100K+.

    When it comes to service, US doctors are no better than in other countries’ doctors. They all read google or some form of symptoms chart, prescribe medication, and give you a bill. I have not been to a country the doctor did not speak any English. If you are out in the province, this should be one of your first criteria you should look into immediately if you have any health issues.

    Get someone in your life who will understand that if you are going to take care of them, they must do the same. I see many veterans in Thailand being push around by young girls and their boyfriend asking you for your wallet to shop for them. Thai woman only cares about your money. There is no room for higher learning, and this is all I have to say about them.

    And last, I never see Expats talking about eating right to stay healthy, exercising, or anything that would keep them from getting sick. A 30-60 minute walk for five days a week in the early morning or late afternoon will change things in your life, regardless of your age. It’s like an apple a day will keep the doc away.

    So no matter where you want to go and live in another country, city, or province, you have to ask yourself all these medical things. They will determine how comfortable you can live and where you live.

    The bottom line is that we will not live forever, but why not live healthy to enjoy life while we can.

    ***Living abroad versus living in the US

    Cost of living. If you never save any money in your life, why are you worried about leaving the high cost of living in the US? I don’t think you will get a better deal of living in another country when you did not have it in the US. What do I mean? If you are rich, you are not going to live in a middle-class community. If you are middle-class, you are not going to live in the slums. And if you came from the slums, I pretty sure you are not looking to continue but go forward.

    Don’t expect Asian country’s and people to understand when they don’t have any living standards. Why place yourself in harm’s way to save drinking and party money.

    Food is not cheap anywhere. If you buy at supermarket or street markets. You are a foreigner, and they have a special price always for you. Do a recon, get a local friend to shop, and see if they get it cheaper. Plus everything in street maket is negotiable even if it has a price tag.

    Now, why are you eating out when you can be cooking and eating at home? Eating out is another reason why people have health issues in Asia. They don’t know what’s in their foods that might be the trigger to a stroke or inflammatory arthritic, known as GOUT. Alcohol and MSG spell GOUT, high blood pressure, and death. Asians love MSG in their food, and you don’t know it is killing you faster. Cook at home. Because they sell cheap meals on the street, that meal will one day become a very high medical expense.

    Crime. Google and see what happens in the country versus where you come from. I bet it lower in Asia than in the US and Europe. If poor people are living around you, help them out. They are your security. Just don’t invite them into your home to give them an idea you have something they might want. No place or home is safe from someone breaking into it. God said, love thy neighbor. They will look out for you because you look out for them. I did not know everyone on my block in the US, but where I live now, I do.

    Amenities, oh well, whatever they have, I will make do until something comes along better, but it’s cheaper. You can not get internet or WiFi service under $100 in the US. When it comes to family, my family is worldwide, so I use FaceTime, Messenger, and Skype. They are free.

    Overall, I am currently in Thailand and planning to come to the Philippines to reside for six months and then back to Thailand. I have been living abroad since 1984. Germany 21 yrs, Japan 5 yrs, Korea 5 yrs, Thailand 4 yrs. There is nothing in the US better than enjoying life abroad. Rakkasans learned to live and adapt to all countries’ standard of living.

    ReeKay, great topic, and I hope and pray those out there share other things that will benefit others in making the right sound decision when deciding to live abroad. Again no, covid has not changed my mind about living abroad.

  19. Great video as always. My plans are now on hold. All the points mentioned I have been thinking about. The only thing I can do now is just wait and see what happens. So this kicks my timeline plans back indefinitely. I just need to wait and see.

  20. I have been living in the Philippines for almost 6 years and have no plans on leaving. Covid hasn’t really affected my plans except for some local traveling. Happy to be here.

  21. Great video Henry. As for me, I do not plan on being an expat but working on my K1 Visa to bring my Filipina Fiance to my home here in the USA. I will be having my second vaccine shot later this month and hope to visit her in the Philippines the second time around this year (already been with her in Singapore). Hope international travel opens up soon! Stay safe!

  22. Not really…. there are parts of the U.S. with just as many stupid restrictions as the Philippines. I think I will stay. If I left here I would peobably go to Serbia or somewhere in Eastern Europe which has the climate I like and miss but is still affordable.

