How To Cope With Covid-19 While Overseas

You already heard or read about it somewhere. As of this writing, hundreds of thousands of people around the world are infected with Covid-19. Thousands were already dead since the virus was discovered late last year. Worse, millions around the world are unsure as to what will happen and how to recover when all of this is over.

This includes you.

You might be worried of the future since your bread and butter is temporarily halted. Because of the lockdown imposed by the government where you are located, you cannot work – and no work means no pay as well. Surely, you are more worried about your family back home, who is also dependent on remittances.

Times like this can be stressful. You might be anxious and has this urgency to go home but you can’t because of the imposed lockdown. The government, as much as they want, might not recommend repatriation because of the increased risk.

While this may be easier said that done, here are some tips to help you cope with coronavirus even while overseas:

Tip No. 1: Observe Proper Hygiene

Regardless of where you are, hygiene is a must. Covid-19 can be spread easily if we don’t practice proper hygiene, especially when going out.

Wash your hands regularly, sanitize and disinfect your home, and keep yourself clean at all times. Some say wearing a mask is not helpful, but you’ll never know who you’ll interact with so it’s better to have some protection. It won’t hurt if you use gloves, too, especially when going out.

Tip No. 2: Practice Social Distancing

This is a must. Close contact is among the easiest ways to spread the virus. As much as possible, practice social distancing or at least one meter away from other people.

Avoid crowded places. If possible, bulk up as much as you can to minimize your trips outside and increase your chances of catching the virus.

If you know someone who is sick, regardless of the cause, then it is best to stay away from that person – for now.

Tip No. 3: Maximize Technology

You could be missing your family now more than ever. Unfortunately, you cannot go home because of the risk.

Thankfully, there’s technology. Unlike decades ago, all you need is an Internet connection and Facebook account, and you can talk to your loved ones back home. Make sure to keep them updated of your situation because surely, they are worrying about you, too.

Tip No. 4: It’s Time To Bring Out Your Emergency Fund

We cannot stress enough the importance of having an emergency fund. Again, you’ll never know what will happen so it is best to be prepared.

The issue with imposed lockdowns means you cannot work as much as you want to. This could affect your current money status since you still need some to survive. If that’s the case, then you will need to use your Emergency Fund since, well, the situation is considered as emergency.

Tip No. 5: Take Care Of Yourself

Unfortunately, Covid-19 is deadlier on elderly people and those who are immuno-compromised or with underlying medical conditions. Even if you don’t have hypertension or diabetes among many medical conditions, this doesn’t mean you will be spared from contracting the virus.

That being said, make sure to take care of yourself not just for your own sake but also for your family. Get sufficient amount of sleep, exercise as much as you can, and eat healthy. A strong immune system is what people need these days and you need that as well.

Soon, this will be over and everyone could go back to their normal lives. While we all wait for that day, brace for impact and stay as healthy as you can.

6 Tips In Adapting To A Foreign Work Environment

Working abroad comes with tons of challenges, both personal and external. You have to deal with homesickness and carry the burden of ensuring that you will provide a better future for your family.

Apart from that, there is another challenge you have to deal with: foreign work place.

Starting a new job in the Philippines can be daunting. Can you imagine what it feels like to work to a new company that is thousands of miles away from home and with co-workers who don’t speak your language?

Not to worry because here are tips that will help you adapt to your foreign workplace and get along with your co-workers:

Tip No. 1: Always Do Your Research

This is important and the first thing you need to do before you go overseas.

Before you leave, read and learn as much as you can about your country destination. The PDOS will cover the basics but keep yourself informed as much as you can. Learn about their culture, way of life, traditions, clothing choice, and even food.

Research about work etiquette, too. Some countries prefer shake hands as a means of introduction while others like to bow. Some cultures are specific when it comes to introduction, so make sure to look into it as well.

The more you know, the easier for you to adapt because you know what to expect.

Tip No. 2: If Unsure, Then Ask Questions

In Filipino culture, oftentimes, asking questions is a sign of weakness. People assume and expect that you know until your mistake blows up.

Thankfully, other countries are not assuming. In fact, they will appreciate it more if you are honest about your limitations and willing to ask questions. Ask for help if you are not familiar about anything.

