I’ve been there trust me. In my journey as a ‘,professional expat’ I’ve been broke as a hoe. When I first arrived in Vietnam I had $75 in my checking account. While living in the Philippines I had a negative balance in my checking account at one point. Not a good feeling! In this article, I will talk about real ways for expats to make money in the Philippines.
Whore Yourself Out to a Dozen (Fake) Fat Chicks for 50 Bucks a Piece
Quagmire may have gotten it right. Well for the Philippines it would probably be 50 fat ladyboys If you need cash you gotta do what you gotta do. Remember, 50 bucks is a lot of money here.
Tutoring English Online w Cambly
By far the easiest way for expats in the Philippines to make money is to teach English online. I won’t lie to you, the golden age of online ESL ended when China pulled the plug on kids learning English via foreign teachers. That being said it is far from dead. By far, the best company to work for is Cambly.
They’re not the best because the pay is high but because you can be hired quickly and they pay once a week. When my checking account was at $200 I activated my dormant Cambly account and got my first payment about three days later ($22), the next week I got $256.
While you won’t get rich working for Cambly it can really be a life saver if you’re in dire financial straits. Actually, if you work enough hours you can live like a middle-class Filipino with Cambly.
Another thing that’s great about Cambly is you don’t need a degree or a TEFL certificate! You just need to be a native English speaker and have a headset which you can get anywhere for less than $15.
Note: They advertise the pay at $10.20 p/hr but that’s the maximum. The real pay rate is between $5-$6 an hour which still isn’t bad considering the strength of the dollar in the Philippines.
Why I Like Cambly The Best
- You get paid once a week
- All of my students are teenagers or adults
- No ramp-up period in the beginning (they assign the students to you)
- You don’t need a TEFL/TESOL to be hired
- NO DEGREE REQUIRED
Some other companies that hire native speakers without a degree are BiboGlobal and NativeCamp. My buddy worked for BiboGlobal and he liked it a lot. Unfortunately, they’re really picky about who they hire now though. I don’t know that much about NativeCamp but I heard the pay is quite low.
Online Freelance Work
You can sign up as a gig worker for Fiverr and Upwork. How much and how quickly you earn money will depend upon how well you can sell yourself and your services.
Some gigs (like writers and personal assistants) are tougher to break into than others. I recommend you try to think outside of the box. On Fiverr you can do anything from being a personal alarm clock or reminding someone to exercise that day. Just use your imagination!
Be a Mock Juror
I’ve never done this one myself but attornies will pay you to sit and listen/read through their cases and make a decision. This will help them test and refine their arguments. Based on my research the pay seems to be between $20-$60 per case. Please be careful of scams and never pay to work anywhere.
Work at a Call Center
- Steady Hours
- You can get a long-term visa/work permit
- Health insurance
- Meet Employed Filipinos
If you can speak another language besides English, it will be relatively easy to get a work permit. I speak Spanish, and I was offered a job at a call center earning approximately $1200 per month.
I’ve heard if you speak Mandarin Chinese that you can earn a lot more than that, though. There are many sites you can go to search for jobs in a call center. Jobstreet.com comes to mind as the most prominent.
Start a Youtube Channel
ONLY DO THIS ONE IF YOU HAVE SOMETHING UNIQUE AND INTERESTING TO SAY OR DO!
- Easy to get started
- Low cost of entry
- It can be a lot of fun
- You might be able to earn a lot of money
This may or may not be a quick way to earn money. I’ve seen channels take off and get monetized in a matter of weeks while other guys are still trying after more than a year. If you’re just planning on vlogging about your life it may be tough to stand out unless your girl is really hot or you have a really unique life.
Tim K is successful because his GF is hot and he’s living the dream (a house near the beach with beautiful scenery) and a nice car.
OldDogNewTricks is successful because his GF is hot and he’s also living the dream. Retired, in a beautiful quiet area near the beach, with a girl that wouldn’t give him the time of day back home.
Reekay Life Beyond the Sea was the first Philippines lifestyle vlogger
Actually, I’d be curious to see how someone scrapes by on a $200 per month budget.
If you want to start a youtube channel then you need good lighting and good audio. A mid-range smartphone will do in the beginning but keep in mind you can only go so far with the audio from a phone. Don’t expect to get rich being a Philippines lifestyle vlogger. Ad Revenue for a local audience (including expats) is low.
Most people only make about $2.00-$4.00 per thousand views. That means even TimK, one of the most successful Philippines bloggers I know only makes about $150-$200 for a video that gets 75k views. Most vloggers won’t reach that level though and the average vlogger who gets 2k-3k views per video is making about $4-$6 per video