Some Gleanings from my Travel Insurance Business

Since I started this travel insurance business more than 5 years ago, I picked up bits of info about the behavior of Filipinos or culture in general: PINOY CULTURE

1. Many Filipinos still want to migrate in the hope of searching for greener pastures.

From my dealings with some of my clients, it’s very evident that some of them will apply for a Schengen visa, even US/Canadian visa, for the purpose of staying there for good only to be denied because they do not have enough proof to show that they will come back. Many who come to me are jobless, or even sponsored by partners, even relatives.But it doesn’t follow that their visa application will be successful as I’ve seen it.

I dream of the day when our country will be able to provide stable, good paying jobs or better, even provide good business opportunities so that the “modern Josephs” will no longer have to leave the country for this purpose.

2. Filipinos love to cram.

I don’t know about the other nationalities but from experience, many Filipinos love to get something at the last minute. I have clients, out of desperation, will text, email or even call me, at the last hour because they have an interview with a schengen embassy the following morning.

I will never forget this particular client who had to fill up the application form for a family of five before emailing it to me and I had to wait until they have completed the requirements before I issue the travel policy online. We started around 11pm and we finished around past 2am! Talk about being a 24/7 service provider! LOL. Lest I be misunderstood, it’s all good. I love this kind of opportunities. And I just have to recover some sleep the next day for staying up late the night before.

I do not know when this kind of culture can be eradicated. I believe it is only through the renewing of the mindset before I can expect a zero incident of this kind of behavior.

3. More Filipinos are now open to purchase online via credit or debit card.

When the company I represent for this online travel insurance business, Chartis Philippines, announced 2 years ago that the travel insurance payment will have to be purchased via credit card, I thought my business will decline. In fact,  I still have some clients who are uncomfortable with this idea. And I have to make ways for them so i can still service their travel insurance requirements.

But majority of my clients whom I have never met at all trusted me with their credit card info and I only have to thank God for leading these clients to me.

4. Filipinos are one closely-knit families in this side of the world.

I’ve seen some of my clients sponsoring their families – parents, siblings, to spend some time with them in their new homeland. Some even sponsor just a mother who will stay with a daughter for six months, some a sister or a brother for 90 days. Some clients even sponsor the whole family every Christmas season, New Year celebration and it is heartening to know this whenever I encounter one.

Filipinos just love to travel – touring the country (via domestic travel insurance) and the world (global and schengen) and I love hearing from my clients how happy they were when they get their travel policies on  time because that completes their visa application requirements.

5. There are still many foreigners who prefer Filipino women as their partner or wife.

I vaguely recall what era was that, 70s or 80s, when the mail-order bride was a very popular term back then. This term simply means that there are foreigners looking for Filipino women to marry or just take care of them and through this process, they are able to find out to meet their need.  I thought this is no longer the case in the 90s and to this day. I was wrong. There are still many foreigners longing for a Filipina partner. I’ve seen it with my own eyes. I’ve even met some of them. You won’t believe it but the age discrepancy even beats the age difference of the late comedy king Dolphy and Zsa-Zsa by a mile. Nothing wrong with that. Just stating a fact. One foreigner client whom I’ve met even boasted Filipino women are the best in the world.

And only recently, I recently got a picture from a client, in his 70s, who was happy to inform me that he is now married to his girlfriend, in her 20s. He even emailed a picture of them. And they both look good and happy together.

Does this tell something about those seeking greener pastures via intermarriages?

These are but bits and pieces, gleanings I have learned in the course of time while doing travel insurance business with my clients.

I hope to add more as I continue this business that the Lord has bestowed on me by His grace.


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