Here’s the truth about applying for a job overseas: before you can set foot in a foreign land, you need to pay for certain fees in order to make the job possible. This includes payment of placement fee.
Placement fee is the amount that either you or the employer has paid to the recruitment agency as a form of compensation for hiring a qualified worker for an overseas job. It usually amounts to equivalent to or less than one-month-worth of salary. This fee is placed in a fund, which can be used to assist an overseas Filipino worker in times of need.
Despite its good intentions, most Filipinos dread the day they have to pay for placement fee. Some agencies prefer “salary deduction” wherein a portion of your salary will be remitted for payment of placement fee. Apparently, not all agencies do that. As a result, Filipinos often borrow money from relatives; hence “utang na loob.” Some would even sell valuable assets like residential lots or farming lands to make up for the fee.
Still, the key here is preparation – and these tips will help you raise enough funds for it (without giving up your home or other valuable assets):
1. Look for something you can sell.
It could be shirts or shoes you never get to wear or items that are still in mint condition. You can even sell unopened, duplicate items like lotion or shampoo. Believe it or not, some things you don’t need anymore could be valuable to other people, so why not convert it into cash.
The good thing about this is that selling them easier. Take good pictures, provide all the information needed, and then post them on OLX, Facebook, or Instagram to attract potential buyers. The best thing about this is that it is free.
2. Get a side job.
Aside from selling some of your items, you should also consider getting a side job or do some freelancing to help you raise enough funds. The good thing about this is that you get to work at your own pace and you are only hired on a per-project basis.
You can try freelance writing, English tutor, or data encoding jobs. The pay may not be that high, but it is good enough to add to your placement fee fund. If someone in the family enjoys baking or crafting, then put them into good use by selling products online.
3. Eliminate unnecessary expenses.
It could be eating out in restaurants (fast-food is considered as eating out), going out every weekend, or coffee trips with your family. Perhaps your spouse enjoys online shopping, which can be considered as unnecessary if the item bought doesn’t come with sense of urgency. The point is there are some expenses that are considered unnecessary because they are something you can postpone.
If you want to save up for your placement fee, then do your best to eliminate spending for unnecessary expenses, regardless of how small the amount is. P1.00 is still P1.00 and it could make a difference if you are saving up for your placement fee.
4. Do not immediately resort to loan.
If you prefer something quick and instant, then borrowing money could solve your placement fee problems. Still, this equates to debt, which you need to pay for every month.
Therefore, do not immediately borrow money from lenders to avoid incurring penalty or interest charges in case of late payment or inability to pay the loan. This could also affect your chances of getting a loan the next time you apply for more urgent needs because of your history of non-payment. Surely, you don’t want that to happen.
Take note that payment of placement fee will only be done AFTER you signed an employment contract bearing the job you were accepted for. Stay away from recruitment agencies that ask for payment of placement fee the moment you submitted an application form.
Nonetheless, take note of these tips (and make sure you do them) so you don’t have to worry when the time comes and you have to pay for it.