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Living In Bacolod Philippines As An Expat

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    Living In Bacolod Philippines: Have you been wondering what is life like living in Bacolod as a foreigner? Of course, the Philippines, in general, is a beautiful country, and there are many unique cities all across the country. Still, the question is, what makes Bacolod a good place to live for foreigners, and should you consider moving there?

    Today’s guide will cover these questions and more as we dive into what life is like in Bacolod Philippines as a foreigner. For a more visual guide, feel free to head over to our YouTube channel for the latest on Bacolod city.  

    What Is Bacolod City Known For

    Bacolod city in the Philippines is best known for its friendly locals and urbanized atmosphere. The city is nicknamed the city of smiles due to the friendliness of locals. In addition, Bacolod city is known in the food scene for local cuisines such as piaya and chicken inasal.

    What Is The Vibe Of The City

    The general vibe of the city is laidback. However, Bacolod has its fair share of malls and developments, resulting in a more modern feel. Similar to most parts of the Philippines, there is a great deal of growth in this current era, so you may see construction and developments as you walk around in the city.

    Suppose you are thinking about living in Bacolod city as a foreigner. In that case, you will find that the locals are extremely positive and open towards foreign visitors, which positively impacts the overall atmosphere for foreigners who decide to visit and live in Bacolod in the Philippines.

    In addition, there are also some additional features which make life in Bacolod city so much more unique such as its water park and historical plazas and monuments.

    Lastly, when exploring the overall vibe of a city such as Bacolod, it’s important to consider the nightlife. Bacolod has a few bars, but the nightlife is not as big as other cities in the Philippines; thus, if you are looking for a party city, you may find other cities such as Cebu City or Metropolitan Manila more appropriate.

    Like Cebu city, there are also several business process outsourcing centers across the city, so you may find that many locals you meet work in call centers for American, Australian, or British companies.

    What Is The Cost Of Living In Bacolod

    The cost of living in Bacolod Philippines is approximately $850 – $1150 a month for a standard expat. If you can live frugally, then the total living expenses in Bacolod are around $700 a month (excluding your extra lifestyle costs).  In most cases, lifestyle extras are $100 – $450 each month, resulting in a total of $850 – $1150 on average.

    The cost of living in Bacolod as a foreigner would differ greatly on two significant factors. The first one is where you live. If you choose a popular neighborhood in a new condo development, you may be paying more than someone who lives in an apartment or a cheaper neighborhood.

    The second significant factor that impacts the cost of living in Bacolod will be your lifestyle expenses. For example, suppose you wish to travel to Cebu or Iloilo city every so often or visit other parts of the mainland. In that case, transportation costs must be factored in, which increases the general lifestyle expenses of an expat living in the Philippines.

    Living expenses in Bacolod city such as mobile phone bills, water bills, laundry, and gym membership often remain low. All of which are often under 2000 pesos ($40). Water & phone bills are the lowest at only a few hundred pesos a month. But again, this is only based on an average, and your living expenses may be slightly higher or lower depending on your usage.

    When looking at the cost of living for a condominium in Bacolod, you will find that most small studios range between 15-17K Pesos ($300 – $339). On the other hand, larger one-bedroom units are often priced between 20K-25K Pesos ($400 – $498). Therefore, a cheap option for living in Bacolod cities in the Philippines is to rent a small house. Prices range between 6K-13K ($120 – $259) a month for a house in Bacolod city.

    For those who are interested in-hospital treatment, there are many different options and services in the city. Of course, it’s always recommended to obtain health insurance. Still, if you decide to go out of pocket, you may be happily surprised by the cost-effective services, including some cosmetic treatment.

    To summarise, the cost of living in Bacolod will depend on your lifestyle and living expenses. The cost of living in Bacolod city in the Philippines remains low, and therefore some expats can live frugally on less than $800. however, The cost of living for most foreigners ranges between $850 – $1150 a month.

    Is Bacolod City Safe?

    The topic of safety covers many different categories. For example, before moving to Bacolod City, you will most likely want to know about crime, terrorism, food safety, natural disasters, and so on, so let’s take a look at the most significant factors of safety in Bacolod city.

    According to online contributions over the last three years, the crime index score reflects moderate. It’s important to note that most cities in the Philippines are generally rated as having an average crime index score. Most cities have a higher level of crime due to their ever-growing population.

    However, officially, The Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO) reported a decrease of 19.14% in criminal cases from January to March 2021. The total cases were only 321 incidents recorded compared to 397 for the same period last year.

    BCPO stated that the decrease in incidents is from careful policing operations and enhancements of police management.

    A non-government organization has continuously pushed food safety awareness with consumers and food vendors around the city in terms of food safety. As a result, specific laws are designed to protect consumers, and tighter food safety inspections look to increase as the population grows.

    Unfortunately, the Philippines is one of the most natural disaster-prone countries globally. Therefore, earthquakes and floods are common in many parts of the Philippines, including Bacolod city. Fortunately, large-scale natural disasters are rare, but smaller, less significant natural disasters such as mini earthquakes can be common.

    What Is There To Do In Bacolod City In The Philippines

    One of the great things about living in the Bacolod, Philippines, is its accessibility to nearby areas such as Cebu.  Meaning that as an expat living in Bacolod, you could easily take a trip to other areas outside of the city. However, staying in the city – let’s take a look at a list of things to do in Bacolod Philippines

    • Bacolod Public Plaza
    • Barangay Sang Virgen Chape
    • Buro-Buro And Bucal-Bucal Springs.
    • Dizon Ramos Museum
    • Eco-Garden 
    • Fountain Of Justice
    • Iron Dinosaurs
    • Lizares-Rodriguez Mansion
    • Mariano Ramos Ancestral Home
    • Mt. Kanla-On Natural Park
    • Museum Negrense De La Salle
    • Negros Museum
    • St. Jude Thaddeus Shrine
    • The Ruins
    • Theodore Vinther Monument

    As mentioned, there is also plenty of things to do outside of the main city. Therefore, I’ve added several links in the paragraphs above for extra resources on things to do in Bacolod City.

    Is Living In Bacolod Philippines A Good Idea

    Bacolod Is a beautiful city in a fantastic area. So if you are looking to travel to other parts of the Philippines during your stay, Bacolod is a great option. However, what I found most surprising was the different options for sports, whether that be football, basketball, karate, or anything else, which increases the quality of life if you are looking to take up a new hobby while enjoying your new life in Bacolod city.

    From our calculations and the latest population statistics, the population of Bacolod city is around 59% smaller than Cebu, which means that the lifestyle is slightly quieter, which is often an advantage for those looking to settle down all those who are retired.

     One other area of interest when deciding if living in Bacolod Philippines is a good idea or not is your overall lifestyle. For example, are you in a position where you wish to party and let your hair down? Or are you looking for a quieter lifestyle to explore nature and enjoy your retirement?

    The reason why this question is important is that this will highlight what is most important to you, and from there, you can compare what you desire to the overall quality of life in Bacolod city.

    Many expats have visited and stayed long term in Bacolod city in the Philippines due to the high quality of life. This includes a lower living expense and in vibrant city experience. Whether Bacolod city is right for you will depend on your overall lifestyle needs.

    Living In Bacolod Philippines