  23. Outside of the fact that I’m trying to get to the Philippines, to be with my girlfriend…Aren’t we all…I’m looking at retirement as early as 13 months, but no longer than 25 months from now. What I hope to be able to do is spend 8 to 10 months in the Philippines, then 2 to 4 months in the US visiting my kids and my mother, while she is still with us. While I’m there, I’ll visit my doctor for a check-up and blood work, and then back to Palawan I will go. Eventually I’m sure I’ll find a doctor in the Philippines, and maybe cut my trips to the US back to only 1 or 2 months max. It just depends on how big of a mess Uncle Joe creates in DC the next few years.
    As long as I stay healthy, I’m planning on having a beautiful life in the Philippines, with my beautiful Filipina…

  24. Hi bro. Can i ask favor? I have a few friends that are heading your way in a few months. I know Pea has touched of this subject but can you do a vid teaching the proper way to greet and insert themselves into their girlfriends family. Only 1 has a girlfriend and they are 5 coming, safer to travel in groups lol. Id appreciate if you can help them bro. If Vi can instruct them tagalish it would help also. Thanks bro.

  25. Reekay I am an “aspiring expat” from Australia. Covid has delayed my visits to Pi but only until things settle down. My first visit was planned and booked in 2020 but Covid stopped that. I am “thankfully” still a bit over 4 years away from pension age when I will become an expat so although I wanted to start visiting in 2020 that has now become 2021. I have the luxury of waiting until it settles down. If I have to wait until 2022 to start visiting Pi so be it. Covid has delayed, but not yet derailed my plans. I think I have watched every one of your “free” vids and am so much better informed because of them – thanks again for the time and effort you put into them.

  26. Reekay, Allan Joyce CEO of qantas stated that to fly international you will be required to have proof of vaccine,i have just been approved for disability support pension,so once the vaccine roll out begins,this month i shall get it,when boarders open up i will move to the philippines permanent,cheers

  27. Covid has definitely given me second thoughts about expat-ing. I don’t want to travel until there is global vaccine coverage which will take some time. My personal experiences depends on other people being vaccinated. And, visa policies have been getting goofier and goofier all the time. Now, I feel if I do expat I will need to circulate visas between Thailand (my 1st choice) Vietnam, and Philippines. That’s ok I guess, but I wish it wasn’t dependent on visa policy. I am fine with Thai medicine as I have been treated like a king by Bangkok hospital for several issues. They are more strict with my blood pressure than the US is. One good thing about the quarantine is that I am studying the languages, Thai, Vietnamese and Tagalog for the future. SE Asia will be a base and I am learning more Spanish and French as I plan to spend some time in those countries as well. Lastly, the stock market increases may change my money situation such that I can maintain a base in the US as well.

  28. It has only made me detest governments even more. My bags are packed and I’m ready to go!!! Hopefully to Thailand

  29. Last year in march I went to indonesia I am happy that I did that I can travel in indonesia more freely than in philippines

  30. Covid has always been nothing but political garbage to me. It is the response to it that has damaged the world. If the Philippines allow people from America to come in right now underneath the quarantine rules it would cost me $2300 by the time I fly there go through their designated quarantine and test and a six-month extension of a visa. That would get me to where you are right now, locked in an apartment or a house, unable to travel to different islands, unable to see the sights, unable to experience the beauty in everything in the Philippines that I would be coming there for. So no. I will not be coming to the Philippines until the Philippines becomes what it was.

  31. This pandemic has opened my eyes even more about leaving the USA and retiring in the Philippines. I can’t wait for air travel to open so I can leave the USA.

  32. I intend to take the necessary precautions and proceed with my travel plans. I understand the morality rate for our species is 100% so before I become a part of that statistic there is more I want to experience.

  33. In most ways it has not effected my plan to move abroad later in 2021. However, I have now taken the option off the table of being in the Philippines for the rest of my life. Too much freedom was lost with covid came due to fear. Much worse than in the U.S. So my plan is to always have flexibility so I can go to the most free countries. Many in south and central america kept their freedom more than other places. That surprised me.

  34. Hey Reekay my friend, My plans have not changed, after being in the Philippines for eight months and returning to get some business in US done. Now that things are in order with Social Security and Medicare I will return and jump thru the hoops that are in place at the time I leave. I want to see and visit other South East Asia Countries too. I will probably let the dust settle a little before returning unless the deals are too enticing . So I will not be on the first plane back, but no my plans have not changed. Thanks as always for all your content and information!!

  35. Speaking for myself I am 44 and my plans have not changed. I m trying to be as healthy as possible. Vitamins turmeric ginger black seed oil. Reekay it seems that you had more fun there than I did this past year in Texas.

