Sooner or later during your stay in the Philippines you’ll be talking to a nice girl and want to take her number so you can chat with her and arrange a date.
Unless you don’t worry about paying overpriced rates for calls, messages and roaming to the telecommunications provider in your home country, you better just remove your current SIM card, put it in the coin holder of your wallet where it’s safe and get yourself a local SIM card for the time you are here.
There are two main network providers in the Philippines: Globe and Smart. (There’s also Sun Cellular and TNT but I don’t know anyone using them.) Quality and service are pretty much the same, but I think slightly more girls use Smart (probably because it sounds better.) However, if you pick the right package, it doesn’t really matter which one of the two companies you choose.
You can conveniently get local SIM cards with internet at the booths in the arrival hall of Manila airport, which will cost between 1,250 and 1,500 Pesos. However, if you “do it yourself” you can save more than 50%:
Go to the supermarket/7-Eleven/shopping mall and get yourself a Globe SIM card that will cost you just 60 Pesos. Just like in Thailand, you will need to provide your ID (passport) in order to register and be able to buy one. At the same time buy “load” for 600 Pesos. “Load” is what they call phone credit in the Philippines. Then send an SMS with the text “GOSURF599” to 8080. This will give you:
- 5 GB worth of mobile internet usage
- unlimited texting to all networks
- 100 minutes of phone calls
- all valid for 30 days
Is Mobile Internet reliable in the Philippines?
Outside the big cities, the internet connection is relatively bad all over the Philippines compared to other countries in the region and especially Thailand is just so much more reliable and faster. You’ll notice a huge difference between both countries in terms of connection and speed. This is not just the case for the hotel WIFI but also for the mobile internet, and that’s why you will find most girls still sticking to the old school way of sms messaging instead of using apps like WhatsApp, Line or WeChat that require internet connection.
You might not even want to bother about getting mobile internet at the moment as most restaurants and even the sports bars have free WIFI (even though you often have to ask them to restart the router when it’s not working again). A lot of Filipina girls will ask you for your Facebook though, but when it comes to chatting and arranging dates it’s more common to use SMS.
And by the way: If you have a smartphone with Google Maps you can just load the map using your hotel WIFI, then “download offline map” and when you go out it will still be there for a month – and the GPS, means your current location, is always working – you don’t need an internet connection for that. This usually even works in the airplane, test it.
That should cover pretty much everything you should know about mobile sim cards, internet and how to chat with girls in the Philippines. And if you struggle with something – remember that there will always be someone nice and charming ready to assist you.