Moving To Boracay: Your Rental Place Primer
In a previous post, we discussed the usual living arrangements in Metro Manila. We also mentioned that it is a lot different in Boracay Island. This is our post letting you know what it is to move here.
We also told the story of a former ad agency creative who moved to Boracay Island and found solace — and a new life — in the island of pristine sands. And if you’re the world-weary Manila girl (or boy) who would love a few months to a few years of rest from the busy metro and live and work in paradise, here’s your primer.
Living in Boracay Island is frankly a lot more expensive than living even in Manila. Goods are a good Php 5 to Php 10 more costly than its prices elsewhere. But if you know how to make your budget fit you, living here is no different from living in other Philippine cities.
When you move here, prepare for apartments that will cost you anywhere from Php 7,000 to Php 13,000. These rooms are already decent accommodations: big, roomy selections, with their own toilet and bath, a mini-kitchen, and more often than not, it will come with airconditioning, cable TV and a refrigerator for the higher-priced rooms.
Having lived in Makati, Mandaluyong, Commonwealth and in Metro Iloilo, I was very (pleasantly) surprised how different rental real estate is in Boracay. While a friend who was born and raised in Manila was quipping that Php 8,000 is already “palasyo” in Metro Manila (most likely a studio-type condo), I was more impressed by the fact that amenities like Cable TV and airconditioning or a refrigerator already came with the price of rent. You’d be hard-pressed to find arrangements like that in Metro Manila, more so in the provincial cities.
In Makati, for example, your Php 3,000 will give you a whole room, but the bathroom will most likely be located in common areas. You may even have to fight for your place there. Soap and shampoo may even get stolen. For Php 4,500, you may be able to find a studio-type room that already has a bathroom in it. But the only furnishings will be a bed, a mattress and a cabinet. You will have to provide everything else.
In Quezon City, accommodations will be more of houses converted into boarding houses. You will have to live with seeing other people in the common areas, and your landlord’s room would most likely be located in another part of the house.
In Boracay, these are the accommodations I’ve seen so far:
- Php 7,000 — all-in, no need to pay your electricity. Your room comes with a bathroom, a small kitchen, a table, a bed, a mattress, an electric fan, and a TV set hooked to Cable TV.
- Php 7,000 — with airconditioning, electricity will be paid separate. Comes with the same amenities as above.
- Php 8,000 — electric fan, TV set with Cable TV, refrigerator, no need to pay electricity. Sheets will be changed for you regularly.
- Php 10,000 — aircon, TV set with Cable TV, own bathroom, refrigerator, but electricity is paid separately.
- Php 13,000 — aircon, TV set with Cable TV, own bathroom and refrigerator. No need to pay for your electricity.
Water is free and included with the rent, mostly, so you won’t need to worry about using too much for your laundry. There are other types of accommodations, but these are the middle-scale rates. Foreigners choose the Php 40,000 to Php 80,000 accommodations because these are what they can afford and are used to. It is surprising, however, that some choose to live in nipa-hut type setups. Maybe they want to get the true feel of island living. There are also accommodations from Php 5,000 down. But some of the Php 5,000 price points are located in slummy areas where you’d probably fear for your life and belongings.
We’re opening your horizons to possibilities other than the regular graduate, work, retire grind. If you’re one of the adherents of the “Eat, Pray, Love” culture, maybe you’d want to see how it is to live in the different environs around the Philippines, a few months at a time. Surely, one of those on your list may well be Boracay.
Now you know how affordable it would be to live in Boracay on the month. You can cancel that one-month booking in that “cheap” hotel now.