Just make sure to pay attention and remember what they say so they don’t have to repeat themselves.

Tip No. 3: Be A Good Observer

Again, you are in a different country. The things you are used to back home may not be the same as what others are doing in your work place. You might even be shocked with the things they are used to.

That being said, make it a habit to observe. Pay attention to how your co-workers are, especially the locals. Your research may not say a thing or two about how work is carried out in your work place so make sure you see how your co-workers are handling the work.

Tip No. 4: Learn Their Language

English may be the universal language but don’t assume that everyone knows how to speak it. In fact, you will have co-workers who won’t even make an effort to learn English.

This is why it is important to do your research. Make list of the common words and greetings in their local language. Make sure you practice proper pronounciation so people will understand you easily. This will make it easier for you to connect with them and vice versa.

Tip No. 5: Take Time To Explore

It’s not easy to make friends with someone who grew up with a different culture than yours. While you are still familiarizing your new environment, keep an open mind and start exploring the area around you. This will give you a better understanding of the new place and culture you are in.

Take this opportunity as well to build rapport with your new colleagues. Ask about must visit spots and recommended restaurants you can try. Who knows, they’ll give you a free tour.

Tip No. 6: Connect With The Filipino Community

Filipinos are everywhere so make sure you use that to your advantage, especially if you are the new kid on the block.

You will most likely have Filipino co-workers and it will help you a lot if you co-worker will guide you. If you are the lone Filipino in the workplace, then that’s fine, too. You will meet fellow Filipinos in the country where you’re working, so be friendly and say hi.

It will make a difference if you have the Filipino community backing you up. They will give you tips, do’s, and don’ts that you can remember to make working easier and enjoyable for you.

They’re a good source of connections as well, just in case you need a side job.

Adapting to a new environment, especially a foreign one, will not be a walk in the park. Take it one day at a time and you’ll get better eventually.

7 Signs You Should Leave Your Job Overseas

They say OFW life is not for everyone. That could be true. Can you just imagine battling with homesickness and living in a foreign country you’ve never been to?

Being an OFW requires tons of sacrifices – starting from the application process to adjusting to your new life overseas. Even going back home can be stressful as well, especially if you cannot present the required documents.

Nonetheless, there are instances that tell you that it’s time to go home even without finishing your contract. As much as it hurts to leave early, you have no choice.

Here are signs that tell you that you need to leave your job:

Sign No. 1: You Are Sickly

There is a reason why employers require medical exam. They need to know that you are physically fit to handle the job. Otherwise, your application will be rejected.

If you notice that you are becoming sickly up to the point where you cannot fulfill your job properly, then it’s probably best to go home. Your employer will most likely terminate your contract since you are not physically fit for the job.

Sign No. 2: Your Mental Health Is Suffering

Aside from being physically fit, OFWs must also be mentally fit.

Being away from your family could take a toll in your mental health. Some might be depressed, will experience homesickness, or will get paranoid. While it’s normal to be sad and feel worried, what employers don’t like is when these emotions are taking a toll on the job.

Perhaps, OFW life is not for you.

Sign No. 3: You Experience Abuse

This is a serious situation. Abuse, in whatever form, is and will never be tolerated. This could mean verbal abuse, bullying,

If you experience abuse from your employer or even your co-employees, then it’s best to go home. Make sure you coordinate with the Philippine Embassy since they have a Repatriation Program that helps distressed Filipinos into going back home.

Sign No. 4: You Were Scammed

Sometimes, it’s not your employer’s fault as to why you need to go back home. Sadly, illegal recruitment is still prevalent and if you happen to be a victim, you need to consider going back to the Philippines.

First, illegal recruitment is prohibited by law. Second, this would mean that you are an undocumented OFW. If the officials in the country where you’re working finds out that you don’t have legitimate papers, then consequences will follow. Some will put you in jail while others may have you deported.

The bottom line is be more careful and vigilant. Pay extra attention to the agency you are dealing with and check its status in the POEA website to see if it is a legitimate and licensed recruitment agency.

