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Bring Cash

Don’t Leave Home Without It

Your cash! The credit or debit cards are optional. Your credit may be good, and your debit card may be fully covered, but best not to rely on these. Bring cash.

The developing world may be getting there, but not quite yet. Not when it comes to common acceptance of the plastic money. This is true in the Philippines. While acceptance and usage of plastic money has been growing, the growth has so far been limited mostly to highly urbanized areas and high-end tourist spots in rural areas. And there are establishments which honor only local (i.e., RP-issued Visa, Mastercard, others) credit cards. Put the blame on, among other reasons, the still far from universal availability of internet services and still expensive hardware.

Save yourself from potentially embarassing or uncomfortable situations related to funds. Check first, ask around if the places you are going to accept credit and/or debit cards. Most banks and their branches now have ATMs that accomodate non-proprietary cards for a fee. You can withdraw cash from these.