  36. Covid didn’t change me to spend my retirement elsewhere, but the longer this pandemic lasts the more I think about not to focus on 1 country anymore, I love the philiphins but the altitude of the philiphins will possibly do me decide to look for another destination especially when I notice money and profit is being made by the covid on the head of the common traveler why is the price for a covid test more than twice as expensive in the philiphins than in Europe ?? but lets see what happens in e couple months and lets hope the best

    1. vaccines will arrive in the PH by May/2021… if i had to make a wild guess, i’d say “maybe” around september/october. but that would be a best-case scenario.

  37. Hi Reekay, I have no plans to leave the Philippines. As far as the lock down here, I would not go out now if I could. If I was in the US I would lock myself down. I plan on surviving the virus. There will be plenty of time to party when the virus is gone. I have noticed some inflation here lately. But that is not a budget buster for me. Here I can still voice my opinion without being canceled or attacked. I have many expat friends here. They are all living with a girl friend or wife. None of them are leaving either. I think it is the single expats that are leaving.

  38. No way this pandemic would ever change my plans for the future. I might consider other directions/countries based on the recent experience, but the final goal will remain unchanged.

  39. I left Cebu in Sept. to head back to the US as I had some things that I had to take care of. I was hoping that I would be on my way back by now but, that obviously isn’t happening. I regret even leaving as I can’t get out of here and back there til God knows when. My 3 years in PH would’ve been up in mid-2021 so I’m guessing I would’ve had to leave anyway and not be able to return. I wish this whole thing would be over already, it is dragging on for far too long. Anyway, as long as my financial situation remains as it is, I will be heading back as soon as it’s permitted.

  40. Could has not dampened my desired to retire in Philippines, act increased my desire. I had planned on waiting till turned 65, 3 and a half year, but just decided last week to move there as soon as Christmas . I should be vaccinated by then, and will be very happy to get back there again.

  41. My lease on our apartment is up in August here in Canada, we will not renew the lease, instead we will be putting our stuff in storage and moving to Cebu in October 2021, no matter what. If we have to get a vaccine, so be it, we want to come back. So I’ll see you in Oct. Reekay.

  42. I am patiently waiting for the restrictions to lift so I can move there. On hold until then. Hoping for late this year. Fingers crossed. What are the gun laws like there. Can I possess a weapon legally?

  43. Well the question of the day. V09492747989iolence ,the United States,I rather live this place where ever day someone is killed than stay here. Camaraderie, if you can fine it here in the United States then have at in. nursing homes, I lived in a nursing home, I would not put my worst enemy in a home.the worst reason to come back here. Getting older, for me it’s about what I fine out there while I live on social security, if it not in the Philippines.then their are 239 countries to go,not one of those countries happens to be the United States.

  44. Yes, that is exactly my situation. I need to be able to return to Canada for health care if necessary and without delays.
    Travel restrictions and quarantine requirements make that impossible.

  45. Hi bro. This pandemic has indeed added a layer to my concerns about living abroad in the Phili. Being that Mexico is easier to get to and gives us a few more options, i think we’ll go there for a while first.

  46. Definitely having second thoughts now… So tired of these ridiculous lockdowns and violations of my human rights
    65 year old ex navy with only SS for a pension. Very difficult making it on that money. So disheartening

  47. Hi Reekay, good? It has not changed my mind about retirement in SEA just been delayed. Most likely VN, I think TL & PH will open first. I may wait for VN in PH. Had 1st vaccine.

  48. What’s the point of staying in your country because of better health system? better die in “action” , at least I’m going to end in a memorable way LOL

  49. I personally don’t think it will change most plans. It’s a time issue. Like all storms, sooner or later, it blows over and you simply start to repair the damage.
    Once the right $$$ gets to the right people, the Philippines (much like central America/south America), will just go back to business as usual, albeit at a rate much more costly to everyone. From travellers to school children, the cost of “living” will skyrocket. Inflation is my fear, not travelling.

  50. No it hasn’t I can’t wait to get over there to see my girlfriend. As soon as they let me I’m coming over!!

  51. Pretty much. I was really looking forward to moving to the Philippines. Who knows when anything will get back to normal with all of this Covid nonesense. Plus who knows what these idiots in Washington will do with SS.

  52. Hey Reekay having met you inside gone when I first came to Vietnam in 2019 you will recall that my intentions were to indeed move to the Philippines at some point. My plans have not changed only the timeline for when I will eventually make that move. I look forward to seeing you and Vi when I do make it over there.