Sign No. 5: You Don’t Have Enough Opportunity For Growth

Surely, you don’t want to do the same things over and over. As much as possible, you want to improve and get better in your chosen career path.

But if you notice that you’ve been doing the same job, or you’re not given the opportunity to showcase your skill, or your voice doesn’t matter, or there is limited room for improvement and growth, then it’s time for a check.

Perhaps, there is a different path somewhere around the world where you will be able to thrive and showcase who you are.

Sign No. 6: The Salary Is Not Enough

Let’s face it. The real reason why you sought greener pastures outside the country is because of the amount of money you will make. You have tons of responsibilities and you want to make sure that you will be able to do something about those.

But if you are not being properly compensated considering your skills or work experience, or your employer is stripping your benefits despite what was written in the employment contract, the maybe it’s best to leave your job abroad.

Know your worth because you deserve fair compensation.

Sign No. 7: You Want A Career Change

Here’s the thing about being an adult: sometimes, you still cannot figure out what you want. You’ll only learn about what you really need when you are tasked to do something and you realized that you weren’t happy. You want to try something new because you need not only bigger pay but also the opportunity to try something new.

Plus, you’re getting bored with your job and everything seems like a routine to you. In that case, you need to figure it out what you really want.

Given these signs, do you need to leave your job overseas? Only you can answer that.

Where To Work For First Time OFWs

Working in the Philippines might seem hopeless for you. You want to make sure that you will provide the best life and future for your family so you decided to seek greener pastures.

The question is where. There are tons of countries in need of Filipino workers and the choices could be overwhelming, especially if it’s your first time. Hong Kong may be an instant choice as well but with the current condition of the city, it is best to explore your other options.

If you are a first-time OFW, then here are some of the country destinations ideal for you:


This is recommended especially if you don’t want to feel too far from home.

Singapore is among the best and most stable countries to work in because of their current economic status. Plus, the pay is good, so you will be able to save money in no time. You just have to be competitive, hardworking, and patient because Singaporeans are known for being workaholic.

Language won’t be an issue as well since many Singaporeans can speak English. It is also a haven for expats from around the world, which means communication won’t be a problem.

Technology-related jobs are in demand in Singapore. Marketing, sales, and food and beverage industry have tons of job openings as well that you might want to check out.

READ: OFW Guide to Living and Working In Singapore

United Arab Emirates

UAE is also another OFW-favorite. This immensely-rich country, thanks to oil and gas deposits, are in need of skilled workers who want to advance in their field of expertise.

Healthcare, engineering, domestic work, food and beverage, and BPO are in demand nowadays. The best part is your income is tax-free, so there’s nothing to worry.

READ: OFW Guide to Living and Working In UAE


There is a reason why Taiwan is becoming a popular tourist destination among Filipinos. Aside from food, there’s so much to see in this small but proud country. This is why it’s not surprising why many aspiring OFWs are looking into this as well.

There are tons of job opportunities in Taiwan such as factory work, domestic work, production, and other similar jobs. Plus, Taiwanese are generally not discriminatory and work permit will be taken cared of by your employer.

READ: OFW Guide to Living and Working In Taiwan

New Zealand

No, New Zealand is not all about cows. Believe it or not, there are tons of job opportunities for OFWs that you might want to consider working here. There’s a job waiting in the healthcare industry, tourism, sports, and even electronics.

Plus one since New Zealand also provides equal opportunities, regardless of gender and citizenship.

If you love nature, then this country is for you.

READ: OFW Guide to Living and Working In New Zealand


Sometimes, it’s not enough that you are working overseas. Eventually, you will miss your family and you would want to be with them 24/7. If you plan to move your family for good to a different country, then Canada is the best choice.

There are tons of job opportunities waiting with competitive employment and healthcare benefits. It’s also easier to secure permanent residency as long as you submit all the needed requirements.

The weather may be more challenging, though, so choose your state wisely.

READ: OFW Guide to Living and Working in Canada

Which among these countries are you most likely to go? Regardless of your choice, make sure you submit all requirements and be truthful about your information.

More importantly, work hard. These countries will provide you with the best opportunities and benefits but if you don’t take your job seriously, then you might end up going home with nothing.