First time to the Philippines - Etiquette help need

Travel Forums Asia First time to the Philippines - Etiquette help need

1. Posted by PDRabbon (Budding Member 3 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

I will be doing an 8-day trip to Santa Catalina, Ilocos Sur in February to visit my relatives on my father's side. It's a rural area. A few questions.

1- Friends said to dress casually. What exactly is casual...shorts or long pants; sandals, tennis shoes, or slip-ons; and t-shirt or polo shirt?
2- I live in the United States and I want to bring my two cousins a gift, they are in their early 70's, one is male, the other female. Any recommendations?
3- I will be staying in Vigan, ILocos Sur, just a few minutes from Santa Catalina. Can I arrange for a car/driver once I get to my hotel or should I do that in advance?

Thanks.

2. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 4783 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

Long ride from the US to the Philippines for only 8 days. Can you do 14 days even if you simply visit other places other than where your relatives live?

What advice did your father give you for what to wear? For me, Manila, and a few other locations, I wore mostly shorts or lightweight trousers with T-shirt. For an "official" meet and greet probably long trousers and a tuck in shirt. (Assuming you are male.)

Have you touched base with other relatives in the same area or just plan on suddenly showing up? Maybe set up some sort of dialog with younger relatives closer to your age. Recommendations for a hotel you can use. I think you will be able to arrange a ride in person, even if through your hotel once you arrive in

Have phone numbers and email addresses. Google will give you some pointers on how best to get to your relative's town. (I have taken buses to various cities in the Philippines but not this place.) On buses keep your passport and money on your person and not in a bag far away out of sight.

Bring a photo or two of your father. Maybe he has kept photos from when he was a kid. Make copies.

Normal stuff. Have more than one source of spending money. Don't rely on a single debit card for spending. A credit card or two could come in handy for emergencies that may come up.

Locate on a map where this city is located relative to your point of entry. Except for time in the military I have always flown to Manila. Investigate any Covid testing or masking requirements.

Google type search will give you some info if I have the right place.

Sample. https://www.kingtolentino.com/blog/sta-catalina-ilocos-sur

Good luck.

3. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 4783 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

Probably have Jeepneys for local transportation.

https://www.lakadpilipinas.com/2014/09/vigan-travel-guide-itinerary.html

Good luck.

4. Posted by PDRabbon (Budding Member 3 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

Karazyal,

I really appreciate your input. I am doing a short trip as an "exploratory trip" and will do a longer one in the future. I don't do international travel so all your feedback is extremely useful.

5. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 4783 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

Have a good trip.

Check your messages.

6. Posted by PDRabbon (Budding Member 3 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

Quoting karazyal

Probably have Jeepneys for local transportation.

https://www.lakadpilipinas.com/2014/09/vigan-travel-guide-itinerary.html

Good luck.

I found a few sites with info on Vigan. The one you provided is very good. Thanks