  53. My feeling is that any kind of normality is many months away but if you’re still very intent on moving to the Phils then just hang tight. I been here since ’17 so me & my pine box are going nowhere…………

  54. Great points. And, I think it depends on how the expat perceives the true nature of his relationship(s) overseas. If he is very astute and non-traditional, he will more likely see that relationships are transactional and avoid encumbrances. Those with cognitive dissonance will think they are truly loved, commit and hope for the best. I’m not in a rush to get there as I know it’s just vacation fun, not love. Peace.

  55. Hi Reekay, My girlfriend lives in a Squater area in Basak, Lapu Lapu, close to the airport. They are very poor, and I support them monthly with money for foods. My plans have not changed, as soon as possible I take a flight and come to her. We want to marry and live together in Dumaguete probably. So I hope Philipines open this summer

  56. Unless people wise up to this world extremism by world government and say no It’s won’t go away and will get worse.

  57. I think most people are eager to travel and cant wait till these restrictions in place to halt a virus with a 99.8 percent survival rate are lifted.

  58. What’s effecting many people is the three year rule, where are we supposed to go and if we’ve set up home here when can we return? Immigration is not being fair with foreigners.

    1. @lionhearted1969 we’re not stranded in the ph. before covid hit our plan already was to spend 2020 touring the ph together, so we’d still be here anyway. before going to vietnam we’d need to get her passport taken care of.

    2. Why worry? There are more than 200 countries to choose from other than the Philippines which are much freer, much friendlier, much cheaper, with much more liberal immigration policies. Don’t train too much on the Philippines. In fact, the Philippines is not a good place for expats in general. You won’t find peace here. If you ask Reekay, he’d surely say go elsewhere. He’d stayed here only because he’s stranded and can’t go back to Vietnam.

  59. The stupid reaction from ALL government entities is the biggest problem here in Philippines.. Fear is the driving force behind decision making..
    Stupidity is the result..
    I will continue to try and help the poor especially the street poor..
    If government makes more rule changes for foreigners
    I will consider leaving
    But for now its 16 years and counting
    Enjoy life Reekay

  60. Covid has been a wake up call for the world & for me has made me more determined to live my life to the full, while i’m healthy enough to do so.

    This entails alot of travelling away from my home country & asap…& eventually settling down in Asia.

    Life is too short…Live it while you can.

  61. Filipino society is being strained. In my fiance’s barangay, fights have increased, theft, domestic abuse. Lets hope when economy improves it will settle down. I have 20 more years until retire so my plan is to wait and see.

    1. I’ve heard this too Jay Brown. My girlfriend lives in a province area in central Bohol And she said that the crime rates are way up, people are desperate there is even an armed hold up nearby. She lives there with my infant son just the two of them. I worry constantly. There is a cockfighting ring too nearby and this creates a lot of crime in her area like fights and stabbings and shady characters (loan sharks etc). I just want her out of there I want to bring her to Canada or I want to move there and get them into a nicer place in a gated community in the city or in a tourist area like Panglao, Siargao, or Boracay where it’s much safer

  62. Even though this virus issues have cost me more than $1000 for cancelled flights, my plane for moving to Cebu hasn’t. I just see it has a delay than anything else. As soon as travel ban and quarantine is lifted, I’ll be on the next flight to Cebu!!!!

  63. Qantas Airlines has come out with a statement late in 2020 they WILL be requiring POVac for flights. Ticket Master came out and stated the same for live venue shows at point-of-sale for tickets.

  64. I have been in Thailand more than 10 years and I hope to stay here as long as money is enough and personal safety is not becoming a concern. Another friend retired in Yangoon with his local wife and they are planning a plan B as condition are shaky in Myanmar.

  65. Hi , I’ve been grounded here in Cebu for the last year as a result of the Pandemic. I had been living in Thailand for the last 6 years but I am thinking now I will make Cebu my home port as I continue to travel. As someone with Asthma the air is much cleaner here in Cebu than Bangkok and Chiang Mai. I have also decided to purchase health insurance that will cover me wherever I go in Asia and Latin America, since I am now 67. It is much easier and cheaper to stay here in the Philippines rather than other countries and everyone speaks English. So yes the pandemic has changed my plans. I am very grateful to know that I can still fully enjoy my life even through this pandemic.

  66. Inspiring Expat…. Or just someone still excited to visit the Philippines.
    It doesn’t both me nor effect me any way shape nor form…. My suggestion, keep doing the homework as you would. Before the pandemic started. That’s all. Be safe then sorry. I will admit. The fees and extra steps to take. Such as the 14day quarantine…. #LiveAndLearn

  67. SE Asia is too far to go for only 4 weeks, spend 2 in quarantine, have to have ticket to go elsewhere like Thailand, do the same. 30 day visas are ridiculous. If I go back to PHI, again quarantine. Having to spend half my life in “jail” and taking tests is not feasible. I plan a road trip to Texas and maybe with jump off to Cancun. Short flight and no restrictions. Then I might wait out the US test requirements to be lifted. Mexico gives me 6 months no visa. I like the Mexican presidente, refusing shutdowns and masks.

  68. It’s wise to retire early even if it’s for few years and enjoy life. You never know when your health will deteriorate. Money is off less value if you are old and/or sick. When I reach 55 it’s my goal to retire temporary and comfortably in Philippines or Thailand for 5-7 years. Pandemic or not having financial security for rest of my life will not discourage me.

  69. I had planned to see much more of SE Asia but now with quarantine and lock downs and masks with face shields it’s just too much hassle.

  70. When I moved to the Philippines nearly 8 years ago I was sure if it worked with Jen and me then this would be the place I would end my life in. While it would be foolish to not think about how something like this affects you not only now but in the future, it has not changed my mind. While the familiar is comfortable I know in my current situation my partner will be there for me and I for her. So while the country your in is important, for me I am just glad to be with her anywhere.

  71. The very thought of retirement in an old age home in most western nations is quickly becoming unsettling for most, myself included. I would rather live in a region of the world where caregivers are affordable and prevalent as they are in the Philippines.

  72. I will be coming back to the Philippines as soon as they give me a tourist visa again. Sold my house and will retire there.

  73. Coming back to the Philippines on balikbayan status in a few months after tying up things here. Since covid will be everywhere and won’t disappear similarly to the flu, why let it dictate your life?! As far as that article and describing expats retiring overseas, you work to get a pension or 401k, get SS, then move overseas bcuz you can’t afford to live off that income in the states. Part of going overseas can have negative effects like missing your grandchildren but overall I believe it will be more positive than negative!

  74. living here 2 last years in age of 73, no attention to change my plants at all. only missing my children and grand children can leave the country and come back as srrv holder. the problems are in my homeland no coming and going. so i will stay here hoping for sunny days to come in the future .

  75. Great vlog as always. I only came here 2 years ago to be with neneng & she is behind me now so my plans haven’t changed. I have even planned my funeral I purchased heavy-duty garbage bags & some rope. The rocks to weigh me down were free & the fishy s will take of the rest. Lol

  76. Sadly yes, the governments, both in the US and abroad have ruined my recent travel plan by using this politicized virus scam to infringe on freedom, and the future does not looks good once the safety Nazis, fear porn and big corrupt governments have their ” hands in our backyard.

    1. I think you, and your conspiracy nonsense, should stay put. It would be a shame to spread such bs. Almost a half-million dead in the US and it is all nonsense? How do you folks get this way? Stay in your bunker.

  77. I still hope to return back to Cebu .. I was hoping to spend my winters living in Cebu and flying back to the US for the spring and summer. My fiancée and I got to chat with you when we saw you at Ayala Mall , while we were waiting for a movie to start. We both enjoyed meeting you and your girl friend . Take Care Reekay stay Safe .. Love your videos..

  78. Heeeyyyyy Reekay,my bags are packed.lm so excited in coming as soon as lm allowed.lt will be my fourth trip to the philippines.l enjoy all your videos Reekay.take care.

  79. Once i get my vaccine i hope to visit my fiancé in the Philippines soon thereafter. I hope they let me in. Its been over a year. Oh – looks like your video was shot in a different place?

    1. @Dan Ford you need to have a plain (preferably white) background, and also good even lighting upon yourself.

      if your background has objects of a variety of colors and shapes, the software can’t establish a clean line around you to separate you from the video background.

    2. @Reekay’s LifeBeyondTheSea How do you keep yourself from disappearing when using the green screen? When I use mine on zoom I disappear all the time.

  80. IT hasn’t changed my mind , but it makes me want to stay longer once i get there because of all the hoops we will have to jump through. It was also a wake up call to expect the unexpected. Reminded me how important a back up plan is, food and water stock pile. Ability to hop to alternate countries in case of a shut down or in case i am kicked out due to a pandemic, a coup, a natural disaster, medical, etc etc. A good emergency fund, more than one source of income and definitely HEALTH and immune system matters a lot. It was a wake up call and reality check for me

    1. @Reekay’s LifeBeyondTheSea Yea , good one. Live near INT airport and just in case, have a friend nearby with at least a 1000hp jetboat. 🙂

    2. living near an international airport is another consideration. some guys i know wanted to leave but first had to get a list of permissions and documents first just to get to an island with an airport.

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